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.

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

inveterately, adverb
inveterateness, noun

1. hardened, constant, habitual. 2. set, fixed, rooted. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
inveterate (ɪnˈvɛtərɪt)
1.  long established, esp so as to be deep-rooted or ingrained: an inveterate feeling of hostility
2.  (prenominal) settled or confirmed in a habit or practice, esp a bad one; hardened: an inveterate smoker
3.  obsolete full of hatred; hostile
[C16: from Latin inveterātus of long standing, from inveterāre to make old, from in-² + vetus old]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1528, from L. inveteratus "of long standing, chronic," pp. of inveterare "become old in," from in- "in, into" + veterare "to make old," from vetus (gen. veteris) "old" (see veteran).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

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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Example sentences
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.
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