a. A set of customary or unchanging and often mechanically performed activities or procedures: a routine of housework. See Synonyms at method.
b. The practice of such activities or procedures: "Routine had caused stagnation" (Garry Wills).
2. A scripted piece of entertainment, especially in a nightclub or theater: The audience laughed at the comedian's routine.
3. Slang A particular kind of behavior or activity: Must you go into your hurt routine when you don't get your way?
4. Computers A set of programming instructions designed to perform a specific limited task.
1. In accord with established procedure: a routine check of passports.
2. Habitual; regular: made his routine trip to the store.
3. Having no special quality; ordinary: a routine day.
[French, from route, route, from Old French; see ROUTE.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.