un·​com·​mon | \ˌən-ˈkä-mən \

Definition of uncommon 

1 : not ordinarily encountered : unusual an uncommon plant

2 : remarkable, exceptional a soldier of uncommon courage

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Other Words from uncommon

uncommonly adverb
uncommonness \ˌən-​ˈkä-​mən-​nəs \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for uncommon

infrequent, uncommon, scarce, rare, sporadic mean not common or abundant. infrequent implies occurrence at wide intervals in space or time. infrequent family visits uncommon suggests a frequency below normal expectation. smallpox is now uncommon in many countries scarce implies falling short of a standard or required abundance. jobs were scarce during the Depression rare suggests extreme scarcity or infrequency and often implies consequent high value. rare first editions sporadic implies occurrence in scattered instances or isolated outbursts. sporadic cases of influenza

Examples of uncommon in a Sentence

It is not uncommon for people to become depressed after they retire. an athlete with uncommon ability a soldier of uncommon courage She is an uncommon woman.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Cryptocurrencies are one of the most speculative asset classes in the markets, so sharp selloffs aren’t uncommon. Paul Vigna, WSJ, "Bearish on Bitcoin: Crypto Markets Take Steep Dive," 20 Nov. 2018 This isn't uncommon in the world of aviation, but this was my first! Georgia Dean, Condé Nast Traveler, "Co-Piloting a 54-Day Flight With My Dad: Dispatch #5," 17 Oct. 2018 Clashes are uncommon in the camp of Miyeh ou Miyeh, near the port city of Sidon. Bassem Mroue, The Seattle Times, "Clashes in Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon wound 6," 15 Oct. 2018 Lynching was not uncommon in the Jim Crow-era South, so Tom was relatively fortunate to receive even an unfair trial and conviction. Allysia Finley, WSJ, "The Senate’s Job Isn’t to Kill a Mockingbird," 3 Oct. 2018 Some bilingual schools are boarding schools, which are not uncommon in China. Yanan Wang And Dake Kang, Fox News, "China distances children from families to subdue Muslim west," 21 Sep. 2018 Kidnappings are not uncommon in Nigeria, the country where Boko Haram’s abduction of nearly 300 schoolgirls shocked the world’s conscience in 2014. Daniel Victor, New York Times, "Nigeria Captain Played Key World Cup Match Hours After Learning His Father Was Kidnapped," 3 July 2018 Matt called her before their first date, which is pretty uncommon in online dating. Lisa Bonos, chicagotribune.com, "Don't think Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson will make it? Meet 4 couples who got engaged quickly," 23 June 2018 Well, unless there are steady winds or thunderstorms, not uncommon in the Payson area in early July. Scott Craven, azcentral, "Best Fourth of July fireworks, events around Arizona," 20 June 2018

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

circa 1576, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for uncommon

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for uncommon

The first known use of uncommon was circa 1576

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More Definitions for uncommon



English Language Learners Definition of uncommon

: not often found, seen, or experienced

: not ordinary : remarkable or exceptional


un·​com·​mon | \ˌən-ˈkä-mən \

Kids Definition of uncommon

1 : not often found or seen : unusual an uncommon bird

2 : not ordinary : remarkable uncommon ability uncommon courage

Other Words from uncommon

uncommonly adverb It was an uncommonly cold summer.

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More from Merriam-Webster on uncommon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for uncommon

Spanish Central: Translation of uncommon

Nglish: Translation of uncommon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of uncommon for Arabic Speakers

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