from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • transitive verb To grant authority or power to.
  • transitive verb To give permission for (something); sanction.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To give authority, warrant, or legal power to; empower (a person): as, to authorize commissioners to settle the boundary of a state.
  • To give authority for; approve of and permit; formally sanction (an act or a proceeding).
  • To make authoritative or valid; legalize; validate.
  • To establish by authority or usage: as, an authorized idiom.
  • To warrant; vouch for.
  • To support (one's self) upon the authority (of).
  • Also spelled authorise.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To clothe with authority, warrant, or legal power; to give a right to act; to empower.
  • transitive verb To make legal; to give legal sanction to; to legalize.
  • transitive verb To establish by authority, as by usage or public opinion; to sanction.
  • transitive verb To sanction or confirm by the authority of some one; to warrant.
  • transitive verb To justify; to furnish a ground for.
  • transitive verb [Obs.] to rely for authority.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb transitive To grant (someone) power or authority (to do something specific).
  • verb transitive To give (someone) permission; to sanction or consent.
  • verb transitive To permit (something), to sanction or consent to (something).

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb give or delegate power or authority to
  • verb grant authorization or clearance for


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English auctorisen, from Old French autoriser, from Medieval Latin auctōrizāre, from Latin auctor, author; see author.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French autoriser


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word authorize.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.