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See also: Strange, strânge, and Stränge




From Middle English strange, from Old French estrange, from Latin extraneus (that which is on the outside), whence also more directly the English adjective extraneous. Displaced native Middle English fremd, frempt (strange) (from Old English fremede, fremde).



strange (comparative stranger, superlative strangest)

  1. Not normal; odd, unusual, surprising, out of the ordinary.
    He thought it strange that his girlfriend wore shorts in the winter.
    • Milton
      Sated at length, erelong I might perceive / Strange alteration in me.
  2. Unfamiliar, not yet part of one's experience.
    I moved to a strange town when I was ten.
    • Shakespeare
      Here is the hand and seal of the duke; you know the character, I doubt not; and the signet is not strange to you.
    • 1955, Rex Stout, "The Next Witness", in Three Witnesses, October 1994 Bantam edition, ISBN 0553249592, pages 48–49:
      She's probably sitting there hoping a couple of strange detectives will drop in.
  3. (physics) Having the quantum mechanical property of strangeness.
    • 2004 Frank Close, Particle Physics: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford, page 93:
      A strange quark is electrically charged, carrying an amount -1/3, as does the down quark.
  4. (obsolete) Belonging to another country; foreign.
    • Shakespeare
      one of the strange queen's lords
    • Ascham
      I do not contemn the knowledge of strange and divers tongues.
  5. (obsolete) Reserved; distant in deportment.
    • Shakespeare
      She may be strange and shy at first, but will soon learn to love thee.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Nathaniel Hawthorne to this entry?)
  6. (obsolete) Backward; slow.
    • Beaumont and Fletcher
      Who, loving the effect, would not be strange / In favouring the cause.
  7. (obsolete) Not familiar; unaccustomed; inexperienced.
    • Shakespeare
      In thy fortunes am unlearned and strange.



Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit



strange (third-person singular simple present stranges, present participle stranging, simple past and past participle stranged)

  1. (obsolete, transitive) To alienate; to estrange.
  2. (obsolete, intransitive) To be estranged or alienated.
  3. (obsolete, intransitive) To wonder; to be astonished.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Glanvill to this entry?)


Most common English words before 1923 in Project Gutenberg: reached · appeared · spoke · #462: strange · force · character · taking


strange (uncountable)

  1. (slang, uncountable) vagina





  1. strangely

Old EnglishEdit




  1. Inflected form of strang