Definitions for uniqueyuˈnik

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word unique

Random House Webster's College Dictionary


  1. existing as the only one or as the sole example; single; solitary in type or characteristics.

  2. having no like or equal; unparalleled; incomparable.

  3. limited in occurrence to a given class, situation, or area.

  4. not typical; unusual:

    She has a very unique ability to inspire people.

  5. (n.)the embodiment of unique characteristics; the only one of a given kind.

* Usage: Many usage guides, editors, teachers, and others maintain that such “absolute” words as complete, equal, perfect, and esp. unique cannot be compared because the condition they denote cannot be more or less than it already is. However, all such words have undergone semantic development and are used in a number of senses, some of which can be compared by words like more, very, somewhat, and totally and some of which cannot. The earliest meanings of unique when it entered English around 1600 were “single, sole” and “having no equal.” By the mid-19th century unique had developed a wider meaning, “not typical, unusual,” and it is in this wider sense that it is compared: The foliage on the late-blooming plants is more unique than that on the earlier varieties. Such comparison, though criticized, is standard in all varieties of speech and writing. See also a1, complete, perfect .

Origin of unique:

1595–1605; < F < L ūnicus, der. of ūn(us) one


Princeton's WordNet

  1. alone(p), unique, unequaled, unequalled, unparalleled(adj)

    radically distinctive and without equal

    "he is alone in the field of microbiology"; "this theory is altogether alone in its penetration of the problem"; "Bach was unique in his handling of counterpoint"; "craftsmen whose skill is unequaled"; "unparalleled athletic ability"; "a breakdown of law unparalleled in our history"

  2. unique(p)(adj)

    (followed by `to') applying exclusively to a given category or condition or locality

    "a species unique to Australia"

  3. singular, unique(adj)

    the single one of its kind

    "a singular example"; "the unique existing example of Donne's handwriting"; "a unique copy of an ancient manuscript"; "certain types of problems have unique solutions"

  4. unique(adj)

    highly unusual or rare but not the single instance

    "spoke with a unique accent"; "had unique ability in raising funds"; "a frankness unique in literature"; "a unique dining experience"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. unique(adjective)ˈnik

    different and unusual

    a couple who has chosen to spend their retirement in a unique way

  2. uniqueˈnik

    being the only one of its kind

    a unique individual; a completely unique experience in the Australian outback

  3. uniqueˈnik

    found or existing only in

    many rare species of animal are unique to the island


  1. unique(Adjective)

    Being the only one of its kind; unequaled, unparalleled or unmatched.

  2. unique(Adjective)

    Of a feature, such that only one holder has it.

  3. unique(Adjective)

    (disputed) Of a rare quality.

  4. unique(Adjective)

    (disputed) Unusual.

  5. Origin: From unique.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Unique(adj)

    being without a like or equal; unmatched; unequaled; unparalleled; single in kind or excellence; sole

  2. Unique(noun)

    a thing without a like; something unequaled or unparalleled

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'unique' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2325

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'unique' in Written Corpus Frequency: #4486

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'unique' in Adjectives Frequency: #311

Translations for unique

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


being the only one of its kind, or having no equal

His style is unique.

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