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  1. Newbie
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    #1

    take authority

    I am translating a text about behaviours in the workplace and I have a doubt about the meaning of "take authority" in the following sentence:

    "he is even more willing and determined to achieve a result in pressure situations and probably takes authority very seriously."

    a) takes authority = assumes authority very seriously
    b) takes authority = thinks that the authority is very serious

    Which one is the right meaning?

    Thank you in advance.

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    #2

    Re: take authority

    There is ambiguity. It could mean that he has the authority already and he regards and uses that authority with the utmost seriousness.

    It could mean that he regards the authority of some unnamed other very seriously.

    It does not refer to assuming authority. If it said simply that he "takes authority," then it would mean that he assumed authority.

    But this is the structure "take X seriously" where the meaning is how one regards X.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: take authority

    I would go with "b". It is about his attitude towards authority.

  3. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: take authority

    Obviously there's more to the text. Isn't it apparent from the rest whether he is taking authority or not?
    It's a common phrase in English, "to take something seriously", meaning to regard something as serious. A. and b. can mean the same thing. He takes all authority seriously. Whether he is the one who is "taking authority" is a different point, and a different use of the word "take" ie. "regards" vs. "assumes".

  4. Newbie
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    #5

    Re: take authority

    Thank you for your help!

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    #6

    Re: take authority

    There is no need to write a new post just to say "Thank you", sicci. It makes us think there is new information or a follow-up question and we spend time opening the thread. Simply click on the "Thank" button at the bottom left-hand corner of any post you find helpful.

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