\ ˈstrānj How to pronounce strange (audio) \
stranger; strangest

Definition of strange

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : different from what is usual, ordinary, or expected : odd a strange sound a strange person the cat's strange behavior
b : not before known, heard, or seen : unfamiliar customs that were strange to him feeling lost in a strange city
2a : not entirely comfortable or well : uncomfortable, ill at ease felt a strange sensation in the pit of my stomach I left Lady Glyde … and joined Mrs. Rubelle, with the object of kindly preventing her from feeling strange and nervous in consequence of the uncertainty of her situation.— Wilkie Collins
b dated : discouraging familiarities : reserved, distant … why did you break off our confidences and become quite strange to me?— George Bernard Shaw
3 : unaccustomed sense 2 She was strange to his ways.
4a : not native to or naturally belonging in a place : of external origin, kind, or character
b archaic : of, relating to, or characteristic of another country : foreign


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

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

Adjective 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. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective How strange that this was like that—that the most adult thing was, in some way, like being a child. Elif Batuman, The New Yorker, 18 Apr. 2022 That seems a bit strange, if your baseline expectation is that investors are going to seek arbitrage opportunities. Tim Fernholz, Quartz, 22 Apr. 2022 Samsung's strategy, meanwhile, is strange right now. Sascha Segan, PCMAG, 19 Apr. 2022 Foreign players are no longer some import into the game that everyone finds a bit strange. Steve Larkin, The Week, 18 Apr. 2022 Regardless of intent, the resulting works are strange, quotidian reports shot through with deep fears about the surrounding tragedies. Kate Cray, The Atlantic, 15 Apr. 2022 Which is strange, since no American of the 19th century -- not even Lincoln -- enjoyed a more meteoric rise from obscurity. Allen C. Guelzo, National Review, 14 Apr. 2022 The doll was terrifying — a strange orange color that reminded me, just slightly, of Chucky. Maggie Gyllenhaal, Los Angeles Times, 1 Mar. 2022 Obviously talking about live in-person events feels a bit strange at the moment, given the omicron surge and how the rise in COVID-19 cases has forced January and February events to be postponed, canceled or moved to virtual. Michael Schneider, Variety, 25 Jan. 2022 See More

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.

First Known Use of strange


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4b


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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Time Traveler for strange

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

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Dictionary Entries Near strange



strange attractor

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Last Updated

10 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Strange.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for strange


\ ˈstrānj How to pronounce strange (audio) \
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

More from Merriam-Webster on strange

Nglish: Translation of strange for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of strange for Arabic Speakers


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