Definition of peculiar adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//pɪˈkjuːliə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//pɪˈkjuːliər//
    Being ill
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  1. 1strange or unusual, especially in a way that is unpleasant or worrying a peculiar smell/taste There was something peculiar in the way he smiled. I had a peculiar feeling we'd met before. Her behaviour was a peculiar mixture of the sophisticated and the childlike. He died in very peculiar circumstances. For some peculiar reason, she refused to come inside. The peculiar thing was that no one mentioned her disappearance. They behaved in a very peculiar way. compare odd
  2. 2peculiar (to somebody/something) belonging or relating to one particular place, situation, person, etc., and not to others a humour that is peculiar to American sitcoms a species of bird peculiar to Asia He has his own peculiar style which you'll soon get used to. the family’s peculiar importance in the affair the peculiar properties of mercury
  3. 3(British English, informal) slightly ill/sick I don’t think I’ll eat anything—I’m feeling a bit peculiar. See related entries: Being ill
  4. Word Originlate Middle English (in the sense ‘particular’): from Latin peculiaris ‘of private property’, from peculium ‘property’, from pecu ‘cattle’ (cattle being private property). The sense ‘strange’ dates from the early 17th cent.Extra examples I find her attitude a bit peculiar, to say the least. The meat tasted rather peculiar. These problems are by no means peculiar to this country. the smell that is peculiar to hospitals Each house had its own peculiar smell. Every case presents its own peculiar problems. For some peculiar reason, she refused to come inside. He waved in a way entirely peculiar to himself. I had a peculiar feeling we’d met before. It’s got a peculiar taste. The species is peculiar to China. We shall concentrate on environmental features that are peculiar to the tropics.Idioms
    funny peculiar (British English) (US English funny weird/strange)
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    (informal) used to show that ‘funny’ is being used with the meaning of ‘strange’
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: peculiar

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