Definition of dead letter noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


    dead letter

    BrE BrE//ˌded ˈletə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˌded ˈletər//
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  1. 1[usually singular] a law or an agreement that still exists but that is ignored The treaty had been a dead letter for many years.
  2. 2(especially North American English) a letter that cannot be delivered to an address or to the person who sent it
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: dead letter