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From Middle English woonted (usual, customary), from wont (custom, habit, practice), alteration of wone (custom, habit, practice), from Old English wuna (custom, habit, practice; usual, wonted), from Proto-Germanic *wunô (custom, practice), from Proto-Indo-European *wenh₁- (to wish, love). Cognate with Old Frisian wona, wuna (custom), Old High German giwona (custom). More at wont, wone.



wonted (comparative more wonted, superlative most wonted)

  1. Usual, customary, habitual, or accustomed.
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, “Book II, Canto XII”, in The Faerie Queene. [], London: [] [John Wolfe] for William Ponsonbie, →OCLC, stanza 31, pages 370–371:
      They were faire Ladies, till they fondly ſtriu’d / With th’Heliconian maides for mayſtery; / Of whom they ouer-comen, were depriu’d / Of their proud beautie, and th’one moyity / Transform’d to fiſh, for their bold ſurquedry, / But th’vpper halfe their hew retayned ſtill, / And their ſweet skill in wonted melody; / Which euer after they abuſd to ill, / T’allure weake traueillers, whom gotten they did kill.
    • 1836, “Boz” [pseudonym; Charles Dickens], Sketches by “Boz,” Illustrative of Every-day Life, and Every-day People. [], volumes (please specify |volume=I or II), London: John Macrone, [], →OCLC:
      Rose Villa has once again resumed its wonted appearance; the dining-room furniture has been replaced; the tables are as nicely polished as formerly; the horsehair chairs are ranged against the wall, as regularly as ever [...]
    • 1866, Herman Melville, Battle-Pieces and Aspects of the War[1], Supplement:
      But the oath is alterable; and in the wonted fluctuations of parties not improbably it will undergo alteration, assuming such a form, perhaps, as not to bar the admission into the National Legislature of men who represent the populations lately in revolt.
    • 1897 December (indicated as 1898), Winston Churchill, chapter II, in The Celebrity: An Episode, New York, N.Y.: The Macmillan Company; London: Macmillan & Co., Ltd., →OCLC:
      I had occasion […] to make a somewhat long business trip to Chicago, and on my return […] I found Farrar awaiting me in the railway station. He smiled his wonted fraction by way of greeting, […], and finally leading me to his buggy, turned and drove out of town.
    • 1889, William Dean Howells, A Hazard of New Fortunes:
      Superficially, the affairs of 'Every Other Week' settled into their wonted form again, and for Fulkerson they seemed thoroughly reinstated.
    • 2008 (tr.?), Lodovico Ariosto, Orlando Furioso
      But not with wonted welcome;—inly moved [...]

Related terms[edit]