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Word of the Week

proxime accessit, adj. (and n.)
[‘ Judged to be next in merit to the actual winner of a prize, scholarship, etc. Also as n.: a person so judged; a runner-up. In extended use: a person who or thing which is nearly, but not quite, a success.’]
Pronunciation: Brit. /ˌprɒksᵻmiː akˈsɛsɪt/, /ˌprɒksᵻmeɪ akˈsɛsɪt/, U.S. /ˈˌprɑksəmi ækˈsɛsət/
Etymology: < post-classical Latin proxime accessit he (or she) has come very near or next (5th cent. in Augustine with reference to an enemy) < classical Latin proximē nearest ( < proximus proxime adj.1 + , suffix forming adverbs) + accessit, 3rd singular perfect of accēdere accede v. Compare accessit n. 1.
Judged to be next in merit to the actual winner of a prize, scholarship, etc. Also as n.: a person so judged; a runner-up. In extended use: a person who or thing which is nearly, but not quite, a success.1852 Times 27 Mar. 8/6 The Examiners..have elected..Scholar of Balliol College, to the vacant Scholarship. Proxime accessit—Mr. David Williams Bernard, Post-master of Merton College.
1878 L. W. M. Lockhart Mine is Thine I. xi. 224, I..was proxime accessit for the Chancellor’s medal at Cambridge.
1882 Standard 11 Dec. 3/2 They had..reserved an honourable mention, as proxime accessit.
1930 Music & Lett. 11 107 No doubt the world has, for its conventional repertory, chosen on the whole the best, but we can’t be sure of that without hearing also the proxime accessit’s occasionally.
1978 Daily Tel. 14 Nov. 16/3 Gibbs Prize in Law: N. A. Hamblen (Scholar, St John’s), proxime accessit S. F. Lee (Scholar, Balliol).
1995 Stornoway Gaz. 13 July 5/1 (caption) The Proxime Accessit of Stornoway Primary School is Daniel Mahony and the Dux of the school is Laura Read.

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