anomaly

noun
anom·​a·​ly | \ ə-ˈnä-mə-lē How to pronounce anomaly (audio) \
plural anomalies

Definition of anomaly

1 : something different, abnormal, peculiar, or not easily classified : something anomalous They regarded the test results as an anomaly.
2 : deviation from the common rule : irregularity
3 : the angular distance of a planet from its perihelion as seen from the sun

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Examples of anomaly in a Sentence

In approximately 10% of patients, autism can be explained by genetic syndromes and known chromosomal anomalies (most of which have recognizable features in addition to autism) … — Lauren A. Weiss et al., New England Journal of Medicine, 14 Feb. 2008 Eleven minutes may not sound like much when you're waiting for a table at your favorite restaurant, but in the course of centuries, eleven minutes and change become a formidable chunk of time. By the 1300s, those superfluous minutes had added up to hours, then days, then more than a week. The calendar was losing time, irrevocably, to the "real" year, slipping further and further behind in its measurement of the earth's orbit. Anomalies began to creep into what had been the certainties of life. The spring equinox—one of two moments in the year when day and night are of equal length all over the earth, and which occurs on or about March 21—began to fall on March 16, then 15, then 14. — Michelle Stacey, Harper's, December 2006 Californians aren't the only ones vexed by rolling brownouts and other power-supply anomalies. Everyday power spikes, surges, sags, and line noise cause computers, stereo equipment, televisions, telephones, and other delicate electronic equipment to go psychotic or have complete nervous breakdowns. Fortune, 25 June 2001 This policy may well have made sense back when steroid use was an anomaly. Now that bulking up with chemical help seems to be more popular than ever, it's incumbent on baseball to take action. — Steve Kettman, New York Times, 20 Aug. 2000 We couldn't explain the anomalies in the test results. her C grade is an anomaly, as she's never made anything except A's and B's before
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Recent Examples on the Web In the unlikely event that all current telescope surveys fail, and the anomalies endure years of the Vera C. Rubin Observatory’s operations, Unwin’s primordial black hole theory might start to look even more reasonable. Charlie Wood, Popular Science, "Planet Nine might not be a planet at all," 14 May 2020 Barring the anomaly of Belarus, football across the continent has been on lockdown since mid-March. Aleks Klosok, CNN, "Chaos beckons as European soccer season is devastated by coronavirus pandemic," 11 May 2020 March had the second-largest anomaly of any month, said Deke Arndt, the head of climate monitoring at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information in Asheville, N.C., during a news conference call. Andrew Freedman, BostonGlobe.com, "This year is on track to be Earth’s warmest on record, beating 2016, NOAA says," 21 Apr. 2020 With septate uterus, the most common anomaly, the organ looks normal from the outside, but a muscular or fibrous septum divides the uterine cavity into two chambers. Katherine Hobson, New York Times, "Know Your Uterus," 18 Apr. 2020 The company has finalized the investigation of the nozzle anomaly on the C600 booster static fire test last year and completed a successful C300 booster static test in February. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Rocket Report: Electron’s crazy midair test, SLS work delayed for “weeks”," 10 Apr. 2020 Since the moon influences the tides, the anomaly causes a dramatic change in the geology of planet Earth, leading to tsunamis all across the globe. Ritoban Mukherjee, Quartz, "Apocalyptic sci-fi is helping me cope with the Covid-19 crisis—yes, really," 8 Apr. 2020 In February, the team revealed that a series of critical software errors were responsible for the anomalies. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "When At First Your Starliner Doesn't Succeed, Fly, Fly Again," 6 Apr. 2020 Perhaps the most notable anomaly of the latest selloff has been gold, which had been enjoying a strong year. Mike Bird, WSJ, "Coronavirus Selloff Reveals the Hidden Mechanics of Financial Markets," 3 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'anomaly.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of anomaly

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for anomaly

see anomalous

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Time Traveler for anomaly

Time Traveler

The first known use of anomaly was in 1603

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Statistics for anomaly

Last Updated

28 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Anomaly.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/anomaly. Accessed 29 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for anomaly

anomaly

noun
How to pronounce anomaly (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of anomaly

somewhat formal : something that is unusual or unexpected : something anomalous

anomaly

noun
anom·​a·​ly | \ ə-ˈnä-mə-lē How to pronounce anomaly (audio) \
plural anomalies

Kids Definition of anomaly

: something different, abnormal, strange, or not easily described

anomaly

noun
anom·​a·​ly | \ ə-ˈnäm-ə-lē How to pronounce anomaly (audio) \
plural anomalies

Medical Definition of anomaly

: a deviation from normal especially of a bodily part the infants demonstrated congenital anomalies personality anomalies

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