not often synonym rarely He had seldom seen a child with so much talent. She seldom, if ever, goes to the theatre. They seldom watch television these days. (literary) Seldom had he seen such beauty. Word Origin Old English seldan, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch zelden and German selten, from a base meaning
‘strange, wonderful’.Extra examples It is seldom that a week passes by without my having several letters on the subject. People are very seldom exactly what you would like them to be. Revenge was seldom, if ever, the motive in these cases. Seldom have I come across such vindictive reviews. She seldom smiled. They work hard and seldom take holidays. Why is the symphony so seldom played?