1. Legally regulating expenditures considered extravagant.
2. Legally prohibiting or discouraging, as by the imposition of taxes, certain behaviors: sumptuary laws forbidding gambling.
[Latin sūmptuārius, from sūmptus, expense, from past participle of sūmere, to take, buy; see em- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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.