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verb, ac·crue \ə-ˈkrü\

Simple Definition of accrue

  • : to increase in value or amount gradually as time passes : to grow or build up slowly

  • : to come to or be given to someone

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of accrue


  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to come into existence as a legally enforceable claim

  3. 2 a :  to come about as a natural growth, increase, or advantage <the wisdom that accrues with age> b :  to come as a direct result of some state or action <rewards due to the feminine will accrue to me — Germaine Greer>

  4. 3 :  to accumulate or be added periodically <interest accrues on a daily basis>

  5. transitive verb
  6. :  to accumulate or have due after a period of time <accrue vacation time>

accruableplay \-ˈkrü-ə-bəl\ adjective
accruement play \-ˈkrü-mənt\ noun

Examples of accrue in a sentence

  1. I'll get back all the money I invested, plus any interest and dividends that have accrued.

  2. investments that have accrued interest and dividends

Origin of accrue

Middle English acreuen, probably from Anglo-French *acrue increase, from acreistre to increase, from Latin accrescere, from ad- + crescere to grow — more at crescent

First Known Use: 15th century

Law Dictionary


verb ac·crue \ə-ˈkrü\

Legal Definition of accrue


  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to come into existence as an enforceable claim :  vest as a right <action…does not accrue until the plaintiff knew or reasonably should have known that he may have suffered injury — National Law Journal> Editor's note: Statutes of limitations begin to run when a cause of action accrues.

  3. 2 :  to come by way of increase or addition :  arise as a growth or result —usually used with to or from <advantages accruing to society from the freedom of the press> <interest accrues to the seller as a result of the delay>

  4. 3 :  to be periodically accumulated in the process of time whether as an increase or a decrease <the accruing of taxes> <allowing the receivable interest to accrue>

  5. transitive verb
  6. 1 :  to accumulate or have due after a period of time <authorized by law to accrue leave in the maximum amount of 90 days>

  7. 2 :  to enter in the books as an accrual

Origin of accrue

Middle French accreue increase, addition to a property, from feminine of accreu, past participle of acreistre to increase

Seen and Heard

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