A curio is a strange or interesting collectible object. Your vintage Pez dispenser collection, for example, is a group of curios.

Something worth collecting, whether it's a rare coin or a strange 19th century photograph or a bizarre clown painting, is a curio. You might even have a special, tall cabinet with glass doors for protecting and displaying your curios — you can call this a curio cabinet. The word curio, first used in the mid-19th century, originally meant specifically a collectible item from "the Far East," and was a shortened form of curiosity.

Definitions of curio
  1. noun
    something unusual and perhaps worthy of collecting
    synonyms: curiosity, oddity, oddment, peculiarity, rarity
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    bric-a-brac, knickknack, knickknackery, nicknack, whatnot
    miscellaneous curios
    collectable, collectible
    things considered to be worth collecting (not necessarily valuable or antique)
    collector's item, piece de resistance, showpiece
    the outstanding item (the prize piece or main exhibit) in a collection
    chachka, tchotchke, tsatske, tshatshke
    (Yiddish) an inexpensive showy trinket
    (plural) rare collector's items
    type of:
    object, physical object
    a tangible and visible entity; an entity that can cast a shadow
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘curio'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
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