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

  • n. A published letter on a subject of general interest, addressed to a person but intended for general readership.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A letter addressed to one person but published (as for example in a newspaper) for the public to read.

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

  • n. a letter of protest; addressed to one person but intended for the general public


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • (London, 1908); Father Tyrell's Modernism: an expository criticism of "Through Scylla and Charybdis" in an open letter to Mr. Athelstan

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 10: Mass Music-Newman

  • Besides his great work, Irenaeus wrote an open letter to the Roman priest Florinus, who thought of joining the Valentinians; and when the unfortunate priest had apostatized, and had become a Gnostic,

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 6: Fathers of the Church-Gregory XI

  • That also happened to be the day Rudd issued his open letter in response to Kirk's speech about the "nihilism" of "growing numbers" of youth and the generation gap, in which he had called the Vietnam War "a well-meant but essentially fruitless effort."

    1968 the Year that Rocked the World

  • At his desk Dr Iannis read once more the famous open letter to Hitler that Vlakhos had published in the Kathimerini.

    Captain Corelli's Mandolin

  • Humour doesn't bubble much now on this side the world, for the censor had forbidden the publication of this open letter lest it should possibly cause American-German trouble!

    The Life and Letters of Walter H Page

  • Not content with this letter of recommendation which she gave to Smith to deliver, Madame Riccoboni at the same time sent Garrick another through the post, and shows the sincerity of the feelings of high esteem she had expressed in the open letter by expressing them again quite as decisively in the closed one: ” 6 Octobre.

    Life of Adam Smith

  • Baudin's gratitude for King's hospitality was expressed in a cordial personal letter, and also in an open letter which he addressed to the Governors of the French colonies of Ile-de-France and Reunion.

    The Life of Captain Matthew Flinders

  • [HILMAR comes in hurriedly and agitatedly from the right, with an open letter in his hand.]

    Pillars of Society

  • Kuroh and Modzelewski signed their open letter and next to their signatures stated that they expected to receive three years in prison for this act.

    1968 the Year that Rocked the World

  • After the Coup d'Etat, 2 Dec., 1851 in an open letter to the "Univers", he invited the Catholics to rally to

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 10: Mass Music-Newman


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  • Upon reflection, it seems odd to me that we call these things "open letters" when they're really more like announcements or editorials.

    Anyway... Here are some really good ones, to "people or entities who are unlikely to respond."

    August 29, 2008