Synonym Chooser

How is the word peculiar distinct from other similar adjectives?

Some common synonyms of peculiar are eccentric, erratic, odd, outlandish, quaint, singular, strange, and unique. While all these words mean "departing from what is ordinary, usual, or to be expected," peculiar implies a marked distinctiveness.

the peculiar status of America's first lady

In what contexts can eccentric take the place of peculiar?

While in some cases nearly identical to peculiar, eccentric suggests a wide divergence from the usual or normal especially in behavior.

the eccentric eating habits of preschoolers

When could erratic be used to replace peculiar?

The words erratic and peculiar are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, erratic stresses a capricious and unpredictable wandering or deviating.

a friend's suddenly erratic behavior

When is odd a more appropriate choice than peculiar?

The synonyms odd and peculiar are sometimes interchangeable, but odd applies to a departure from the regular or expected.

an odd sense of humor

When would outlandish be a good substitute for peculiar?

The meanings of outlandish and peculiar largely overlap; however, outlandish applies to what is uncouth, bizarre, or barbaric.

outlandish fashions of the time

When is it sensible to use quaint instead of peculiar?

Although the words quaint and peculiar have much in common, quaint suggests an old-fashioned but pleasant oddness.

a quaint fishing village

Where would singular be a reasonable alternative to peculiar?

The words singular and peculiar can be used in similar contexts, but singular suggests individuality or puzzling strangeness.

a singular feeling of impending disaster

When can strange be used instead of peculiar?

In some situations, the words strange and peculiar are roughly equivalent. However, strange stresses unfamiliarity and may apply to the foreign, the unnatural, the unaccountable.

a journey filled with strange sights

When might unique be a better fit than peculiar?

While the synonyms unique and peculiar are close in meaning, unique implies singularity and the fact of being without a known parallel.

a career unique in the annals of science


Thesaurus Entries Near peculiar

Cite this Entry

“Peculiar.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

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