mis·​sive | \ ˈmi-siv How to pronounce missive (audio) \

Definition of missive

: a written communication : letter wrote a lengthy missive to her father

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Examples of missive in a Sentence

She received yet another lengthy missive from her father. the two old friends like to fire off missives filled with good-natured teasing and mock insults
Recent Examples on the Web The film, a dark-horse awards contender, is also a missive for Valley kids everywhere. Seija Rankin, EW.com, "Location, location, location: Booksmart's team takes EW behind-the-scenes of its most iconic scenes," 16 Dec. 2019 By the time Austen sat down to compose the missive, she and her family members had settled in comfortably for the evening. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "This Jane Austen Letter Highlights the Horrors of 19th-Century Dentistry," 19 Oct. 2019 These missives aren’t really asking for engagement. Michelle Valladares, The Conversation, "5 new ways for schools to work with families," 11 Dec. 2019 Expect trippy visual displays, angry missives from frontman Maynard James Keenan, and deliciously complex rhythms. BostonGlobe.com, "With its packed headlining show at Boston Calling in 2017, prog-metal quartet," 14 Nov. 2019 The government censored information about the uprising, preventing missives from being published in newspapers or broadcast on the news. King-wa Fu, Quartz, "Students in Hong Kong used fax machines to fight Chinese censorship of Tiananmen Square," 29 Oct. 2019 Most professionals outside of the creative fields would never get hired if would-be employers checked their social media profiles, an increasingly regular practice, and found Cardi-style missives on waxing or footage of them twerking. Alicia Menendez, Time, "Women Are Often Told to Just Be Themselves. Here's Why That Advice Can Be Dangerous," 29 Oct. 2019 Despite the varied paths leading to epilepsy, all share one endpoint: disruption in electrical missives between neurons, which manifests as seizures. Jennifer Couzin-frankel, Science | AAAS, "As epilepsy drugs fail nearly one-third of patients, scientists seek root causes of seizures," 12 Dec. 2019 The generation is now getting married and having kids – milestones that often mark the start of your own card tradition (instead of being included on your parents’ annual missive). Laura Johnston, cleveland, "Why we send holiday cards -- and what are the trends in 2019," 2 Dec. 2019

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

circa 1553, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for missive

Middle French lettre missive, literally, letter intended to be sent

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Time Traveler for missive

Time Traveler

The first known use of missive was circa 1553

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Statistics for missive

Last Updated

15 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Missive.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/missive. Accessed 25 January 2020.

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More Definitions for missive


How to pronounce missive (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of missive

formal + humorous : a letter or other written message


mis·​sive | \ ˈmi-siv How to pronounce missive (audio) \

Kids Definition of missive

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More from Merriam-Webster on missive

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for missive

Spanish Central: Translation of missive

Nglish: Translation of missive for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of missive for Arabic Speakers

Comments on missive

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


dull or mediocre

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