rare

1
[ rair ]
/ rɛər /
See synonyms for: rare / rarer / rarest / raring on Thesaurus.com

adjective, rar·er, rar·est.

coming or occurring far apart in time; unusual; uncommon: a rare disease;His visits are rare occasions.
thinly distributed over an area; few and widely separated: Lighthouses are rare on that part of the coast.
having the component parts not closely compacted together; not dense: rare gases;lightheaded from the rare mountain air.
unusually great: a rare display of courage.
unusually excellent; admirable; fine: She showed rare tact in inviting them.

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Origin of rare

1
First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English rar(e), rer(e) “light, airy, loose,” from Latin rārus “loose, porous, wide apart, thin, infrequent”

OTHER WORDS FROM rare

rareness, noun

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH rare

extinct, rare , scarce

Definition for rare (2 of 3)

rare2
[ rair ]
/ rɛər /

adjective, rar·er, rar·est.

(of meat) cooked just slightly: He likes his steak rare.

Origin of rare

2
First recorded in 1610–20; variant of earlier rear, Middle English rere, hrere, Old English hrēr “(of eggs) lightly boiled”

OTHER WORDS FROM rare

rareness, noun

Definition for rare (3 of 3)

rare3
[ rair ]
/ rɛər /

verb (used without object), rared, rar·ing.Older Use.

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for rare

British Dictionary definitions for rare (1 of 2)

rare1
/ (rɛə) /

adjective

Derived forms of rare

rareness, noun

Word Origin for rare

C14: from Latin rārus sparse

British Dictionary definitions for rare (2 of 2)

rare2
/ (rɛə) /

adjective

(of meat, esp beef) very lightly cooked

Word Origin for rare

Old English hrēr; perhaps related to hreaw raw
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