[al-uh-graf, -grahf]
  1. Linguistics. a variant form of a grapheme that is in complementary distribution or free variation with another form of the same grapheme, as t and T or n in run and nn in runner; an orthographic contextual variant.Compare grapheme.
  2. writing or a signature inscribed by one person for another, as distinguished from autograph.
  3. a deed or other legal document not in the writing of any of the persons who are party to it.

Origin of allograph

1950–55; allo- + -graph, on the model of allophone
Related formsal·lo·graph·ic [al-uh-graf-ik] /ˌæl əˈgræf ɪk/, adjective
Can be confusedallograph allograft Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for allograph


  1. a document written by a person who is not a party to it
  2. a signature made by one person on behalf of anotherCompare autograph
  3. linguistics any of the written symbols that constitute a single graphemem and M are allographs in the Roman alphabet
Derived Formsallographic (ˌæləˈɡræfɪk), adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for allograph

"writing made by another person," by 1916 (implied in allographic), from allo- + -graph "something written."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper