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Alternative formsEdit


From Middle English auctour, from Anglo-Norman autour, from Old French autor, from Latin auctor, from augeō (to increase, originate). The h, also found in Middle French autheur, is unetymological as there is no h in the original Latin spelling. The OED attributes the h to contamination by authentic.



author (plural authors)

  1. The originator or creator of a work, especially of a literary composition.
    The copyright of any original writing belongs initially and properly to its author.
    Have you read any Corinthian authors?
  2. Someone who writes books for a living.
  3. (obsolete, criminal law) Principal.
    • 1894, Franco-Siamese Mixed Court, The Case of Kieng Chek (Kham Muon) before the Franco-Siamese Mixed Court[1], Bangkok: n.p., page 4:
      Accomplices of a crime or an offence shall incur the same punishment as the authors of such a crime or offence, except when the law will have disposed otherwise.
  4. (obsolete) One's authority for something: an informant.
    • 1699, Seven new Colloquies translated out of Erasmus
      Let me inform you en passant, Ladies, that those Villains the Heathens, as my Authors tell me, (and I thought it wou'd[sic] not be amiss to communicate such a nice Observation to this House) used to call our Saviour Chrestus, and not Christus, by way of Contempt and Derision []


Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.


author (third-person singular simple present authors, present participle authoring, simple past and past participle authored)

  1. (chiefly US, sometimes proscribed) To create a work as its author.

Derived termsEdit






author m (genitive authōris); third declension

  1. (proscribed) Alternative form of auctor


Third-declension noun.

Case Singular Plural
Nominative author authōrēs
Genitive authōris authōrum
Dative authōrī authōribus
Accusative authōrem authōrēs
Ablative authōre authōribus
Vocative author authōrēs


  • author”, in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
    auctor”, in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • auctor in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré latin-français, Hachette, page 184f.

Middle EnglishEdit



  1. Alternative form of auctour