Rare Rare, a. [Compar. {Rarer} (r[^a]r"[~e]r); superl. {Rarest}.] [F., fr. L. rarus thin, rare.] 1. Not frequent; seldom met with or occurring; unusual; as, a rare event. [1913 Webster]

2. Of an uncommon nature; unusually excellent; valuable to a degree seldom found. [1913 Webster]

Rare work, all filled with terror and delight. --Cowley. [1913 Webster]

Above the rest I judge one beauty rare. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

3. Thinly scattered; dispersed. [1913 Webster]

Those rare and solitary, these in flocks. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

4. Characterized by wide separation of parts; of loose texture; not thick or dense; thin; as, a rare atmosphere at high elevations. [1913 Webster]

Water is nineteen times lighter, and by consequence nineteen times rarer, than gold. --Sir I. Newton. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Scarce; infrequent; unusual; uncommon; singular; extraordinary; incomparable.

Usage: {Rare}, {Scarce}. We call a thing rare when but few examples, specimens, or instances of it are ever to be met with; as, a rare plant. We speak of a thing as scarce, which, though usually abundant, is for the time being to be had only in diminished quantities; as, a bad harvest makes corn scarce. [1913 Webster]

A perfect union of wit and judgment is one of the rarest things in the world. --Burke. [1913 Webster]

When any particular piece of money grew very scarce, it was often recoined by a succeeding emperor. --Addison. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

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