- an increase by natural growth or by gradual external addition; growth in size or extent.
- the result of this process.
- an added part; addition: The last part of the legend is a later accretion.
- the growing together of separate parts into a single whole.
- Law. increase of property by gradual natural additions, as of land by alluvion.
Origin of accretion
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for accretive
Architectural peculiarities and appointments are ever accretive properties with the novelist of imagination and latitude.The Key to the Bront Works
If we willed it, we could not prevent 'an institutional race' from absorbing one which has no accretive principle of growth.
The process is not accretive, but exfoliatory—a continual movement from within outwards.Civilisation: Its Cause and Cure
- any gradual increase in size, as through growth or external addition
- something added, esp extraneously, to cause growth or an increase in size
- the growing together of normally separate plant or animal parts
- abnormal union or growing together of parts; adhesion
- a mass of foreign matter collected in a cavity
- law an increase in the share of a beneficiary in an estate, as when a co-beneficiary fails to take his share
- astronomy the process in which matter under the influence of gravity is attracted to and increases the mass of a celestial body. The matter usually forms an accretion disc around the accreting object
- geology the process in which a continent is enlarged by the tectonic movement and deformation of the earth's crust
C17: from Latin accretiō increase, from accrēscere. See accrue
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
Word Origin and History for accretive
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- Growth or increase in size by gradual external addition, fusion, or inclusion.
- Increase by addition to the periphery of material of the same nature as that already present, as in the growth of crystals.accrementition
- Foreign material, such as plaque or calculus, collecting on the surface of a tooth or in a cavity.
- The growing together or adherence of body parts that are normally separate.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
- Geology The gradual extension of land by natural forces, as in the addition of sand to a beach by ocean currents, or the extension of a floodplain through the deposition of sediments by repeated flooding.
- Astronomy The accumulation of additional mass in a celestial object by the drawing together of interstellar gas and surrounding objects by gravity.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.