What does Specific mean?

Definitions for Specific
spɪˈsɪf ɪkspe·cif·ic

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word Specific.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. particular, specificnoun

    a fact about some part (as opposed to general)

    "he always reasons from the particular to the general"

  2. specificadjective

    a medicine that has a mitigating effect on a specific disease

    "quinine is a specific for malaria"

  3. specificadjective

    (sometimes followed by `to') applying to or characterized by or distinguishing something particular or special or unique

    "rules with specific application"; "demands specific to the job"; "a specific and detailed account of the accident"

  4. specificadjective

    stated explicitly or in detail

    "needed a specific amount"

  5. specificadjective

    relating to or distinguishing or constituting a taxonomic species

    "specific characters"

  6. specificadjective

    being or affecting a disease produced by a particular microorganism or condition; used also of stains or dyes used in making microscope slides

    "quinine is highly specific for malaria"; "a specific remedy"; "a specific stain is one having a specific affinity for particular structural elements"


  1. specificnoun

    A distinguishing attribute or quality.

  2. specificnoun

    Something particularly adapted for a particular use, as a remedy for a particular disorder

  3. specificnoun


  4. specificnoun

    The details; particulars.

  5. specificadjective

    explicit or definite

  6. specificadjective

    of, or relating to a species

  7. specificadjective

    pertaining to a taxon at the rank of species

  8. specificadjective

    special, distinctive or unique

  9. specificadjective

    intended for, or applying to a particular thing

  10. specificadjective

    being a remedy for a particular disease

  11. specificadjective

    limited to a particular antibody or antigen

  12. specificadjective

    of a value divided by mass (e.g. specific orbital energy)

  13. specificadjective

    similarly referring to a value divided by any measure which acts to standardize it (e.g. thrust specific fuel consumption, referring to fuel consumption divided by thrust)

  14. specificadjective

    a measure compared with a standard reference value by division, to produce a ratio without unit or dimension (e.g. specific refractive index is a pure number, and is relative to that of air)

  15. Etymology: From specifique, from specificus, from species + facio.



    The Sustainable Product Engineering Centre for Innovative Functional Industrial Coatings (SPECIFIC) is an academic and industrial consortium led by Swansea University, with Tata Steel as the main industrial partner. It is funded by EPSRC, Innovate UK and the Welsh Government.The centre is developing the concept 'Buildings as Power Stations' and has been awarded £26 million, comprising £15 million from the EU, with the remaining money coming from EPSRC, Innovate UK, industry partners, and contributions from Swansea and Cardiff universities. SPECIFIC has developed an 'Active Classroom', designed by architect Joanna Clarke and situated at Swansea University Bay Campus, showcasing innovative technologies for creating low carbon buildings which generate more energy than they consume. The Active Classroom won the Construction Excellence in Wales Award for Innovation in 2017.In 2018 the UK government announced £36 million funding for an Active Building Centre in order to accelerate market adoption of active buildings.


  1. specific

    Specific can be defined as something that is precise, clear, and detailed, focusing on particular details or characteristics, rather than being general or vague. It refers to being explicit or definite about a particular aspect, item, or situation.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Specificadjective

    of or pertaining to a species; characterizing or constituting a species; possessing the peculiar property or properties of a thing which constitute its species, and distinguish it from other things; as, the specific form of an animal or a plant; the specific qualities of a drug; the specific distinction between virtue and vice

  2. Specificadjective

    specifying; definite, or making definite; limited; precise; discriminating; as, a specific statement

  3. Specificadjective

    exerting a peculiar influence over any part of the body; preventing or curing disease by a peculiar adaption, and not on general principles; as, quinine is a specific medicine in cases of malaria

  4. Specificnoun

    a specific remedy. See Specific, a., 3

  5. Specificadjective

    anything having peculiar adaption to the purpose to which it is applied

  6. Etymology: [F. spcifique, or NL. spesificus; L. species a particular sort or kind + facere to make. Cf. specify.]

Editors Contribution

  1. specific

    Accurate and perfect details, data or words.

    They had to have the specific budget for the invitation to quotation.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 1, 2020  

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Specific' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #871

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Specific' in Written Corpus Frequency: #1249

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Specific' in Adjectives Frequency: #100

How to pronounce Specific?

How to say Specific in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Specific in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Specific in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of Specific in a Sentence

  1. Dr. Viktor E Frankl:

    Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated, thus, everyone's task is unique as his specific opportunity to implement it.

  2. George Santayana:

    To attempt to be religious without practicing a specific religion is as possible as attempting to speak without a specific language.

  3. Chancellor Kelli Brown:

    These last 24 hours have been a roller coaster of emotions for me and many others on this campus. Over the weekend there have been several videos of students, Western Carolina University students that are displaying behavior that is racist and bigoted. This behavior disappoints, angers, frustrated me to no end, justifiable calls for action can be heard from across our campus community today. Rest assured, the University is taking active steps to address these particular incidents consistent with our University processes and policies ; however, we can not disclose specific actions taken against a specific student( s). With that in mind, our inability to communicate specific actions should not be construed as inaction. Western Carolina University takes seriously the effect that these videos have had on the campus community and will act accordingly.

  4. Peter McWilliams:

    Pain (any pain--emotional, physical, mental) has a message. The information it has about our life can be remarkably specific, but it usually falls into one of two categories We would be more alive if we did more of this, and, Life would be more lovely if we did less of that. Once we get the pain's message, and follow its advice, the pain goes away.

  5. Jimmy Whitworth:

    MERS-CoV is a disease we worry about because we don't have any specific countermeasures to it. We've got no specific drugs, no specific vaccine, or anything to deal with it, essentially we need to identify cases, get them into isolation and to give them intensive supportive care until they get better.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for Specific

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"Specific." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 2 Oct. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/Specific>.

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    diverge from the expected
    • A. aberrate
    • B. suffuse
    • C. abet
    • D. knead

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