put down to

put (something) down to (something else)

To regard a situation, action, or outcome as being the result of some specific aspect, condition, or event. The runner put her leg pain down to simple muscle fatigue, but she was shocked to learn that it was due to deep vein thrombosis. I put most of my success down to the excellent teaching I received in secondary school.
See also: down, put

put something down to something

 and set something down to something
to explain something as being caused by something else. I put his bad humor down to his illness. We set your failure down to your emotional upset.
See also: down, put
References in classic literature ?
A poem of the satirical kind cannot indeed be put down to any author earlier than Homer; though many such writers probably there were.
From this moment all unlucky casualties which could not be otherwise accounted for were put down to the monster.
The Hymn is doubtless a very ancient form; but if no example of extreme antiquity survive this must be put down to the fact that until the age of literary consciousness, such things are not preserved.
Jones was at length prevailed on, chiefly by the latter argument of the landlord; and now a joint of mutton was put down to the fire.
The way he had behaved to me could not be put down to mere boorishness.
Two horses weren't killed, they were put down to save them from further suffering.
Due to the severe injuries the creamy brown-coloured animal sustained, the RSPCA said it was put down to end its "unbearable suffering".
Our house is now much admired by our friends, a fact that my wife puts down to its stylishness, and that I put down to their politeness - Harry Enfield.