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sui generis

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adjective sui ge·ner·is \ˌsü-ˌī-ˈje-nə-rəs; ˌsü-ē-ˈje-, -ˈge-\

Simple Definition of sui generis

  • : in a class or group of its own : not like anything else

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of sui generis

  1. :  constituting a class alone :  unique, peculiar

Examples of sui generis in a sentence

  1. <among history's greats Leonardo da Vinci is often considered sui generis—a man of such stupendous genius that the world may never see his like again>



Did You Know?

English contains many terms that ultimately trace back to the Latin forms gener- or "genus" (which are variously translated as "birth," "race," "kind," and "class"). Offspring of those roots include "general," "generate," "generous," "generic," "degenerate," and "gender." But "sui generis" is truly a one-of-a-kind "gener-" descendant that English speakers have used for singular things since the late 1600s. Its earliest uses were in scientific contexts, where it identified substances, principles, diseases, and even rocks that were unique or that seemed to be the only representative of their class or group. By the early 1900s, however, "sui generis" had expanded beyond solely scientific contexts, and it is now used more generally for anything that stands alone.

Origin and Etymology of sui generis

Latin, of its own kind


First Known Use: 1754


Law Dictionary

sui generis

play
adjective sui ge·ner·is \ˈsü-ˌī-ˈje-nə-rəs, ˈsü-ē-\

Legal Definition of sui generis

  1. :  constituting a class alone :  unique or particular to itself <the lawyer's…ad that makes no distinction among various legal and factual nuances in each sui generis case has the potential to mislead — National Law Journal>



Origin and Etymology of sui generis

Latin, of its own kind



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