• synonyms


[yoo-zhoo-uhl, yoozh-wuhl]
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  1. habitual or customary: her usual skill.
  2. commonly met with or observed in experience; ordinary: the usual January weather.
  3. commonplace; everyday: He says the usual things.
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  1. something that is usual: He could expect only the usual.
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  1. as usual, in the customary or usual manner: As usual, he forgot my birthday.
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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 formsu·su·al·ly, adverbu·su·al·ness, noun


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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.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for usually

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • I am bound to him by ties stronger than usually bind the hearts of women.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • Pericles was usually represented with a helmet, to cover the deformity in his skull.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • And I remember they were more than usually brilliant at that time.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • But Allister had not come in, although he was usually the first at a rendezvous.

  • But, because he won't submit, he usually runs foul of other men.

British Dictionary definitions for usually


  1. customarily; at most times; in the ordinary course of events
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  1. of the most normal, frequent, or regular type; customarythat's the usual sort of application to send
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  1. ordinary or commonplace events (esp in the phrase out of the usual)
  2. the usual informal the habitual or usual drink, meal, etc
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Derived Formsusualness, noun

Word Origin

C14: from Late Latin ūsuālis ordinary, from Latin ūsus use
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 usually


late 15c., from usual + -ly (2).

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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).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with usually


see as usual; business as usual.

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