to gather or collect, often in gradual degrees; heap up:
to accumulate wealth.
to gather into a heap, mass, cover, etc.; form a steadily increasing quantity:
Snow accumulated in the driveway. His debts kept on accumulating.
Contemporary Examples

If we have another, the debt we’re accumulating now will leave us in a worse position to pay for it.
All We Need is Growth Megan McArdle January 27, 2013

But in the South, the utter lack of status had prevented black Southerners from accumulating wealth in the first place.
David’s Bookclub: The Warmth of Other Suns David Frum May 19, 2013

We have been accumulating problems: we are battling the elements and disease.
Bad News for the Bubbly: Champagne Suffers Worst Season in Decades The Telegraph August 16, 2012

The scientific evidence on which he would base the decision was accumulating.
George Washington, the First Vaxxer Tom Shachtman October 4, 2014

Idiocies multiply in direct proportion to the accumulating legal rigidities.
Red Tape Is Strangling Good Samaritans Philip K. Howard December 26, 2014

Historical Examples

The flood of invective which had been accumulating in Mr. Peck’s system all the afternoon now broke its bounds.
The Go-Getter Peter B. Kyne

I watch them accumulating just as I watch the waves of the sea.
My Double Life Sarah Bernhardt

He has half come to believe in the secret hoard his wife says old Jim is accumulating.
An Isle in the Water Katharine Tynan

She fancied every man a seducer, and every hour an hour of accumulating peril!
Beaux and Belles of England Mary Robinson

Columbus says he is building stone bulwarks for defense, and when this is done he shall provide for accumulating gold.
Christopher Columbus and How He Received and Imparted the Spirit of Discovery Justin Winsor

to gather or become gathered together in an increasing quantity; amass; collect

1520s, from Latin accumulatus, past participle of accumulare “to heap up” (see accumulation). Related: Accumulated; accumulating.


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  • Accumulation

    act or state of ; state of being . that which is ; an amount, number, or mass. growth by continuous additions, as of interest to principal. Contemporary Examples In both countries, the rulers place the accumulation of wealth far ahead of the welfare of the nation. Ukraine’s Revolutionary Lesson for Russia David Satter March […]

  • Accumulative

    tending to or arising from ; cumulative. tending to wealth; acquisitive. Historical Examples These last men are seldom if ever idealists; they see the world as it is, are men of order and of accumulative tendency. Memoir of Rev. Joseph Badger Elihu G. Holland Next: ‘Aia’ is generally an accumulative yet depreciative termination. The Browning […]

  • Accumulatively

    tending to or arising from ; cumulative. tending to wealth; acquisitive. Historical Examples It rolls up continually, accumulatively; and another fifty years will show more advance than the past five hundred. The home Charlotte Perkins Gilman

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