[ uh-skrahyb ]
/ əˈskraɪb /

verb (used with object), as·cribed, as·crib·ing.

to credit or assign, as to a cause or source; attribute; impute: The alphabet is usually ascribed to the Phoenicians.
to attribute or think of as belonging, as a quality or characteristic: They ascribed courage to me for something I did out of sheer panic.

Nearby words

  1. ascorbic,
  2. ascorbic acid,
  3. ascospore,
  4. ascot,
  5. ascribable,
  6. ascribed status,
  7. ascription,
  8. ascriptive,
  9. ascs,
  10. ascu

Origin of ascribe

1400–50; late Middle English < Latin ascrībere, equivalent to a- a-5 + scrībere to scribe2; replacing Middle English ascrive < Middle French. See shrive

Related formsa·scrib·a·ble, adjectiveun·as·cribed, adjective

Can be confusedascribe proscribe subscribe

Synonym study

1. See attribute. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ascribe

British Dictionary definitions for ascribe


/ (əˈskraɪb) /

verb (tr)

to credit or assign, as to a particular origin or periodto ascribe parts of a play to Shakespeare
to attribute as a quality; consider as belonging toto ascribe beauty to youth
Derived Formsascribable, adjective

Word Origin for ascribe

C15: from Latin ascrībere to enrol, from ad in addition + scrībere to write


Ascribe is sometimes wrongly used where subscribe is meant: I do not subscribe (not ascribe) to this view

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