[uh-kuhs-tuh m]

verb (used with object)

to familiarize by custom or use; habituate: to accustom oneself to cold weather.

Origin of accustom

First recorded in 1425–75; late Middle English word from Middle French word acoustumer. See ac-, custom
Related formspre·ac·cus·tom, verb (used with object)re·ac·cus·tom, verb (used with object)un·ac·cus·tom, verb (used with object) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for accustom

Historical Examples of accustom

  • At its foot he stopped and tried to accustom his eyes to the darkness.

    Keziah Coffin

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • Accustom people to be nose-led and spoon-fed, and democracy is a mere pretence.

    Another Sheaf

    John Galsworthy

  • He looked up to accustom his eyes to the light and saw a dozen guns covering him.

    The Coyote

    James Roberts

  • Get something to do yourself, and accustom your children to work.

  • Accustom your children to find beauty in goodness, and goodness in beauty.

British Dictionary definitions for accustom



(tr usually foll by to) to make (oneself) familiar (with) or used (to), as by practice, habit, or experience

Word Origin for accustom

C15: from Old French acostumer, from costume custom
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 accustom

early 15c., from Old French acostumer (12c., Modern French accoutumer), from à "to" (see ad-) + costume (see costume (n.)). Related: Accustomed; accustoming.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper