un·​com·​mon | \ ˌən-ˈkä-mən How to pronounce uncommon (audio) \

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 How to pronounce uncommon (audio) \ 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 What's uncommon is for those security guards to make contact with a player, as was the case when Tucker and Durant wound up face-to-face in the third quarter of a tense Game 3 Bucks victory at Fiserv Forum. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 13 June 2021 The Bluffdale couple’s calculus for growing their family is not that uncommon, but multiply it a few million times over and the effects are huge. Matt Canham, The Salt Lake Tribune, 11 June 2021 Eclipses are not uncommon but are rarely seen in Massachusetts, according to Boston University’s observatory manager Quinn Sykes. BostonGlobe.com, 10 June 2021 Such failures are uncommon, on the order of a 1 in 5,000 chance. Los Angeles Times, 10 June 2021 While the National Geographic Society has been updating its maps for decades, large revisions are uncommon and, generally, the maps follow the International Hydrographic Organization's (IHO) guidance on marine names. Julia Musto, Fox News, 10 June 2021 This is not to say there will not be exceptions and emergencies, but those should be uncommon and accompanied with an apology — even if the doctor spent the intervening time saving another patient’s life. Washington Post, 10 June 2021 In New York City, a few cultural venues, like the Park Avenue Armory, offer rapid antigen testing on site as an alternative to proving vaccination status in order to gain entry, but that is uncommon. New York Times, 9 June 2021 Brief internet service blackouts are not uncommon and only rarely are the result of hacking or other mischief. Compiled Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 9 June 2021

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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Time Traveler for uncommon

Time Traveler

The first known use of uncommon was circa 1576

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Statistics for uncommon

Last Updated

15 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Uncommon.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/uncommon. Accessed 21 Jun. 2021.

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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 How to pronounce uncommon (audio) \

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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