modus operandi

[ moh-duh s op-uh-ran-dee, -dahy; Latin moh-doos oh-pe-rahn-dee ]
/ ˈmoʊ dəs ˌɒp əˈræn di, -daɪ; Latin ˈmoʊ dus ˌoʊ pɛˈrɑn di /

noun, plural mo·di op·e·ran·di [moh-dee op-uh-ran-dee, moh-dahy op-uh-ran-dahy; Latin moh-dee oh-pe-rahn-dee] /ˈmoʊ di ˌɒp əˈræn di, ˈmoʊ daɪ ˌɒp əˈræn daɪ; Latin ˈmoʊ di ˌoʊ pɛˈrɑn di/.

mode of operating or working.

Origin of modus operandi

First recorded in 1645–55, modus operandi is from the Latin word modus operandī
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for modus operandi

modus operandi
/ (ˈməʊdəs ˌɒpəˈrændiː, -ˈrændaɪ) /

noun plural modi operandi (ˈməʊdiː ˌɒpəˈrændiː, ˈməʊdaɪ ˌɒpəˈrændaɪ)

procedure; method of operating

Word Origin for modus operandi

C17: from Latin
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

Culture definitions for modus operandi

modus operandi
[ (moh-duhs op-uh-ran-dee, op-uh-ran-deye) ]

The way someone does something; a characteristic method: “Her modus operandi in buying a new car always included a month of research.” This phrase, often abbreviated “m.o.,” is used by police to describe a criminal's characteristic way of committing a crime. From Latin, meaning “method of operation.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.