This word is a great favourite, especially in business letters. It is made to mean almost anything. It is safe to say that any sentence in which this omnibus use occurs will be improved either by omitting the word or by substituting a word of more definite meaning. The following is a typical instance; it refers to the condition of a set of batteries:
The accessory items, stands and other parts, are satisfactory, but the sediment approximates to 1-in. in depth and . . . this item can be removed conveniently when the renewals are effected.
Accessory items should be changed to accessories and this item can be removed to this can be removed.
The next example is from a notice of a meeting:
* I shall be able to attend the meeting.
* I shall not be able to attend the meeting.
* Please delete items not required.
Here, what meant sediment in the first example appears to mean words.
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