Authorities
Authority Au*thor"i*ty, n.; pl. {Authorities}. [OE. autorite, auctorite, F. autorit['e], fr. L. auctoritas, fr. auctor. See {Author}, n.] 1. Legal or rightful power; a right to command or to act; power exercised buy a person in virtue of his office or trust; dominion; jurisdiction; authorization; as, the authority of a prince over subjects, and of parents over children; the authority of a court. [1913 Webster]

Thus can the demigod, Authority, Make us pay down for our offense. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

By what authority doest thou these things ? --Matt. xxi. 23. [1913 Webster]

2. Government; the persons or the body exercising power or command; as, the local authorities of the States; the military authorities. [Chiefly in the plural.] [1913 Webster]

3. The power derived from opinion, respect, or esteem; influence of character, office, or station, or mental or moral superiority, and the like; claim to be believed or obeyed; as, an historian of no authority; a magistrate of great authority. [1913 Webster]

4. That which, or one who, is claimed or appealed to in support of opinions, actions, measures, etc. Hence: (a) Testimony; witness. ``And on that high authority had believed.'' --Milton. (b) A precedent; a decision of a court, an official declaration, or an opinion, saying, or statement worthy to be taken as a precedent. (c) A book containing such a statement or opinion, or the author of the book. (d) Justification; warrant. [1913 Webster]

Wilt thou be glass wherein it shall discern Authority for sin, warrant for blame. --Shak. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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