au·​thor | \ ˈȯ-thər How to pronounce author (audio) \

Definition of author

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the writer of a literary work (such as a book) a famous author
2a : one that originates or creates something : source software authors film authors the author of this crime
b capitalized : god sense 1


authored; authoring; authors

Definition of author (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to be the author of : write a writer who has authored several best sellers

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Other Words from author


authorial \ ȯ-​ˈthȯr-​ē-​əl How to pronounce authorial (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for author

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

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Examples of author in a Sentence

Noun The author of the article didn't check his facts. I enjoyed the book, but I can't remember the name of the author. She is the author of a plan for reforming the school system. Verb authored a new biography of Thomas Jefferson
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Vivek is co-author of Community Paralegals and the Pursuit of Justice. Wired Opinion, Wired, "Digital IDs Make Systemic Bias Worse," 5 Feb. 2020 Study co-author Frédérique Aberlenc, a biologist at the French National Institute for Sustainable Development, says the group plans to pollinate the female plants in the near future, hopefully allowing them to bear fruit. Andrew Curry, Science | AAAS, "Dead Sea dates grown from 2000-year-old seeds," 5 Feb. 2020 Justin Burton, co-author of the latest paper and a physicist at Emory University specializing in fluid dynamics, first got intrigued by the topic at a conference in Barcelona. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Physicists determine the optimal soap recipe for blowing gigantic bubbles," 4 Feb. 2020 One of America's most acclaimed young poets, Danez Smith is the author of Don't Call Us Dead, a 2017 National Book Award finalist. TheWeek, "Danez Smith recommends their 6 favorite books," 2 Feb. 2020 Daily is the author of numerous books on the subject and the founder of Stanford’s Natural Capital Project, which has produced research on the value of natural assets from Kenya to Costa Rica to Nepal. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, "How much is an ecosystem worth?," 29 Jan. 2020 Ben Lerner is the author of three novels, three books of poetry, and numerous critical essays, including the book-length monograph The Hatred of Poetry. Elaine Blair, The New York Review of Books, "Learning to Fight," 28 Jan. 2020 Michelle Obama is a woman who has worn many hats in her lifetime: daughter, wife, mother, lawyer, first lady, author. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Grammys 2020: Michelle Obama Just Won Her First Grammy Award," 27 Jan. 2020 The paper, by lead author researcher Stephan van Schaik of the University of Michigan and colleagues, has also been made public. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "New 'CacheOut' attack targets Intel processors, with a fix arriving soon," 27 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Hubbard has authored an upcoming book about Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Kevin Collier, Fortune, "New York Times reporter writing a bin Salman book was targeted with NSO Group spyware, report says," 29 Jan. 2020 Wynia co-authored an editorial that accompanied the new study. Megan Thielking, STAT, "‘Traumatic as hell’: Patients describe what it’s like to be restrained in the ER," 24 Jan. 2020 Eastman also co-authored the Equal Rights Amendment, first introduced in 1923, to help women achieve social, economic, and political equality. Susan N. Herman, Marie Claire, "Celebrating 100 Years of the ACLU—and Its Next Century," 19 Jan. 2020 Bill Self’s squad authored a 10-2 run during that stretch to cut the deficit to five, 39-34, with 13:01 remaining. Matt Galloway, USA TODAY, "Baylor beats Kansas for first victory at Allen Fieldhouse in 18 attempts," 12 Jan. 2020 Cukier has co-authored a paper on the discovery with scientists from the Center as well as San Diego University, the University of Chicago and elsewhere. Tara Law, Time, "High School NASA Intern Discovers a Planet Orbiting Two Stars," 12 Jan. 2020 Three consecutive turnovers should’ve authored the end of their night — and subsequently, their streak. Mike Singer, The Denver Post, "“We didn’t panic”: Inside the Nuggets’ dramatic, streak-saving win over Suns," 24 Dec. 2019 Mussolini co-authored three plays while ruling Italy and was the honorary president of the International Mark Twain Society, writing a greeting to the readers of his favorite author while installed as Duce. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "The Field Guide to Tyranny," 16 Dec. 2019 Bradfield, a former Alaskan who graduated from the University of Alaska’s MFA writing program, has authored three previous poetry books and won multiple awards. Nancy Lord, Anchorage Daily News, "Poet and naturalist Elizabeth Bradfield turns her vision south," 15 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'author.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of author


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a


1597, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for author

Noun and Verb

Middle English auctour, from Anglo-French auctor, autor, from Latin auctor promoter, originator, author, from augēre to increase — more at eke

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Time Traveler for author

Time Traveler

The first known use of author was in the 14th century

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Statistics for author

Last Updated

8 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Author.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for author


How to pronounce author (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of author

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who has written something especially : a person who has written a book or who writes many books
: a person who starts or creates something (such as a plan or idea)



English Language Learners Definition of author (Entry 2 of 2)

: to be the author of (something, such as a book)


au·​thor | \ ˈȯ-thər How to pronounce author (audio) \

Kids Definition of author

: a person who writes something (as a novel)

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