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.
Contemporary Examples

Is writing simply a borderless act or can we ascribe a closed-circuit origin to it?
Do National Writers Still Exist? Colum McCann November 27, 2010

My problem with both perspectives is the tendency to ascribe human motivations to non-human entities.
The Internet Mob’s Porn Bomb Douglas Rushkoff January 9, 2010

What drives the human impulse to ascribe divine meaning to tragic events?
This Week’s Must-Read Journalism The Daily Beast March 18, 2011

Yet neither expressed any interest in the legend that so many people want to ascribe to the man.
The Bin Laden of His Day? A New Biography of Geronimo Marc Wortman December 4, 2012

Different boycotters will ascribe different meanings to the same act.
What Does the ASA Boycott Mean? They Don’t Know. Jay Michaelson December 3, 2013

Historical Examples

There are some, on the other hand, who ascribe to the story a deep spiritual meaning.
Of Six Medival Women Alice Kemp-Welch

To ascribe them specially to God would seem to us far-fetched.
The Conquest of Fear Basil King

If I am still unable to follow the impulse of my heart, I hope you will ascribe it to the state of my eyes.
Beethoven’s Letters 1790-1826 Vol. 2 Lady Wallace

That is, theoretically we may ascribe them to God, but practically we dissociate Him from them.
The Conquest of Fear Basil King

So might it be possible to ascribe to particular months the tokens with which the obliging sea bestrews the beaches.
Tropic Days E. J. Banfield

verb (transitive)
to credit or assign, as to a particular origin or period: to ascribe parts of a play to Shakespeare
to attribute as a quality; consider as belonging to: to ascribe beauty to youth

to count; to enter into an account
Word Origin

Latin ad- + scribere ‘to write’
Usage Note

transitive; used with to

mid-14c., ascrive, from Old French ascrivre “to inscribe; attribute, impute,” from Latin ascribere “to write in, to add to in a writing,” from ad- “to” (see ad-) + scribere “to write” (see script (n.)). Spelling restored by 16c. Related: Ascribed; ascribing.


Read Also:

  • Ascribed status

    the social position assigned to a person on the basis of kinship, ethnic group, sex, etc. Historical Examples Social status on this frontier depended more upon achieved status than ascribed status. The Fair Play Settlers of the West Branch Valley, 1769-1784 George D. Wolf

  • Ascription

    the act of . a statement something, especially praise to the Deity. Historical Examples This ascription is based upon the entry in the Stationers’ Register, which runs: ‘7º Novembris 1627. Pastoral Poetry and Pastoral Drama Walter W. Greg But in the two verses that follow the ascription of holiness, we find the sum of the […]

  • Ascriptive

    pertaining to, involving, or indicating ascription, especially the attribution of qualities or characteristics.

  • Ascs

    Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service. Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service

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