letter

A letter is one of the characters that make up the alphabet. When a child first learns to write, she often starts with the letters in her name. Then she can write a message, or letter, to her grandmother.

The alphabet begins with the letters a, b, c, d. These are written as capital letters when they appear at the start of a sentence or a proper noun, such as a person's name. Another letter is the kind you write and send to someone through the mail. Letter comes from the Old French letre, "character, letter, or note," from the Latin littera, "letter of the alphabet," and also "a writing or document."

Primary Meanings of letter

1.
n
a written message addressed to a person or organization
2.
nv
the conventional characters of the alphabet used to represent speech
mark letters on or mark with letters
3.
n
owner who lets another person use something (housing usually) for hire
4.
nv
an award earned by participation in a school sport
win an athletic letter
Full Definitions of letter
1

n a written message addressed to a person or organization

“mailed an indignant letter to the editor”
Synonyms:
missive
Types:
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business letter
a letter dealing with business
cover letter, covering letter
a letter sent along with other documents to provide additional information
crank letter
a hostile (usually anonymous) letter
encyclical, encyclical letter
a letter from the pope sent to all Roman Catholic bishops throughout the world
fan letter
a letter that is a piece of fan mail
personal letter
a letter dealing with personal affairs
form letter
a letter that is printed in multiple copies and mailed to a list of recipients
open letter
a letter of protest; addressed to one person but intended for the general public
chain letter
a letter that is sent successively to several people
pastoral
a letter from a pastor to the congregation
round robin
a letter signed by a number of people
aerogram, aerogramme, air letter, airmail letter
a letter sent by air mail
epistle
a specially long, formal letter
dead letter, dead mail
mail that can neither be delivered nor returned
letter of intent
any letter expressing an intention to take (or forgo) some action
invitation
a request (spoken or written) to participate or be present or take part in something
billet, line, note, short letter
a short personal letter
billet doux, love letter
a personal letter to a loved one expressing affection
bidding, summons
a request to be present
invite
a colloquial expression for invitation
investment letter
a letter of intent saying that a letter security is being bought for investment and not for resale; avoids need for SEC registration
Type of:
document
anything serving as a representation of a person's thinking by means of symbolic marks
text, textual matter
the words of something written
2

n the conventional characters of the alphabet used to represent speech

“his grandmother taught him his letters
Synonyms:
alphabetic character, letter of the alphabet
Types:
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ascender
a lowercase letter that has a part extending above other lowercase letters
descender
a lowercase letter that has a part extending below other lowercase letters
digram, digraph
two successive letters (especially two letters used to represent a single sound: `sh' in `shoe')
initial
the first letter of a word (especially a person's name)
A, a
the 1st letter of the Roman alphabet
B, b
the 2nd letter of the Roman alphabet
C, c
the 3rd letter of the Roman alphabet
D, d
the 4th letter of the Roman alphabet
E, e
the 5th letter of the Roman alphabet
F, f
the 6th letter of the Roman alphabet
G, g
the 7th letter of the Roman alphabet
H, h
the 8th letter of the Roman alphabet
I, i
the 9th letter of the Roman alphabet
J, j
the 10th letter of the Roman alphabet
K, k
the 11th letter of the Roman alphabet
L, l
the 12th letter of the Roman alphabet
M, m
the 13th letter of the Roman alphabet
N, n
the 14th letter of the Roman alphabet
O, o
the 15th letter of the Roman alphabet
P, p
the 16th letter of the Roman alphabet
Q, q
the 17th letter of the Roman alphabet
R, r
the 18th letter of the Roman alphabet
S, s
the 19th letter of the Roman alphabet
T, t
the 20th letter of the Roman alphabet
U, u
the 21st letter of the Roman alphabet
V, v
the 22nd letter of the Roman alphabet
W, double-u, w
the 23rd letter of the Roman alphabet
X, ex, x
the 24th letter of the Roman alphabet
Y, wye, y
the 25th letter of the Roman alphabet
Z, ezed, izzard, z, zed, zee
the 26th letter of the Roman alphabet
alpha
the 1st letter of the Greek alphabet
beta
the 2nd letter of the Greek alphabet
gamma
the 3rd letter of the Greek alphabet
delta
the 4th letter of the Greek alphabet
epsilon
the 5th letter of the Greek alphabet
zeta
the 6th letter of the Greek alphabet
eta
the 7th letter of the Greek alphabet
theta
the 8th letter of the Greek alphabet
iota
the 9th letter of the Greek alphabet
kappa
the 10th letter of the Greek alphabet
lambda
the 11th letter of the Greek alphabet
mu
the 12th letter of the Greek alphabet
nu
the 13th letter of the Greek alphabet
xi
the 14th letter of the Greek alphabet
omicron
the 15th letter of the Greek alphabet
pi
the 16th letter of the Greek alphabet
rho
the 17th letter of the Greek alphabet
sigma
the 18th letter of the Greek alphabet
tau
the 19th letter of the Greek alphabet
upsilon
the 20th letter of the Greek alphabet
phi
the 21st letter of the Greek alphabet
chi, khi
the 22nd letter of the Greek alphabet
psi
the 23rd letter of the Greek alphabet
omega
the last (24th) letter of the Greek alphabet
aleph
the 1st letter of the Hebrew alphabet
beth
the 2nd letter of the Hebrew alphabet
gimel
the 3rd letter of the Hebrew alphabet
daleth
the 4th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
he
the 5th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
waw
the 6th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
zayin
the 7th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
heth
the 8th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
teth
the 9th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
yodh
the 10th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
kaph
the 11th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
lamedh
the 12th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
mem
the 13th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
nun
the 14th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
samekh
the 15th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
ayin
the 16th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
pe
the 17th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
sadhe
the 18th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
qoph
the 19th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
resh
the 20th letter of the Hebrew alphabet
sin
the 21st letter of the Hebrew alphabet
shin
the 22nd letter of the Hebrew alphabet
taw
the 23rd letter of the Hebrew alphabet
polyphone, polyphonic letter
a letter that has two or more pronunciations
block capital, block letter
a plain hand-drawn letter
vowel
a letter of the alphabet standing for a spoken vowel
consonant
a letter of the alphabet standing for a spoken consonant
vowel point
a mark placed below or near a consonant (as in Hebrew or Arabic) to indicate the spoken vowel
Type of:
character, grapheme, graphic symbol
a written symbol that is used to represent speech

n a strictly literal interpretation (as distinct from the intention)

“he followed instructions to the letter
“he obeyed the letter of the law”
Type of:
literal interpretation
an interpretation based on the exact wording

v mark letters on or mark with letters

Type of:
write
mark or trace on a surface

v set down or print with letters

Type of:
impress, print
reproduce by printing
3

n owner who lets another person use something (housing usually) for hire

Type of:
owner, proprietor
(law) someone who owns (is legal possessor of) a business
4

n an award earned by participation in a school sport

“he won letters in three sports”
Synonyms:
varsity letter
Type of:
accolade, award, honor, honour, laurels
a tangible symbol signifying approval or distinction

v win an athletic letter

Type of:
earn, garner
acquire or deserve by one's efforts or actions

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