accessory

noun
ac·​ces·​so·​ry | \ ik-ˈse-sə-rē How to pronounce accessory (audio) , ak-, ek-, -ˈses-rē also ə-ˈse- \
variants: or less commonly accessary
plural accessories

Definition of accessory

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : an object or device that is not essential in itself but adds to the beauty, convenience, or effectiveness of something else auto accessories clothing accessories
b : a thing of secondary or lesser importance : adjunct
2 law
a : a person not actually or constructively present but contributing as an assistant or instigator to the commission of an offense

called also accessory before the fact

b : a person who knowing that a crime has been committed aids or shelters the offender with intent to defeat justice

called also accessory after the fact

accessory

adjective

Definition of accessory (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : assisting under the orders of another especially : contributing to a crime but not as the chief agent
2 : aiding or contributing in a secondary way : supplementary accessory materials
3 : present in a minor amount and not essential as a constituent an accessory mineral in a rock

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Synonyms & Antonyms for accessory

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of accessory in a Sentence

Noun fashion accessories such as scarves, handkerchiefs, bracelets, and rings He is wanted as an accessory to murder. Adjective most phone services offer accessory features such as call-waiting
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Our boutique provides all the attire and accessories a women needs to put her best foot forward. Kelly Zive, Cincinnati.com, "Paris Bloom donates 50 new work-appropriate dresses to Dress For Success Cincinnati," 10 Jan. 2020 Yet from time to time, these angular accessories stomp their way into the fore. Nick Remsen, WSJ, "Square-Toed Shoes: The Egregious ’90s Style Returns," 8 Jan. 2020 Of course, the pièce de résistance of the hairstyle was the dainty embellished headband, created by accessories designer Jennifer Behr. Megan Decker, refinery29.com, "The $3 Drugstore Beauty Product Hilary Duff Wore On Her Wedding Day," 8 Jan. 2020 Miller and more than 20 other designers at Neil Kelly are creating accessory dwellings in an attic, basement or a wing within the house, as well as converting parts of the garage or above it to living quarters. oregonlive, "Oregon home design trends deliver a fresh look in 2020," 8 Jan. 2020 By the 1970s, it was hunted almost to extinction for shoes and accessories, but was fortunately placed on the federal endangered species list in 1973, and due to a remarkable comeback was removed from the list in 1987. Jordan G. Teicher, The New Republic, "An Animal’s-Eye View of Mass Extinction in Progress," 7 Jan. 2020 As much as 90% of my bags is comprised of just camera equipment and accessories. Valerie Lee, Billboard, "10 of the Hottest Photographers In Dance Music Share Their Advice on Making It in the Scene," 7 Jan. 2020 The Pet package includes a dog partition, portable washer, rear bumper protector, and dog accessory holder. Connor Hoffman, Car and Driver, "How We'd Spec It: 2020 Aston Martin DBX," 6 Jan. 2020 One bill filed by Housing Committee Co-chair Representative Kevin Honan would require accessory dwelling units and cluster developments to be permitted by right in single-family residential zoning districts. Chris Lisinski, BostonGlobe.com, "Multi-family housing plan advances," 6 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Realtors asked how accessory dwellings are being appraised. Rose Meily, The Mercury News, "Real deal: Silicon Valley property values experience moderate gains," 19 July 2019 While accessory trends lately have been impractical (ahem mini bags), this trend provides utility as well. Teen Vogue, "16 Sunglasses Chains Gigi Hadid (And Your Grandma) Would Approve Of," 3 July 2019 Women with accessory breast tissue can have extra nipples or areolas; this condition is called polythelia. Maggie O'neill, Health.com, "This Woman Started Lactating From Her Vulva After Childbirth—Here’s How That Can Happen," 12 June 2019 Emil Corsillo is the founder of The Hill-Side, the cult men’s accessory brand, and a creative consultant to many insider fashion brands. Matt Hranek, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Visit Norway, According To Two Design Insiders," 3 Dec. 2018 Similarly, in 2015, Austin eased the requirements for accessory dwellings in certain neighborhoods. Lisa Ward, WSJ, "Cities Hope for Big Benefits From Tiny Houses," 26 June 2018 The city previously had restrictive rules on accessory units, generally banning them except those for people 55 and older. Hillary Davis, latimes.com, "Newport begins tweaking ‘granny flat’ rules, including lower parking requirement," 18 May 2018 The council voted 6-2 to allow the following: * Elimination of lot size requirements so accessory units can be built anywhere. Jacqueline Lee, The Mercury News, "Palo Alto ‘granny units’ encouraged by new zoning rules," 9 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accessory.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of accessory

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Adjective

1563, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for accessory

Noun

Middle English accessorie, axcessary "person contributing to the commission of an offense," borrowed from Anglo-French accessorie, accessoire, borrowed from Medieval Latin accessōrius "person contributing to the commission of an offense, supplementary material," from Latin access- (stem in derivation of accēdere "to approach") + -ōrius -ory entry 1 — more at accede

Adjective

Middle English accessorie, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin accessōrius — more at accessory entry 1, -ory entry 2

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Time Traveler for accessory

Time Traveler

The first known use of accessory was in the 15th century

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Statistics for accessory

Last Updated

14 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Accessory.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/accessary. Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for accessory

accessory

noun
ac·​ces·​so·​ry | \ ik-ˈse-sə-rē How to pronounce accessory (audio) , ak- \
plural accessories

Kids Definition of accessory

1 : a person who helps another in doing wrong an accessory to theft
2 : an object or device not necessary in itself but adding to the beauty or usefulness of something else clothing accessories

accessory

adjective
ac·​ces·​so·​ry | \ ik-ˈses-(ə-)rē, ak- How to pronounce accessory (audio) \

Medical Definition of accessory

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : aiding, contributing, or associated in a secondary way: as
a : being or functioning as a vitamin accessory food substances
b : associated in position or function with something (as an organ or lesion) usually of more importance the testis and accessory male ducts and glands— B. T. Scheer
2 : supernumerary accessory spleens

accessory

noun
plural accessories

Medical Definition of accessory (Entry 2 of 2)

accessory

noun
ac·​ces·​so·​ry
variants: also accessary \ ik-​ˈse-​sə-​rē, ak-​ How to pronounce accessary (audio) \
plural accessories

Legal Definition of accessory

1 : a person who is not actually or constructively present but with criminal intent contributes as an assistant or instigator to the commission of a felony

called also accessory before the fact

— compare principal in the second degree at principal

Note: The traditional distinction between accessories before the fact and principals, that accessories were not present and principals were present at the commission of the crime, is not recognized under most modern state statutes. Accessories before the fact are usually considered principals.

2 : a person who knowing that a felony has been committed aids, assists, or shelters the offender with the intent to defeat justice

called also accessory after the fact

Note: Many state statutes now omit the term accessory after the fact and instead characterize the accessory as having committed a particular offense, such as obstructing justice.

3 : the crime of being an accessory usually used with to and specifying the crimeconvicted of murder and accessory to murder— H. B. Zobel — compare substantive crime

Other Words from accessory

accessoryship noun

History and Etymology for accessory

Medieval Latin accessorius subordinate matter, accomplice to a crime, from Latin accedere to go to, agree, assent

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Comments on accessory

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