Etymology
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conciseness (n.)

"brevity of statement, expression of much in few words," 1650s, from concise + -ness.

[Conciseness] is the English word familiar to the ordinary man: concision is the LITERARY CRITIC'S WORD, more recent in English, used by writers under French influence & often requiring the reader to stop & think whether he knows its meaning. [Fowler]
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litterateur (n.)
"a literary man, one whose profession is literature," 1806, from French littérateur, from Latin litterator "a grammarian, philologist," from littera "letter; writing" (see letter (n.1)). Sometimes Englished as literator (1630s), but often with a deprecatory sense. O.W. Holmes used the French fem. form littératrice (1857).
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Attic (adj.)
1590s, "pertaining to Attica" (q.v.), the region around Athens, from Latin Atticus "Athenian," from Greek Attikos "Athenian, of Attica." The Attic dialect came to be regarded as the literary standard of ancient Greece, and it passed into the koine of the Alexandrine and Roman periods. Attested from 1560s as an architectural term for a type of column base.
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literature (n.)

early 15c., "book-learning," from Latin literatura/litteratura "learning, a writing, grammar," originally "writing formed with letters," from litera/littera "alphabetic letter" also "an epistle, writing, document; literature, great books; science, learning" (see letter (n.1)). In English originally "book learning" (in which sense it replaced Old English boccræft); the meaning "activity of a writer, the profession of a literary writer" is first attested 1779 in Johnson's "Lives of the English Poets;" that of "literary productions as a whole, body of writings from a period or people" is first recorded 1812.

Great literature is simply language charged with meaning to the utmost possible degree. [Ezra Pound, "ABC of Reading"]

Meaning "the whole of the writing on a particular subject" is by 1860; sense of "printed matter generally" is from 1895. The Latin word also is the source of Spanish literatura, Italian letteratura, German Literatur.

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classic (n.)

"a Greek or Roman writer or work," 1711, from classic (adj.). So, by mid-18c., any work or author in any context held to have a similar quality or relationship; an artist or literary production of the first rank. In classical Latin the noun use of classicus meant "a marine" (miles classicus) from the "military division" sense of classis.

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Wardour-street (n.)

"affected pseudo-archaic diction of historical novels," 1888, from street in London lined with shops selling imitation-antique furniture.

This is not literary English of any date; this is Wardour-Street Early English — a perfectly modern article with a sham appearance of the real antique about it. [A. Ballantyne, "Wardour-Street English," Longman's Magazine, October, 1888]
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symbolist (n.)
1580s, from symbol + -ist. From 1888 in reference to a literary movement that aimed at representing ideas and emotions by indirect suggestion rather than direct expression, from French symboliste, coined 1885 by poet Paul Verlaine (1844-1896). Rejecting realism and naturalism, they attached symbolic meaning to certain objects, words, etc.
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picaresque (adj.)

"pertaining to or dealing with rogues or knaves and their adventures," especially in literary productions, 1810, from Spanish picaresco "roguish," from picaro "rogue," a word of uncertain origin, possibly from picar "to pierce," from Vulgar Latin *piccare (see pike (n.1)). Originally in roman picaresque "rogue novel," the classic example being "Gil Blas."

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expurgation (n.)

early 15c., expurgacion, "a cleansing from impurity," from Latin expurgationem (nominative expurgatio), noun of action from past-participle stem of expurgare "to cleanse out, purge, purify; clear from censure, vindicate, justify," from ex "out" (see ex-) + purgare "to purge" (see purge (v.)). Sense of "a removal of objectionable passages from a literary work" is recorded in English from 1610s. Related: Expurgatory.

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chrestomathy (n.)

"collection of literary passages" (especially from a foreign language), 1774, from French chrestomathie, from Latinized form of Greek khrestomatheia "desire of learning; book containing selected passages," lit. "useful learning," from khrestos "useful" (verbal adjective of khresthai "to make use of," from PIE root *gher- (2) "to like, want") + manthanein "to learn" (from PIE root *mendh- "to learn"). Related: Chrestomathic.

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