Definition of as per
- As per usual I tried to see into Myra's mind and as per usual I got nowhere at all.
- —Gore Vidal
Many wonder whether the as in as per is superfluous. Wouldn’t the phrase “per your instructions” mean much the same thing as “as per your instructions?” In that case, would it be incorrect to insert the extra word?
The fact is that both per and as per have existed in English in the sense “according to” for a very long time–since the 15th and 16th centuries, respectively. The choice of which to use (or avoid) is entirely a matter of taste. The more ponderous as per is often found in business and legal prose, or in writing that attempts to adopt a formal tone. It is not incorrect to use, but some find it overly legalistic and counsel avoiding it for that reason. On the other hand, it has been used to good effect in facetious mock-business-English (“as per the President’s shiny new Environmental Policy Act”). As in so many matters of diction, the tonal needs of a particular passage should guide your choice.
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