Definition of peculiar in English:


Line breaks: pe¦cu|liar
Pronunciation: /pɪˈkjuːlɪə


  • 2Particular; special: any attempt to explicate the theme is bound to run into peculiar difficulties
    More example sentences
    • This indicates one aspect of the peculiar difficulty of police research.
    • All of them are unique and have their peculiar features.
    • They are dependent upon the peculiar circumstances of the particular case, what should or should not have been the outcome of a discretionary judgment.
    distinctive, characteristic, distinct, different, individual, individualistic, distinguishing, typical, special, specific, representative, unique, idiosyncratic, personal, private, essential, natural; identifiable, unmistakable, conspicuous, notable, remarkable
    rare singular
  • 2.1 (peculiar to) Belonging exclusively to: some languages are peculiar to one region
    More example sentences
    • That is not peculiar to New Zealand; it is true in almost every developed country in the world that I am aware of.
    • This is true, but these values are not peculiar to Britain, and it is hard to see why we have to become patriots in order to invoke them.
    • No doubt there are problems arising from the role of the drug companies in medical research, but these are not peculiar to vaccines.
    characteristic of, typical of, representative of, belonging to, indicative of, symptomatic of, suggestive of, exclusive to, like, in character with


chiefly British Back to top  
  • A parish or church exempt from the jurisdiction of the diocese in which it lies, and subject to the direct jurisdiction of the monarch or an archbishop: deans and canons of royal peculiars, notably Westminster Abbey and Windsor
    More example sentences
    • Yet others, founded by kings or bishops as their own, were later known as ‘peculiars’, withdrawn from ordinary diocesan jurisdiction.
    • The abbey is a so-called royal peculiar, one of a handful of churches under the Queen's direct control.


late Middle English (in the sense 'particular'): from Latin peculiaris 'of private property', from peculium 'property', from pecu 'cattle' (cattle being private property). The sense 'strange' dates from the early 17th century.

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Pronunciation: grəʊˈtɛskəri
grotesque quality or grotesque things collectively