Literary Lit"er*a*ry (l[i^]t"[~e]r*[asl]*r[y^]), a. [L. litterarius, literarius, fr. littera, litera, a letter: cf. F. litt['e]raire. See {Letter}.] [1913 Webster] 1. Of or pertaining to letters or literature; pertaining to learning or learned men; as, literary fame; a literary history; literary conversation. [1913 Webster]

He has long outlived his century, the term commonly fixed as the test of literary merit. --Johnson. [1913 Webster]

2. Versed in, or acquainted with, literature; occupied with literature as a profession; connected with literature or with men of letters; as, a literary man. [1913 Webster]

In the literary as well as fashionable world. --Mason. [1913 Webster]

{Literary property}. (a) Property which consists in written or printed compositions. (b) The exclusive right of publication as recognized and limited by law. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • literary — (adj.) 1640s, pertaining to alphabet letters, from Fr. littéraire, from L. literarius/litterarius belonging to letters or learning, from littera/litera letter (see LETTER (Cf. letter) (n.1)). Meaning pertaining to literature is attested from 1737 …   Etymology dictionary

  • literary — [adj] concerning books belletristic, bookish, classical, erudite, formal, learned, lettered, literate, scholarly, well read; concepts 267,536 Ant. illiterate …   New thesaurus

  • literary — literarily, adv. literariness, n. /lit euh rer ee/, adj. 1. pertaining to or of the nature of books and writings, esp. those classed as literature: literary history. 2. pertaining to authorship: literary style. 3. versed in or acquainted with… …   Universalium

  • literary — lit|er|ar|y [ lıtə,reri ] adjective usually before noun ** 1. ) involving books or the activity of writing, reading, or studying books: Dublin s great literary tradition a respected literary critic a ) relating to books that are considered to… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • literary — [[t]lɪ̱tərəri, AM reri[/t]] ♦♦♦ 1) ADJ: usu ADJ n Literary means concerned with or connected with the writing, study, or appreciation of literature. Her literary criticism focuses on the way great literature suggests ideas... She s the literary… …   English dictionary

  • literary */*/ — UK [ˈlɪt(ə)rərɪ] / US [ˈlɪtəˌrerɪ] adjective [usually before noun] 1) a) involving books or the activity of writing, reading, or studying books Dublin s great literary tradition a respected literary critic b) relating to books that are considered …   English dictionary

  • literary — lit|e|ra|ry W2 [ˈlıtərəri US ˈlıtəreri] adj [only before noun] [Date: 1600 1700; : Latin; Origin: litterarius, from littera; LETTER1] 1.) relating to literature ▪ a literary prize ▪ literary criticism (=the study of the methods used in writing… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

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