plural noun, singular literatus [lit-uh-rah-tuhs] .
persons of scholarly or literary attainments; intellectuals.

1615–25; < Latin līterāti learned, scholarly people, noun use of plural of līterātus. See literate Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
literati (ˌlɪtəˈrɑːtiː)
pl n
literary or scholarly people
[C17: from Latin]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

"men and women of letters; the learned class as a whole," 1621, from L. lit(t)erati, pl. of lit(t)eratus "lettered" (see literate). The proper sing. would be literatus, though It. literato (1704) sometimes is used.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The literati sent out their minions to do their bidding.
The back-and-forth nonetheless started a debate among the literati about language and heritage.
The literati may be appalled, but her devoted fans relish every word.
But it doesn't help that these days even the literati have a hazy grasp of grammatical structure.
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