library

noun
li·​brary | \ ˈlī-ˌbrer-ē How to pronounce library (audio) , -ˌbre-rē; British usually and US sometimes -brə-rē; British often and US sometimes -brē, nonstandard -ˌber-ē, nonstandard -ˌbe-rē How to pronounce library (audio) \
plural libraries

Definition of library

1a : a place in which literary, musical, artistic, or reference materials (such as books, manuscripts, recordings, or films) are kept for use but not for sale
b : a collection of such materials a library of jazz recordings
2a : a collection resembling or suggesting a library an illustrations library
3a : a series of related books issued by a publisher a Dickens library
b : a collection of publications on the same subject
4 : a collection of cloned DNA fragments that are maintained in a suitable cellular environment and that usually represent the genetic material of a particular organism or tissue

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Synonyms for library

Synonyms

archive

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How do you pronounce library?: Usage Guide

While the pronunciation \ˈlī-ˌbrer-ē\ is the most frequent variant in the U.S., the other variants are not uncommon. The contraction \ˈlī-brē\ and the dissimilated form \ˈlī-ˌber-ē\ result from the relative difficulty of repeating \r\ in the same syllable or successive syllables; our files contain citations for these variants from educated speakers, including college presidents and professors, as well as with somewhat greater frequency from less educated speakers.

Examples of library in a Sentence

I borrowed the book from the school library. He has an impressive library of jazz records. a library of computer programs
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Recent Examples on the Web

The library, founded in 1981, is a favorite stop for reading, research, and events. Jessica Flint, WSJ, "Big Sur Blends Rustic Charm With Sleek Design," 12 Feb. 2019 Completed only a few weeks ago by artist, and former bookbinder, Sharalee Armitage Howard, this library is now part of the Free Little Library Organization. Madeleine Bokan, House Beautiful, "Tree Libraries Are The New Tree Houses," 13 Jan. 2019 Even by the standards of eclectic Paris bookstores, the personal library in the back of Studio 7L is immense, about 80,000 volumes. Erik Maza, Town & Country, "Karl Lagerfeld Turns Interior Designer With a New Miami Masterpiece," 3 Jan. 2019 This school library in India is continuing the tradition with a sloping shape that merges with the ground. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "You can walk on the roof of this sloping brick library in India," 21 Sep. 2018 The library is a mix of purple, mauve, and electric blue. Whitney Robinson, ELLE Decor, "A Maximalist Dream Home Comes to Life In Seville," 5 Sep. 2018 The library is a city facility that operates with its own tax levy and a nine-member board. Linda Girardi, Aurora Beacon-News, "Yorkville Library Board member 'lucky to be alive' after chain-reaction crash," 12 July 2018 The library is offering sewing classes for children this summer. Courant Community, "Community News For The Vernon Edition," 10 July 2018 Facilities in the Department of Recreation and Parks — such as recreation centers, museums and senior centers — as well as libraries are available as cooling centers during regular hours, city officials said. Sarah Parvini, latimes.com, "Southern California sets all-time heat records amid broiling conditions," 7 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'library.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of library

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for library

Middle English, from Anglo-French librarie, Medieval Latin librarium, from Latin, neuter of librarius of books, from libr-, liber inner bark, rind, book

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Statistics for library

Last Updated

18 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for library

The first known use of library was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for library

library

noun

English Language Learners Definition of library

: a place where books, magazines, and other materials (such as videos and musical recordings) are available for people to use or borrow
: a room in a person's house where books are kept
: a collection of similar things (such as books or recordings)

library

noun
li·​brary | \ ˈlī-ˌbrer-ē How to pronounce library (audio) \
plural libraries

Kids Definition of library

1 : a place where literary or reference materials (as books, manuscripts, recordings, or films) are kept for use but are not for sale
2 : a collection of literary or reference materials They have a large personal library.

library

noun
li·​brary | \ ˈlī-ˌbrer-ē How to pronounce library (audio) \
plural libraries

Medical Definition of library

: a collection of cloned DNA fragments that are maintained in a suitable cellular environment and that represent the genetic material of a particular organism or tissue inserting segments from a library of human DNA into yeast cellsScience News

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Comments on library

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of or relating to a parable or parabola

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