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Take it as read

Posted by Victoria S Dennis on July 30, 2006

In Reply to: Take it as read posted by Smokey Stover on July 29, 2006

: : Help - does anyone know the origin of the phrase ' take it as read ' thanks in advance

: Since you are the person that saw it used, why not tell us HOW you saw or heard it used. Two possible meanings stand out, but I'm not much good at guessing games. The most likely meaning seems to me to be: accept it as having been read--even if it wasn't. What is "it"? Surely you know. Of you could accept it the way it was read--whatever "it" may be.
: These are not the only possible meanings, but wihout knowing the context these are all the guesses I care to make.
: SS

It's a committee-procedural phrase. If the rules pf procedure for a meeting demand that a long document (for example, the minutes of the previous meeting, or a written proposal) should be read out, the chairman may say "Listen, this was circulated to everyone beforehand and we've all read it, haven't we? Nobody really wants to sit and listen to it, do they? Fine - we'll take it as read [meaning, as Smokey says, 'we'll assume that it has been read out, even though it hasn't been'] and we can get on to discussing it." This means that officially the document has been read out and will appear in the record of the meeting. (VSD)

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