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[kuh m-poz-i-ter] /kəmˈpɒz ɪ tər/
a person who sets the type or text for printing.
Origin of compositor
1325-75 for earlier sense “referee, arbiter”; 1560-70 for current sense; Middle English < Latin: one who composes, equivalent to composi-, variant stem of compōnere (see component, composite) + -tor -tor
Related forms
[kuh m-poz-i-tawr-ee-uh l, -tohr-] /kəmˌpɒz ɪˈtɔr i əl, -ˈtoʊr-/ (Show IPA),
adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for compositor
Historical Examples
  • Thence the proof passes back again to the compositor, who corrects the type in accordance with the proof-reader's markings.

  • This figure, borrowed from the compositor's desk, will give a notion of what we mean.

    George Cruikshank William Makepeace Thackeray
  • Perhaps the first desire of the born writer is to be a compositor.

    Young Lives Richard Le Gallienne
  • Meredith was no compositor, a poor pressman, and seldom sober.

  • The poet is a compositor; words are his types; he must have them within reach, and in unlimited abundance.

  • This is one of the tasks which subject the compositor to the test of intelligence.

    Punctuation Frederick W. Hamilton
  • When the editor underscores a word, the Chinese compositor charges $9 extra for italicizing it.

    Remarks Bill Nye
  • If the copy is hard to read, the compositor will set but few pages.

    Punctuation Frederick W. Hamilton
  • Then they watched the compositor setting type in the metal "stick" with the sliding end.

    The Adventures of Bobby Orde Stewart Edward White
  • Why is it necessary for a compositor to understand punctuation?

    Punctuation Frederick W. Hamilton
British Dictionary definitions for compositor


(printing) a person who sets and corrects type and generally assembles text and illustrations for printing Sometimes shortened to comp
Derived Forms
compositorial (kəmˌpɒzɪˈtɔːrɪəl) adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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