no·​vel·​la | \ nō-ˈve-lə How to pronounce novella (audio) \
plural novellas or novelle\ nō-​ˈve-​lē How to pronounce novelle (audio) \

Definition of novella

1 plural novelle : a story with a compact and pointed plot
2 plural novellas : a work of fiction intermediate in length and complexity between a short story and a novel

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Examples of novella in a Sentence

pressed for time, many English teachers have their students read the one novella among the novelist's works

Recent Examples on the Web

In a haunting novella based on a memoir by Amasa Delano, a Massachusetts ship captain who had encountered a Spanish slave ship, Herman Melville—almost alone among classic white writers before the Civil War—confronted the horror of slavery. Andrew Delbanco, WSJ, "Five Best: Andrew Delbanco on Books on Slavery and the Coming of the Civil War," 30 Nov. 2018 Joyce Carol Oates, author of some forty novels (nine written under an assumed name), twenty short story collections, six novellas, eight volumes of poetry, seven of plays, and nine of essays, may be our most prolific contemporary writer. Sarah Smarsh, The New York Review of Books, "Caroline Fraser," 21 Feb. 2019 Ochoa’s choreography, based on Saint-Exupéry’s beloved novella, is set to music by Peter Salem, who will perform on stage as a one-man band. Ellen Dunkel,, "Hot dates in dance: A BalletX ‘Little Prince,’ rising-star choreographers, and offseason work for Pa. Ballet dancers," 5 June 2019 Back in the magazine era, the novella was the heartbeat of science fiction. Tom Shippey, WSJ, "Science Fiction: Tomorrow’s Nightmares Start Today," 26 Apr. 2019 Martha Wells’ first Murderbot novella, All Systems Red, came out last year, and was a huge hit — eventually earning the 2018 Nebula and Hugo Awards for its category. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Our favorite science fiction and fantasy books of 2018," 21 Dec. 2018 There’s only one novel, Codename Villanelle, made up of a series of novellas by author Luke Jennings, who has another novel coming out in March. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "'Killing Eve' Season Two Finally Has a Release Date. Here's Everything We Know.," 5 Jan. 2019 Martin had sold the rights to the novella before, with nothing to show for it but a few big paychecks. Noel Murray, The Verge, "Before Game of Thrones and Nightflyers, George R.R. Martin’s work inspired a great Outer Limits episode," 30 Nov. 2018 The term of endearment is a borrowed from Truman Capote’s seminal novella, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, which also happens to be Ariana’s favorite movie, according to MTV. Dan Barna, Teen Vogue, "Pete Davidson and Ariana Grande Got Another Set of Matching Tattoos," 21 Sep. 2018

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

1677, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for novella

borrowed from Italian, "piece of news, announcement, story, narrative," noun derivative from feminine of novello "new," going back to Latin novellus "young, tender (of plants or animals)," from novus "new" + -ellus, diminutive suffix — more at new entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near novella






novel news


Statistics for novella

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for novella

The first known use of novella was in 1677

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English Language Learners Definition of novella

: a short novel : a story that is longer than a short story but shorter than a novel

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More from Merriam-Webster on novella

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with novella

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for novella

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

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something desired as essential

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