habitual or customary performance; operation: office practice.
habit; custom: It is not the practice here for men to wear long hair.
repeated performance or systematic exercise for the purpose of acquiring skill or proficiency: Practice makes perfect.
condition arrived at by experience or exercise: She refused to play the piano, because she was out of practice.
the action or process of performing or doing something: to put a scheme into practice; the shameful practices of a blackmailer.
the exercise or pursuit of a profession or occupation, especially law or medicine: She plans to set up practice in her hometown.
the business of a professional person: The doctor wanted his daughter to take over his practice when he retired.
Law. the established method of conducting legal proceedings.
Archaic. plotting; intrigue; trickery.
Usually, practices. Archaic. intrigues; plots.
verb (used with object), practiced, practicing.
to perform or do habitually or usually: to practice a strict regimen.
to follow or observe habitually or customarily: to practice one's religion.
to exercise or pursue as a profession, art, or occupation: to practice law.
to perform or do repeatedly in order to acquire skill or proficiency: to practice the violin.
to train or drill (a person, animal, etc.) in something in order to give proficiency.
verb (used without object), practiced, practicing.
to do something habitually or as a practice.
to pursue a profession, especially law or medicine.
to exercise oneself by repeated performance in order to acquire skill: to practice at shooting.
Archaic. to plot or conspire.
Also, British, practise (for defs 11–19).

1375–1425; (v.) late Middle English practisen, practizen (< Middle French pra(c)tiser) < Medieval Latin prāctizāre, alteration of prācticāre, derivative of prāctica practical work < Greek prāktikḗ noun use of feminine of prāktikós practic; see -ize; (noun) late Middle English, derivative of the v.

practicer, noun
mispractice, noun, verb, mispracticed, mispracticing.
nonpractice, noun
outpractice, verb (used with object), outpracticed, outpracticing.
overpractice, verb (used with object), overpracticed, overpracticing.
prepractice, verb, prepracticed, prepracticing.
repractice, verb (used with object), repracticed, repracticing.

2. See custom. 3. application. See exercise. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
practice (ˈpræktɪs)
1.  a usual or customary action or proceeding: it was his practice to rise at six; he made a practice of stealing stamps
2.  repetition or exercise of an activity in order to achieve mastery and fluency
3.  the condition of having mastery of a skill or activity through repetition (esp in the phrases in practice, out of practice)
4.  the exercise of a profession: he set up practice as a lawyer
5.  the act of doing something: he put his plans into practice
6.  the established method of conducting proceedings in a court of law
7.  the US spelling of practise
[C16: from Medieval Latin practicāre to practise, from Greek praktikē practical science, practical work, from prattein to do, act]

practise or (US) practice (ˈpræktɪs)
vb (foll by on or upon)
1.  to do or cause to do repeatedly in order to gain skill
2.  (tr) to do (something) habitually or frequently: they practise ritual murder
3.  to observe or pursue (something, such as a religion): to practise Christianity
4.  to work at (a profession, job, etc): he practises medicine
5.  to take advantage of (someone, someone's credulity, etc)
[C15: see practice]
practice or (US) practice
[C15: see practice]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 15c., "to perform repeatedly to acquire skill;" mid-15c., "to perform, to work at, exercise," from O.Fr. practiser "to practice," from M.L. practicare "to do, perform, practice," from L.L. practicus "practical," from Gk. praktikos "practical." The noun is from early 15c., originally as practise,
from O.Fr. pratiser, from M.L. practicare. Also as practik, which survived in parallel into 19c. Practiced "expert" is from 1560s; practicing (adj.) is recorded from 1620s in reference to professions, from 1906 in reference to religions.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

practice prac·tice (prāk'tĭs)
v. prac·ticed, prac·tic·ing, prac·tic·es
To engage in the profession of medicine or one of the allied health professions. n.

  1. The exercise of the profession of medicine.

  2. The business of a practicing physician or group of physicians, including facilities and customary patients.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


In addition to the idioms beginning with practice, also see in practice; make a practice of; out of practice; put into practice; sharp practice.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
It was common practice to carry rose petals to ward off the odors believed to
  cause the plague.
The usual practice appears to have been to have one entrance door only to the
  body of the house.
We encourage applications from persons who have an outstanding academic
  background and relevant practice experience.
During the first two or three years in practice, your skills seem to improve
  almost daily.
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