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[weerd] /wɪərd/
adjective, weirder, weirdest.
involving or suggesting the supernatural; unearthly or uncanny:
a weird sound; weird lights.
fantastic; bizarre:
a weird getup.
Archaic. concerned with or controlling fate or destiny.
noun, Chiefly Scot.
fate; destiny.
fate (def 6).
Origin of weird
before 900; (noun) Middle English (northern form of wird), Old English wyrd; akin to worth2; (adj.) Middle English, orig. attributive noun in phrase werde sisters the Fates (popularized as appellation of the witches in Macbeth)
Related forms
weirdly, adverb
weirdness, noun
1. unnatural, preternatural. weird, eerie, unearthly, uncanny refer to that which is mysterious and apparently outside natural law. Weird refers to that which is suggestive of the fateful intervention of supernatural influences in human affairs: the weird adventures of a group lost in the jungle. Eerie refers to that which, by suggesting the ghostly, makes one's flesh creep: an eerie moaning from a deserted house. Unearthly refers to that which seems by its nature to belong to another world: an unearthly light that preceded the storm. Uncanny refers to that which is mysterious because of its apparent defiance of the laws established by experience: an uncanny ability to recall numbers.
1. natural. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for weird
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • There is a weird stillness in which I can hear my heart beating.

    The Inferno August Strindberg
  • Their acts all had the weird inconsequence of the people we see in dreams.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • The chant is a weird sing-song which relates the conquests of the race.

    Poems of Experience Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  • Why she's Cleopatra is as weird a history as why I'm Mrs. Jones.

    It Happened in Egypt C. N. Williamson
  • The boat which has been tethered to the weird, baleful shore is set free, and sails toward the glories of the morning.

British Dictionary definitions for weird


suggestive of or relating to the supernatural; eerie
strange or bizarre
(archaic) of or relating to fate or the Fates
(archaic, mainly Scot)
  1. fate or destiny
  2. one of the Fates
(Scot) dree one's weird, See dree
(transitive) (Scot) to destine or ordain by fate; predict
See also weird out
Derived Forms
weirdly, adverb
weirdness, noun
Word Origin
Old English (ge)wyrd destiny; related to weorthan to become, Old Norse urthr bane, Old Saxon wurd; see worth²
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for weird

Old English wyrd (n.) "fate, destiny," literally "that which comes," from Proto-Germanic *wurthis (cf. Old Saxon wurd, Old High German wurt "fate," Old Norse urðr "fate, one of the three Norns"), from PIE *wert- "to turn, wind," (cf. German werden, Old English weorðan "to become"), from root *wer- (3) "to turn, bend" (see versus). For sense development from "turning" to "becoming," cf. phrase turn into "become."

The modern sense of weird developed from Middle English use of weird sisters for the three fates or Norns (in Germanic mythology), the goddesses who controlled human destiny. They were portrayed as odd or frightening in appearance, as in "Macbeth," which led to the adjectival meaning "odd-looking, uncanny," first recorded 1815.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for weird



Excellent; wonderful; cool

[1940s+ Bop talk & cool talk; also attested as 1920s British upper-class use]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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