Definition of demy in English:

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Pronunciation: /dɪˈmʌɪ/
(also metric demy)


[mass noun]
1A paper size, 564 × 444 mm.
Example sentences
  • All books are in metric Demy format unless otherwise stated.
1.1 (also demy octavo) A book size, 216 × 138 mm.
Example sentences
  • Twenty-five large paper copies (22.6 x 14 cm, demy octavo) of Ballads and Sonnets were printed on Whatman's rag paper.
  • The first edition in English, of 1868, was in two volumes demy octavo, the only Murray Darwin to appear in this format, and it occurs in two issues.
  • John Ruskin and the Lakeland Arts Revival 1880-1920, a sewn-section demy octavo paperback of 288 pages with a full-colour cover, will be published on 6 April 2004 at £14.95.
1.2 (also demy quarto) A book size, 276 × 219 mm.
Example sentences
  • Those who consult bibliographies may need this information to identify books styled as foolscap folio, demy quarto, or with other such expressions of size and format occurring in early sources.
  • In any press, the most frequently used sizes of pages are demy quarto (1.4), demy octavo (1/8), crown quarto and crown octavo.


Late Middle English (as an adjective in the sense 'half-sized'): from demi-, or from its source, French demi 'half'.

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