Definition of uncanny in English:



  • Strange or mysterious, especially in an unsettling way.

    ‘an uncanny feeling that she was being watched’
    • ‘It is an uncanny phenomenon; the culture we placed our faith in is hounding our freedoms.’
    • ‘The series demonstrated once again that Ferguson has an uncanny knack for turning controversy into lucre.’
    • ‘Paul had this uncanny ability of making me want to hit him and laugh at the same time.’
    • ‘Burns' ability to describe managerial styles is uncanny to the modern eye.’
    • ‘However, I have noticed an uncanny ability to give good luck to those who are gambling.’
    • ‘He hated how his uncle crept up silently on him; it was both eerie and uncanny.’
    • ‘Eriksson, charming, smooth and cerebral, has the uncanny ability to deflect most criticism.’
    • ‘But long-running rumours are developing an uncanny knack of coming true at the moment.’
    • ‘Davis never failed to draw irony from his uncanny ability to find the right things at the right time.’
    • ‘Some people seem to have an uncanny ability to grow personally regardless of their apparent setting.’
    • ‘Yet his tongue-in-cheek whimsy has an uncanny knack of transporting you back to the event itself.’
    • ‘Right now, if he has, I have an uncanny understanding of why he kisses the ground.’
    • ‘Humankind possesses this uncanny ability to survive in the face of adversity!’
    • ‘One of his more uncanny talents has been the ability to capture the zeitgeist before we even knew it was upon us.’
    • ‘I do rely on him because his technical expertise is superb and his ability to predict the future has been uncanny.’
    • ‘Google's success stems from its uncanny ability to sort useful web pages from dross.’
    • ‘She had the uncanny ability to turn things around in a flash - as if she was flipping over an egg timer.’
    • ‘They had uncanny ability to know where each other was on the football ground at any time of the match.’
    • ‘I've seen this person around quite a lot, and seeing them recently, and then the show, was just uncanny!’
    • ‘That impresses me but not as much as his uncanny expertise on the topic of game and quiz shows.’
    eerie, unnatural, preternatural, supernatural, unearthly, other-worldly, unreal, ghostly, mysterious, strange, abnormal, odd, curious, queer, weird, bizarre, freakish
    striking, remarkable, extraordinary, out of the ordinary, out of the way, unusual, exceptional, astounding, astonishing, incredible, conspicuous, noteworthy, notable, considerable, distinctive, arresting
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Late 16th century (originally Scots in the sense relating to the occult, malicious): from un- not + canny.