View synonyms for habit



[ hab-it ]


  1. an acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary:

    the habit of looking both ways before crossing the street.

  2. customary practice or use:

    Daily bathing is an American habit.

    Synonyms: wont, bent

  3. a particular practice, custom, or usage:

    the habit of shaking hands.

  4. a dominant or regular disposition or tendency; prevailing character or quality:

    She has a habit of looking at the bright side of things.

  5. Often the habit. addiction, especially to narcotics.
  6. mental character or disposition:

    a habit of mind.

  7. characteristic bodily or physical condition.
  8. the characteristic form, aspect, mode of growth, etc., of an organism:

    a twining habit.

  9. the characteristic crystalline form of a mineral.
  10. garb of a particular rank, profession, religious order, etc.:

    a monk's habit.

    Synonyms: costume, dress

  11. the attire worn by a rider of a saddle horse.

verb (used with object)

  1. Synonyms: deck out, attire, garb, dress



[ hab-it ]

verb (used with object)

  1. Archaic. to dwell in.

verb (used without object)

  1. Obsolete. to dwell.


/ ˈhæbɪt /


  1. a tendency or disposition to act in a particular way
  2. established custom, usual practice, etc
  3. psychol a learned behavioural response that has become associated with a particular situation, esp one frequently repeated
  4. mental disposition or attitude

    a good working habit of mind

    1. a practice or substance to which a person is addicted

      drink has become a habit with him

    2. the state of being dependent on something, esp a drug
  5. botany zoology the method of growth, type of existence, behaviour, or general appearance of a plant or animal

    a burrowing habit

    a climbing habit

  6. the customary apparel of a particular occupation, rank, etc, now esp the costume of a nun or monk
  7. Also calledriding habit a woman's riding dress
  8. crystallog short for crystal habit


  1. to clothe
  2. an archaic word for inhabit habituate


/ hăbĭt /

  1. The characteristic shape of a crystal, such as the cubic habit that is characteristic of pyrite.
  2. The characteristic manner of growth of a plant. For example, grape plants and ivy display a vining habit.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of habit1

First recorded in 1175–1225; Middle English, from Latin habitus “state, style, practice,” equivalent to habi- (variant stem of habēre “to have”) + -tus verbal noun suffix; replacing Middle English abit, from Old French

Origin of habit2

First recorded in 1325–75; Middle English habiten from Old French (h)abiter, from Latin habitāre “to wear habitually; inhabit; habitat

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Word History and Origins

Origin of habit1

C13: from Latin habitus custom, from habēre to have

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Idioms and Phrases

  1. old habits die hard. old habits die hard.

More idioms and phrases containing habit

see kick a habit .

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Synonym Study

See custom.

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Example Sentences

It also delivers valuable brand safety for your ads during the holiday shopping season, and takes advantage of viewers’ natural second screen habits so they can immediately navigate to your site.

They’d already restarted their well-oiled machines and were in the process of booting up new routines and habits.

From Fortune

In April 2020, almost 1,500 parents in Canada reported their kids’ physical activity, screen time and sleep habits since the new coronavirus pandemic hit.

You can help your customers focus on the end-users’ search habits in your SEO proposal by describing why it doesn’t make sense to improve visibility for queries that are navigational keywords and trigger site links.

That 2010 study backs up one of Nebel’s preferred study habits.

Hollywood has developed a habit of relying on what worked best in the past, and 300 was hugely successful.

Does wildlife campaigner Prince Charles's hunting habit make him a hypocrite?

We still retain the 27 November habit, through sheer gluttony more than anything else.

Texas governors have a habit of running for president: Just ask Perry or former president George W. Bush.

Those who dream of a post-partisan future should note that paranoia has a habit of erasing traditional political boundaries.

She and her younger sister, Janet, had quarreled a good deal through force of unfortunate habit.

Doubtless the commentator habit is fixed in the nature of man; but it was pre-eminently mediaeval.

This habit and the fact that she cares more for color than for drawing are the usual criticisms of her pictures.

When d'Aubran entered, the Seneschal was composed and in his wonted habit of ponderous dignity.

To punish the habit, a Turk was seized and a pipe transfixed through his nose.


Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.