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To transcribe a document is to “write it across” to another sheet of paper.
The Latin root word scrib and its variant script both mean “write.” These roots are the word origin of a fair number of English vocabulary words, including scribe, describe, postscript, and manuscript. The root scrib is easily recalled through the word scribe, whose job is “writing,” and script, a “written” document.
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The Latin root word scrib and its variant script both mean “write.” Today we have “written” a unique podcast script to permanently “write” these roots into your memory!
Let’s begin with the root scrib, which means “write.” A scribe used to be the primary “writer” of copies before the printing press was invented. A scribe would often transcribe documents, or make “written” copies of them. A bored scribe might scribble or carelessly “write” meaningless marks on what he is “writing.” Imagine if a scribe were given a task which was indescribable, or could not be “written” about at all! Now imagine once more if a scribe were asked to inscribe, or “write” letters on stone with only his usual pen! Perhaps a doctor would have to prescribe pain killers, or “write” a note beforehand, to ease his aching fingers—it’s rough “writing” on stone!
Now let’s move on to the variant root script, which also means “write.” For instance, a script is simply a “written” text. Scribes often copied manuscripts, or documents once “written” by hand. These manuscripts “written” by scribes were often scriptures, or holy “writings.”
Do you have a subscription to a magazine? If so, you have “underwritten” it to provide money for its production. If you need some medicine that is available by prescription only, you must receive a “written” document beforehand from a physician to get it. Have you ever needed a transcript from your school, or document “written” across to another to make a copy, to prove that you’ve taken a certain course?
And just what does the abbreviation “PS” mean after a signature on a letter? It stands for the Latin post scriptum, or “postscript,” a further message which is “written” after the main body of the letter.
I have now “written” more than enough about both scrib and script. Enough describing and description for today!