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adjective sin·gu·lar \ˈsiŋ-gyə-lər\

Simple Definition of singular

  • grammar : showing or indicating no more than one thing

  • : better or greater than what is usual or normal

  • : strange or odd

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of singular

  1. 1a :  of or relating to a separate person or thing :  individualb :  of, relating to, or being a word form denoting one person, thing, or instance <a singular noun>c :  of or relating to a single instance or to something considered by itself

  2. 2 :  distinguished by superiority :  exceptional <an artist of singular attainments>

  3. 3 :  being out of the ordinary :  unusual <on the way home we had a singular adventure>

  4. 4 :  departing from general usage or expectation :  peculiar, odd <the air had a singular chill>

  5. 5a of a matrix :  having a determinant equal to zerob of a linear transformation :  having the property that the matrix of coefficients of the new variables has a determinant equal to zero



Examples of singular in a sentence

  1. In the phrase his car is red, the word car is a singular noun.

  2. He had a singular appearance.

Origin and Etymology of singular

Middle English singuler, from Anglo-French, from Latin singularis, from singulus only one — more at single

First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of singular

strange, singular, unique, peculiar, eccentric, erratic, odd, quaint, outlandish mean departing from what is ordinary, usual, or to be expected. strange stresses unfamiliarity and may apply to the foreign, the unnatural, the unaccountable <a journey filled with strange sights>. singular suggests individuality or puzzling strangeness <a singular feeling of impending disaster>. unique implies singularity and the fact of being without a known parallel <a career unique in the annals of science>. peculiar implies a marked distinctiveness <the peculiar status of America's first lady>. eccentric suggests a wide divergence from the usual or normal especially in behavior <the eccentric eating habits of preschoolers>. erratic stresses a capricious and unpredictable wandering or deviating <a friend's suddenly erratic behavior>. odd applies to a departure from the regular or expected <an odd sense of humor>. quaint suggests an old-fashioned but pleasant oddness <a quaint fishing village>. outlandish applies to what is uncouth, bizarre, or barbaric <outlandish fashions of the time>.

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms



noun sin·gu·lar

Definition of singular

  1. 1 :  the singular number, the inflectional form denoting it, or a word in that form

  2. 2 :  a singular term

14th Century

First Known Use of singular

14th century

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

SINGULAR Defined for Kids



adjective sin·gu·lar \ˈsiŋ-gyə-lər\

Definition of singular for Students

  1. 1 :  of, relating to, or being a word form used to show not more than one person or thing <The singular form of “calves” is “calf.”>

  2. 2 :  1superior 2, exceptional <He showed singular poise.>

  3. 3 :  of unusual quality <We had a singular experience.>

  4. 4 :  strange 2, odd <A wind was rising and making a singular, wild, low, rushing sound. — Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden>



noun sin·gu·lar

Definition of singular for Students

  1. :  a form of a word used to show that only one person or thing is meant

Seen and Heard

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of or relating to the heavens

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