va·​ri·​e·​ty | \ və-ˈrī-ə-tē How to pronounce variety (audio) \
plural varieties

Definition of variety

1 : the quality or state of having different forms or types : multifariousness
2 : a number or collection of different things especially of a particular class : assortment
3a : something differing from others of the same general kind : sort
b : any of various groups of plants or animals ranking below a species : subspecies

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Examples of variety in a Sentence

I was surprised by the variety of the choices that were available. My life needs more variety.
Recent Examples on the Web City Council members, who are elected to two-year terms, call on people to weigh in on a variety of issues in commissions and boards, from redistricting to planning to city improvements. Imelda García, Dallas News, "Ballot questions ask voters if non-U.S. citizens can serve on parks, planning and redistricting groups in Dallas," 30 Apr. 2021 The response touched on various other issues in the limited timeframe with Scott saying the president is a good man with good words, but has failed to lower the country's temperature by caving to left-leaning interests on a variety of issues. Phillip M. Bailey, USA TODAY, "'America is not a racist country,' Tim Scott says in Republican rebuttal to Biden's speech," 29 Apr. 2021 It is scheduled to make its way to space as early as Thursday evening, though that timeline could shift based on a variety of factors. Mike Wehner, BGR, "China’s ‘Heavenly Harmony’ space station module is about to take off," 28 Apr. 2021 Wayfair Days are April 28-29 and includes discounts on a variety of items from bedding and outdoor furniture to rugs and lighting. Leada Gore |, al, "Wayfair Way Days sale is live: Home goods site’s biggest sale of the year April 28-29," 28 Apr. 2021 Small businesses pay based on a variety of minimum wages, depending on which state their firm is in and conditions in the local market. William Dunkelberg, Forbes, "Minimum Wage One-Size-Fits-All Approach Is Bad For Small Business," 27 Apr. 2021 In Texas, the state Senate has already advanced S.B. 7 and the state House is considering H.B. 6, two bills aimed at tightening voting rules on a variety of fronts. Tyler Olson, Fox News, "GOP state legislatures move ahead with election security bills amid outrage over Georgia law," 16 Apr. 2021 This spring his designs appear on a variety of items for fundraising by classical music radio station WFMT, including a bird orchestra on a T-shirt and images of famous composers on coffee mugs. Carol Flynn,, "A Chicago artist whose work has been shown in White House, Vatican, has spent part of pandemic creating free coloring sheets to do while sheltering at home," 12 Apr. 2021 There are a variety of swimming pools located throughout the property including three main pools, one of which includes a waterslide. Judy Koutsky, Forbes, "Captiva Island: Why This Florida Oasis Should Be On Your Travel Bucket List," 19 Apr. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for variety

borrowed from Middle French or Latin; Middle French varieté, borrowed from Latin varietāt-, varietās, from varius "having contrasting colors, various entry 1" + -etāt- -etās, variant of -itās -ity

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Time Traveler for variety

Time Traveler

The first known use of variety was in the 15th century

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Statistics for variety

Last Updated

4 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Variety.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for variety



English Language Learners Definition of variety

: a number or collection of different things or people
: the quality or state of having or including many different things
: a particular kind of person or thing


va·​ri·​ety | \ və-ˈrī-ə-tē How to pronounce variety (audio) \
plural varieties

Kids Definition of variety

1 : a collection of different things This store sells a variety of items.
2 : the quality or state of having different forms or types My diet lacks variety.
3 : something (as a plant or animal) that differs from others of the same general kind or of the group to which it belongs a variety of tulip
4 : entertainment made up of performances (as dances and songs) that follow one another and are not related


va·​ri·​e·​ty | \ və-ˈrī-ət-ē How to pronounce variety (audio) \
plural varieties

Medical Definition of variety

: any of various groups of plants or animals ranking below a species : subspecies

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