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usage

[yoo-sij, -zij]
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noun
  1. a customary way of doing something; a custom or practice: the usages of the last 50 years.
  2. the customary manner in which a language or a form of a language is spoken or written: English usage; a grammar based on usage rather than on arbitrary notions of correctness.
  3. a particular instance of this: a usage borrowed from French.
  4. any manner of doing or handling something; treatment: rough usage.
  5. habitual or customary use; long-continued practice: immemorial usage.
  6. an act of using or employing; use.

Origin of usage

1250–1300; Middle English < Anglo-French, Old French < Medieval Latin ūsāticum, equivalent to Latin ūs(us) (see use) + -āticum -age
Related formsnon·us·age, noun
Can be confuseduse usage utilize (see usage note at the current entry) (see synonym study at use)

Synonyms

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1. tradition, habit, convention.

Usage note

The nouns usage and use are related in origin and meaning and to some extent overlap in their use. Usage usually refers to habitual or customary practices or procedures: Some usages of the Anglican Church are similar to those of the Roman Catholic Church. It is also commonly used in reference to language practices: English usage is divided in the pronunciation of aunt. Use refers to the act of using or employing (something): She put her extra money to good use. Perhaps in the belief that it is the more impressive term, usage is sometimes used where use would be more natural: Has your usage of a personal computer made the work any easier?
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for usages

Historical Examples

  • Betty's ignorance of the usages of good society stood her friend.

    The Incomplete Amorist

    E. Nesbit

  • He had been taken prisoner when engaged in some exploit which was contrary to the usages of war.

    Bunyan

    James Anthony Froude

  • Arab religion was based on the ideas and usages which have been described in chap.

    History of Religion

    Allan Menzies

  • The former was derived from, and regulated by, the laws and usages of nations.

  • Living so long in the East, he has unlearned the laws, the manners, and the usages of his country.

    The Nabob

    Alphonse Daudet


British Dictionary definitions for usages

usage

noun
  1. the act or a manner of using; use; employment
  2. constant use, custom, or habit
  3. something permitted or established by custom or practice
  4. what is actually said in a language, esp as contrasted with what is prescribed

Word Origin

C14: via Old French, from Latin ūsus use (n)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for usages

usage

n.

c.1300, "established practice, custom," from Anglo-French and Old French usage "custom, habit, experience," from us, from Latin usus "use, custom" (see use (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper