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Meaning of authority file

author'ity file"

Pronunciation: [key]
— Library Science. Library Science.
  1. a file, either on cards or in machine-readable format, in which decisions involving bibliographic records, particularly for form of entry, are recorded to establish a precedent or rule for subsequent decisions and to provide for consistency of entries.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.