General English

General Science

  • noun a substance made from the pulp of wood, rags or fibre rolled flat into sheets, used for writing on, printing, wrapping objects and other purposes


Information & Library Science

  • noun a material made of cellulose fibres derived mainly from woodpulp, which is processed into thin sheets and used for writing, printing and drawing
  • noun part of a written examination
  • noun a long essay on an academic subject


  • noun documents such as bills of exchange or promissory notes which can represent money


  • noun a written report or proposal
  • noun an official document

Origin & History of “paper”

Paper gets its name from the papyrus, a sort of rush from which in ancient times paper was made. The Greek word for this (presumably borrowed from some Oriental language) was pápūros, and its Latin in descendant papȳrus passed into English via Old French papier and Anglo-Norman papir. (English papyrus (14th c.) itself was an independent borrowing direct from Latin.).