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 The author of bill curbing the state's regulations of wetlands has ties to a Noblesville property that underwent IDEM scrutiny. Chris Sikich, Indianapolis Star, "Lawmaker wants to deregulate wetlands. Her family once was cited for bulldozing them.," 17 Feb. 2020 Michaël Marsset, the paper's lead author and a postdoctoral student in MIT's Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, told MIT News. Fox News, "Asteroid Pallas' violent history revealed in new images," 14 Feb. 2020 Tom Saler is an author and freelance journalist in Madison. Tom Saler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Tom Saler: Illicit payments are common in some corners of international business," 14 Feb. 2020 Its most famous detractor is cookbook author and Mexican food authority Diana Kennedy, a vociferous critic of north-of-the-border Mexican American cuisine. Patricia Escárcega, Bon Appétit, "It’s Time We Give the Mexican Combo Platter the Credit It Deserves," 13 Feb. 2020 Its authors, led by Neeraj Sood, an expert in health costs and insurance markets, explained how the sheer size of pharmacy benefit managers might be forcing up costs by squeezing ever-more discounts out of drug makers. Marty Schladen,, "Report finds that drug rebates drive up consumer costs," 11 Feb. 2020 The authors of the order hope to put it in front of President Trump within the next month, a person familiar with the the order told The New York Times. Isabel Garcia, House Beautiful, "New Trump Administration Proposal Could Mandate all Federal Architecture Is a Certain Style," 7 Feb. 2020 The only difference between this piece and most factchecks, then, is that the latter hide behind a patina of impartiality, allowing their authors to claim to be arbiters of truth. David Harsanyi, National Review, "Factcheckers Have Become the Janissaries of the Obama Legacy," 5 Feb. 2020 Her other authors included journalists Jill Abramson, Jonathan Alter, Richard Engel, Ron Suskind and James B. Stewart; and historians Stephen E. Ambrose, Taylor Branch, James Chace and Diane McWhorter. Harrison Smith, Washington Post, "Alice Mayhew, book editor with an eye on Washington, dies at 87," 4 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The original proposal drew a backlash from conservatives in the church, and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in a move seen as undercutting Francis' upcoming decision recently co-authored a book that argues for the necessity of celibacy among priests. TheWeek, "Pope Francis turns down proposal to allow married priests in the Amazon," 12 Feb. 2020 Reputation, an attempt to hit back at the haters and in all likelihood regain control of the narrative by authoring her own cartoonish, self-deprecating villain edit, was a case in point. Judy Berman, Time, "Taylor Swift: Miss Americana," 28 Jan. 2020 These letters claimed to be authored by God, typically offering divine protection in exchange for proper religious observance. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "The Divine Origins of the Horny Chain Text," 24 Jan. 2020 Servigne’s 2018 follow-up to Comment tout peut s’effondrer, co-authored with Raphaël Stevens and Gauthier Chapelle, focuses on the inner life in an age of collapse. Harrison Stetler, The New York Review of Books, "‘Collapsologie’: Constructing an Idea of How Things Fall Apart," 21 Jan. 2020 Kartik Sunagar, an evolutionary biologist at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, co-authored the study. Harini Barath, Scientific American, "Venomous Menace: Snakebite Treatments Are Failing in India," 7 Jan. 2020 The extreme coincidence of urgency and irrelevance, terror and impotence, turns into a maddening unsettledness and contradiction in the conceptual sphere of life, authoring fear, anger, and confusion everywhere. Greg Jackson, Harper's magazine, "Vicious Cycles," 6 Jan. 2020 Eight hours into the day and six rounds of delegate voting in, Nolan, who was not at the convention, endorsed Radinovich with a statement authored on-site and approved over the phone by the former congressman. Brady Slater, Twin Cities, "Nystrom, Nolan show mutual admiration in the 8th District," 28 Dec. 2019 As her role as a senator, Hudson co-authored a resolution to remove a Confederate statue from the university’s campus. Breanna Edwards, Essence, "#BlackGirlMagic Shows Up And Shows Out In The American Rhodes Scholar Class of 2020," 26 Nov. 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

22 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Author.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 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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