noun (1)
\ ˈskrīb How to pronounce scribe (audio) \

Definition of scribe

 (Entry 1 of 5)

1 : a member of a learned class in ancient Israel through New Testament times studying the Scriptures and serving as copyists, editors, teachers, and jurists
2a : an official or public secretary or clerk
b : a copier of manuscripts
3 : writer specifically : journalist


verb (1)
scribed; scribing

Definition of scribe (Entry 2 of 5)

intransitive verb

: to work as a scribe : write


verb (2)
scribed; scribing

Definition of scribe (Entry 3 of 5)

transitive verb

1 : to mark a line on by cutting or scratching with a pointed instrument
2 : to make by cutting or scratching


noun (2)

Definition of scribe (Entry 4 of 5)


biographical name
\ ˈskrēb How to pronounce Scribe (audio) \

Definition of Scribe (Entry 5 of 5)

(Augustin-) Eugène 1791–1861 French dramatist

First Known Use of scribe

Noun (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (1)

1651, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

1678, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1812, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for scribe

Noun (1)

Middle English, from Latin scriba official writer, from scribere to write; akin to Greek skariphasthai to scratch an outline

Verb (2)

probably short for describe

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about scribe

Time Traveler for scribe

Time Traveler

The first known use of scribe was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for scribe

Cite this Entry

“Scribe.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for scribe


\ ˈskrīb How to pronounce scribe (audio) \

Kids Definition of scribe

: a person who copies writing (as in a book)

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on scribe

What made you want to look up scribe? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!