A book by any other name | OxfordWords blog

whodunit (or whodunnit) – a story or other work of fiction about the solving of a mystery, esp. a murder.

reportory – a written account of something; esp. a literary composition in the form of a report.

anagraph – a record or register of events.

introuvable – an unfindable, undiscoverable book.

panchart – originally: a charter, esp. one of a general character, or confirming all special grants. In later use: a written record of any kind.

tome – a book, a volume; now usually suggesting a large, heavy, old-fashioned book.

récit – a book or passage consisting largely of narrative.

anagraphy – an anagraph.

volumen – a volume, a book.

examen – a critical dissertation or treatise.

fifteener – a 15th-century book.

saga – a narrative having the (real or supposed) characteristics of the Icelandic sagas; a story of heroic achievement.

novel – a fictional prose narrative.

spine-freezer – a book that inspires excitement and terror.

diatribe – a critical dissertation.

thesis – a dissertation to maintain and prove a thesis.

tec – abbreviation of detective story.

biblet – a book, or a library.


disquisition – a treatise or discourse in which a subject is investigated and discussed, or the results of investigation set forth at some length.

curdler – a story, etc., that (supposedly) curdles the blood.

swashbuckler – A book, film, or other work portraying a swaggering bravo or ruffian.

    A book by any other name

    codex – a manuscript volume: e.g. one of the ancient manuscripts of the Scriptures, or of the ancient classics.

    drawth – a treatise.

    ergasy – a literary production; a treatise.

    roman à clef – a novel in which actual people or events are represented in disguised form, as by the use of fictitious names.

    Robinsonade – a novel with a subject similar to that of Robinson Crusoe; a story about being marooned on a desert island or some similarly inhospitable place.

    rarissima – extremely rare books, manuscripts, or prints.

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  • Bildungsroman – a novel that has as its main theme the formative years or spiritual education of one person.

    tract – top custom essay reviews a book or written work treating of some particular topic; in later use: a short pamphlet on some religious, political, or other topic, suitable for distribution or for purposes of propaganda.

    incunabulum – a book printed before 1500.

    monument – a written document or record.

    penny dreadful – a cheaply published crime story written in a sensational or morbidly exciting style.

    rariora – rare books.

    rotulet – a small roll.

    curiosa – curiosities, oddities; specifically erotic or pornographic books.

    makimono – a Japanese scroll containing a narrative, usually in pictures and with explanatory writing, designed to be examined progressively from right to left as it is unrolled.

    notitia – an account or list; specifically a register or list of ecclesiastical sees or districts.

    narrative – a story; an account.

    Following on from our post about the etymology of the word book, we’ve delved into the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) to find different words for book and various types of book through time… they’re in the word cloud above, and the list below. 

    diegesis – the narrative presented by a cinematographic film or literary work.

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