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account - definition and synonyms


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verb account pronunciation in British English /əˈkaʊnt/
Word Forms
present tense
present participleaccounting
past tenseaccounted
past participleaccounted
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phrasal verb

account for

Word Forms
present tense
I/you/we/theyaccount for
he/she/itaccounts for
present participleaccounting for
past tenseaccounted for
past participleaccounted for
  1. 1
    account for something to be the reason why something exists or happens

    A number of factors account for the differences between the two scores.

    The increase in carbon dioxide emissions may account for changes in the climate.

  2. 2
    account for someone/something to form, use, or produce a particular amount or part of a group of people or things

    Electronic goods account for over 30% of our exports.

  3. 3
    account for something to give an explanation for something bad that has happened, especially something that you are responsible for

    You will be brought before the disciplinary panel to account for your behaviour.

    How do you account for this sudden improvement in his test scores?

  4. 4
    [often passive]account for something to say how you have used, or how you will use, an amount of money that you are responsible for spending, especially in your job

    She had to account for every penny she spent.

    Investors were told that over half their savings had vanished and could not be accounted for.

  5. 5
    [usually passive]account for someone if someone is accounted for, you know where they are and so do not worry that they are not where they should be

    One small child was still not accounted for.

  6. 6
    there’s no accounting for taste mainly spoken used for saying that you think what someone likes is strange


used to describe something which is done more carefully and over a longer period of time …

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the practice of giving birth in the presence of several friends and relatives

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