novelty

noun
nov·​el·​ty | \ ˈnä-vəl-tē How to pronounce novelty (audio) \
plural novelties

Definition of novelty

1 : something new or unusual the novelty of a self-driving car
2 : the quality or state of being novel : newness an uncritical acceptance of novelty as advance— H. M. Jones A toy's novelty soon wears off.
3 : a small manufactured article intended mainly for personal or household adornment usually used in plural Disney novelties filled the shelves.
4 : something (such as a song or food item) that provides often fleeting amusement and is often based on a theme often used attributively The movie included a few novelty songs.

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Examples of novelty in a Sentence

the novelty of space exploration Electric-powered cars are still novelties. Eating shark meat is a novelty to many people.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Sensing a novelty, the zoo’s public relations department alerted the media. San Diego Union-Tribune, "In 2019, can the San Diego Zoo make new fans out of TV viewers?," 3 Aug. 2019 The skepticism was warranted; both women began playing music in their teens, the Runaways especially guided and misguided by older men with sometimes prurient interests who treated the group as a novelty. chicagotribune.com, "How rock veterans from Runaways, Fanny joined forces," 29 July 2019 Most of her neighbors treated her as a novelty; one deskmate introduced himself by bending down and rubbing Ms. Wille’s ankle. Harrison Smith, Washington Post, "Lois Wille, two-time Pulitzer winner and pillar of Chicago journalism, dies at 87," 28 July 2019 The skepticism was warranted; both women began playing music in their teens, the Runaways especially guided and misguided by older men with sometimes prurient interests who treated the group as a novelty. Katherine Turman, Los Angeles Times, "How two fearless rock pioneers survived the ’70s and found each other four decades later," 25 July 2019 Niki Novak, who has run Sweet-N-Nasty for 39 years, says many customers buy her cakes as a novelty, fall in love, and continue to order them for important life occasions. BostonGlobe.com, "15 things to love and 11 things to loathe about Boston," 2 July 2019 Despite the technical novelty, humans are essential to the process. Julie Verhage, Fortune, "Square Deploys a Robot to Fight Bad Online Product Photos," 22 July 2019 Unexpected tips that make gardening more fun or fruitful likewise are all the more precious for their novelty. Bonnie Blodgett, Twin Cities, "Blundering Gardener: The things you think of — and cry about — when gardening," 13 July 2019 That is to say: Dragonfruit is the new buzzy ingredient in quasi-health foods, appreciated more for its novelty than its taste. Maura Judkis, The Know, "The new Starbucks dragonfruit drink tastes like — oh, who cares? It’s pink!," 18 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'novelty.' 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 novelty

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for novelty

Middle English novelte, borrowed from Anglo-French novelté, from novel "new, novel entry 1" + -té -ty

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Statistics for novelty

Last Updated

13 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for novelty

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

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More Definitions for novelty

novelty

noun

English Language Learners Definition of novelty

: the quality or state of being new, different, and interesting
: something that is new or unusual : something novel
: something unusual and entertaining that is popular for a short period of time

novelty

noun
nov·​el·​ty | \ ˈnä-vəl-tē How to pronounce novelty (audio) \
plural novelties

Kids Definition of novelty

1 : something new or unusual Grandma remembers when television was a novelty.
2 : the quality or state of being new or unusual The toy's novelty soon wore off.
3 : a small unusual ornament or toy

novelty

noun
nov·​el·​ty | \ ˈnä-vəl-tē How to pronounce novelty (audio) \
plural novelties

Legal Definition of novelty

: the quality or state of being new : quality of being different from anything in prior existence satisfied the requirement of novelty for a patent on the design

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More from Merriam-Webster on novelty

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for novelty

Spanish Central: Translation of novelty

Nglish: Translation of novelty for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of novelty for Arabic Speakers

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