odd·i·ty | \ ˈä-də-tē \
plural oddities

Definition of oddity 

1 : an odd person, thing, event, or trait

2 : the quality or state of being odd

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Examples of oddity in a Sentence

Her shyness makes her a bit of an oddity in the business world. The zoo has such oddities as anteaters and platypuses.

Recent Examples on the Web

But the oddity of her Reform Party victory illustrates the pull and occasional power of New York’s third parties — entities like the Women’s Equality Party and the influential Working Families Party. Lisa W. Foderaro, New York Times, "Ocasio-Cortez Highlights How Third-Party Quirks Can Muddle Elections," 11 July 2018 Kamenetz’s appearance on the ballot wasn’t the only oddity for voters. Pamela Wood, baltimoresun.com, "Democratic ballot for Maryland governor offers a rare crowded field that includes Kevin Kamenetz," 26 June 2018 That would create the oddity of the Fever having two players named Mitchell – but not related – in the USA Basketball national team pool. David Woods, Indianapolis Star, "You think draft is important to Colts? For Fever, the future depends on it," 10 Apr. 2018 The oddity of it all got the story picked up around the country, from People magazine to the Huffington Post. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Photos: Mom who drove with son on roof pleads guilty to felony," 15 Mar. 2018 Now, scientists have spied in those waves the spiraling signature of an extremely strong magnetic field, suggesting that the cosmic oddity exists in an intense galactic environment containing a powerfully magnetic source. National Geographic, "Mystery Radio Bursts From Space Just Got Even Weirder," 10 Jan. 2018 This is just the tip of the iceberg of the cosmic oddity that is Sun Ra, who left behind an incomparable legacy. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "17 Songs About Space That Are Cosmically Great," 3 Mar. 2017 The only low-tech oddity in this very electrified vehicle is the mechanical foot-pumper parking brake. Mark Maynard, sandiegouniontribune.com, "2018 Kia Niro PHEV: The future of plug-and-play," 13 July 2018 Minds did not have to wonder much at that point to figure out what oddities were in play. Andrew Turner, latimes.com, "Newport Beach PONY throws combined no-hitter," 28 June 2018

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

1713, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for oddity

Last Updated

14 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for oddity

The first known use of oddity was in 1713

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More Definitions for oddity



English Language Learners Definition of oddity

: a strange or unusual person or thing

: the quality or state of being strange or unusual


odd·i·ty | \ ˈä-də-tē \
plural oddities

Kids Definition of oddity

1 : something strange The zoo has oddities such as platypuses.

2 : the quality or state of being strange We laughed at the oddity of the situation.

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More from Merriam-Webster on oddity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for oddity

Spanish Central: Translation of oddity

Nglish: Translation of oddity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of oddity for Arabic Speakers

Comments on oddity

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the setting in which something occurs

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