What does the word missive mean?

Usage examples for missive

  1. The latest of them, the King's Missive, originally contributed to the Memorial History of Boston in 1880, and reprinted the next year in a volume with other poems, has been the occasion of a rather lively controversy. – Brief History of English and American Literature by Henry A. Beers
  2. They found destruction amid the trenches and on the pikes in the way, and with broken ranks and fearful confusion, fell or fled under the missive weapons which poured on them from a neighboring hill. – The Scottish Chiefs by Jane Porter
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