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[dahy-uh-ree] /ˈdaɪ ə ri/
noun, plural diaries.
a daily record, usually private, especially of the writer's own experiences, observations, feelings, attitudes, etc.
a book for keeping such a record.
a book or pad containing pages marked and arranged in calendar order, in which to note appointments and the like.
1575-85; < Latin diārium daily allowance, journal, equivalent to di(ēs) day + -ārium -ary
Can be confused
dairy, diary.
1, 2. journal, daybook, log, chronicle. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for diaries
  • Many people keep diaries of their thoughts and experiences to get to know themselves.
  • Gamekeepers of the old school, diligent and devoted, keep their bear-watching data in notebook diaries.
  • diaries of the preceding days mention smoky air and a red sun at morning and evening.
  • The heir to the throne is seeking to block publication of diaries he kept during trips abroad.
  • During the study, the patients kept headache diaries.
  • The work is not simply everything a novelist writes-notebooks, diaries, articles.
  • diaries she has kept since childhood show she remembers accurately, too.
  • He poured them into letters, diaries, and lengthy memoranda to his colleagues and bosses among the powerful.
  • Some have kept diaries to remind themselves of their deeds, others to reproach themselves for their misdeeds.
  • He was the designated custodian of her diaries in case of her deportation.
British Dictionary definitions for diaries


noun (pl) -ries
a personal record of daily events, appointments, observations, etc
a book for keeping such a record
Word Origin
C16: from Latin diārium daily allocation of food or money, journal, from diēs day
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for diaries



1580s, from Latin diarium "daily allowance," later "a journal," neuter of diarius "daily," from dies "day" (see diurnal); also see -ary. Earliest sense was a daily record of events; sense of the book in which such are written is said to be first attested in Ben Jonson's "Volpone" (1605).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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