n. & v.
n. 1 a a written or printed work consisting of pages glued or sewn together along one side and bound in covers. b a literary composition intended for publication (is working on her book). 2 a bound set of blank sheets for writing or keeping records in. 3 a set of tickets, stamps, matches, cheques, samples of cloth, etc., bound up together. 4 (in pl.) a set of records or accounts. 5 a main division of a literary work, or of the Bible (the Book of Deuteronomy). 6 (in full book of words) a libretto, script of a play, etc. 7 colloq. a magazine. 8 a telephone directory (his number's in the book). 9 a record of bets made and money paid out at a race meeting by a bookmaker. 10 a set of six tricks collected together in a card-game. 11 an imaginary record or list (the book of life).
v. 1 tr. a engage (a seat etc.) in advance; make a reservation of. b engage (a guest, supporter, etc.) for some occasion. 2 tr. a take the personal details of (an offender or rule-breaker). b enter in a book or list. 3 tr. issue a railway etc. ticket to. 4 intr. make a reservation (no need to book). book club a society which sells its members selected books on special terms. book-end a usu. ornamental prop used to keep a row of books upright. book in esp. Brit. register one's arrival at a hotel etc. book learning mere theory. book-plate a decorative label stuck in the front of a book bearing the owner's name. book-rest an adjustable support for an open book on a table. book token Brit. a voucher which can be exchanged for books to a specified value. book up 1 buy tickets in advance for a theatre, concert, holiday, etc. 2 (as booked up) with all places reserved. book value the value of a commodity as entered in a firm's books (opp. market value). bring to book call to account. closed (or sealed) book a subject of which one is ignorant. go by the book proceed according to the rules. the good Book the Bible. in a person's bad (or good) books in disfavour (or favour) with a person. in my book in my opinion. make a book take bets and pay out winnings at a race meeting. not in the book disallowed. on the books contained in a list of members etc. suits my book is convenient to me. take a leaf out of a person's book imitate a person. throw the book at colloq. charge or punish to the utmost.
[ OE boc, bocian, f. Gmc, usu. taken to be rel. to BEECH (the bark of which was used for writing on) ]