from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A handwritten book, poem, or other document, or a collection of such handwritten documents bound together.
  • noun A version of a book, article, or other work before being published or prepared for publication.
  • noun Handwriting, especially in contrast to print.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To write by hand.
  • Written with the hand; in handwriting (not printed).
  • Consisting of writings or written books.
  • noun A book, paper, or instrument written by hand with ink or other pigment, or with a pencil or the like; a writing of any kind, as distinguished from anything that is printed. Especially
  • noun Such a book, paper, or instrument so written before the introduction and general adoption of printing in the fifteenth century, or in a style in vogue before the invention of printing.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Written with or by the hand; not printed.
  • noun An original literary or musical composition written by the author, formerly with the hand, now usually by typewriter or word processor. It is contrasted with a printed copy.
  • noun Writing, as opposed to print.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Which is handwritten, or by extension typewritten, as opposed to mechanical reproduction.
  • noun A book, composition or any other document, (type)written by hand, not mechanically reproduced.
  • noun A single, original copy of a book, article, composition etc, written by hand or even printed, submitted as original for (copy-editing and) reproductive publication.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun handwritten book or document
  • noun the form of a literary work submitted for publication


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[From Medieval Latin manūscrīptum, from neuter of manūscrīptus, handwritten : Latin manū, ablative of manus, hand; see man- in Indo-European roots + Latin scrīptus, past participle of scrībere, to write; see skrībh- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

1597, from Medieval Latin manuscriptum ("writing by hand"), from Latin manu (ablative of manus ("hand")) + scriptus (past participle of scribere ("to write")), calqued from a word of Germanic origin, compare Middle High German hantschrift, hantgeschrift (c. 1450, "manuscript"), Old English handġewrit (before 1150, "what is written by hand, deed, contract, manuscript"), Old Norse handrit (before 1300, "manuscript").


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word manuscript.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.