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Definition of "patent" []

  • A grant made by a government that confers upon the creator of an invention the sole right to make, use, and sell that invention for a set period of time. (noun)
  • Letters patent. (noun)
  • An invention protected by such a grant. (noun)
  • A grant made by a government that confers on an individual fee-simple title to public lands. (noun)
  • The official document of such a grant. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "patent" in a sentence
  • "After this patent was published, many promised to answer the king's expectations so effectually, that the next year he published _another patent_; wherein he tells his subjects, that the _happy hour_ was drawing nigh, and by means of THE STONE, which he should soon be master of, he would pay all the debts of the nation in real _gold and silver_."
  • "As it happens, Detkin is the man who coined the term "patent troll.""
  • "Google's biggest ever deal probably catapulted the word patent up the list of the week's most searched for terms."