9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[ak-ses] /ˈæk sɛs/
the ability, right, or permission to approach, enter, speak with, or use; admittance:
They have access to the files.
the state or quality of being approachable:
The house was difficult of access.
a way or means of approach:
The only access to the house was a rough dirt road.
Theology. approach to God through Jesus Christ.
an attack or onset, as of a disease.
a sudden and strong emotional outburst.
verb (used with object)
to make contact with or gain access to; be able to reach, approach, enter, etc.:
Bank customers can access their checking accounts instantly through the new electronic system.
Computers. to locate (data) for transfer from one part of a computer system to another, generally between an external storage device and main storage.
Television. (of programming, time, etc.) available to the public:
Six channels now offer access services.
Origin of access
1275-1325; Middle English accesse (< Old French acces) < Latin accessus an approach, equivalent to acced-, variant stem of accēdere to accede + -tus suffix of v. action
Related forms
preaccess, noun
Can be confused
access, assess, excess. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for access
  • For years, newspaper companies have been offering Web access free .
  • Individual students now pay for subscriptions to any of several major digital-book vendors for unlimited access.
  • Prepaid Internet access is moving into the mainstream.
  • To access the music, you'll have to install software from the site.
  • You download a music player that gives you access to the music.
  • We found them housing and access to employment.
  • In understanding science, there is the necessity that the nonprofessional have access to the original literature.
  • If you're unable to access the beta forum, please log out then back in.
  • We offer a competitive benefit package including access to individual health plans and a retirement savings program.
  • Most of its revenues come from its internet-access business, which is in decline.
British Dictionary definitions for access


the act of approaching or entering
the condition of allowing entry, esp (of a building or room) allowing entry by wheelchairs, prams, etc
the right or privilege to approach, reach, enter, or make use of something
a way or means of approach or entry
the opportunity or right to see or approach someone: she fights for divorce and free access to her children
(modifier) designating programmes made by the general public as distinguished from those made by professional broadcasters: access television
a sudden outburst or attack, as of rage or disease
to gain access to; make accessible or available
(transitive) (computing)
  1. to obtain or retrieve (information) from a storage device
  2. to place (information) in a storage device See also direct access, sequential access
Word Origin
C14: from Old French or from Latin accessus an approach, from accēdere to accede
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for access

early 14c., "an attack of fever," from Old French acces "onslaught, attack; onset (of an illness)" (14c.), from Latin accessus "a coming to, an approach," noun use of past participle of accedere "approach" (see accede). The later senses are directly from Latin. Meaning "an entrance" is from c.1600. Meaning "habit or power of getting into the presence of (someone or something)" is from late 14c.


1962, originally in computing, from access (n.). Related: Accessed; accessing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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access in Medicine

access ac·cess (āk'sěs)

  1. A means of approaching, entering, exiting, or making use of; passage.

  2. The space required to view a tooth and manipulate dental instruments to remove decay and prepare the tooth for restoration.

  3. The opening in the crown of a tooth necessary to allow adequate admittance to the pulp space to clean, shape, and seal the root canal.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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access in Technology

1. An English-like query language used in the Pick operating system.
2. Microsoft Access.

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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Related Abbreviations for access


Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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