ac·​cus·​tom | \ ə-ˈkəs-təm How to pronounce accustom (audio) \
accustomed; accustoming; accustoms

Definition of accustom

transitive verb

: to make familiar with something through use or experience

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Other Words from accustom

accustomation \ -​ˌkəs-​tə-​ˈmā-​shən How to pronounce accustomation (audio) \ noun

Examples of accustom in a Sentence

the task of accustoming new recruits to shipboard life

Recent Examples on the Web

When Parks first arrived, Stryker insisted he spend a few days roaming around Washington without his camera to accustom himself to life in a segregated city. William Meyers, WSJ, "‘Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940-1950’ Review: Young Talent in Black and White," 5 Dec. 2018 Apple, Google and Microsoft are each aiming to accustom schoolchildren to their operating systems to win the next generation as lifelong customers. Jack Nicas And Natasha Singer, New York Times, "Apple Unveils New iPad to Catch Google in the Classroom," 27 Mar. 2018 By that time, my children were accustomed to the routine of changing houses. Tara Conklin, Vogue, "After Divorce, Floating Another Chance at Love," 6 Feb. 2019 That was the year Mr. Xi also promised not to militarize artificial islands in the South China Sea, but Beijing became accustomed in the Obama years to running roughshod over toothless agreements. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "China’s Hacking State," 20 Dec. 2018 You may be accustomed to paying a power bill as a renter, but homeowners must pay for power, water, and sewer, which can add up to another hefty monthly expense. Nancy Mann Jackson, House Beautiful, "How Much Money You'll Really Need To Buy A House," 26 Feb. 2019 While France is accustomed to sometimes violent protests in the working class suburbs of Paris, Saturday’s rioting occurred in the streets around the Champs-Élysées, a magnet for tourists and the wealthy. Stacy Meichtry, WSJ, "Antigovernment Rally Is Among the Most Violent to Hit Paris in Decades," 2 Dec. 2018 Some customers accustomed to paying bills of a few hundreds dollars have been slammed with bills totaling thousands of dollars and then struggled to get answers from the utility. Daniel Beekman, The Seattle Times, "Seattle auditor to investigate City Light practices after complaints over huge electricity bills," 11 Sep. 2018 But the dynamic of radio was totally different from the teahouses where he was accustomed to performing. Amy Qin, The Seattle Times, "Shan Tianfang, a superstar of Chinese storytelling, dies at 83," 17 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accustom.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of accustom

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for accustom

Middle English acustomen "to habituate (reflexive or intransitive)," borrowed from Anglo-French acustumer, acostumer, from a-, prefix forming transitive verbs (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + -customer, costomer, verbal derivative of custume custom entry 1

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Statistics for accustom

Last Updated

19 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for accustom

The first known use of accustom was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for accustom



English Language Learners Definition of accustom

: to cause (someone) to become adjusted to or familiar with something


ac·​cus·​tom | \ ə-ˈkə-stəm How to pronounce accustom (audio) \
accustomed; accustoming

Kids Definition of accustom

: to cause (someone) to get used to something I accustomed my dog to a leash.

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More from Merriam-Webster on accustom

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for accustom

Spanish Central: Translation of accustom

Nglish: Translation of accustom for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of accustom for Arabic Speakers

Comments on accustom

What made you want to look up accustom? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to mark by some ceremony or observation

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