orig·​i·​nal·​i·​ty | \ ə-ˌri-jə-ˈna-lə-tē How to pronounce originality (audio) \

Definition of originality

1 : the quality or state of being original
2 : freshness of aspect, design, or style
3 : the power of independent thought or constructive imagination

Synonyms for originality


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Examples of originality in a Sentence

Critics have praised the movie's startling originality. I was amazed by the originality of her ideas.
Recent Examples on the Web With her focus on trademarks, Ms. Glaum-Lathbury follows a long line of designers whose work has challenged prevailing ideas about originality, brand value and desire. New York Times, 24 May 2022 In this strange, dreamlike world the two solitary souls gradually start to develop feelings for one another… A melancholic love story with a mesmeric atmosphere and striking visuals that proves Greek cinema has lost nothing of its originality. Leo Barraclough, Variety, 31 May 2022 Any of the Easter eggs above would have made Moon Knight an even better MCU show without stealing anything from its originality. Chris Smith, BGR, 11 May 2022 Given to artists, musicians, songwriters and producers whose originality and influence creating music have had a dramatic impact on music. Mary Colurso | Mcolurso@al.com, al, 4 May 2022 Their originality, as much as their technical skill, is what conferred on them the right, in the eyes of their contemporaries, to stand among the giants of the past. Ingrid D. Rowland, The New York Review of Books, 27 Apr. 2022 Considering Cleveland art strictly from an art-historical perspective inevitably raises questions about the quality, originality, and impact of local work beyond Cleveland. Steven Litt, cleveland, 12 Dec. 2021 Four judges rated students on their dishes’ taste, texture, originality, difficulty, plating and visual appeal. Laura Groch, San Diego Union-Tribune, 8 May 2022 The Rock Hall describes its induction categories this way: Performers: Artists who have created music whose originality, impact, and influence has changed the course of rock and roll. Mary Colurso | Mcolurso@al.com, al, 4 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of originality

1742, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of originality was in 1742

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Last Updated

20 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Originality.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/originality. Accessed 24 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for originality


orig·​i·​nal·​i·​ty | \ ə-ˌri-jə-ˈna-lə-tē How to pronounce originality (audio) \

Kids Definition of originality

: the quality or state of being creative or new and different



Legal Definition of originality

: the quality or fact of being the product of individual creation that warrants copyright protection for a particular work regardless of novelty

More from Merriam-Webster on originality

Nglish: Translation of originality for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of originality for Arabic Speakers


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