Very infrequently, I'll use the fragment "if and as" in a sentence. For instance:

Having it be double fudge chocolate cake in both cases comes off as needless frippery if and as the recipe is valid in itself.

I think I'm using it to mean that the recipe itself can be considered valid by some ("if") and is considered so by me ("as"). But this could be either grammatically unsound or not meaning roughly what I want it to mean.

So is it grammatically sound?

Does it convey what I think conveys?

If so, does this fragment of three words have a formal name for what it's doing grammatically?

  • How is this better than/different from if and when? Nov 21, 2014 at 11:14
  • @TimLymington Better is subjective; but Different I answer - as and when are quite different words. 'When' is essentially temporal; 'As' is rather more diverse in possible meanings. "if and when" is just another way of saying "when this may happen"; whilst "if and as" is... well that's the question isn't it? Nov 21, 2014 at 11:20
  • I don't think I've ever heard that usage. I would not know what meaning was intended if I heard it.
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 20, 2015 at 12:34

1 Answer 1


Google NGrams shows that it is used, with an interesting peak around 1885, but these days it would seem unusual, and probably not be understood, outside of a legal document. (BrEng)

  • I do occasionally see it in legal documents; but with more emphasis on the "if" than the "as" due to the common framing words I've seen it in. Nov 21, 2014 at 7:31
  • @Mari-LouA, I'm trying to answer the question. I don't want to say outright "Is it gramatically sound? No. Does it convey what I think conveys? No" because in other variations of English it might be valid.
    – A E
    Nov 21, 2014 at 8:24
  • @Mari-LouA, it's hard to see how matters of acceptable usage can ever be anything other than opinions. Anyway, edited.
    – A E
    Nov 21, 2014 at 8:39

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.