noun, plural a·man·u·en·ses [uh-man-yoo-en-seez] /əˌmæn yuˈɛn siz/.

a person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another; secretary.

Origin of amanuensis

1610–20; < Latin (servus) āmanuēnsis, equivalent to ā- a-4 + manu-, stem of manus hand + -ēnsis -ensis Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for amanuensis

Contemporary Examples of amanuensis

Historical Examples of amanuensis

  • This amanuensis was very different from any other I had had.

    The House of Martha

    Frank R. Stockton

  • He may be a copyist, he may be an amanuensis, he may be a writer of originals, and furnish both the language and the ideas.

    Christian Science

    Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

  • Austin came back from school last week, which made a great time for the Amanuensis, you may be sure.

  • Of the two boys, one was my amanuensis and well skilled in music, and the other was a lackey.

    Jerome Cardan

    William George Waters

  • "Your father missed both his daughter and his amanuensis," said the captain.

    Elsie at Home

    Martha Finley

British Dictionary definitions for amanuensis


noun plural -ses (-siːz)

a person employed to take dictation or to copy manuscripts

Word Origin for amanuensis

C17: from Latin āmanuensis, from the phrase servus ā manū slave at hand (that is, handwriting)
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 amanuensis

"one who takes dictation," 1610s, from Latin amanuensis "adjective used as a noun," from servus a manu "secretary," literally "servant from the hand," from a "from" + manu, ablative of manus "hand" (see manual (adj.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper