When I use a word…: Buyers and sellers

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: (Published 23 August 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:f
  1. Jeff Aronson, clinical pharmacologist
  1. Oxford

    These articles about words elicit an interesting postbag. I have recently been asked by F J Langfield of Frenchay in Bristol if I can remind him of the word for the inverse of a monopoly. A monopoly is defined in the Oxford English Dictionary as “the condition of having no competitor in the sale of some commodity or in the exercise of some trade or business.” What then do you call the condition in which you have no competitor in the purchase of some commodity?

    Well monopoly comes from two Greek words, μoνoσ …

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