From Middle English scribe, from Old French scribe (“scribe”), from Late Latin usage of scriba (“secretary”) (used in the Vulgate Bible translation to render Ancient Greek γραμματεύς (grammateús, “scribe, secretary”), which had been used in its turn to render the Hebrew סופר (“writer, scholar”)) from scribere (“to write, draw, draw up, draft (a paper), enlist, enroll, levy; orig. to scratch”), probably akin to scrobs (“a ditch, trench, grave”).
The verb sense used in carpentry comes from the way a workman uses a compass to mark a line before cutting.
scribe (plural scribes)
- Someone who writes; a draughtsperson; a writer for another; especially, an official or public writer; an amanuensis, secretary, notary, or copyist.
- 2013 September 14, Jane Shilling, “The Golden Thread: the Story of Writing, by Ewan Clayton, review [print edition: Illuminating language]”, in The Daily Telegraph (Review), page R28:
- [T]he pleasure of writing on wax with a stylus is exemplified by the fine, flowing hand of a Roman scribe who made out the birth certificate of Herennia Gemella, born March 128 AD.
- A person who writes books or documents by hand as a profession.W
- 2013 September-October, Henry Petroski, “The Evolution of Eyeglasses”, in American Scientist:
- The ability of a segment of a glass sphere to magnify whatever is placed before it was known around the year 1000, when the spherical segment was called a reading stone, […] . Scribes, illuminators, and scholars held such stones directly over manuscript pages as an aid in seeing what was being written, drawn, or read.
- (informal) A journalist.
- (archaic) A writer and doctor of the law; one skilled in the law and traditions; one who read and explained the law to the people.
- A very sharp, steel drawing implement used in engraving and etching, a scriber.
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
- To write.
- To write, engrave, or mark upon; to inscribe.
- c. 1597–1598, Edmund Spenser, “Two Cantos of Mutabilitie: […]”, in The Faerie Qveene, […], London: […] H[umphrey] L[ownes] for Mathew Lownes, published 1609, OCLC 1191025313, book VII, canto VI, stanza 35, page 356:
- There—at Ioue wexed wroth, and in his ſpright / Did inly grudge, yet did it well conceale; / And bade Dan Phœbus Scribe her Appellation ſeale.
- 1812, Anonymous, The Trial
- he scribed his name on the mould, and wrote it on the two pieces of pasteboard
- To record, as a scribe.
- To write or draw with a scribe.
- (carpentry) To cut (something) in order to fit it closely to an irregular surface, as a baseboard to a floor which is out of level, a board to the curves of a moulding, etc.
- To score or mark with compasses or a scribing iron.
- scribe in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
- scribe in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.
scribe m (plural scribes)
- “scribe” in Trésor de la langue française informatisé (The Digitized Treasury of the French Language).