cus·​tom·​ary | \ ˈkə-stə-ˌmer-ē How to pronounce customary (audio) , -ˌme-rē \

Definition of customary

1 : commonly practiced, used, or observed customary acts of courtesy his customary enthusiasm
2 : based on or established by custom customary laws

Other Words from customary

customariness \ ˈkə-​stə-​ˌmer-​ē-​nəs How to pronounce customary (audio) , -​ˌme-​rē-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for customary

usual, customary, habitual, wonted, accustomed mean familiar through frequent or regular repetition. usual stresses the absence of strangeness or unexpectedness. my usual order for lunch customary applies to what accords with the practices, conventions, or usages of an individual or community. the customary waiting period before the application is approved habitual suggests a practice settled or established by much repetition. a habitual morning routine wonted stresses habituation but usually applies to what is favored, sought, or purposefully cultivated. his wonted determination accustomed is less emphatic than wonted or habitual in suggesting fixed habit or invariable custom. accepted the compliment with her accustomed modesty

Examples of customary in a Sentence

He forgot the customary “thank you.” It is customary to hold the door open for someone who is entering a building behind you. She dressed in her customary fashion. He did the work with his customary efficiency.
Recent Examples on the Web The types of meetings like the one held Thursday are customary when a company is being bought. Ben Collins, NBC News, 16 June 2022 Afterward, Mickelson spoke to members of the press, as is customary. David Dusek, USA TODAY, 9 June 2022 Stradivari likely learned his craft by apprenticing with an older mentor, as was customary at the time. Katherine Kornei, New York Times, 8 June 2022 Both companies were criticized as insensitive for dumping employees by video rather than in person, as was customary before the COVID-19 pandemic. Kate Gibson, CBS News, 1 June 2022 That's likely to hurt dental practices, which generally get an allotment based on normal and customary use. Darius Tahir, CBS News, 3 June 2022 That’s likely to hurt dental practices, which generally get an allotment based on normal and customary use. Darius Tahir, Fortune, 2 June 2022 In the mad rush to get the shoot up and running by March, 1977, the studio placed fewer checks on Cimino than were customary for a big-budget film. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 22 May 2022 As is customary in Cannes, Hathaway added some spectacular jewelry. Vogue, 20 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of customary

1552, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for customary

see custom entry 1

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Time Traveler for customary

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The first known use of customary was in 1552

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Dictionary Entries Near customary



customary court

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Last Updated

25 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Customary.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for customary


cus·​tom·​ary | \ ˈkə-stə-ˌmer-ē How to pronounce customary (audio) \

Kids Definition of customary

1 : usual in a particular situation or at a particular place or time Throwing a … net was the customary method of capture.— Carl Hiaasen, Hoot
2 : typical of a particular person She answered with her customary cheerfulness.

More from Merriam-Webster on customary

Nglish: Translation of customary for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of customary for Arabic Speakers


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