In 'Meteorites and Their Parent Planets', H. Y. McSween writes:

Chondrites are not well-blended consumes of ingredients, but instead are lumpy, heterogeneous aggregates of different components.

I am not familiar with this use of 'consume' as a noun and it is not listed in dictionaries, e.g. the O.E.D. Is this usage a mistake? What word might have been meant?

Meteorites and Their Parent Planets, 2ed, H. Y. McSween, CUP, 1999

  • 3
    Or maybe consommés (soups).
    – Mick
    Commented Dec 4, 2017 at 13:50
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    Just a thought, but "consommé" is a French word, adopted into English, meaning a smooth, clear soup, as opposed to a lumpy soup or broth. The Spanish spelling is "consumé", both having plurals ending in "s". "Consumes" may be a misprint or typo, possibly - I certainly can't find a dictionary definition of "consumes" that satisfies the obvious meaning. @Mick - I really should learn to type faster!
    – Spratty
    Commented Dec 4, 2017 at 13:52
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    @Mick The book has a glossary which doesn't include 'consume' or 'consumes', though it does contain fairly basic entries like 'crater', so technical term seems unlikely, also the section heading is 'Chondrite Recipes' making a food analogy more understandable.
    – Spagirl
    Commented Dec 4, 2017 at 14:01
  • 2
    @Spratty: The omission of the accent on the é does have precedents. E.g. compare the AmE "coupe" (coop) and the original French "coupé" (coo-pay).
    – Flater
    Commented Dec 4, 2017 at 15:34
  • 4
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's asking about a spelling mistake. Commented Jan 6, 2018 at 22:51

1 Answer 1


After reading the text various times, I think the word that fits better is: combination.

1- It is similar to "consumes" (which is obviously out of place).

2- It preserves the idea in the sentence and the paragraph too.

Btw, nice catch. It requires a close reading to notice errors of this kind.

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