• Having a particular habit, activity, or interest that is long-established and unlikely to change.
  • (Of a feeling or habit) Long-established and unlikely to change.

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Example Sentences

“After supporting the same party for so long, Walt was an inveterate voter.”

“April had an inveterate longing for a lavish wedding, having dreamed of it since she was a little girl.”

“He had an inveterate habit of going to the same restaurant every Friday after work.”

Word Origin

Latin, late 16th century

Why this word?

In Late Middle English, “inveterate” referred to long-standing or chronic disease, but that usage has dropped out and changed in the centuries since. It now describes an entrenched habit or interest — for example, an inveterate practice of two cups of coffee every morning while reading the paper. The adjective originates from the Latin “inveteratus” (“made old”), and you would be correct if you recognized a shared root with the word “veteran.” The latter noun is defined as “a person who has had long experience in a particular field,” and that sort of experience often leads to inveterate habits.

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