Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To grant authority or power to.
  • transitive v. To give permission for; sanction: the city agency that authorizes construction projects.
  • transitive v. To be sufficient grounds for; justify.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

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

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

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

  • v. give or delegate power or authority to
  • v. grant authorization or clearance for

Etymologies

Middle English auctorisen, from Old French autoriser, from Medieval Latin auctōrizāre, from Latin auctor, author; see author.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French autoriser (Wiktionary)

Examples

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