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First attested in 1604, in modern sense since 1665, from Old French idiosyncrasie, from Ancient Greek ἰδιοσυγκρασία (idiosunkrasía, one’s own temperament), from ἴδιος (ídios, one’s own) + σύν (sún, together) + κρᾶσις (krâsis, temperament).


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˌɪdɪə(ʊ)ˈsɪŋkɹəsi/
  • IPA(key): /ˌɪd.i.əʊˈsɪŋ.kɹə.si/
  • IPA(key): /ˌɪdi.əˈsɪŋkɹəsi/
  • Hyphenation: idio‧syn‧crasy


idiosyncrasy (plural idiosyncrasies)

  1. A behavior or way of thinking that is characteristic of a person.
  2. A language or behaviour that is particular to an individual or group.
  3. (medicine) A peculiar individual reaction to a generally innocuous substance or factor.
  4. A peculiarity that serves to distinguish or identify.
    He mastered the idiosyncrasies of English spelling.


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