out·​li·​er | \ ˈau̇t-ˌlī(-ə)r How to pronounce outlier (audio) \

Definition of outlier

1 : a person whose residence and place of business are at a distance His house was a place of refuge for outliers.
2 : something (such as a geologic feature) that is situated away from or classed differently from a main or related body The island is an outlier on the southeast side of the archipelago.
3a : a statistical observation that is markedly different in value from the others of the sample Values that are outliers give disproportionate weight to larger over smaller values.
b : a person or thing that is atypical within a particular group, class, or category She was an outlier when she launched her cruelty-free, sustainably minded brand in 2001, but has found the centre of gravity shifting in her direction.— Jess Cartner-Morley Among the world's wealthy nations, the United States is an outlier on this issue: Americans have the lowest national minimum wage, relative to the median wage, of any of the wealthy nations represented in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.— Christopher Ingraham

Examples of outlier in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There is no doubt that Cheney is an outlier in her party nationally as well as in Washington. Stephen Collinson, CNN, "Liz Cheney chooses truth over power -- a lonely path in Trump's GOP," 5 May 2021 San Francisco often has been an outlier in the pandemic in California, an island of low infection and death rates even during the darkest days. Erin Allday, San Francisco Chronicle, "S.F. and Los Angeles enter the yellow tier together. How did that happen?," 4 May 2021 Mr Manchin, a pro-coal, pro-God progressive of the old school, is certainly an outlier in the modern Democratic Party. The Economist, "Lexington Joe Manchin, the wild man of the mountains," 13 Mar. 2021 This online forum—just one node in a constellation of similar forums, subreddits, and Discord groups—is not some outlier in the industry. Seth Simons, The New Republic, "The Comedy Industry Has a Big Alt-Right Problem," 9 Feb. 2021 Otherwise, New Hampshire would be an outlier, which could disrupt commerce, trade, interstate transportation and broadcasting. Christian Wade, Washington Examiner, "New Hampshire weighs plan to ditch daylight savings," 28 Apr. 2021 The Chauvin case was an outlier – with a graphic, lengthy video of the incident, and prosecution testimony from emotional bystanders and the defendant’s fellow officers. Noah Robertson, The Christian Science Monitor, "Chauvin convicted: Why this big trial broke from pattern," 21 Apr. 2021 Northam has signed into law legislation that has made Virginia an outlier in the South, including Medicaid expansion, sweeping criminal justice reforms, LGBTQ protections, a minimum wage increase and stricter gun laws. Sarah Rankin, Star Tribune, "Northam endorses predecessor McAuliffe for Virginia governor," 8 Apr. 2021 But that station is an outlier, like others that have been shared to exaggerate rising fuel prices. Rick Rouan, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Gas prices not as high as Los Angeles photo would have you believe," 20 Mar. 2021

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

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 3b

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The first known use of outlier was in 1606

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Statistics for outlier

Last Updated

13 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Outlier.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/outlier. Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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