- a retail store, as a five-and-ten, carrying a large variety of goods, especially low-priced articles.
Origin of variety store
An Americanism dating back to 1760–70
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
A retail shop that carries a large selection of usually inexpensive merchandise, as in What this town needs is a good variety store. [Second half of 1700s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.