outlandish

adjective
out·land·ish | \ˌau̇t-ˈlan-dish \

Definition of outlandish 

1 : of or relating to another country : foreign saw many outlandish animals at the zoo

2a : strikingly out of the ordinary : bizarre an outlandish costume Her book is filled with outlandish characters. spun some outlandish tales

b : exceeding proper or reasonable limits or standards workers complain of outlandish hours— Joan E. Rigdon outlandish government specifications

3 : remote from civilization no other young men foolish enough to offer to go to such an outlandish stationGeog. Jour.

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from outlandish

outlandishly adverb
outlandishness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for outlandish

strange, singular, unique, peculiar, eccentric, erratic, odd, quaint, outlandish mean departing from what is ordinary, usual, or to be expected. strange stresses unfamiliarity and may apply to the foreign, the unnatural, the unaccountable. a journey filled with strange sights singular suggests individuality or puzzling strangeness. a singular feeling of impending disaster unique implies singularity and the fact of being without a known parallel. a career unique in the annals of science peculiar implies a marked distinctiveness. the peculiar status of America's first lady eccentric suggests a wide divergence from the usual or normal especially in behavior. the eccentric eating habits of preschoolers erratic stresses a capricious and unpredictable wandering or deviating. a friend's suddenly erratic behavior odd applies to a departure from the regular or expected. an odd sense of humor quaint suggests an old-fashioned but pleasant oddness. a quaint fishing village outlandish applies to what is uncouth, bizarre, or barbaric. outlandish fashions of the time

Did You Know?

In olden times, English speakers used the phrase outlandish man to refer to a foreigner - or, one who came from an outland, which originally meant "a foreign land." From here, outlandish broadened in usage from a word meaning "from another land" to one describing something unfamiliar or strange. Dress was a common early target for the adjective - Henry Fielding, in Tom Jones (1749), writes of a woman who was drest in one of your outlandish Garments. Nowadays, the word can be applied to anything that strikes us as out of the ordinary, as in the description of one man’s outlandish proposal to replace the aging Tappan Zee Bridge with a seven-mile tunnel, from the New York Times, September 16, 2001.

Examples of outlandish in a Sentence

She fills her books with outlandish characters. The actress wore an outlandish dress to the awards ceremony.

Recent Examples on the Web

Besides the competitors, there’s another draw: George Shea—the event’s host, or Master of Ceremonies—who delivers a series of verbose, outlandish and occasionally inspired introductions of the competitors. Alejandro De La Garza, Time, "'I Love Things That Are Absurd.' Meet the Man Who Turned Nathan's Hot Dog-Eating Contest Into a National Obsession," 3 July 2018 But as outlandish and frankly, weird, as the Emery news was, Arsenal were not done. SI.com, "Wait, What? Twitter Gets Really Confused as Monday May 21 Sees a Night of Big Change at Arsenal," 21 May 2018 This repression has gone beyond obvious political targets and has produced a stultifying environment in which prosecutors have initiated outlandish legal actions, shocking even staunch regime supporters. Michael Wahid Hanna, Washington Post, "Egypt’s election is coming soon. The real battle begins afterward.," 8 Mar. 2018 No rumor of black perfidy was too outlandish to be believed. Joseph Crespino, WSJ, "‘Deep South Dispatch’ Review: Witness to the Persecution," 10 July 2018 There’s a woman with a cat familiar that can perform outlandish special attacks, and a secret agent with an uncanny ability to avoid attacks. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "Pocket Rumble for the Nintendo Switch channels the best portable fighters," 6 July 2018 Hurricane Harvey, which inundated the Houston area with up to 60 inches of rain last August, was one of the most outlandish storms ever to hit the U.S. Mark Fischetti, Scientific American, "New Data: Hurricanes Will Get Worse," 16 May 2018 As for the present, 60 Minute's Scott Pelley gets a firsthand look at a variety of projects from the Media Lab, with the most outlandish being the brain-to-Google device. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "This MIT Gadget Can Google Search Your Thoughts," 23 Apr. 2018 The very woods are alive with splashes of color so outlandish against the spring green as to be almost unbelievable. Ben Raines, AL.com, "Tiny birds, incredible journey," 20 Apr. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of outlandish

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about outlandish

Share outlandish

Listen to Our Podcast about outlandish

Dictionary Entries near outlandish

outkitchen

outland

outlander

outlandish

outlast

outlaugh

outlaw

Statistics for outlandish

Last Updated

27 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for outlandish

The first known use of outlandish was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for outlandish

outlandish

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of outlandish

: very strange or unusual : extremely different from what is normal or expected

outlandish

adjective
out·land·ish | \au̇t-ˈlan-dish \

Kids Definition of outlandish

: very strange or unusual : bizarre outlandish behavior outlandish clothes

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on outlandish

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for outlandish

Spanish Central: Translation of outlandish

Nglish: Translation of outlandish for Spanish Speakers

Comments on outlandish

What made you want to look up outlandish? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

lying above or upon

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!