noun, often attributive
spe·​cial·​ty | \ ˈspe-shəl-tē How to pronounce specialty (audio) \
plural specialties

Definition of specialty

1 : a distinctive mark or quality
2a : a special object or class of objects: such as
(1) : a legal agreement embodied in a sealed instrument
(2) : a product of a special kind or of special excellence fried chicken is my specialty
b : the state of being special, distinctive, or peculiar
3 : something in which one specializes

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Examples of specialty in a Sentence

Buttermilk pie is a Southern specialty. a doctor with a specialty in dermatology
Recent Examples on the Web There is a back patio with plants and specialty cocktails. Jamie Clarkson, The Enquirer, 17 June 2021 The tasting room, which also serves specialty cocktails and sandwiches, is open daily for patio service and for limited indoor seating. Hannah Selinger, Travel + Leisure, 13 June 2021 With so many specialty items from Taiwan and other Asian countries, the spacious market can be a bit overwhelming. Andi Berlin, The Arizona Republic, 9 June 2021 This involved posting visually pleasing #StopAsianHate art treatments to their Instagram grids or offering limited-edition specialty items where a portion of the purchase price would be allocated toward charitable initiatives. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, 7 June 2021 New changes to the app are also on the drawing board, including giving users the ability to search for specialty items like vegan or gluten-free pizza options or cauliflower crusts pizzas. Janet Forgrieve, Forbes, 15 Apr. 2021 There's plenty to keep you busy here, including a full bar with specialty cocktails and more than 40 beers on tap, many of them local. Rick Nelson, Star Tribune, 9 Apr. 2021 There are also specialty cocktails, wines, local craft beers and Champagne. San Diego Union-Tribune, 6 Apr. 2021 Two of the specialty items are named for Chequita’s parents. Bob Carlton | Bcarlton@al.com, al, 31 Mar. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for specialty

Middle English specialte, from Anglo-French especialté, from Late Latin specialitat-, specialitas, from Latin specialis special

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Learn More About specialty

Time Traveler for specialty

Time Traveler

The first known use of specialty was in the 15th century

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Statistics for specialty

Last Updated

18 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Specialty.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/specialty. Accessed 20 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for specialty



English Language Learners Definition of specialty

: something that a person or place is known for making or producing very well
: an area of study or business that a person specializes in or has special knowledge of


spe·​cial·​ty | \ ˈspe-shəl-tē How to pronounce specialty (audio) \
plural specialties

Kids Definition of specialty

: something for which a person or place is known Pancakes are my specialty. Good service is the restaurant's specialty.


spe·​cial·​ty | \ ˈspesh-əl-tē How to pronounce specialty (audio) \
plural specialties

Medical Definition of specialty

: something (as a branch of medicine) in which one specializes

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plural specialties

Legal Definition of specialty

1 [from the special form of the contract] : formal contract at contract
2 : a doctrine providing that a person extradited can be prosecuted only for the charges described in the order for extradition
3 : real property (as a parcel of land or especially a structure) that is of such specialized character that no market for it exists and for which value upon condemnation is determined by the cost of reproduction less depreciation used especially in New York


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