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[in-vet-er-it] /ɪnˈvɛt ər ɪt/
settled or confirmed in a habit, practice, feeling, or the like:
an inveterate gambler.
firmly established by long continuance, as a disease, habit, practice, feeling, etc.; chronic.
Origin of inveterate
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English < Latin inveterātus (past participle of inveterāre to grow old, allow to grow old, preserve), equivalent to in- in-2 + veter- (stem of vetus) old + -ātus -ate1; cf. veteran
Related forms
inveterately, adverb
inveterateness, noun
1. hardened, constant, habitual. 2. set, fixed, rooted. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for inveterate
  • Half a century ago and more, licenses to smoke opium were issued to certain inveterate smokers of means and standing.
  • Most people aren't inveterate skeptics vigilantly testing each anecdote to make sure it is representative of an overall pattern.
  • Except in the case of a few highfliers and a somewhat larger number of inveterate slackers, college is a stressful experience.
  • His desire to do things for people made him an inveterate matchmaker.
  • Innovators are also inveterate experimenters, who fiddle with both their products and their business models.
  • inveterate schemers, the station's personnel manage to have as many romantic misadventures as they have job-related ones.
  • Perhaps some little boys consumed with curiosity to watch their maiden aunts in the bathroom later become inveterate sociologists.
  • As others have mentioned she was an inveterate traveler.
British Dictionary definitions for inveterate


long established, esp so as to be deep-rooted or ingrained: an inveterate feeling of hostility
(prenominal) settled or confirmed in a habit or practice, esp a bad one; hardened: an inveterate smoker
(obsolete) full of hatred; hostile
Derived Forms
inveteracy, inveterateness, noun
inveterately, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Latin inveterātus of long standing, from inveterāre to make old, from in-² + vetus old
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 inveterate

late 14c., from Latin inveteratus "of long standing, chronic," past participle of inveterare "become old in," from in- "in, into" (see in- (2)) + veterare "to make old," from vetus (genitive veteris) "old" (see veteran).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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inveterate in Medicine

inveterate in·vet·er·ate (ĭn-vět'ər-ĭt)

  1. Firmly and long established; deep-rooted.

  2. Persisting in an ingrained habit; habitual.

in·vet'er·a·cy (-ər-ə-sē) or in·vet'er·ate·ness n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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