trea·​tise | \ ˈtrē-təs How to pronounce treatise (audio) also -təz \

Definition of treatise

1 : a systematic exposition or argument in writing including a methodical discussion of the facts and principles involved and conclusions reached a treatise on higher education
2 obsolete : account, tale

Examples of treatise in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web At a time where so much pop culture looks myopically backward, Remake is a treatise on letting the past die to be reborn. Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "Ars Technica’s best games of 2020," 22 Dec. 2020 This is an especially urgent and cogent treatise during this COVID-19 pandemic; a concise guide to transformation and empowerment. John J. Kelly, Detroit Free Press, "Holiday gift guide 2020: The best books bring comfort and joy," 7 Dec. 2020 As Michael Howard’s brilliant treatise War and the Liberal Conscience shows, liberal societies such as ours want to believe that the last attack or the last war was . . . John Hillen, National Review, "How to Remember Pearl Harbor Day," 7 Dec. 2020 Her voice and visage make Koudounaris’ take on the subject truly singular, mimicking oral storytelling more than an academic treatise. Rachel Nuwer, Smithsonian Magazine, "A History of Felines, as Narrated and Illustrated by a Cat," 23 Nov. 2020 Catherine regularly consulted the famous Spanish humanist Juan Luis Vives for advice on Mary’s education and even commissioned him to write De Institutione Feminae Christianae, a treatise on the education of girls. Maureen Lee Lenker,, "Spanish Princess recap: Catherine and Henry walk in fields of gold — and other historical observations," 16 Nov. 2020 But no specifics had been given. Reading Wells' treatise so many years later led him to believe this may have been the atrocity in which Lonnie had taken part. Jack Schnedler, Arkansas Online, "J. Chester Johnson," 8 Nov. 2020 This treatise is both digestible and plainly written, while also revealing something deeply profound. New York Times, "New & Noteworthy, From the Harlem Renaissance to a History of Magic," 3 Nov. 2020 Mi opinión sobre las libertades, derechos y deberes de la mujer (My opinion on the liberties, rights and responsibilities of women), widely considered the first treatise on feminism in Puerto Rico. Rosa Cartagena, Smithsonian Magazine, "In Puerto Rico, Women Won the Vote in a Bittersweet Game of Colonial Politics," 2 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'treatise.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of treatise

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for treatise

Middle English tretis, from Anglo-French tretiz, alteration of tretez, traitet, from Medieval Latin tractatus, from Latin tractare to treat, handle

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about treatise

Time Traveler for treatise

Time Traveler

The first known use of treatise was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for treatise

Last Updated

10 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Treatise.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for treatise


How to pronounce treatise (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of treatise

: a book, article, etc., that discusses a subject carefully and thoroughly

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on treatise

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!