noun \ˈkəs-təm\

: an action or way of behaving that is usual and traditional among the people in a particular group or place

: something that is done regularly by a person

customs : taxes or fees that are paid to the government when goods come into or go out of a country

Full Definition of CUSTOM

a :  a usage or practice common to many or to a particular place or class or habitual with an individual
b :  long-established practice considered as unwritten law
c :  repeated practice
d :  the whole body of usages, practices, or conventions that regulate social life
a :  duties, tolls, or imposts imposed by the sovereign law of a country on imports or exports
b usually singular in construction :  the agency, establishment, or procedure for collecting such customs
a :  business patronage
b :  usu. habitual patrons :  customers

Examples of CUSTOM

  1. It is the custom for the bride to wear a white dress on her wedding day.
  2. According to custom, the festivities begin at dusk.
  3. It's a matter of custom.
  4. We went through customs at the airport without any difficulty.
  5. It took us a long time to clear customs at the border.

Origin of CUSTOM

Middle English custume, from Anglo-French, from Latin consuetudin-, consuetudo, from consuescere to accustom, from com- + suescere to accustom; akin to suus one's own — more at suicide
First Known Use: 13th century

Rhymes with CUSTOM



: made to fit the needs or requirements of a particular person

: doing work that fits the needs or requirements of a particular person

Full Definition of CUSTOM

:  made or performed according to personal order
:  specializing in custom work or operation <a custom tailor>

Examples of CUSTOM

  1. The new kitchen will have custom cabinets.
  2. <that business tycoon wears only custom suits>

First Known Use of CUSTOM



noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In law, long-established practice common to many or to a particular place or institution and generally recognized as having the force of law. In England during the Anglo-Saxon period, local customs formed most laws affecting family rights, ownership and inheritance, contracts, and violence between individuals. The Norman conquerors granted the validity of customary law, adapting it to their feudal system. In the 13th and 14th centuries, English law was given statutory authority under the crown, making the “customs of the realm” England's common law. See also culture; folklore; myth; taboo.


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