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Etymology 1[edit]

From tractate, from Latin tractatus, or borrowed from Latin tractus, the perfect passive participle of trahō. Doublet of trait.


tract (plural tracts)

  1. An area or expanse.
    an unexplored tract of sea
  2. A series of connected body organs, as in the digestive tract.
  3. A small booklet such as a pamphlet, often for promotional or informational uses.
  4. A brief treatise or discourse on a subject.
  5. A commentator's view or perspective on a subject.
  6. Continued or protracted duration, length, extent
  7. Part of the proper of the liturgical celebration of the Eucharist for many Christian denominations, used instead of the alleluia during Lenten or pre-Lenten seasons, in a Requiem Mass, and on a few other penitential occasions.
  8. (obsolete) Continuity or extension of anything.
    the tract of speech
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Older to this entry?)
  9. (obsolete) Traits; features; lineaments.
  10. (obsolete) The footprint of a wild animal.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Dryden to this entry?)
  11. (obsolete) Track; trace.
  12. (obsolete) Treatment; exposition.
    • 1613, William Shakespeare, Henry VIII, Act I, Scene I
      The tract of every thing Would, by a good discourser, lose some life Which action's self was tongue to.
  • (series of connected body organs): system
Related terms[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 2[edit]

From Latin tractus, the participle stem of trahere (to pull, drag).


tract (third-person singular simple present tracts, present participle tracting, simple past and past participle tracted)

  1. (obsolete) To pursue, follow; to track.
  2. (obsolete) To draw out; to protract.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Ben Jonson to this entry?)




Borrowed from English tract.



tract m (plural tracts)

  1. flyer, circular, pamphlet

Derived terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]