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

Based on author Shirley Jackson’s 1959 novella, the story jumped between two time periods to tell of the Crain family. Nick Romano,, "Everything we know about The Haunting of Bly Manor (so far)," 29 Aug. 2019 This time, the basis is the 1898 Henry James novella, The Turn of the Screw. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "'The Haunting of Hill House' Season 2, 'The Haunting of Bly Manor': Everything We Know About the New Season," 23 Aug. 2019 In 11 stories and one novella, Scott explores themes of religion, violence and love with a dash of magical realism. Barbara Vandenburgh, USA TODAY, "5 books not to miss: Philippa Gregory’s ‘Tidelands,’ Rob Hart's 'The Warehouse'," 18 Aug. 2019 In her debut novella, Emily Tesh takes a new look at the Green Man mythos. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "11 new science fiction and fantasy books to check out in late June," 15 June 2019 Fielding claimed the novella to have been based on interviews with Hamilton, a claim historians have thoroughly challenged. Jeanna Kadlec, Longreads, "The 19th Century Lesbian Made for 21st Century Consumption," 7 June 2019 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

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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Last Updated

9 Sep 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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