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[huh-bich-oo-eyt] /həˈbɪtʃ uˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), habituated, habituating.
to accustom (a person, the mind, etc.), as to a particular situation:
Wealth habituated him to luxury.
Archaic. to frequent.
verb (used without object), habituated, habituating.
to cause habituation, physiologically or psychologically.
Origin of habituate
1520-30; < Late Latin habituātus conditioned, constituted, (past participle of habituāre), equivalent to habitu(s) habit1 + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
unhabituated, adjective
1. familiarize, acclimate, train. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for habituate
  • Adaptation, in this case, is the process by which neurons habituate and eventually cease responding to an unchanging stimulus.
  • Wolves and dogs evaluate and habituate to humans to varying extents, to their own and other species as well as others.
  • Because wild bonobos are extremely shy, it takes a long time to habituate them to human presence.
  • If you search the annals of science, you won't find anywhere that females with babies are the first to habituate.
  • The startle response should habituate, or diminish, over repeated administrations.
  • habituate them to humans and vessels, placing them at risk of injury.
  • One advantage that mule deer might have over elk is a better ability to habituate to human activities on winter ranges.
  • Bears that habituate to human presence eventually become a threat to human safety.
  • Researchers there habituate the meerkats using food treats in order to weigh, capture and collar individual animals.
British Dictionary definitions for habituate


to accustom; make used (to)
(US & Canadian, archaic) to frequent
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
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Word Origin and History for habituate

1520s, from Latin habituatus, past participle of habituare "to bring into a condition or habit of the body," from habitus (see habit (n.)). Related: Habituated; habituating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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habituate in Medicine

habituate ha·bit·u·ate (hə-bĭch'ōō-āt')
v. ha·bit·u·at·ed, ha·bit·u·at·ing, ha·bit·u·ates

  1. To accustom by frequent repetition or prolonged exposure.

  2. To cause physiological or psychological habituation, as to a drug.

  3. To experience psychological habituation.

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