In longman Dictionary Of Contemporary English, the word "AUTHOR" being used as a "VERB" was defined as follows:

Author: to be the writer of a book, report etc.

I think the definition is completely wrong, since the definition defines it as if it is a noun.

I think a better definition for the word as a "VERB" is the following:

Author (V): to write a book, article, etc.*

What do the other members think?

http://dictionary.cambridge.org/define.asp?key=4939&dict=CALD
Original Post
This is very interesting! Yes, "author" as a verb does fit with the Cambridge definition.

The LDOCE* and the Collins COBUILD* dictionaries both define "author" as a verb as "to be the author..." In this sense it has the meaning of actually bing the author or taking the responsibility of being the author as opposed to just doing the work of the author.

Compare this to the use of "doctor" as in the definition of "doctor" as a verb, in the LDOCE, or with "broker" as a verb. With these verbs, only the actions of the verbs are described. This is a little different from the meaning of "author" as a verb, which means that not only do you write something, but that you are and/or want to be perceived as the author of it. Being perceived as the author is important in the verb "author," but it is not important or it does not exist with the verbs "doctor" and "broker."

So, some reputable dictionaries define the verb "author" as similar to "write," while others write that it connotes being the author whether you have written the whole work yourself or not.

Here is the entry for "author" as a verb from the American Heritage Dictionary***:

tr.v., -thored, -thor"¢ing, -thors.
1. Usage Problem. To assume responsibility for the content of (a published text).
To write or construct (an electronic document or system): authored the company's
USAGE NOTE The verb author, which had been out of use for a long period, has been rejuvenated in recent years with the sense "to assume responsibility for the content of a published text." As such it is not quite synonymous with the verb write; one can write, but not author, a love letter or an unpublished manuscript, and the writer who ghostwrites a book for a celebrity cannot be said to have "authored" the creation. The sentence He has authored a dozen books on the subjectt was unacceptable to 74 percent of the Usage Panel, probably because it implies that having a book published is worthy of special lexical distinction, a notion that sits poorly with conventional literary sensibilities and seems to smack of press agentry. The sentence The Senator authored a bill limiting uses of desert lands in California was similarly rejected by 64 percent of the Panel, though here the usage is common journalistic practice and is perhaps justified by the observation that we do not expect that legislators will actually write the bills to which they attach their names. "¢
The use ofauthor as a verb in computer-related contexts is well established and unexceptionable.
_______

Yoong Liat, you have a dozen dictionaries. Would you care to tell us about their definitions?

Rachel
_______
* http://pewebdic2.cw.idm.fr/
* Collins COBUILD English Dictionary. Harper Collins. 1005
***The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin 2007

Add Reply

×
×
×
×
Link copied to your clipboard.
×