Hypertext Webster Gateway: "letter"

From Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary (easton)

in Rom. 2:27, 29 means the outward form. The "oldness of the
letter" (7:6) is a phrase which denotes the old way of literal
outward obedience to the law as a system of mere external rules
of conduct. In 2 Cor. 3:6, "the letter" means the Mosaic law as
a written law. (See {WRITING}.)

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Letter \Let"ter\ (l[e^]t"t[~e]r), n. [From {Let} to permit.]
One who lets or permits; one who lets anything for hire.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Letter \Let"ter\, n. [From {Let} to hinder.]
One who retards or hinders. [Archaic.]

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Letter \Let"ter\, n. [OE. lettre, F. lettre, OF. letre, fr. L.
littera, litera, a letter; pl., an epistle, a writing,
literature, fr. linere, litum, to besmear, to spread or rub
over; because one of the earliest modes of writing was by
graving the characters upon tablets smeared over or covered
with wax. --Pliny, xiii. 11. See {Liniment}, and cf.
1. A mark or character used as the representative of a sound,
or of an articulation of the human organs of speech; a
first element of written language.

And a superscription also was written over him in
letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew. --Luke
xxiii. 38.

2. A written or printed communication; a message expressed in
intelligible characters on something adapted to
conveyance, as paper, parchment, etc.; an epistle.

The style of letters ought to be free, easy, and
natural. --Walsh.

3. A writing; an inscription. [Obs.]

None could expound what this letter meant.

4. Verbal expression; literal statement or meaning; exact
signification or requirement.

We must observe the letter of the law, without doing
violence to the reason of the law and the intention
of the lawgiver. --Jer. Taylor.

I broke the letter of it to keep the sense.

5. (Print.) A single type; type, collectively; a style of

Under these buildings . . . was the king's printing
house, and that famous letter so much esteemed.

6. pl. Learning; erudition; as, a man of letters.

7. pl. A letter; an epistle. [Obs.] --Chaucer.

{Dead letter}, {Drop letter}, etc. See under {Dead}, {Drop},

{Letter book}, a book in which copies of letters are kept.

{Letter box}, a box for the reception of letters to be mailed
or delivered.

{Letter carrier}, a person who carries letters; a postman;
specif., an officer of the post office who carries letters
to the persons to whom they are addressed, and collects
letters to be mailed.

{Letter cutter}, one who engraves letters or letter punches.

{Letter lock}, a lock that can not be opened when fastened,
unless certain movable lettered rings or disks forming a
part of it are in such a position (indicated by a
particular combination of the letters) as to permit the
bolt to be withdrawn.

A strange lock that opens with AMEN. --Beau. & Fl.

{Letter paper}, paper for writing letters on; especially, a
size of paper intermediate between note paper and
foolscap. See {Paper}.

{Letter punch}, a steel punch with a letter engraved on the
end, used in making the matrices for type.

{Letters of administration} (Law), the instrument by which an
administrator or administratrix is authorized to
administer the goods and estate of a deceased person.

{Letter of attorney}, {Letter of credit}, etc. See under
{Attorney}, {Credit}, etc.

{Letter of license}, a paper by which creditors extend a
debtor's time for paying his debts.

{Letters close or clause} (Eng. Law.), letters or writs
directed to particular persons for particular purposes,
and hence closed or sealed on the outside; --
distinguished from letters patent. --Burrill.

{Letters of orders} (Eccl.), a document duly signed and
sealed, by which a bishop makes it known that he has
regularly ordained a certain person as priest, deacon,

{Letters patent}, {overt}, or {open} (Eng. Law), a writing
executed and sealed, by which power and authority are
granted to a person to do some act, or enjoy some right;
as, letters patent under the seal of England.

{Letter-sheet envelope}, a stamped sheet of letter paper
issued by the government, prepared to be folded and sealed
for transmission by mail without an envelope.

{Letters testamentary} (Law), an instrument granted by the
proper officer to an executor after probate of a will,
authorizing him to act as executor.

{Letter writer}.
(a) One who writes letters.
(b) A machine for copying letters.
(c) A book giving directions and forms for the writing of

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Letter \Let"ter\ (l[e^]t"t[~e]r), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Lettered}
(-t[~e]rd); p. pr. & vb. n. {Lettering}.]
To impress with letters; to mark with letters or words; as, a
book gilt and lettered.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Letter \Let"ter\, n. (Teleg.)
A telegram longer than an ordinary message sent at rates
lower than the standard message rate in consideration of its
being sent and delivered subject to priority in service of
regular messages. Such telegrams are called by the Western
Union Company {day, or night, letters} according to the time
of sending, and by The Postal Telegraph Company {day, or
night, lettergrams}.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Attorney \At*tor"ney\, n.; pl. {Attorneys}. [OE. aturneye, OF.
atorn['e], p. p. of atorner: cf. LL. atturnatus, attornatus,
fr. attornare. See {Attorn}.]
1. A substitute; a proxy; an agent. [Obs.]

And will have no attorney but myself. --Shak.

2. (Law)
(a) One who is legally appointed by another to transact
any business for him; an attorney in fact.
(b) A legal agent qualified to act for suitors and
defendants in legal proceedings; an attorney at law.

Note: An attorney is either public or private. A private
attorney, or an attorney in fact, is a person appointed
by another, by a letter or power of attorney, to
transact any business for him out of court; but in a
more extended sense, this class includes any agent
employed in any business, or to do any act in pais, for
another. A public attorney, or attorney at law, is a
practitioner in a court of law, legally qualified to
prosecute and defend actions in such court, on the
retainer of clients. --Bouvier. -- The attorney at law
answers to the procurator of the civilians, to the
solicitor in chancery, and to the proctor in the
ecclesiastical and admiralty courts, and all of these
are comprehended under the more general term lawyer. In
Great Britain and in some states of the United States,
attorneys are distinguished from counselors in that the
business of the former is to carry on the practical and
formal parts of the suit. In many states of the United
States however, no such distinction exists. In England,
since 1873, attorneys at law are by statute called

{A power}, {letter}, or {warrant}, {of attorney}, a written
authority from one person empowering another to transact
business for him.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

n 1: a written message addressed to a person or organization;
"wrote an indignant letter to the editor" [syn: {missive}]
2: the conventional characters of the alphabet used to
represent speech; "his grandmother taught him his letters"
[syn: {letter of the alphabet}, {alphabetic character}]
3: a strictly literal interpretation (as distinct from the
intention); "he followed instructions to the letter"; "he
obeyed the letter of the law"
4: an award earned by participation in a school sport; "he won
letters in three sports" [syn: {varsity letter}]
5: owner who lets another person use something (housing
usually) for hire
v 1: win an athletic letter, in sports
2: set down or print with letters
3: mark letters on or mark with letters

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