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Alternative forms[edit]


From Latin extrāōrdinārius, from extrā ōrdinem (outside the order); equivalent to extra- +‎ ordinary. Doublet of extraordinaire.


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ɪksˈtɹɔː(ɹ)dɪnəɹi/, /ɪksˈtɹɔː(ɹ)dɪnɹi/, /ˌɛkstɹəˈɔː(ɹ)dɪnəɹi/, /ˌɛkstɹəˈɔː(ɹ)dɪnɹi/
  • (file)
  • (Hong Kong) IPA(key): /ɪks.tɹɑː.ˈɔː.dɪn.nə.ɹiː/
  • Hyphenation: ex‧tra(‧)or‧di‧na‧ry


extraordinary (comparative more extraordinary, superlative most extraordinary)

  1. Not ordinary; exceptional; unusual.
    • 1921, G. B. Shaw, Back to Methuselah:
      Everybody knew I was an extraordinary person. When I was born my beard was three feet long.
    • 1978, Spanish Constitution of 1978:
      The Houses may meet in extraordinary sessions at the request of the Government, of the Permanent Deputation or of the overall majority of members of either of the two Houses. Extraordinary sessions must be convened with a specific agenda and shall be adjourned once this has been dealt with.
    • 2011 October 23, Tom Fordyce, “2011 Rugby World Cup final: New Zealand 8-7 France”, in BBC Sport:
      Tony Woodcock's early try and a penalty from fourth-choice fly-half Stephen Donald were enough to see the All Blacks home in an extraordinary match that defied all pre-match predictions.
    • 2013 June 8, “The new masters and commanders”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8839, page 52:
      From the ground, Colombo’s port does not look like much. [] But viewed from high up in one of the growing number of skyscrapers in Sri Lanka’s capital, it is clear that something extraordinary is happening: China is creating a shipping hub just 200 miles from India’s southern tip.
  2. Remarkably good.
    an extraordinary poet
  3. Special or supernumerary.
    the physician extraordinary in a royal household
    an extraordinary professor in a German university



Derived terms[edit]



extraordinary (plural extraordinaries)

  1. Anything that goes beyond what is ordinary.
    • 1787, The New Annual Register:
      [] the sum that will probably be wanted for each head of service during the year: it is divided into the ordinary, and the extraordinaries.