Definition of accrete in English:


Line breaks: ac|crete
Pronunciation: /əˈkriːt


[no object]
  • 1Grow by accumulation or coalescence: ice that had accreted grotesquely into stalactites
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    • Online, audiences or communities don't necessarily build so much as grow or accrete.
    • One process is accretion under water - ‘the idea that grains on the sea floor or in living water roll around and sometimes they accrete or grow by adding layers of material,’ explained McSween.
    • There may have been an additional body of work, but this was secondary to the text-representation of yourself that accreted, word by word, as a result of your participation.
  • 1.1 [with object] Form (a composite whole) by gradual accumulation: the collection of art he had accreted was to be sold
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    • How is it possible that now, and in the next few months, his little brain accretes cells at the mind-blowing rate of 250 000 a minute?
    • Although the sedimentary rocks of the LeMay Group are generally regarded as having been accreted, this has only been demonstrated at a few localities.
    • Batman is a thought form dreamt up by Bob Kane, which has accreted beliefs and views over the decades to become the Batman we know today, independent of the original.
  • 1.2 Astronomy (With reference to matter or a body) come or bring together under the influence of gravitation: [no object]: the gas will cool and then accrete to the galaxy’s core
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    • When the giant Jupiter was formed 4.6 billion years ago, its enormous gravity cleared the region around it from most of the rocky debris that would normally accrete to form a planet.
    • Planet cores and terrestrial rocky planets would accrete from the planetesimals.
    • Theory predicts that these disks accrete onto the holes because of friction.


late 18th century: from Latin accret- 'grown', from the verb accrescere, from ad- 'to' + crescere 'grow'.

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