Odd Meaning: Here’s What It Means and How to Use It

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The word odd is used frequently in the English language. It’s a simple word that is commonly used to describe strange things, and it holds an important place in our language. 

There are different definitions of odd, and you might not know them all. So, we’ve come up with a complete guide to the word odd and its various definitions. This way, you don’t ever have to be confused by the use of this word, and you can use it correctly. 

Today’s word of the day is odd. After reading this guide, you can be confident in your understanding of the word odd and all of its definitions — even the more uncommon ones. Let’s get started. 

What Is the Definition of Odd? 

As mentioned above, there are several definitions of the adjective odd. Here’s a list of these miscellaneous definitions in each of their forms:

  • Strange, peculiar, or unexpected
  • Different, differing from the other members of a group 
  • Rare, not happening very often
  • (When referring to numbers) unable to be divided by two
  • Slightly more than the number stated

Odd can be used to call a person or thing strange or weird. It can also be used to say that something only happens every so often. It can even be used to describe numbers that can’t be divided by two, AKA the opposite of even numbers. 

There are also different forms of the word odd. The adverb oddly can describe an action being done. Meanwhile, the adjectives odder and oddest can serve as a comparative adjective and a superlative.  

Common Collocations

With such a simple and common word, it’s no wonder that there are many different collocations for odd. A collocation is a set of words that are commonly used together out of habit. Here are some common collocations using the word odd:

  • Odd number
  • Odd jobs
  • Some-odd
  • Odd way
  • Odd years
  • Oddball 
  • Odd socks
  • At odds

What Is the Etymology of Odd? 

The word odd has a bit of interesting history attached. While most of the words in the English language have their roots in Latin, this word actually comes from Norse

The word’s oldest ancestor is the Old Norse word oddi. The word oddi means “angle or point” and was used to describe a point of land or even the point of a weapon. The word then evolved in the Norse language into the word odda, meaning “third or additional number.” 

This is where the idea of “odd numbers” came from. Any number that wasn’t a multiple of two was considered odd. Odda was also used in the form odda-mathr, meaning “odd or third man.” This was the man who would break a tie with his casting vote. 

Around the same time, the Old English ord came about, meaning “point or beginning.” The Norse and Old English definitions fused into Middle English, giving us the word “odd” with its current definitions like “odd numbers” and “other or strange.”

Are There Any Other Meanings for the Word Odd?

There is one other significant meaning of the word odd. ODD is an abbreviation for the acronym “oppositional defiance disorder” or “oppositional defiant disorder.” It’s a behavior disorder found in children that makes them uncooperative, rebellious, defiant, and hostile towards those around them and their authority figures. 

This conduct disorder is a fairly serious mental health condition. It causes severe social impairment and can cause problems for the child in the classroom, at home, and in their relationships. 

While disorders like attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can affect a child’s attention span, and indirectly affect relationships, ODD directly affects a child’s social skills. 

ODD can be treated with family therapy and other types of behavioral therapy, and the misbehavior will eventually slow down. 

What Are Some Examples of Odd in a Sentence? 

Here are some example sentences for the word odd with each of its definitions. By seeing each in context, you can better understand their meanings. 

Jared may be a bit of an odd man, but he’s really nice once you get to know him. 

The odd thing about platypi is that they lay eggs even though they’re mammals. 

I’ve experienced a lot of odd moments with her that just don’t add up with what I’ve heard about her.

I have an extra odd glove lying around that doesn’t have a partner. 

He’s oddly pretentious, despite not being very good at what he does.

I’ve taken some odd jobs around town to try and make ends meet.

There are the occasional odd corners, but for the most part, the road is completely straight 

The houses on the right side of the street all end in odd numbers and the ones on the left are all even numbers.

Round numbers are numbers that end in zero, so any odd number can’t be a round number. 

The book only has about 200 odd pages in it. 

I think we’ll have about 30 odd guests tonight. 

Gas prices are crazy! It took me 70 odd dollars to fill up!

What Are Some Synonyms for the Word Odd?

Here are some synonyms for odd that you might find in a thesaurus: 

  • Weird
  • Different
  • Unusual
  • Curious
  • Irregular
  • Occasional
  • Uncommon
  • Periodic
  • About
  • A little more than
  • Above

What Are Its Antonyms?

Here are some antonyms for the word odd.

Strange or peculiar

  • Common
  • Normal
  • Standard
  • Ordinary

The Word Odd 

Now you have a full understanding of the word odd and its various definitions, even its lesser-known ones. Use it confidently in your writing and conversation! If you ever need a refresher on the word odd and its meanings, come back to this article for more information. 


ODD | Cambridge English Dictionary 

Odd | World Wide Words 

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) in Children | Johns Hopkins Medicine