What does particular mean?

Definitions for particular
pərˈtɪk yə lər, pəˈtɪk-par·tic·u·lar

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

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. detail, particular, itemnoun

    a small part that can be considered separately from the whole

    "it was perfect in all details"

  3. particular, particular propositionadjective

    (logic) a proposition that asserts something about some (but not all) members of a class

  4. particular(a), peculiar(a), special(a)adjective

    unique or specific to a person or thing or category

    "the particular demands of the job"; "has a particular preference for Chinese art"; "a peculiar bond of sympathy between them"; "an expression peculiar to Canadians"; "rights peculiar to the rich"; "the special features of a computer"; "my own special chair"

  5. particular(a)adjective

    separate and distinct from others of the same group or category

    "interested in one particular artist"; "a man who wishes to make a particular woman fall in love with him"

  6. especial(a), exceptional, particular(a), specialadjective

    surpassing what is common or usual or expected

    "he paid especial attention to her"; "exceptional kindness"; "a matter of particular and unusual importance"; "a special occasion"; "a special reason to confide in her"; "what's so special about the year 2000?"

  7. particular, specialadjective

    first and most important

    "his special interest is music"; "she gets special (or particular) satisfaction from her volunteer work"

  8. finical, finicky, fussy, particular, pickyadjective

    exacting especially about details

    "a finicky eater"; "fussy about clothes"; "very particular about how her food was prepared"

  9. particular(a)adjective

    providing specific details or circumstances

    "a particular description of the room"


  1. particularnoun

    A small individual part of something larger; a detail, a point.

  2. particularnoun

    A person's own individual case.

  3. particularnoun

    A particular case; an individual thing as opposed to a whole class. (Opposed to generals, universals.)

  4. particularadjective

    Pertaining only to a part of something; partial.

  5. particularadjective

    Specific; discrete; concrete.

  6. particularadjective

    Specialised; characteristic of a specific person or thing.

    I don't appreciate your particular brand of cynicism.

  7. particularadjective

    Known only to an individual person or group; confidential.

  8. particularadjective

    Distinguished in some way; special (often in negative constructions).

  9. particularadjective

    Of a person, concerned with, or attentive to, details; minute; precise; fastidious.

    He is very particular about his food and if it isn't cooked to perfection he will send it back.

  10. Etymology: From particuler, particuler, particulier, and their source, particularis, from particula. Compare particle.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Particularadjective

    Etymology: particulier, French.

    He, as well with general orations, as particular dealing with men of most credit, made them see how necessary it was. Philip Sidney.

    As well for particular application to special occasions, as also in other manifold respects, infinite treasures of wisdom are abundantly to be found in the holy scripture. Richard Hooker.

    Wheresoever one plant draweth such a particular juice out of the earth, as it qualifieth the earth, so as that juice, which remaineth, is fit for the other plant; there the neighbourhood doth good. Francis Bacon.

    This is true of actions considered in their general nature or kind, but not considered in their particular individual instances. Robert South, Sermons.

    Artists, who propose only the imitation of such a particular person, without election of ideas, have often been reproached for that omission. Dryden.

    Of this prince there is little particular memory; only that he was very studious and learned. Francis Bacon.

    I have been particular in examining the reason of children’s inheriting the property of their fathers, because it will give us farther light in the inheritance of power. John Locke.

    Rather performing his general commandment, which had ever been, to embrace virtue, than any new particular, sprung out of passion, and contrary to the former. Philip Sidney.

  2. Particularnoun

    I must reserve some particulars, which it is not lawful for me to reveal. Francis Bacon.

    Those notions are universal, and what is universal must needs proceed from some universal constant principle; the same in all particulars, which can be nothing else but human nature. Robert South, Sermons.

    Having the idea of an elephant or an angle in my mind, the first and natural enquiry is, whether such a thing does exist? and this knowledge is only of particulars. John Locke.

    And if we will take them, as they were directed, in particular to her, or in her, as their representative, to all other women, they will, at most, concern the female sex only, and import no more but that subjection, they should ordinarily be in, to their husbands. John Locke.

    The master could hardly sit on his horse for laughing, all the while he was giving me the particulars of this story. Addis.

    Vespasian he resembled in many particulars. Jonathan Swift.

    It is the greatest interest of particulars, to advance the good of the community. Roger L'Estrange.

    Our wisdom must be such, as doth not propose to itself τὸ ἴδιον our own particular, the partial and immoderate desire whereof poisoneth wheresoever it taketh place; but the scope and mark, which we are to aim at, is the publick and common good. Richard Hooker.

    They apply their minds even with hearty affection and zeal, at least, unto those branches of publick prayer, wherein their own particular is moved. Richard Hooker, b. 5.

    His general lov’d him
    In a most dear particular. William Shakespeare.

    For his particular, I’ll receive him gladly;
    But not one follower. William Shakespeare, K. Lear.

    The reader has a particular of the books, wherein this law was written. John Ayliffe, Parergon.

    Invention is called a muse, authors ascribe to each of them, in particular, the sciences which they have invented. Dryden.


  1. Particular

    In metaphysics, particulars or individuals are usually contrasted with universals. Universals concern features that can be exemplified by various different particulars. Particulars are often seen as concrete, spatiotemporal entities as opposed to abstract entities, such as properties or numbers. There are, however, theories of abstract particulars or tropes. For example, Socrates is a particular (there's only one Socrates-the-teacher-of-Plato and one cannot make copies of him, e.g., by cloning him, without introducing new, distinct particulars). Redness, by contrast, is not a particular, because it is abstract and multiply instantiated (for example a bicycle, an apple, and a given woman's hair can all be red). In nominalist view everything is particular. Universals in each moment of time from point of view of an observer is the collection of particulars that participates it (even a void collection).


  1. particular

    A general definition for "particular" is something that is specific or unique to a certain person, thing, or situation, as opposed to being general or universal. It indicates a specific or distinct quality, characteristic, or detail that differentiates it from others.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Particularadjective

    relating to a part or portion of anything; concerning a part separated from the whole or from others of the class; separate; sole; single; individual; specific; as, the particular stars of a constellation

  2. Particularadjective

    of or pertaining to a single person, class, or thing; belonging to one only; not general; not common; hence, personal; peculiar; singular

  3. Particularadjective

    separate or distinct by reason of superiority; distinguished; important; noteworthy; unusual; special; as, he brought no particular news; she was the particular belle of the party

  4. Particularadjective

    concerned with, or attentive to, details; minute; circumstantial; precise; as, a full and particular account of an accident; hence, nice; fastidious; as, a man particular in his dress

  5. Particularadjective

    containing a part only; limited; as, a particular estate, or one precedent to an estate in remainder

  6. Particularadjective

    holding a particular estate; as, a particular tenant

  7. Particularadjective

    forming a part of a genus; relatively limited in extension; affirmed or denied of a part of a subject; as, a particular proposition; -- opposed to universal: e. g. (particular affirmative) Some men are wise; (particular negative) Some men are not wise

  8. Particularnoun

    a separate or distinct member of a class, or part of a whole; an individual fact, point, circumstance, detail, or item, which may be considered separately; as, the particulars of a story

  9. Particularnoun

    special or personal peculiarity, trait, or character; individuality; interest, etc

  10. Particularnoun

    one of the details or items of grounds of claim; -- usually in the pl.; also, a bill of particulars; a minute account; as, a particular of premises


  1. Particular

    In philosophy, particulars are concrete entities existing in space and time as opposed to abstractions. There are, however, theories of abstract particulars or tropes. For example, Socrates is a particular. Redness, by contrast, is not a particular, because it is abstract and multiply instantiated. Sybil Wolfram writes Particulars include only individuals of a certain kind: as a first approximation individuals with a definite place in space and time, such as persons and material objects or events, or which must be identified through such individuals, like smiles or thoughts. Some terms are used by philosophers with a rough-and-ready idea of their meaning. This can occur if there is lack of agreement about the best definition of the term. In formulating a solution to the problem of universals, the term 'particular' can be used to describe the particular instance of redness of a certain apple as opposed to the 'universal' 'redness'.

Editors Contribution

  1. particular

    Be specific.

    The particular details are easy to see, feel, know and understand.

    Submitted by MaryC on April 6, 2020  

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'particular' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #423

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'particular' in Written Corpus Frequency: #444

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'particular' in Adjectives Frequency: #41

How to pronounce particular?

How to say particular in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of particular in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of particular in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of particular in a Sentence

  1. Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan:

    There are different factions of (witchcraft). While it doesn't bother me to release that particular thing, I most assuredly do not want to defame or demean any particular practice.

  2. Man Haron Monis:

    Can we, should we, would we? Clearly, we work on a priority-based system so if somebody is on a national security watch list, then we pay particular attention to them, but on this occasion, this particular individual was not.

  3. Bertrand Russell, The Conquest of Happiness:

    The man who suffers from a sense of sin is suffering from a particular kind of self-love. In all this vast universe the thing that appears to him of most importance is that he himself should be virtuous. It is a grave defect in certain forms of traditional religion that they have encouraged this particular kind of self-absorption.

  4. Mica Endsley:

    You might want to set the task for five or six UAVs to go and cover a particular area where they work in conjunction with each other. Maybe one has one type of sensor and the other has another type of sensor — so they could cue each other, if one picked up an object of interest, it could cue another one to go examine it with maybe a different kind of sensor that might a higher resolution. They would be working together to accomplish a particular mission.

  5. Valentin Balakhnichev:

    The coaches have even more responsibility than the sportsmen, they should be more actively making sure that the anti-doping controls from (Russia's anti-doping agency) RUSADA are being enforced. We should be concentrating our focus on particular individuals and not on particular sports.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for particular

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • বিশেষBengali
  • speziell, kleinlich, bestimmt, spezifisch, eigenGerman
  • especialSpanish
  • sonrachIrish
  • air lethScottish Gaelic
  • tertentuIndonesian
  • ನಿರ್ದಿಷ್ಟವಾಗಿKannada
  • تایبه‌تیKurdish
  • bestemtNorwegian
  • szczególnyPolish
  • wakiQuechua
  • specific, special, particular, caracteristicRomanian
  • характерный, разборчивый, конкретный, частный, специальный, щепетильный, особый, привередливый, специфический, отдельный, особенныйRussian
  • konkretan, pojedini, specifičanSerbo-Croatian
  • குறிப்பிட்டTamil
  • ప్రత్యేకTelugu
  • خاص طور پرUrdu
  • 特定Chinese

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"particular." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 22 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/particular>.

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    incapable of being atoned for
    • A. pecuniary
    • B. inexpiable
    • C. ostensive
    • D. lank

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