Origin of regular

1350–1400; Middle English reguler (adj.) < Middle French < Late Latin rēgulāris. See regula, -ar1
Related formsreg·u·lar·i·ty [reg-yuh-lar-i-tee] /ˌrɛg yəˈlær ɪ ti/, reg·u·lar·ness, nounqua·si-reg·u·lar, adjectivequa·si-reg·u·lar·ly, adverbsub·reg·u·lar, adjectivesub·reg·u·lar·i·ty, noun
Can be confusedregular routine

Synonyms for regular

2. even, formal, orderly, uniform. 4. habitual, established, fixed. 8. systematic. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for regular

Contemporary Examples of regular

Historical Examples of regular

  • It will not even be a regular history in the accepted sense of the word.

    Ancient Man

    Hendrik Willem van Loon

  • It was one of the regular delights of the household to see them bathe.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • The stairway was very narrow, and formed a regular spiral as in a turret.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • For the remainder of that day, poor George was in a regular whirl of excitement.

    Life in London

    Edwin Hodder

  • The bayonets glisten in a regular line of blue-white points.

British Dictionary definitions for regular



normal, customary, or usual
according to a uniform principle, arrangement, or ordertrees planted at regular intervals
occurring at fixed or prearranged intervalsto make a regular call on a customer
following a set rule or normal practice; methodical or orderly
symmetrical in appearance or form; evenregular features
(prenominal) organized, elected, conducted, etc, in a proper or officially prescribed manner
(prenominal) officially qualified or recognizedhe's not a regular doctor
(prenominal) (intensifier)a regular fool
US and Canadian informal likable, dependable, or nice (esp in the phrase a regular guy)
denoting or relating to the personnel or units of the permanent military servicesa regular soldier; the regular army
(of flowers) having any of their parts, esp petals, alike in size, shape, arrangement, etc; symmetrical
(of the formation, inflections, etc, of a word) following the usual pattern of formation in a language
  1. (of a polygon) equilateral and equiangular
  2. (of a polyhedron) having identical regular polygons as faces that make identical angles with each other
  3. (of a prism) having regular polygons as bases
  4. (of a pyramid) having a regular polygon as a base and the altitude passing through the centre of the base
  5. another name for analytic (def. 5)
botany another word for actinomorphic
(postpositive) subject to the rule of an established religious order or communitycanons regular
US politics of, selected by, or loyal to the leadership or platform of a political partya regular candidate; regular policies
crystallog another word for cubic (def. 4)


a professional long-term serviceman or -woman in a military unit
informal a person who does something regularly, such as attending a theatre or patronizing a shop
a member of a religious order or congregation, as contrasted with a secular
US politics a party member loyal to the leadership, organization, platform, etc, of his or her party
Derived Formsregularity, nounregularly, adverb

Word Origin for regular

C14: from Old French reguler, from Latin rēgulāris of a bar of wood or metal, from rēgula ruler, model
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 regular

late 14c., from Old French reguler "ecclesiastical" (Modern French r*#233;gulier), from Late Latin regularis "containing rules for guidance," from Latin regula "rule," from PIE *reg- "move in a straight line" (see regal).

Earliest sense was of religious orders (the opposite of secular). Extended from late 16c. to shapes, etc., that followed predictable or uniform patterns; sense of "normal" is from 1630s; meaning "real, genuine" is from 1821. Old English borrowed Latin regula and nativized it as regol "rule, regulation, canon, law, standard, pattern;" hence regolsticca "ruler" (instrument); regollic (adj.) "canonical, regular."


c.1400, "member of a religious order," from regular (adj.). Sense of "soldier of a standing army" is from 1756. Meaning "regular customer" is from 1852; meaning "leaded gasoline" is from 1978.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

regular in Science



Having all sides or faces equal. For example, a square is a regular polygon, and a cube is a regular polyhedron.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.