li·​ter | \ ˈlē-tər How to pronounce liter (audio) \
variants: or

Definition of liter

: a metric unit of capacity equal to one cubic decimeter — see Metric System Table

Examples of liter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Milk for children is very expensive too, a liter of milk costs over $1. Ideas Desk, Time, "A Syrian Medic’s Account of His City’s Siege: ‘People Don’t Celebrate Birthdays Now’," 22 Feb. 2018 Near Tongariki, the team found an area where the water contained just 3,690mg of salt per liter. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "How did Easter Islanders survive without wells or streams?," 17 Oct. 2018 Using a standard fuel canister and ignitor built into the burner, the 14.5-ounce stove-and-pot set brings a half-liter of water to boil in under 2 minutes. Clint Carter, WSJ, "Never Camped in the Snow? You’re Missing Out.," 11 Dec. 2018 Because of Canada’s protectionist dairy industry, Canadian farmers earn much more per liter of milk. Rick Noack, Washington Post, "G-7 rift generates another dispute: Whether Canada’s Trudeau belongs in heaven or hell," 11 June 2018 Ice samples from five regions across the Arctic Ocean contained up to 12,000 of the tiny particles per liter of sea ice, researchers say. John Bacon, USA TODAY, "Arctic ice choked with record amount of microplastic from cigarette butts to packing material," 25 Apr. 2018 Casa says a gram of sodium per liter is generally a good amount, which is the serving size found in products like Nuun and Gatorade Endurance Formula. Laura Schwecherl, SELF, "The First-Time Marathoner's Guide to Fuel and Hydration for Your Marathon Training," 6 Oct. 2018 Instead, Toyota brought forth a machine aimed at its own class with a 2.0 liter, four-cylinder engine across three separate trim levels—the C-HR LE ($20,945), XLE ($22,980), and Limited ($26,000). John Scott Lewinski, Ars Technica, "Toyota goes beyond boring and beige with the 2018 C-HR crossover," 4 Sep. 2018 Participants in this 2013 trial followed a low-fat diet (which does not really work for many people) compared to a Mediterranean diet supplemented with either a liter of olive oil per week or daily nut supplementation. David Becker,, "Major study on Mediterranean Diet was retracted, but this cardiologist recommends this way of eating," 19 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'liter.' 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 liter

1797, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for liter

French litre, from Medieval Latin litra, a measure, from Greek, a weight

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Dictionary Entries near liter

lit de repos






literal contract

Statistics for liter

Last Updated

9 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for liter

The first known use of liter was in 1797

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More Definitions for liter



English Language Learners Definition of liter

: a metric unit for measuring the volume of a liquid or gas that is equal to 1.057 quarts


li·​ter | \ ˈlē-tər How to pronounce liter (audio) \

Kids Definition of liter

: a metric unit of liquid capacity equal to 1.057 quarts


variants: or chiefly British litre \ ˈlēt-​ər How to pronounce litre (audio) \

Medical Definition of liter

: a metric unit of capacity equal to the volume of one kilogram of water at 4°C (39°F) and at standard atmospheric pressure of 760 millimeters of mercury

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More from Merriam-Webster on liter

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with liter

Spanish Central: Translation of liter

Nglish: Translation of liter for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of liter for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about liter

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