cu·​ri·​os·​i·​ty | \ ˌkyu̇r-ē-ˈä-s(ə-)tē How to pronounce curiosity (audio) , ˌkyər- \
plural curiosities

Definition of curiosity

1 : desire to know:
a : inquisitive interest in others' concerns : nosiness The construction inside their house aroused the curiosity of their neighbors.
b : interest leading to inquiry intellectual curiosity Her natural curiosity led her to ask more questions.
2 archaic : undue nicety or fastidiousness
3a : one that arouses interest especially for uncommon or exotic characteristics Tobacco was once regarded as a curiosity in Europe.
b : an unusual knickknack : curio The antique shop was full of curiosities.
c : a curious trait or aspect

Synonyms & Antonyms for curiosity



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Examples of curiosity in a Sentence

Her natural curiosity led her to ask more questions. The arrival of a construction crew at their house attracted the curiosity of their neighbors. The movie failed to satisfy her curiosity about the assassination. Tobacco was once a curiosity in Europe. The antique shop was full of curiosities.
Recent Examples on the Web Questions can serve as a particularly effective means of fostering life skills such as empathy and curiosity. USA Today, 15 June 2022 The burial sites in present-day Kyrgyzstan, where excavations began in 1885, have piqued researchers’ curiosity for years. Evan Bush, NBC News, 15 June 2022 Landmark clips by Michael Jackson and Madonna centered the telegenic star, inviting crushes and curiosity while also transporting the viewer to another reality—one of zombie dancers or messianic lovers. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, 15 June 2022 His approach to leadership, entrepreneurism, art and culture, public service, creativity, relentlessness, academia, integrity, and curiosity plus his love for Brooklyn inspire us. Thania Garcia, Variety, 14 June 2022 Her intention was to pique curiosity, but never satisfy it. Julian Sancton, The Hollywood Reporter, 14 June 2022 Since the start of the partnership, Metrokin says there has been an uptick in popularity and curiosity about the team and sport itself among their shareholders. Josh Reed, Anchorage Daily News, 13 June 2022 While this botanical curiosity has virtually worldwide visual recognition, the saguaro's difficult-to-pronounce-and-spell name is mostly unknown. Douglas C. Towne, The Arizona Republic, 11 June 2022 Facilitating this in an environment of safety and curiosity deepens the learning. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 10 June 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of curiosity

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for curiosity

see curious

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Time Traveler for curiosity

Time Traveler

The first known use of curiosity was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near curiosity

curiosa felicitas



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Statistics for curiosity

Last Updated

19 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Curiosity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for curiosity


cu·​ri·​os·​i·​ty | \ ˌkyu̇r-ē-ˈä-sə-tē How to pronounce curiosity (audio) \
plural curiosities

Kids Definition of curiosity

1 : an eager desire to learn and often to learn things that are another's concern "What's happening?" he asked with curiosity.
2 : something strange or unusual They both sat looking at Harriet as though she were a curiosity put on television to entertain them.— Louise Fitzhugh, Harriet the Spy
3 : an object or article valued because it is strange or rare

More from Merriam-Webster on curiosity

Nglish: Translation of curiosity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of curiosity for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about curiosity


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