E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
First applied to collegiate societies of learning in the twelfth century, because the universitas literarum (entire range of literature) was taught in themi.e. arts, theology, law, and physic, still called the learned sciences. Greek, Latin, grammar, rhetoric, and poetry are called humanity studies, or humaniors liter, meaning lay studies in contradistinction to divinity, which is the study of divine things. (See CAD.)