Definition of literature
1 archaic : literary culture
2 : the production of literary work especially as an occupation Literature is his profession.
3a (1) : writings in prose or verse; especially : writings having excellence of form or expression and expressing ideas of permanent or universal interest literature stands related to man as science stands to nature — J. H. Newman (2) : an example of such writings what came out, though rarely literature, was always a roaring good story — Peopleb : the body of written works produced in a particular language, country, or age French literature Renaissance literaturec : the body of writings on a particular subject scientific literatured : printed matter (such as leaflets or circulars) campaign literature
4 : the aggregate of a usually specified type of musical compositions the Brahms piano literature
Examples of literature in a Sentence
She took courses in history and literature.
Her education gave her an appreciation for great literature.
He's an expert in American literature.
the literature of the Renaissance
studies in different Asian literatures
Can you send me some literature about your product?
Recent Examples of literature from the Web
Turn little adventure seekers into budding botanists using an app like Project Noah to identify plants, map a hunt at the local library to take a tour through kids’ literature, or give geocaching a try to uncover secret treasures near and far.
Victorianization’ in the form of railroads, cotton and literature.
Her father was a professor of American literature at the University of Hawaii, who was fiercely intellectual and politically conservative but never dogmatic.
Ms. Lauber, 30, is a doctoral candidate in English literature at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and is to begin studying for a law degree at Harvard in August.
According to the medical literature, the odds that this treatment will succeed are better than good.
The Conti Brandolini d’Adda eventually settled down to enjoy the cultivation of the finer things: art, music, literature, as well as grapes.
Glover has trekked to Chicago from Lexington, Ky., for Lit Fest every year since 1986 to sell rare, used and out-of-print literature.
The parade featured dozens of floats and marchers throwing candy and handing out literature.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'literature'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of literature
Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin litteratura writing, grammar, learning, from litteratus
First Known Use: 15th centurySee Words from the same year
LITERATURE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of literature for English Language Learners
: written works (such as poems, plays, and novels) that are considered to be very good and to have lasting importance
: books, articles, etc., about a particular subject
: printed materials (such as booklets, leaflets, and brochures) that provide information about something
LITERATURE Defined for Kids
Definition of literature for Students
1 : written works considered as having high quality and ideas of lasting and widespread interest
2 : written material I read some travel literature before my vacation.
Seen and Heard
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