#12is "absent" here an adj. or a verb?)
After stumbling over a similar use of "absent" today, I looked in the OED and found this entry:absent, quasi-prep U.S.
): In the absence of, without.
The OED then cites as an example: 1965
R. Flesch ABC of Style
"Don't use in the absence of
as a preposition instead of without
' … Some lawyers use the word absent in the same ugly way.
" (bold added)
In the above-referenced work, Flesch uses this sentence to illustrate the highlighted point:
"Nothing in New York's public policy prevents transfer, absent settlor's contrary intent
(if settlor's intent isn't contrary).
Garner has this to say in Modern English Usage:absent
, used as a preposition meaning “in the absence of ” or “without,” is commonly used in legalese but is simply unnecessary jargon. The better choices are without
and in the absence of
— e.g.: "That is, absent
or in the absence of
] justification, anything goes."
[Jonathan Rauch, “For Better or Worse?” New Republic, 6 May 1996, at 18.]
These are a few other "quasi-preposition" listed in the OED: excepting
(if one excepts) or like
(in or after the manner of).
But what does the term quasi-preposition actually mean? One source defines it as: 'Oxfordian for "it is not really a preposition, but go ahead and use it as such if you insist."' ;)https://archives.cjr.org/language_corner/abse...
Probably not worth creating a LEO entry for this use.