I've read and have heard of both 'as per' and 'per' being used conversationally, both with the same connotation of either 'according to' or 'on authority of'


"Tell Ron to start molding new rollers for the mecanum wheels, as per me"

"Per Mr. Crane, you need to start the molds for the new rollers."

They both establish the same context by setting that something should be done on the authority of someone else (or the speaker, per the first example (see what I did there?)). Or it acts as a way to cite a source of a statement, directive or fact in conversational speech.

My question is, what is, if any, the functional and syntactical difference between as per and per. If there are no differences, which is apropos to use?

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    Just that as per is more formal and older than per. The trend now seems to be to prefer per, just as we tend to shorten everything else. – Kris Jan 16 '12 at 9:40
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    I've always thought "as per" was an over-correction, a mistaken attempt at sounding more formal while not quite understanding the formal nuances of syntax (similar to using "whom" in places where only "who" makes sense, in a mistaken attempt to formalize speech). But perhaps it is just that "as per" used to be used more and is now fading (just like the case of "whom", for that matter). Or, they could be genuinely unique in meaning and usage, and there is simply a lot of confusion about which is which. Anyway, +1 for your use of nested parenthesis. – Ben Lee Jun 21 '13 at 22:48
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    @BenLee what can I say; it's the programmer in me. – WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot Jun 23 '13 at 5:36

Among meanings for preposition per, wiktionary.org includes

in accordance with [e.g.] I parked my car at the curb per your request

It defines as per as a preposition meaning "Consistent, or in accordance, with."

Taking Wiktionary as a guide, one can use either form with little difference in meaning, but I think some people will object to such use of per and others to such use of as per.

My preference is for per because most uses of as per that I've heard seem pompous and verbose.

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    +1 for "either form with little difference in meaning". Probably the answer should not include a personal preference unless you also show that it your preference is representative. – MetaEd Jan 16 '12 at 16:18
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    @MetaEd - Via ngrams for per,as per I observed that frequency of use of per is more than that of as per, but was unwilling to regard that as showing representativeness, so I stated a personal preference and my reasons for it, after noting that some people object to one form, and some to the other form. I suspect that "don't know & don't care" is actually most representative. – James Waldby - jwpat7 Jan 16 '12 at 17:03
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    I am referring to the last sentence in which you give as your reason not a verifiable generality about word frequency but a personal impression that the usage is pompous and verbose. So the claim is about your personal impression and your resulting personal preference. I am not judging your personal preference in any way, just saying it does not belong in the answer. – MetaEd Jan 16 '12 at 17:54
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    @jwpat7: I'm not sure what you are doing in ngrams, but wouldn't 'per' necessarily have a higher always than 'as per' since the former will always appear when the latter appears (and maybe sometimes more)? – Mitch Jan 16 '12 at 21:40
  • @Mitch, the per count is necessarily not less than, rather than necessarily more than, the as per count, but of course in point of fact the former count is hundreds or thousands times as much. In any case, the proper test may be x as per y counts versus x per y counts, x, y being the same for both counts. I don't know how to get ngrams to give such counts without manually entering x, y. – James Waldby - jwpat7 Jan 16 '12 at 22:52

According to Oxford dictionary, per is a preposition and means: for each and by means of. While as per is a phrase, which means in accordance with.

  1. Gas is 2 USD per gallon
  2. Send it per express

As per example

  1. I made it as per your instructions
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    On the other hand, Merriam-Webster says per can be used the same way as as per. Maybe this is British vs. American difference? – Martin Grey Nov 22 '19 at 12:01

The two are demonstrably different and not interchangeable, witness:

  • "As per the forecast, it will rain this afternoon." -- This prophecy will be coming true later.
  • "Per the forecast, it will rain this afternoon." -- The prophecy has merely been made.

Using "according "+ to replace the permutations of per, "Per", in this case, is "According to ...", whereas "As per" is "In accordance with ...".

A solid case could be made that the first could also be "Per the forecast it will rain this afternoon.", with the difference lying in prosody; I'm inclined to agree--but the second meaning cannot be evinced using "As per...", and trying to do so makes Old Mother Hubbard sadder.

Long made short: "as per" is not long for "per"; it is short for "exactly per".

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    Can you provide a citation for this distinction? – Andrew Leach Apr 26 '13 at 6:56
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    I meant, Can you provide external justification for this distinction, or this is simply your opinion? [I know I can cite this answer using the share link below it] – Andrew Leach Apr 26 '13 at 7:11
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    The only opinion I registered is my inclination to agree that, through differences in prosody (which people are not generally accustomed to representing or interpreting textually), the identical (reduced) wording can be used to evince both meanings; the remainder is, as I demonstrated, demonstrable fact. I invite an intellectual challenge, even if by means of resort to anecdote; a challenge requesting an appeal to authority does not, in my opinion, constitute a valid intellectual challenge. – Tomer Apr 26 '13 at 7:16
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    @Tomer I couldn't help it; I had to necro this 7-year-old post. "a challenge requesting an appeal to authority does not, in my opinion, constitute a valid intellectual challenge" Sorry, but pretension doesn't constitute intelligence. Also, there is barely any noticeable distinction between the two sentences in your post. "As per" is redundant, and can easily be replaced with "per." – AleksandrH Jan 30 '20 at 11:06

I find the use of 'as per' to be redundant; they mean the same thing. Simply use 'per your instructions' or 'as you indicated' and be done with it. I also understand that the phrase 'as per' is antiquated and obsolete.

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    I was once severely chidden for accidentally ad-libbing as per in a stage performance where the line of course called for simply per. Apparently, as per merits the same scorn as does thusly for being pretentious twittery — leastways, that’s what I got told. – tchrist Mar 26 '13 at 0:50
  • @tchrist I think that might be a cultural thing. In my little corner of Blighty 'as per' is widely used by the commoners with no connotation of pretentiousness. That may not be a coincidence, I find some people often associate things perceived as being 'English' with being upper-class or pretentious (or vice versa). (Also 'twittery' appears to be an adjective, not a noun. Did you mean 'pretentious twittering' or 'pretentiously twittery'?) – Pharap Aug 31 '19 at 3:47

As Per

A phrase commonly recognized to mean "in accordance with the terms of" a particular document—such as a contract, deed, or affidavit—or "as authorized by the contract."

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

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    The questioner is already familiar with as per; the question asks what the difference between as per and per is. – choster Nov 4 '13 at 21:14

I read several decades ago that "as per" was little used outside of business correspondence and I have noticed since what I had already noticed then--that just as gold golds (per* Plotinus), babbitts babbitt.

Babbitt: (italics) a novel (1922) by Sinclair Lewis. (often lowercase) a self-satisfied person who conforms readily to conventional, middle-class ideas and ideals, especially of business and material success; Philistine: from the main character in the novel by Sinclair Lewis.

According to the theory of personality set forth by Kazimierz Dąbrowski, "most people live their lives in a state of "primary or primitive integration" largely guided by biological impulses ("first factor") and/or by uncritical endorsement and adherence to social conventions ("second factor")" (Wikipedia)

Similarly, cops cop: instead of "a man" we find employed "an adult male individual". Tinhorns have to blow hard--such is the nature of tin--and so come to be known as blowhards.

*"per" is here used in the legal sense, i.e. that conveyed by "as stated by"

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