< Medieval Latin eccentricitās,
equivalent to eccentric-
) + -itās -ity
queerness, strangeness, oddness, freakishness, aberration. Eccentricity, peculiarity, quirk, idiosyncrasy
all refer to some noticeable deviation in behavior, style, or manner from what is normal or expected. Eccentricity
usually suggests a mildly amusing but harmless characteristic or style: a whimsical eccentricity in choice of clothing. Peculiarity
is the most general of these words, referring to almost any perceptible oddity or departure from any norm: the peculiarity of his eyelashes, of the weather. Quirk
often refers to a minor, unimportant kind of oddity: Her one quirk was a habit of speaking to strangers in elevators.
has overtones of strangeness: sexual quirks. Idiosyncrasy
refers to a variation in behavior or manner exclusive to or characteristic of a single individual: idiosyncrasies of style that irritated editors but often delighted readers.