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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun accretion:


Accretion (growth in size or increase in amount) is considered to be an advanced word, according to the Barron's essential words for the GRE, which includes 800 college- and graduate-level words that frequently appear on the Graduate Record Exam.

Definition of the noun accretion

What does accretion mean as a name of something?

noun - plural: accretions

  1. an increase by natural growth or addition
    • lexical domain: Natural Processes - nouns denoting natural processes
    • synonym of accretion: accumulation
    • more generic words: growth / increase / increment = a process of becoming larger or longer or more numerous or more important
    • more specific words:
      • backup = an accumulation caused by clogging or a stoppage
      • buildup = the result of the process of accumulation
      • deposition / deposit = the natural process of laying down a deposit of something
  2. something contributing to growth or increase
    • examples: he scraped away the accretions of paint | the central city surrounded by recent accretions
    • lexical domain: Quantities - nouns denoting quantities and units of measure
    • more generic words: addition / gain / increase = a quantity that is added
  3. (astronomy) the formation of a celestial object by the effect of gravity pulling together surrounding objects and gases
  4. (biology) growth by addition as by the adhesion of parts or particles
  5. (geology) an increase in land resulting from alluvial deposits or waterborne sediment
  6. (law) an increase in a beneficiary's share in an estate (as when a co-beneficiary dies or fails to meet some condition or rejects the inheritance)

Alternative definition of the noun accretion


  1. The act of increasing by natural growth; especially the increase of organic bodies by the internal accession of parts; organic growth.
  2. The act of increasing, or the matter added, by an accession of parts externally; an extraneous addition; as, an accretion of earth.
  3. concretion; coherence of separate particles; as, the accretion of particles so as to form a solid mass.
  4. A growing together of parts naturally separate, as of the fingers or toes.
  5. [legal] The adhering of property to something else, by which the owner of one thing becomes possessed of a right to another; generally, gain of land by the washing up of sand or sail from the sea or a river, or by a gradual recession of the water from the usual watermark.
  6. [legal] Gain to an heir or legatee, failure of a coheir to the same succession, or a co-legatee of the same thing, to take his share.

Definition of the noun accretion for high school students

    slow growth in size or amount
    • example: Stalactites are formed by the accretion of minerals from the roofs of caves.

The noun accretion is considered to be a word that all college-aspiring students should know and understand, so it frequently appears on the SAT, ACT and other college admissions tests.


  1. "Accretion" is a musical album of Füxa.
    • released in (17 years ago)
  2. "Accretion" is a musical album of Of Norway.
  3. "Accretion" is a musical album of Aumgn.
    • released in (5 years ago)


  1. Accretion is a process by which material is added to a tectonic plate or a landmass. This material may be sediment, volcanic arcs, seamounts or other igneous features.
  2. Accretion: In finance, accretion is the change in the price of a bond bought at a discount to the par value of the bond. Accretion can be thought of as the antonym of amortization.
  3. Accretion is an atmospheric science term for when an ice crystal or snowflake hits a supercooled liquid droplet, which then freeze together. This increases the size of the water particle. A common example of this that is visible to people is graupel.
  4. Accretion is the process of coastal sediment returning to the visible portion of a beach or foreshore following a submersion event. A sustainable beach or foreshore often goes through a cycle of submersion during rough weather then accretion during calmer periods. If a coastline is not in a healthy sustainable state, then erosion can be more serious and accretion does not fully restore the original volume of the visible beach or foreshore leading to permanent beach loss.
  5. Accretion is defined as the gradual collection of something over time. In meteorology it is the process of accumulation of frozen water as precipitation over time as it descends through the atmosphere. The collection of these particles eventually forms snow or hail in clouds and depending on lower atmosphere temperatures may become rain or sleet. Accretion is the basis for cloud formation and can also be seen as water accumulates on the particulate matter and form jet contrails. This is because water vapor in the air requires condensation nuclei to form large droplets of solid or liquid water.
  6. Accretion is a process in which the size of something gradually increases by steady addition of smaller parts. This term is used with specific meanings in several scientific fields.

Phrases with Accretion

  1. Accretion Disk
  2. Accretion Shock
  3. Accretion of Lithosphere

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Accretion

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewClark on Surveying and Boundaries with Current Supplement (2013)

by Walter G. Robillard, Lane J. Bouman, Robert C. Shelton

Accretion is the slow and imperceptible buildup of the riverbed or stream bank or of the shore of a lake, pond or sea due to deposit of sediment or alluvium. Reliction is the gradual, imperceptible withdrawal of water that has formed a natural ...

Google previewCode Complete (2004)

by Steve McConnell

The two metaphors are closely related, but software accretion is the more insightful image. “Accretion,” in case you don't have...

Google previewIntroduction to Process Geomorphology (2010)

by Vijay K. Sharma

Lateral accretion is the deposition process of coarser sediments within channels, and vertical accretion refers to the sedimentation of finer fractions in overbank flows at and beyond channel margins. The deposits of slope failure, called ...

Google previewContracts: The Essential Business Desk Reference  (2011)

The Essential Business Desk Reference by Richard Stim

Accretion refers to the process by which payments or value increases over time. For example, accretion occurs when a bond purchased at a discounted price ( $175) matures to its face (or “par”) value ($250). A • Real estate contracts. Accretion ...

Google previewAn Introduction to Coastal Zone Management (2002)

Second Edition by Timothy Beatley, David Brower, Anna K. Schwab

Accretion is the seaward buildup of coastal land that occurs when the supply of sediment is greater than the erosive impacts...

Google previewStudies in Expansive Learning (2016)

Learning What Is Not Yet There by Yrjö Engeström

Accretion is the addition of new knowledge to existing memory schemas. The framework exists, but new data are entered. Accretion is the most common mode of learning. 2. Structuring. Structuring is the formation of new conceptual structures, ...

Google previewInternational Law (2005)

A Dictionary by Boleslaw Adam Boczek

Accretion. Accretion means addition of new land to the existing territory of a state (228) by operation of nature and without the need of any formal acts on the part of the state; there is a presumption of occupation (214), theoretically at least, ...

Google previewAn Introduction to Scientific Research Methods in Geography (2006)

by Daniel Montello, Paul Sutton

An accretion is an intentional or unintentional addition, deposition, or accumulation. Examples of accretions include graffiti painted on city walls or slag piles left by mining operations. A deletion is an intentional or unintentional removal, ...

Google previewStar Struck (2011)

by Udit Basu

Accretion is the process of collecting material from external object and adding the material to itself. This process happens when white dwarf sucks material from other ...

Google previewDeath from the Skies! (2008)

These are the Ways the World Will End-- by Philip C. Plait

The matter just outside the black hole begins to pile up, and it forms a flattened disk called an accretion disk (accretion is the process of accumulating matter). This will happen for any star that is spinning before it collapses, but models have ...

Google previewTerrestrial Hydrometeorology (2012)

by W. James Shuttleworth

water droplets, the process is called accretion. This process can only occur in mixed clouds. All of these collision processes require that there is air motion ...

Google previewHow to Invest Today (1995)

A Beginner's Guide to the World of Investments by Lawrence Lynn

The original purchase price plus the annual accretion is the cost basis for income tax calculations. “Convertible zero coupon bonds” are zero coupon bonds that automatically convert to interest-paying bonds on a specified future date.

Google previewOrigin and Evolution of Planetary and Satellite Atmospheres (1989)

by S. K. Atreya, James B. Pollack, Mildred Shapley Matthews

Accretion is the most effective degassing stage of planetary matter; however, the early atmosphere formed in this way is also continuously removed by the accretion process itself. In addition, especially on Mars because of its homogeneous ...

Google previewThe Restless Universe (2002)

Understanding X-Ray Astronomy in the Age of Chandra and Newton by Eric M. Schlegel

Accretion is the process by which material is accumulated at a specific location. To build a snowman on your front lawn, you start rolling a small ball of snow. As you roll it, the ball accumulates, or accretes, more snow until it is too large for you ...

Google previewApplied Muscle Biology and Meat Science (2009)

by Min Du, Ph.D., Richard J. McCormick

IntroduCtIon Muscle protein accretion is the difference between the rates of muscle protein synthesis and degradation. The growth rate of ...

Google previewAstrophysics

In the nebular theory, accretion refers to the collision and sticking of cooled microscopic dust and ice particles ...

Google previewWiley GAAP 2015 (2014)

Interpretation and Application of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles 2015 by Joanne M. Flood

The effective interest rate used to calculate accretion is the credit-adjusted risk- free rate or rates (or incremental borrowing rate) applied when the liability or portion of the liability (as explained below) was initially measured and recognized.

Google previewSoutheastern Geographer (2013)

Spring 2013 Issue by David M. Cochran Jr., Carl A. Reese

vertical accretion is a good surrogate for surface elevation change. They report that due to shallow subsidence (upper 3–5 meters), surface elevation change was significantly lower than vertical accretion after two years (Cahoon et al. 1995 ).

Google previewPhilippine Law Dictionary

ACCRETION ACKNOWLEDGE added at any moment of time. — Paz v. Director of Lands, 8190-R, January 4, 1957. The result of the latent, incessant and spontaneous manner in which, in the course of time, sediment and alluvial water are ...

Google previewDictionary of Geophysics, Astrophysics, and Astronomy (2001)

by Richard A. Matzner

accretion, Eddington presence is part of the “standard model” of active galactic nuclei, and whose observational status is becoming secure. Active galactic nuclei are thought to be powered by the release of potential gravitational energy by ...

Google previewCRC Dictionary of Agricultural Sciences (2001)

by Robert Alan Lewis

accretion accumulator organism accretion, la: accumulation, accrual, or buildup. Ib: continuous or discontinuous growth (increase in size) by extemal accumulation of material. Ib: infrequently used in reference to organic growth: growth and ...

Google previewLexicon of Trust & Foundation Practice (2016)

by John Goldsworth

Accretion: See Accretion and accrual. Accretion and accrual:Terms indicating an increase in value to personal or real property usually by gradual or imperceptible accumulation or by an apportionment according to established legal practice.

Google previewThe Norton Dictionary of Modern Thought (1999)

by Alan Bullock

ACCRETION structure of the colliding particles which disintegrate in the collision process. Most research in elementary particles is carried out by this method at very large purpose- built facilities. These are often ...

Google previewBouvier's Law Dictionary and Concise Encyclopedia (1914)

by John Bouvier, Francis Rawle

ACCRETION (Lat accrescere, to grow to). The increase of real estate by the addition of portions of soil, by gradual deposition through the operation of natural causes, to that already In possession of the owner. 3 Washb. R. P. (5th ed.) 50.

Google previewEncyclopedia of Soil Science (2006)

by R. Lal

Accretion of sediments accelerates the aging of wetlands, reduces infiltration through bottom substrates increasing water heights, and removes phosphorous, a limiting nutrient in many freshwater ecosystems. In this entry, the mechanics of ...

Google previewFirefly Astronomy Dictionary (2003)

by John Woodruff

accretion The coalescence of small particles in space as a result of collisions, and the gradual building up of larger bodies from smaller ones by gravitational ...

Google previewA Dictionary of Geology and Earth Sciences (2013)

by Michael Allaby

accretion movement of the Avalon *terrane. See APPALACHLAN OROGENIC BELT. Acado-Baltic PROVINCE. Province See ATLANTIC acanthite An *opaque mineral, AgZS; density 7.2-7.4 g/cmg'; *hardness 2-2.5; *monoclinic; lead grey or ...

Google previewThe Extraterrestrial Encyclopedia (2016)

by David Darling , Dirk Schulze-Makuch

accretion In general, a process of growth by accumulation and adhesion. In the context of the origin of planetary systems (>> planetary systems, formation of), accretion is ...

Google previewDictionary of Earth Science (2002)

by McGraw-Hill Education

accretion vein abyssal zone [OCEANOGRI The biogeographic realm of the great depths of the ocean beyond the limits of the continental shelf, generally below 1000 meters. {e'bisel 'zon } abyssolith [GEOL] A molten mass of eruptive material ...

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Video language resources about Accretion

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View more videos about Accretion Disk, Accretion Shock, and Accretion of Lithosphere.

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Quotes about Accretion

Viewed freely, the English language is the accretion and growth of every dialect, race, and range of time, and is both the free and compacted composition of all. (Walt Whitman)
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Scrabble value of A1C3C3R1E1T1I1O1N1

The value of this 9-letter word is 13 points, but it's not an accepted word in the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

Anagrams of ACCRETION

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