memorandum

play
noun mem·o·ran·dum \ˌme-mə-ˈran-dəm\

Definition of memorandum

plural

memorandums

or

memoranda

play \-də\
  1. 1 :  an informal record; also :  a written reminder

  2. 2 :  an informal written record of an agreement that has not yet become official

  3. 3a :  an informal diplomatic (see diplomatic 2) communicationb :  a usually brief communication written for interoffice circulation <The company president sent a memorandum to every employee.>c :  a communication that contains directive, advisory, or informative matter <The memorandum called particular attention to the plight of refugees.>

memorandums or memoranda?

Although some commentators warn against the use of memoranda as a singular and condemn the plural memorandas, our evidence indicates that these forms are rarely encountered in print. We have a little evidence of the confusion of forms, including use of memorandum as a plural, in speech (as at congressional hearings). As plurals memoranda and memorandums are about equally frequent.

Examples of memorandum in a sentence

  1. <I'm waiting for the memorandum that will explain the new vacation policy.>

  2. <the studio executives depend on endless memoranda to keep track of what's going on at a movie shot on location>

Origin and Etymology of memorandum

Middle English, to be remembered, from Latin, neuter of memorandus, gerundive of memorare


First Known Use: 15th century


MEMORANDUM Defined for English Language Learners

memorandum

play
noun mem·o·ran·dum \ˌme-mə-ˈran-dəm\

Definition of memorandum for English Language Learners

  • : a usually brief written message or report from one person or department in a company or organization to another

  • law : an informal written record of an agreement that has not yet become official


MEMORANDUM Defined for Kids

memorandum

play
noun mem·o·ran·dum \ˌme-mə-ˈran-dəm\

Definition of memorandum for Students

plural

memorandums

or

memoranda

\-də\
  1. 1 :  an informal report or message

  2. 2 :  a written reminder


Law Dictionary

memorandum

play
noun mem·o·ran·dum \ˌme-mə-ˈran-dəm\

Legal Definition of memorandum

plural

memorandums

or

memoranda

\-də\ play
  1. 1 :  a usually informal written communication

  2. 2 :  a record (as a note) which is used by a party seeking to enforce an otherwise oral agreement in accordance with the Statute of Frauds to prove that the other party agreed to a contract and which need not contain all the terms of the contract itself

  3. 3 :  brief

  4. 4 :  memorandum decision



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up memorandum? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

sparing in use of food or drink

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • fox-in-front-of-cabin-in-winter
  • The month of December comes from a Latin word that referred to which month of the year?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ