\ˈstrānj \
stranger; strangest

Definition of strange 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a archaic : of, relating to, or characteristic of another country : foreign

b : not native to or naturally belonging in a place : of external origin, kind, or character

2a : not before known, heard, or seen : unfamiliar

b : exciting wonder or awe : extraordinary

3a : discouraging familiarities : reserved, distant

b : ill at ease

4 : unaccustomed sense 2 she was strange to his ways


noun, often attributive

Definition of strange (Entry 2 of 2)

: a fundamental quark that has an electric charge of −¹/₃ and a measured energy of approximately 150 MeV also : the flavor characterizing this particle

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Other Words from strange


strangely adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for strange


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

Examples of strange in a Sentence


Does his behavior seem strange to you? Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction. That is one of the strangest creatures I have ever seen. He gave me a strange look. Strange as it may seem, I don't like walking barefoot on the grass. It's strange that nobody told me about this before. That's strange. He was here a minute ago. The strange thing is that nobody saw him enter or leave the building. Children are taught not to talk to strange people. The language was strange to me.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

That the Giants are in this position feels strange. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "Sticking With Eli Manning Has Torpedoed the Giants—Again," 21 Oct. 2018 That might sound strange, given that the legislative filibuster is a weapon that is momentarily useful for Democrats. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Chuck Schumer Is Secretly Sabotaging the Next Democratic President," 28 June 2018 That might sound strange, given the lack of enormous dinosaurs or giant ground sloths trundling around. Brian Switek, Smithsonian, "Today’s Whales Are Huge, But Why Aren’t They Huger?," 27 June 2018 The show’s problems didn’t end there: The basement venue offered little to no cell phone service — strange, for a show centered around social media. Taylor Lorenz, The Atlantic, "YouTube Star Jake Paul’s Fame Is Fading," 16 June 2018 Of all the people that were jailed at the Ritz-Carlton, which is a strange thing to say. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Silicon Valley’s Saudi money crisis illustrates a decline of ‘moral leadership’ in America," 19 Oct. 2018 The strange thing about this is that Caddy already has a V8. Matthew Jancer, Popular Mechanics, "Why GM Finally Let Cadillac Build an All-New Twin-Turbo V8," 28 Aug. 2018 Deputies arrived at a home on Bonnie Ridge Drive after getting a call about a man standing in the street acting strange, Channel 2 Action News reported. Chelsea Prince, ajc, "JUST IN: Man killed after firing shots at Spalding County deputies, officials say," 5 July 2018 Imagine losing your teddy bear outdoors and in a strange place. Caroline Blackmon, Detroit Free Press, "Family needs help finding teddy bear lost at Sleeping Bear Dunes," 28 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Londonleaf Lane, 3433-Julie A. Strange to Jeremy D. Vitiello and Natsumi Takahashi, $243,000. Washington Post, "Home sales in Anne Arundel and Howard counties," 17 May 2017 Strange, then Alabama's attorney general, was appointed to the Senate in February by Bentley. Paul Gattis |,, "Mo Brooks campaign for Senate blasted by Washington PAC backing Luther Strange," 15 May 2017

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1974, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for strange


Middle English, from Anglo-French estrange, from Latin extraneus, literally, external, from extra outside — more at extra-

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Statistics for strange

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for strange

The first known use of strange was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for strange



English Language Learners Definition of strange

: different from what is usual, normal, or expected

: not known, heard, or seen before

: not entirely comfortable or well


\ˈstrānj \
stranger; strangest

Kids Definition of strange

1 : unfamiliar sense 1 strange surroundings

2 : different from what is usual, normal, or expected a strange sight strange behavior

3 : not relaxed : uneasy I felt strange on the first day at school.

Other Words from strange

strangely adverb
strangeness noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on strange

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with strange

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for strange

Spanish Central: Translation of strange

Nglish: Translation of strange for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of strange for Arabic Speakers

Comments on strange

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


a nest or breeding place

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