Definition of uncanny
- an uncanny sense of direction
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She had an uncanny resemblance to someone I had seen before.
She has an uncanny sense of direction.
an uncanny ability to predict the weather
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'uncanny.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Weird and eerie are synonyms of uncanny, but there are subtle differences in the meanings of the three words. Weird may be used to describe something that is generally strange or out of the ordinary. Eerie suggests an uneasy or fearful consciousness that some kind of mysterious and malign powers are at work, while uncanny, which debuted in the 18th century, implies disquieting strangeness or mysteriousness. English also has a word canny, but canny and uncanny should not be interpreted as opposites. Canny, which first appeared in English in the 16th century, means "clever," "shrewd" or "prudent," as in "a canny lawyer" or "a canny investment."
What made you want to look up uncanny? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
to lessen the seriousness or strength of
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