- strange; queer; odd: peculiar happenings.
- uncommon; unusual: the peculiar hobby of stuffing and mounting bats.
- distinctive in nature or character from others.
- belonging characteristically (usually followed by to): an expression peculiar to Canadians.
- belonging exclusively to some person, group, or thing: the peculiar properties of a drug.
- Astronomy. designating a star or galaxy with special properties that deviates from others of its spectral type or galaxy class.
- a property or privilege belonging exclusively or characteristically to a person.
- British. a particular parish or church that is exempted from the jurisdiction of the ordinary or bishop in whose diocese it lies and is governed by another.
- peculiars. Also called arbitraries. British Printing. special characters not generally included in standard type fonts, as phonetic symbols, mathematical symbols, etc.
Origin of peculiar
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for peculiar
Life is a series of seemingly throwaway moments strung together in a peculiar tapestry, and Linklater has captured it beautifully.Oscars 2015: The Daily Beast’s Picks, From Scarlett Johansson to ‘Boyhood’
January 6, 2015
Because the shop was emblematic of that peculiar Italian institution known as La Faccia: i.e. presenting the best face possible.The Bookstore That Bewitched Mick Jagger, John Lennon, and Greta Garbo
December 16, 2014
In the semifinals, she was in a peculiar position for someone of Jeopardy!Jeopardy! Champion Julia Collins’s Brain Feels Like Mush
November 20, 2014
The remainder is “peculiar” motion: movement of galaxies as dictated by the presence of matter nearby.Laniakea: The Milky Way’s Place in the Heavens
Matthew R. Francis
September 7, 2014
“When I first met Ed, I thought he was a peculiar guy, but when I got my hands on the book, it was masterful,” Osse said.Bam! Pow! Bling! Hip-Hop's History Gets the Graphic Novel Treatment
August 25, 2014
He dwelt on the childhood of Philothea with peculiar pleasure.Philothea
Lydia Maria Child
The physique of the true fashionable is peculiar and characteristic.
Of all the chickens on the place this was his peculiar property.
He thought, too, of the lean face and the peculiar, set eye of Dozier.
She was indeed a peculiar girl—the more the pity for the many that made her so!Weighed and Wanting
- strange or unusual; odda peculiar individual; a peculiar idea
- distinct from others; special
- (postpositive foll by to) belonging characteristically or exclusively (to)peculiar to North America
- Also called: arbitrary printing a special sort, esp an accented letter
- Church of England a church or parish that is exempt from the jurisdiction of the ordinary in whose diocese it lies
Word Origin and History for peculiar
mid-15c., "belonging exclusively to one person," from Latin peculiaris "of one's own (property)," from peculium "private property," literally "property in cattle" (in ancient times the most important form of property), from pecu "cattle, flock," related to pecus "cattle" (see pecuniary). Meaning "unusual" is first attested c.1600 (earlier "distinguished, special," 1580s; for sense development, cf. idiom). Related: Peculiarly.