Recently came across the usage of "affect" in the context of assuming an appearance. Here is an example Google gives:

an American who had affected a British accent

How would this usage come across in modern prose, i.e., might it come across as affectatious?

  • 2
    It looks perfectly idiomatic to me. Depending on the context it could be seen as a hair stuffy, but not really magniloquent.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 2:10
  • Lots of people suffer flattened affects when they are depressed. -Perfectly modern usage. Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 2:21

1 Answer 1


Affected is perfectly modern, and not archaic. It can be a participle and an adjective. One can affect something, a limp, a stutter, an accent for a variety of purposes, not all worthy of blame or derision. To say e.g. that an Englishman affected a Texan accent could mean no more than that he imitated it in some speech, perhaps humorously, whereas to call someone's speech affected generally means that the speaker is trying to sound superior or more educated than they truly are.



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