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[tekst-boo k] /ˈtɛkstˌbʊk/
a book used by students as a standard work for a particular branch of study.
pertaining to, characteristic of, or seemingly suitable for inclusion in a textbook; typical; classic:
a textbook case.
Origin of textbook
1720-30; text + book Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for textbook
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It was, indeed, the first work that deserved to be regarded as a textbook of modern chemistry.

    Woman in Science John Augustine Zahm
  • In our textbook we have adhered to the same plan of division.

    Introductory American History Henry Eldridge Bourne
  • Fenwick figuratively threw away the textbook the first time the professor's back was turned.

    The Great Gray Plague Raymond F. Jones
  • The former work is the earliest Greek textbook which has reached us intact.

  • The first question (I believe I am disclosing no military secret in telling) was, 'Name the textbook.'

British Dictionary definitions for textbook


  1. a book used as a standard source of information on a particular subject
  2. (as modifier): a textbook example
Derived Forms
textbookish, adjective
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 textbook

also text-book, 1779, from text (n.) + book (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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