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[yoo-zhoo-uh l, yoozh-wuh l] /ˈyu ʒu əl, ˈyuʒ wəl/
habitual or customary:
her usual skill.
commonly met with or observed in experience; ordinary:
the usual January weather.
commonplace; everyday:
He says the usual things.
something that is usual:
He could expect only the usual.
as usual, in the customary or usual manner:
As usual, he forgot my birthday.
Origin of usual
1350-1400; Middle English < Late Latin ūsuālis, equivalent to Latin ūsu-, stem of ūsus use (see use (noun)) + -ālis -al1; compare Old French usuel
Related forms
usually, adverb
usualness, noun
1. accustomed. Usual, customary, habitual refer to a settled and constant practice. Usual indicates something that is to be expected by reason of previous experience, which shows it to occur more often than not: There were the usual crowds at the celebration. Something that is customary is in accordance with prevailing usage or individual practice: It is customary to finish up with a bonfire. That which is habitual has become settled or constant as the result of habit on the part of the individual: The merchants wore habitual smiles throughout the season. 2. general, prevailing, prevalent, familiar, regular. 3. expected, predictable. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for usual
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • On this day, however, Philothea's mind was less serene than usual.

    Philothea Lydia Maria Child
  • Anaxagoras retained his usual bland expression and meek dignity.

    Philothea Lydia Maria Child
  • There was another debate over Spring, who had followed his master as usual.

    The Armourer's Prentices Charlotte M. Yonge
  • "Count me in, please," said Blanche, in her usual vein of frankness.

    Malbone Thomas Wentworth Higginson
  • As usual, balm was on his lips, and I found encouragement and support.

British Dictionary definitions for usual


of the most normal, frequent, or regular type; customary: that's the usual sort of application to send
ordinary or commonplace events (esp in the phrase out of the usual)
(informal) the usual, the habitual or usual drink, meal, etc
Derived Forms
usualness, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Late Latin ūsuālis ordinary, from Latin ūsususe
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
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Word Origin and History for usual

late 14c., from Old French usuel (late 13c.), from Late Latin usualis "ordinary," from Latin usus "custom" (see use). The usual suspects is from a line delivered by Claude Rains (as a French police inspector) in "Casablanca" (1942).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for usual


Related Terms

as per usual

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with usual
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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