[per-tik-yuh-ler, puh-tik-]
  1. of or relating to a single or specific person, thing, group, class, occasion, etc., rather than to others or all; special rather than general: one's particular interests in books.
  2. immediately present or under consideration; in this specific instance or place: Look at this particular clause in the contract.
  3. distinguished or different from others or from the ordinary; noteworthy; marked; unusual: She sang with particular warmth at last evening's concert.
  4. exceptional or especial: Take particular pains with this job.
  5. being such in an exceptional degree: a particular friend of mine.
  6. dealing with or giving details, as an account or description, of a person; detailed; minute.
  7. exceptionally selective, attentive, or exacting; fastidious; fussy: to be particular about one's food.
  8. Logic.
    1. not general; referring to an indefinite part of a whole class.
    2. (of a proposition) containing only existential quantifiers.
    3. partaking of the nature of an individual as opposed to a class.
  9. Law.
    1. noting an estate that precedes a future or ultimate ownership, as lands devised to a widow during her lifetime and after that to her children.
    2. noting the tenant of such an estate.
  1. an individual or distinct part, as an item of a list or enumeration.
  2. Usually particulars. specific points, details, or circumstances: to give an investigator the particulars of a case.
  3. Logic. an individual or a specific group within a general class.
  1. in particular, particularly; specifically; especially: There is one book in particular that may help you.

Origin of particular

1350–1400; < Late Latin particulāris, equivalent to Latin particul(a) particle + -āris -ar1; replacing Middle English particuler < Middle French < Late Latin, as above
Related formso·ver·par·tic·u·lar, adjectiveo·ver·par·tic·u·lar·ly, adverbun·par·tic·u·lar, adjective

Synonyms for particular

Synonym study

1. See special. 7. Particular, dainty, fastidious imply great care, discrimination, and taste in choices, in details about one's person, etc. Particular implies especially care and attention to details: particular about one's clothes. Dainty implies delicate taste and exquisite cleanliness: a dainty dress. Fastidious implies being difficult to please and critical of small or minor points: a fastidious taste in styles.

Antonyms for particular Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for over-particular

Historical Examples of over-particular

British Dictionary definitions for over-particular


  1. (prenominal) of or belonging to a single or specific person, thing, category, etc; specific; specialthe particular demands of the job; no particular reason
  2. (prenominal) exceptional or markeda matter of particular importance
  3. (prenominal) relating to or providing specific details or circumstancesa particular account
  4. exacting or difficult to please, esp in details; fussy
  5. (of the solution of a differential equation) obtained by giving specific values to the arbitrary constants in a general equation
  6. logic (of a proposition) affirming or denying something about only some members of a class of objects, as in some men are not wickedCompare universal (def. 10)
  7. property law denoting an estate that precedes the passing of the property into ultimate ownershipSee also remainder (def. 3), reversion (def. 4)
  1. a separate distinct item that helps to form a generalization: opposed to general
  2. (often plural) an item of information; detailcomplete in every particular
  3. logic another name for individual (def. 7a)
  4. philosophy an individual object, as contrasted with a universalSee universal (def. 12b)
  5. in particular especially, particularly, or exactly

Word Origin for particular

C14: from Old French particuler, from Late Latin particulāris concerning a part, from Latin particula particle v
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for over-particular



"a part or section of a whole," late 14c., from particular (adj.). Particulars "small details of statement" is from c.1600.



late 14c., "pertaining to a single thing or person," from Old French particuler (14c., Modern French particulier) and directly from Late Latin particularis "of a part, concerning a small part," from Latin particula "particle" (see particle). Sense of "precise, exacting" first recorded 1814.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with over-particular


see in particular.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.