Origin of unique
usage note for unique
The earliest meanings of unique when it entered English around the beginning of the 17th century were “single, sole” and “having no equal.” By the mid-19th century unique had developed a wider meaning, “not typical, unusual,” and it is in this wider sense that it is compared: The foliage on the late-blooming plants is more unique than that on the earlier varieties. The comparison of so-called absolutes in senses that are not absolute is standard in all varieties of speech and writing.
See also a1, complete, perfect.
OTHER WORDS FROM uniqueu·nique·ly, adverbu·nique·ness, nounnon·u·nique, adjectivenon·u·nique·ly, adverb
How to use unique in a sentence
While the unique challenges of 2020 drove boards to seek experienced executives to fill the top job, CEOs also made clear that the demands of the job changed dramatically.
We each have a role, based on our unique talents, and we all have a responsibility to work together toward solutions.Charles Koch: Partisan politics don’t work. It’s time for a new way|jakemeth|November 19, 2020|Fortune
Another key innovation is Arrival’s unique color-infused composite body paneling, which eliminates the need for a traditional, large-footprint paint system.EV startup Arrival goes public at $5.4 billion valuation in SPAC deal|dzanemorris|November 18, 2020|Fortune
Contact a Fire Island Pines Realtor TodayFire Island Pines is a unique community, truly unlike any other.Fire Island Pines: One Of America’s First LGBTQ Coastal Towns|LGBTQ-Editor|November 18, 2020|No Straight News
“It’s not unique, but the solar system belongs to a rare type of planetary system,” he says.Planets with many neighbors may be the best places to look for life|Lisa Grossman|November 16, 2020|Science News
If well done, a video game is uniquely suited to tell the story of a television show.‘Game of Thrones’ Interactive FanFiction: Whoops, My Friend Was Speared in the Throat|Alec Kubas-Meyer|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Though, at their best, the Van Winkle whiskies are excellent, Pappy is not uniquely great.
But I feel like films are uniquely suited towards addressing paradox, recursiveness, and worlds-within-worlds.Christopher Nolan Uncut: On ‘Interstellar,’ Ben Affleck’s Batman, and the Future of Mankind|Marlow Stern|November 10, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I think Mudbloods does that in a uniquely appropriate way, but there are other reasons it fits.
But the Madonna videos—particularly “Express Yourself” and “Vogue”—are uniquely spectacular.
He wanted Germany punished as though she was a uniquely sinful nation and France a sinless martyr land.The Outline of History: Being a Plain History of Life and Mankind|Herbert George Wells
If Lady Calmady had lighted upon the right, the uniquely right, woman—perhaps—yes.The History of Sir Richard Calmady|Lucas Malet
Whoever can rightly name every warbler, male and female, on sight is uniquely accomplished.Bird Neighbors|Neltje Blanchan
His life gave meaning to His words and made them uniquely different from any other words that had ever been spoken.Herein is Love|Reuel L. Howe
On another, "To the unique, from one who admires him uniquely."Edgar Saltus: The Man|Marie Saltus
British Dictionary definitions for unique
- leading to only one resultthe sum of two integers is unique
- having precisely one valuethe unique positive square root of 4 is 2