British Library Cataloguing Data
The concise Oxford dictionary of current English.--8th ed.
1. English language--Dictionaries
I. Allen, R. E. (Robert Edward), 1944-423
ISBN 0-19-861243-5 thumb index
ISBN 0-19-861200-1 plain
ugh int. 1 expressing disgust or horror. 2 the sound of a cough or
Ugli n. (pl. Uglis or Uglies) propr. a mottled green and yellow
citrus fruit, a hybrid of a grapefruit and tangerine. [UGLY]
uglify v.tr. (-ies, -ied) make ugly. ЬЬuglification n.
ugly adj. (uglier, ugliest) 1 unpleasing or repulsive to see or hear
(an ugly scar; spoke with an ugly snarl). 2 unpleasantly
suggestive; discreditable (ugly rumours are about). 3
threatening, dangerous (the sky has an ugly look). 4 morally
repulsive; vile (ugly vices). Ьugly customer an unpleasantly
formidable person. ugly duckling a person who turns out to be
beautiful or talented etc. against all expectations (with ref.
to a cygnet in a brood of ducks in a tale by Andersen).
ЬЬuglily adv. ugliness n. [ME f. ON uggligr to be dreaded f.
ugga to dread]
Ugrian adj. & n. (also Ugric) --adj. of or relating to the eastern
branch of Finnic peoples, esp. the Finns and Magyars. --n. 1
a member of this people. 2 the language of this people. [Russ.
Ugry name of a race dwelling E. of the Urals]
UKAEA abbr. United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority.
ukase n. 1 an arbitrary command. 2 hist. an edict of the Tsarist
Russian government. [Russ. ukaz ordinance, edict f. ukazat'
Ukrainian n. & adj. --n. 1 a native of the Ukraine in the USSR. 2 the
language of the Ukraine. --adj. of or relating to the Ukraine
or its people or language. [Ukraine f. Russ. ukraina frontier
region f. u at + krai edge]
ukulele n. a small four-stringed Hawaiian (orig. Portuguese) guitar.
[Hawaiian, = jumping flea]
-ular suffix forming adjectives, sometimes corresp. to nouns in -ule
(pustular) but often without diminutive force (angular;
granular). ЬЬ-ularity suffix forming nouns. [from or after L
-ularis (as -ULE, -AR(1))]
ulcer n. 1 an open sore on an external or internal surface of the
body, often forming pus. 2 a a moral blemish. b a corroding or
corrupting influence etc. ЬЬulcered adj. ulcerous adj. [ME f.
L ulcus -eris, rel. to Gk helkos]
ulcerate v.tr. & intr. form into or affect with an ulcer. ЬЬulcerable
adj. ulceration n. ulcerative adj. [ME f. L ulcerare ulcerat-
-ule suffix forming diminutive nouns (capsule; globule). [from or
after L - ulus, -ula, -ulum]
ulema n. 1 a body of Muslim doctors of sacred law and theology. 2 a
member of this. [Arab. ' ulama pl. of ' alim learned f. ' alama
-ulent suffix forming adjectives meaning 'abounding in, full of'
(fraudulent; turbulent). ЬЬ-ulence suffix forming nouns. [L
uliginose adj. (also uliginous) Bot. growing in wet or swampy places.
[L uliginosus f. uligo -ginis moisture]
ullage n. 1 the amount by which a cask etc. falls short of being full.
2 loss by evaporation or leakage. [ME f. AF ulliage, OF
ouillage f. ouiller fill up, ult. f. L oculus eye, with ref. to
ulna n. (pl. ulnae) 1 the thinner and longer bone in the forearm,
on the side opposite to the thumb (cf. RADIUS 3). 2 Zool. a
corresponding bone in an animal's foreleg or a bird's wing.
ЬЬulnar adj. [L, rel. to Gk olene and ELL]
adj. & n. --adj. (also ulotrichous) having tightly-curled
hair, esp. denoting a human type. --n. a person having such
hair. [mod.L Ulotrichi f. Gk oulos woolly, crisp + thrix
ulster n. a man's long loose overcoat of rough cloth. [Ulster in
Ireland, where it was orig. sold]
Ulsterman n. (pl. -men; fem. Ulsterwoman; pl. -women) a native of
ult. abbr. ultimo.
ulterior adj. 1 existing in the background, or beyond what is evident or
admitted; hidden, secret (esp. ulterior motive). 2 situated
beyond. 3 more remote; not immediate; in the future.
ЬЬulteriorly adv. [L, = further, more distant]
ultima n. the last syllable of a word. [L ultima (syllaba), fem. of
ultimata pl. of ULTIMATUM.
ultimate adj. & n. --adj. 1 last, final. 2 beyond which no other
exists or is possible (the ultimate analysis). 3 fundamental,
primary, unanalysable (ultimate truths). 4 maximum (ultimate
tensile strength). --n. 1 (prec. by the) the best achievable
or imaginable. 2 a final or fundamental fact or principle.
ЬЬultimately adj. ultimateness n. [LL ultimatus past part. of
ultimare come to an end]
n. a far-away unknown region. [L, = furthest Thule, a remote
ultimatum n. (pl. ultimatums or ultimata) a final demand or statement of
terms by one party, the rejection of which by another could
cause a breakdown in relations, war, or an end of cooperation
etc. [L neut. past part.: see ULTIMATE]
ultimo adj. Commerce of last month (the 28th ultimo). [L ultimo mense
in the last month]
n. a system in which the youngest son has the right of
inheritance (cf. PRIMOGENITURE 2). [L ultimus last, after
ultra adj. & n. --adj. favouring extreme views or measures, esp. in
religion or politics. --n. an extremist. [orig. as abbr. of F
ultra-royaliste: see ULTRA-]
ultra- comb. form 1 beyond; on the other side of (opp. CIS-). 2
extreme(ly), excessive(ly) (ultra-conservative; ultra-modern).
[L ultra beyond]
n. a high-speed centrifuge used to separate small particles and
large molecules by their rate of sedimentation from sols.
adj. (of a frequency) in the range 300 to 3000 megahertz.
ultraist n. the holder of extreme positions in politics, religion, etc.
n. & adj. --n. 1 a a brilliant blue pigment orig. obtained
from lapis lazuli. b an imitation of this from powdered fired
clay, sodium carbonate, sulphur, and resin. 2 the colour of
this. --adj. 1 of this colour. 2 archaic situated beyond the
sea. [obs. It. oltramarino & med.L ultramarinus beyond the sea
(as ULTRA-, MARINE), because lapis lazuli was brought from
beyond the sea]
n. an optical microscope used to reveal very small particles by
means of light scattered by them.
adj. 1 too small to be seen by an ordinary optical microscope.
2 of or relating to an ultramicroscope.
adj. & n. --adj. 1 situated on the other side of the Alps from
the point of view of the speaker. 2 advocating supreme papal
authority in matters of faith and discipline. --n. 1 a person
living on the other side of the Alps. 2 a person advocating
supreme papal authority. [med.L ultramontanus (as ULTRA-, L
mons montis mountain)]
adj. lying beyond the world or the solar system. [L
ultramundanus (as ULTRA-, mundanus f. mundus world)]
adj. of or involving sound waves with a frequency above the
upper limit of human hearing. ЬЬultrasonically adv.
n.pl. (usu. treated as sing.) the science and application of
n. 1 sound having an ultrasonic frequency. 2 ultrasonic waves.
Ьultrasound cardiography = ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY.
n. Biol. fine structure not visible with an optical
adj. Physics 1 having a wavelength (just) beyond the violet end
of the visible spectrum. 2 of or using such radiation.
adv. & predic.adj. beyond one's legal power or authority. [L]
ululate v.intr. howl, wail; make a hooting cry. ЬЬululant adj.
ululation n. [L ululare ululat- (imit.)]
um int. expressing hesitation or a pause in speech. [imit.]
-um var. of -IUM 1.
umbel n. Bot. a flower-cluster in which stalks nearly equal in
length spring from a common centre and form a flat or curved
surface, as in parsley. ЬЬumbellar adj. umbellate adj.
umbellule adj. [obs. F umbelle or L umbella sunshade, dimin. of
n. any plant of the family Umbelliferae bearing umbels,
including parsley and parsnip. ЬЬumbelliferous adj. [obs. F
umbellifЉre f. L (as UMBEL, - fer bearing)]
umber n. & adj. --n. 1 a natural pigment like ochre but darker and
browner. 2 the colour of this. --adj. 1 of this colour. 2
dark, dusky. [F (terre d') ombre or It. (terra di) ombra =
shadow (earth), f. L UMBRA or Umbra fem. of Umber Umbrian]
umbilical adj. 1 of, situated near, or affecting the navel. 2 centrally
placed. Ьumbilical cord 1 a flexible cordlike structure
attaching a foetus to the placenta. 2 Astronaut. a supply cable
linking a missile to its launcher, or an astronaut in space to a
spacecraft. [obs. F umbilical or f. UMBILICUS]
adj. 1 shaped like a navel. 2 having an umbilicus.
umbilicus n. (pl. umbilici or umbilicuses) 1 Anat. the navel. 2 Bot. &
Zool. a navel-like formation. 3 Geom. a point in a surface
through which all cross-sections have the same curvature. [L,
rel. to Gk omphalos and to NAVEL]
umbles n.pl. the edible offal of deer etc. (cf. humble pie). [ME
var. of NUMBLES]
umbo n. (pl. -os or umbones) 1 the boss of a shield, esp. in the
centre. 2 Bot. & Zool. a rounded knob or protuberance.
ЬЬumbonal adj. umbonate adj. [L umbo -onis]
umbra n. (pl. umbras or umbrae) Astron. 1 a total shadow usu. cast
on the earth by the moon during a solar eclipse. 2 the dark
central part of a sunspot (cf. PENUMBRA). ЬЬumbral adj. [L, =
umbrage n. 1 offence; a sense of slight or injury (esp. give or take
umbrage at). 2 archaic a shade. b what gives shade. [ME f. OF
ult. f. L umbraticus f. umbra: see UMBRA]
umbrella n. 1 a light portable device for protection against rain,
strong sun, etc., consisting of a usu. circular canopy of cloth
mounted by means of a collapsible metal frame on a central
stick. 2 protection or patronage. 3 (often attrib.) a
coordinating or unifying agency (umbrella organization). 4 a
screen of fighter aircraft or a curtain of fire put up as a
protection against enemy aircraft. 5 Zool. the gelatinous disc
of a jellyfish etc., which it contracts and expands to move
through the water. Ьumbrella bird any S. American bird of the
genus Cephalopterus, with a black radiating crest and long
wattles. umbrella pine 1 = stone pine. 2 a tall Japanese
evergreen conifer, Sciadopitys verticillata, with leaves in
umbrella-like whorls. umbrella stand a stand for holding closed
upright umbrellas. umbrella tree a small magnolia, Magnolia
tripetala, with leaves in a whorl like an umbrella.
ЬЬumbrellaed adj. umbrella-like adj. [It. ombrella, dimin. of
ombra shade f. L umbra: see UMBRA]
Umbrian adj. & n. --adj. of or relating to Umbria in central Italy.
--n. 1 the language of ancient Umbria, related to Latin. 2 an
inhabitant of ancient Umbria. ЬUmbrian school a Renaissance
school of Italian painting, to which Raphael and Perugino
adj. formal providing shade. [L umbrifer f. umbra shade: see
umiak n. an Eskimo skin-and-wood open boat propelled by women with
umlaut n. & v. --n. 1 a mark used over a vowel, esp. in Germanic
languages, to indicate a vowel change. 2 such a vowel change,
e.g. German Mann, M„nner, English man, men, due to i, j, etc.
(now usu. lost or altered) in the following syllable. --v.tr.
modify (a form or a sound) by an umlaut. [G f. um about + Laut
umpire n. & v. --n. 1 a person chosen to enforce the rules and settle
disputes in various sports. 2 a person chosen to arbitrate
between disputants, or to see fair play. --v. 1 intr. (usu.
foll. by for, in, etc.) act as umpire. 2 tr. act as umpire in
(a game etc.). ЬЬumpirage n. umpireship n. [ME, later form of
noumpere f. OF nonper not equal (as NON-, PEER(2)): for loss of
n- cf. ADDER]
umpteen adj. & pron. sl. --adj. indefinitely many; a lot of. --pron.
indefinitely many. ЬЬumpteenth adj. umpty adj. [joc. form. on
un-(1) prefix 1 added to adjectives and participles and their
derivative nouns and adverbs, meaning: a not: denoting the
absence of a quality or state (unusable; uncalled-for;
uneducated; unfailing; unofficially; unhappiness). b the
reverse of, usu. with an implication of approval or disapproval,
or with some other special connotation (unselfish; unsociable;
unscientific). °Words formed in this way often have neutral
counterparts in non- (see NON- 6) and counterparts in -in (see
IN-(1)), e.g. unadvisable. 2 (less often) added to nouns,
meaning 'a lack of' (unrest; untruth). °The number of words
that can be formed with this prefix (and similarly with un-(2))
is potentially as large as the number of adjectives in use;
consequently only a selection, being considered the most current
or semantically noteworthy, can be given here. [OE f. Gmc, rel.
to L in-]
un-(2) prefix added to verbs and (less often) nouns, forming verbs
denoting: 1 the reversal or cancellation of an action or state
(undress; unlock; unsettle). 2 deprivation or separation
(unmask). 3 release from (unburden; uncage). 4 causing to be
no longer (unman). °See the note at un-(1). Both un-(1) and
un-(2) can be understood in some forms in -able, -ed
(especially), and -ing: for example, undressed can mean either
'not dressed' or 'no longer dressed'. [OE un-, on- f. Gmc]
'un pron. colloq. one (that's a good 'un). [dial. var.]
UNA abbr. United Nations Association.
unabashed adj. not abashed. ЬЬunabashedly adv.
unabated adj. not abated; undiminished. ЬЬunabatedly adv.
unable adj. (usu. foll. by to + infin.) not able; lacking ability.
adj. (of a text etc.) complete; not abridged.
adj. not absorbed.
adj. 1 not academic (esp. not scholarly or theoretical). 2 (of
a person) not suited to academic study.
adj. not accented; not emphasized.
adj. not acceptable. ЬЬunacceptableness n. unacceptably adv.
adj. not acclaimed.
adj. not accommodating; disobliging.
adj. 1 not accompanied. 2 Mus. without accompaniment.
adj. 1 not accomplished; uncompleted. 2 lacking
adj. 1 unable to be explained. 2 unpredictable or strange in
behaviour. 3 not responsible. ЬЬunaccountability n.
unaccountableness n. unaccountably adv.
adj. of which no account is given. Ьunaccounted for
unexplained; not included in an account.
adj. 1 (usu. foll. by to) not accustomed. 2 not customary;
unusual (his unaccustomed silence). ЬЬunaccustomedly adv.
adj. not acknowledged.
adj. (usu. foll. by with) not acquainted.
adj. not adaptable.
unadapted adj. not adapted.
adj. (esp. of a letter etc.) without an address.
adj. not adjacent.
unadopted adj. 1 not adopted. 2 Brit. (of a road) not taken over for
maintenance by a local authority.
adj. not alterable. ЬЬunalterableness n. unalterably adv.
unaltered adj. not altered; remaining the same.
unamazed adj. not amazed.
adj. not ambiguous; clear or definite in meaning.
ЬЬunambiguity n. unambiguously adv.
adj. not ambitious; without ambition. ЬЬunambitiously adv.
adj. (of feelings etc.) not ambivalent; straightforward.
adj. 1 not in accordance with American characteristics etc. 2
contrary to the interests of the US; (in the US) treasonable.
unamiable adj. not amiable.
adj. not amplified.
unamused adj. not amused.
adj. not able to be analysed.
adj. not analysed.
unaneled adj. archaic not having received extreme unction.
unanimous adj. 1 all in agreement (the committee was unanimous). 2 (of
an opinion, vote, etc.) held or given by general consent (the
unanimous choice). ЬЬunanimity n. unanimously adv.
unanimousness n. [LL unanimis, L unanimus f. unus one + animus
adj. not announced; without warning (of arrival etc.).
adj. 1 unable to be refuted (has an unanswerable case). 2
unable to be answered (an unanswerable question).
ЬЬunanswerableness n. unanswerably adv.
adj. not answered.
adj. not anticipated.
adj. not apparent.
adj. esp. Law not able to be appealed against.
adj. not appealing; unattractive. ЬЬunappealingly adv.
adj. not appeasable.
adj. not appeased.
adj. not appetizing. ЬЬunappetizingly adv.
unapplied adj. not applied.
adj. not appreciated.
adj. not appreciative.
adj. 1 not approachable; remote, inaccessible. 2 (of a person)
unfriendly. ЬЬunapproachability n. unapproachableness n.
adj. 1 not allocated or assigned. 2 not taken into possession
adj. not approved or sanctioned.
unapt adj. 1 (usu. foll. by for) not suitable. 2 (usu. foll. by to +
infin.) not apt. ЬЬunaptly adv. unaptness n.
adj. not artistic, esp. not concerned with art.
adj. not ascertainable.
adj. not ascertained; unknown.
unashamed adj. 1 feeling no guilt, shameless. 2 blatant; bold.
ЬЬunashamedly adv. unashamedness n.
unasked adj. (often foll. by for) not asked, requested, or invited.
adj. unable to be attacked or questioned; impregnable.
ЬЬunassailability n. unassailableness n. unassailably adv.
adj. (of a person) not assertive or forthcoming; reticent.
ЬЬunassertively adv. unassertiveness n.
adj. not assignable.
adj. not assigned.
adj. not assimilated. ЬЬunassimilable adj.
adj. not assisted.
adj. not assuaged. ЬЬunassuageable adj.
adj. not pretentious or arrogant; modest. ЬЬunassumingly adv.
unatoned adj. not atoned for.
adj. 1 (often foll. by to) not attached, esp. to a particular
body, organization, etc. 2 not engaged or married.
adj. unable to be attacked or damaged.
adj. not attainable. ЬЬunattainableness n. unattainably adv.
adj. not attempted.
adj. 1 (usu. foll. by to) not attended. 2 (of a person,
vehicle, etc.) not accompanied; alone; uncared for.
adj. not attractive. ЬЬunattractively adv. unattractiveness
adj. (esp. of information) that cannot or may not be attributed
to a source etc. ЬЬunattributably adv.
adj. not authentic. ЬЬunauthentically adv.
adj. not authenticated.
adj. (also unauthorised) not authorized.
adj. not available. ЬЬunavailability n. unavailableness n.
adj. not availing; achieving nothing; ineffectual.
adj. not avoidable; inevitable. ЬЬunavoidability n.
unavoidableness n. unavoidably adv.
unavowed adj. not avowed.
unaware adj. & adv. --adj. 1 (usu. foll. by of, or that + clause) not
aware; ignorant (unaware of her presence). 2 (of a person)
insensitive; unperceptive. --adv. = UNAWARES. ЬЬunawareness n.
unawares adv. 1 unexpectedly (met them unawares). 2 inadvertently
(dropped it unawares). [earlier unware(s) f. OE unw‘r(es): see
unbacked adj. 1 not supported. 2 (of a horse etc.) having no backers.
3 (of a chair, picture, etc.) having no back or backing.
unbalance v. & n. --v.tr. 1 upset the physical or mental balance of
(unbalanced by the blow; the shock unbalanced him). 2 (as
unbalanced adj.) a not balanced. b (of a mind or a person)
unstable or deranged. --n. lack of balance; instability, esp.
unbar v.tr. (unbarred, unbarring) 1 remove a bar or bars from (a gate
etc.). 2 unlock, open.
adj. not bearable. ЬЬunbearableness n. unbearably adv.
adj. not beatable; excelling.
unbeaten adj. 1 not beaten. 2 (of a record etc.) not surpassed. 3
Cricket (of a player) not out.
adj. not beautiful; ugly. ЬЬunbeautifully adv.
adj. 1 (esp. of clothing) not flattering or suiting a person.
2 (usu. foll. by to, for) not fitting; indecorous or unsuitable.
ЬЬunbecomingly adv. unbecomingness n.
adj. not befitting; unsuitable. ЬЬunbefittingly adv.
adj. not befriended.
adj. not begotten.
predic.adj. (usu. foll. by to) under no obligation.
unbeknown adj. (also unbeknownst) (foll. by to) without the knowledge of
(was there all the time unbeknown to us). [UN-(1) + beknown
(archaic) = KNOWN]
unbelief n. lack of belief, esp. in religious matters. ЬЬunbeliever n.
unbelieving adj. unbelievingly adv. unbelievingness n.
adj. not believable; incredible. ЬЬunbelievability n.
unbelievableness n. unbelievably adv.
unbeloved adj. not beloved.
unbelt v.tr. remove or undo the belt of (a garment etc.).
unbend v. (past and past part. unbent) 1 tr. & intr. change from a
bent position; straighten. 2 intr. relax from strain or
severity; become affable (likes to unbend with a glass of beer).
3 tr. Naut. a unfasten (sails) from yards and stays. b cast
(a cable) loose. c untie (a rope).
unbending adj. 1 not bending; inflexible. 2 firm; austere (unbending
rectitude). 3 relaxing from strain, activity, or formality.
ЬЬunbendingly adv. unbendingness n.
unbiased adj. (also unbiassed) not biased; impartial.
adj. 1 not in or authorized by the Bible. 2 contrary to the
adj. Brit. disobedient; not docile.
unbidden adj. not commanded or invited (arrived unbidden).
unbind v.tr. (past and past part. unbound) release from bonds or
n. (often attrib.) joc. any day but one's birthday (an
adj. not bleached.
adj. not blemished.
unblessed adj. (also unblest) not blessed.
adj. 1 not blinking. 2 steadfast; not hesitating. 3 stolid;
cool. ЬЬunblinkingly adv.
unblock v.tr. 1 remove an obstruction from (esp. a pipe, drain, etc.).
2 (also absol.) Cards allow the later unobstructed play of (a
suit) by playing a high card.
unblown adj. 1 not blown. 2 archaic (of a flower) not yet in bloom.
adj. 1 not blushing. 2 unashamed; frank. ЬЬunblushingly adv.
unbolt v.tr. release (a door etc.) by drawing back the bolt.
unbolted adj. 1 not bolted. 2 (of flour etc.) not sifted.
unbonnet v. (unbonneted, unbonneting) 1 tr. remove the bonnet from. 2
intr. archaic remove one's hat or bonnet esp. in respect.
unbookish adj. 1 not academic; not often inclined to read. 2 free from
unboot v.intr. & tr. remove one's boots or the boots of (a person).
unborn adj. 1 not yet born (an unborn child). 2 never to be brought
into being (unborn hopes).
unbosom v.tr. 1 disclose (thoughts, secrets, etc.). 2 (refl.) unburden
(oneself) of one's thoughts, secrets, etc.
adj. not bothered; unconcerned.
adj. 1 not bound or tied up. 2 unconstrained. 3 a (of a book)
not having a binding. b having paper covers. 4 (of a substance
or particle) in a loose or free state.
past and past part. of UNBIND.
unbounded adj. not bounded; infinite (unbounded optimism). ЬЬunboundedly
adv. unboundedness n.
unbrace v.tr. 1 (also absol.) free from tension; relax (the nerves
etc.). 2 remove a brace or braces from.
adj. not able to be breached.
adj. not breakable.
adj. not able to be breathed.
adj. not bribable.
adj. unable to be bridged.
unbridle v.tr. 1 remove a bridle from (a horse). 2 remove constraints
from (one's tongue, a person, etc.). 3 (as unbridled adj.)
unconstrained (unbridled insolence).
unbroken adj. 1 not broken. 2 not tamed (an unbroken horse). 3 not
interrupted (unbroken sleep). 4 not surpassed (an unbroken
record). ЬЬunbrokenly adv. unbrokenness n.
unbruised adj. not bruised.
unbuckle v.tr. release the buckle of (a strap, shoe, etc.).
unbuild v.tr. (past and past part. unbuilt) 1 demolish or destroy (a
building, theory, system, etc.). 2 (as unbuilt adj.) not yet
built or (of land etc.) not yet built on.
unburden v.tr. 1 relieve of a burden. 2 (esp. refl.; often foll. by
to) relieve (oneself, one's conscience, etc.) by confession etc.
unburied adj. not buried.
unbury v.tr. (-ies, -ied) 1 remove from the ground etc. after burial.
2 unearth (a secret etc.).
adj. not businesslike.
unbutton v.tr. 1 a unfasten (a coat etc.) by taking the buttons out of
the buttonholes. b unbutton the clothes of (a person). 2
(absol.) colloq. relax from tension or formality, become
communicative. 3 (as unbuttoned adj.) a not buttoned. b
colloq. communicative; informal.
uncage v.tr. 1 release from a cage. 2 release from constraint;
uncalled adj. not summoned or invited. Ьuncalled-for (of an opinion,
action, etc.) impertinent or unnecessary (an uncalled-for
uncandid adj. not candid; disingenuous.
uncanny adj. (uncannier, uncanniest) seemingly supernatural;
mysterious. ЬЬuncannily adv. uncanniness n. [(orig. Sc. &
N.Engl.) f. UN-(1) + CANNY]
adj. not canonical. ЬЬuncanonically adv.
uncap v.tr. (uncapped, uncapping) 1 remove the cap from (a jar,
bottle, etc.). 2 remove a cap from (the head or another
adj. disregarded; neglected.
uncase v.tr. remove from a cover or case.
uncashed adj. not cashed.
uncaught adj. not caught.
unceasing adj. not ceasing; continuous (unceasing effort). ЬЬunceasingly
adj. not censored.
adj. not censured.
adj. 1 lacking ceremony or formality. 2 abrupt; discourteous.
ЬЬunceremoniously adv. unceremoniousness n.
uncertain adj. 1 not certainly knowing or known (uncertain what it means;
the result is uncertain). 2 unreliable (his aim is uncertain).
3 changeable, erratic (uncertain weather). Ьin no uncertain
terms clearly and forcefully. ЬЬuncertainly adv.
n. (pl. -ies) 1 the fact or condition of being uncertain. 2
an uncertain matter or circumstance. Ьuncertainty principle (in
full Heisenberg uncertainty principle after W. Heisenberg, Ger.
physicist d. 1976) Physics the principle that the momentum and
position of a particle cannot both be precisely determined at
the same time.
adj. 1 not attested as certain. 2 not guaranteed by a
certificate of competence etc. 3 not certified as insane.
unchain v.tr. 1 remove the chains from. 2 release; liberate.
adj. not challengeable; unassailable. ЬЬunchallengeably adv.
adj. not challenged.
adj. not changeable; immutable, invariable. ЬЬunchangeability
n. unchangeableness n. unchangeably adv.
unchanged adj. not changed; unaltered.
adj. not changing; remaining the same. ЬЬunchangingly adv.
adj. without a chaperone.
adj. not characteristic. ЬЬuncharacteristically adv.
uncharged adj. not charged (esp. in senses 3, 7, 8 of CHARGE v.).
adj. censorious, severe in judgement. ЬЬuncharitableness n.
uncharted adj. not charted, mapped, or surveyed.
adj. 1 not furnished with a charter; not formally privileged or
constituted. 2 unauthorized; illegal.
unchaste adj. not chaste. ЬЬunchastely adv. unchasteness n.
adj. not chivalrous; rude. ЬЬunchivalrously adv.
unchosen adj. not chosen.
adj. 1 a contrary to Christian principles, esp. uncaring or
selfish. b not Christian. 2 colloq. outrageous.
unchurch v.tr. 1 excommunicate. 2 deprive (a building) of its status as
uncial adj. & n. --adj. 1 of or written in majuscule writing with
rounded unjoined letters found in manuscripts of the 4th-8th c.,
from which modern capitals are derived. 2 of or relating to an
inch or an ounce. --n. 1 an uncial letter. 2 an uncial style
or MS. [L uncialis f. uncia inch: sense 1 in LL sense of
unciales litterae, the orig. application of which is unclear]
adj. 1 not circumcised. 2 spiritually impure; heathen.
uncivil adj. 1 ill-mannered; impolite. 2 not public-spirited.
adj. (also uncivilised) 1 not civilized. 2 rough; uncultured.
unclad adj. not clad; naked.
unclaimed adj. not claimed.
unclasp v.tr. 1 loosen the clasp or clasps of. 2 release the grip of
(a hand etc.).
adj. not classifiable.
adj. 1 not classified. 2 (of State information) not secret.
uncle n. 1 a the brother of one's father or mother. b an aunt's
husband. 2 colloq. a name given by children to a male family
friend. 3 sl. esp. hist. a pawnbroker. ЬUncle Sam colloq.
the federal government or citizens of the US (will fight for
Uncle Sam). Uncle Tom derog. a Black man considered to be
servile, cringing, etc. (from the hero of H. B. Stowe's Uncle
Tom's Cabin, 1852). [ME f. AF uncle, OF oncle f. LL aunculus f.
L avunculus maternal uncle: see AVUNCULAR]
-uncle suffix forming nouns, usu. diminutives (carbuncle). [OF -uncle,
-oncle or L -unculus, -la, a special form of -ulus -ULE]
unclean adj. 1 not clean. 2 unchaste. 3 unfit to be eaten;
ceremonially impure. 4 Bibl. (of a spirit) wicked. ЬЬuncleanly
adv. uncleanly adj. uncleanliness n. uncleanness n. [OE
uncl‘ne (as UN-(1), CLEAN)]
unclear adj. 1 not clear or easy to understand; obscure, uncertain. 2
(of a person) doubtful, uncertain (I'm unclear as to what you
mean). ЬЬunclearly adv. unclearness n.
unclench v. 1 tr. release (clenched hands, features, teeth, etc.). 2
intr. (of clenched hands etc.) become relaxed or open.
unclinch v.tr. & intr. release or become released from a clinch.
uncloak v.tr. 1 expose, reveal. 2 remove a cloak from.
unclog v.tr. (unclogged, unclogging) unblock (a drain, pipe, etc.).
unclose v. 1 tr. & intr. open. 2 tr. reveal; disclose.
unclothe v.tr. 1 remove the clothes from. 2 strip of leaves or
vegetation (trees unclothed by the wind). 3 expose, reveal.
unco adj., adv., & n. Sc. --adj. strange, unusual; notable. --adv.
remarkably; very. --n. (pl. -os) 1 a stranger. 2 (in pl.)
news. Ьthe unco guid esp. derog. the rigidly religious. [ME,
var. of UNCOUTH]
uncoil v.tr. & intr. unwind.
adj. (US uncolored) 1 having no colour. 2 not influenced;
impartial. 3 not exaggerated.
uncombed adj. (of hair or a person) not combed.
adj. colloq. inaccessible; unattainable. [UN-(1) +
come-at-able: see COME]
uncomely adj. 1 improper; unseemly. 2 ugly.
adj. 1 not comfortable. 2 uneasy; causing or feeling disquiet
(an uncomfortable silence). ЬЬuncomfortableness n.
adj. 1 not commercial. 2 contrary to commercial principles.
adj. 1 not committed. 2 unattached to any specific political
cause or group.
uncommon adj. & adv. --adj. 1 not common; unusual; remarkable. 2
remarkably great etc. (an uncommon fear of spiders). --adv.
archaic uncommonly (he was uncommon fat). ЬЬuncommonly adv.
adj. not wanting to communicate; taciturn. ЬЬuncommunicatively
adv. uncommunicativeness n.
adj. not compensated.
adj. not competitive.
adj. not complaining; resigned. ЬЬuncomplainingly adv.
adj. not completed; incomplete.
adj. not complicated; simple; straightforward.
adj. not complimentary; insulting.
adj. not compounded; unmixed.
adj. not comprehending. ЬЬuncomprehendingly adv.
adj. unwilling to compromise; stubborn; unyielding.
ЬЬuncompromisingly adv. uncompromisingness n.
adj. not concealed; obvious.
unconcern n. lack of concern; indifference; apathy. ЬЬunconcerned adj.
adj. not concluded.
adj. not subject to conditions; complete (unconditional
surrender). ЬЬunconditionality n. unconditionally adv.
adj. 1 not subject to conditions or to an antecedent condition.
2 (of behaviour etc.) not determined by conditioning; natural.
Ьunconditioned reflex an instinctive response to a stimulus.
adj. not confined; boundless.
adj. not confirmed.
adj. 1 not conformable or conforming. 2 (of rock strata) not
having the same direction of stratification. 3 hist. not
conforming to the provisions of the Act of Uniformity.
ЬЬunconformableness n. unconformably adv. unconformity n.
adj. not congenial.
adj. not conjecturable.
adj. 1 not physically joined. 2 not connected or associated.
3 (of speech etc.) disconnected; not joined in order or sequence
(unconnected ideas). 4 not related by family ties.
ЬЬunconnectedly adv. unconnectedness n.
adj. not conquerable. ЬЬunconquerableness n. unconquerably
adj. not conquered or defeated.
adj. 1 a having no conscience. b contrary to conscience. 2 a
unreasonably excessive (an unconscionable length of time). b
not right or reasonable. ЬЬunconscionableness n.
unconscionably adv. [UN-(1) + obs. conscionable f. conscions
obs. var. of CONSCIENCE]
adj. & n. --adj. not conscious (unconscious of any change; fell
unconscious on the floor; an unconscious prejudice). --n. that
part of the mind which is inaccessible to the conscious mind but
which affects behaviour, emotions, etc. (cf. collective
unconscious). ЬЬunconsciously adv. unconsciousness n.
adj. not consecrated.
adj. not consenting.
adj. 1 not considered; disregarded. 2 (of a response etc.)
immediate; not premeditated.
adj. unable to be consoled; inconsolable. ЬЬunconsolably adv.
adj. not in accordance with the political constitution or with
procedural rules. ЬЬunconstitutionality n. unconstitutionally
adj. not constrained or compelled. ЬЬunconstrainedly adv.
n. freedom from constraint.
adj. not constricted.
adj. not consumed.
adj. not consummated.
adj. not containable.
adj. not contaminated.
adj. not contested. ЬЬuncontestedly adv.
adj. not contradicted.
adj. not controllable. ЬЬuncontrollableness n. uncontrollably
adj. not controlled; unrestrained, unchecked.
adj. not controversial. ЬЬuncontroversially adv.
adj. not controverted. ЬЬuncontrovertible adj.
adj. not bound by convention or custom; unusual; unorthodox.
ЬЬunconventionalism n. unconventionality n. unconventionally
adj. not converted.
adj. not convinced.
adj. not convincing. ЬЬunconvincingly adv.
uncooked adj. not cooked; raw.
uncool adj. sl. 1 unrelaxed; unpleasant. 2 (of jazz) not cool.
adj. not cooperative. ЬЬuncooperatively adv.
adj. 1 not coordinated. 2 (of a person's movements etc.)
adj. not able to be copied.
uncord v.tr. remove the cord from.
uncork v.tr. 1 draw the cork from (a bottle). 2 allow (feelings etc.)
to be vented.
adj. (esp. of evidence etc.) not corroborated.
adj. not corrupted.
adj. 1 inestimable, immense (uncountable wealth). 2 Gram. (of
a noun) that cannot form a plural or be used with the indefinite
article (e.g. happiness). ЬЬuncountability n. uncountably
uncounted adj. 1 not counted. 2 very many; innumerable.
uncouple v.tr. 1 release (wagons) from couplings. 2 release (dogs etc.)
from couples. ЬЬuncoupled adj.
uncourtly adj. not courteous; ill-mannered.
uncouth adj. 1 (of a person, manners, appearance, etc.) lacking in ease
and polish; uncultured, rough (uncouth voices; behaviour was
uncouth). 2 archaic not known; desolate; wild; uncivilized (an
uncouth place). ЬЬuncouthly adv. uncouthness n. [OE uncuth
unknown (as UN-(1) + cuth past part. of cunnan know, CAN(1))]
adj. 1 not bound by a covenant. 2 not promised by or based on
a covenant, esp. God's covenant.
uncover v. 1 tr. a remove a cover or covering from. b make known;
disclose (uncovered the truth at last). 2 intr. archaic remove
one's hat, cap, etc. 3 tr. (as uncovered adj.) a not covered by
a roof, clothing, etc. b not wearing a hat.
uncreate v.tr. literary annihilate.
uncreated adj. existing without having been created; not created.
[UN-(1) + obs. create f. L creatus past part. of creare: see
adj. not creative.
adj. 1 not critical; complacently accepting. 2 not in
accordance with the principles of criticism. ЬЬuncritically
uncropped adj. not cropped.
uncross v.tr. 1 remove (the limbs, knives, etc.) from a crossed
position. 2 (as uncrossed adj.) a Brit. (of a cheque) not
crossed. b not thwarted or challenged. c not wearing a cross.
uncrown v.tr. 1 deprive (a monarch etc.) of a crown. 2 deprive (a
person) of a position. 3 (as uncrowned adj.) a not crowned. b
having the status but not the name of (the uncrowned king of
adj. not crushable.
uncrushed adj. not crushed.
UNCSTD abbr. United Nations Conference on Science and Technology for
UNCTAD abbr. United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.
unction n. 1 a the act of anointing with oil etc. as a religious rite.
b the oil etc. so used. 2 a soothing words or thought. b
excessive or insincere flattery. 3 a the act of anointing for
medical purposes. b an ointment so used. 4 a a fervent or
sympathetic quality in words or tone caused by or causing deep
emotion. b a pretence of this. [ME f. L unctio f. ung(u)ere
unctuous adj. 1 (of behaviour, speech, etc.) unpleasantly flattering;
oily. 2 (esp. of minerals) having a greasy or soapy feel; oily.
ЬЬunctuously adv. unctuousness n. [ME f. med.L unctuosus f. L
unctus anointing (as UNCTION)]
unculled adj. not culled.
adj. (esp. of land) not cultivated.
adj. 1 not cultured, unrefined. 2 (of soil or plants) not
uncurb v.tr. remove a curb or curbs from. ЬЬuncurbed adj.
uncured adj. 1 not cured. 2 (of pork etc.) not salted or smoked.
uncurl v.intr. & tr. relax from a curled position, untwist.
adj. not curtailed.
adj. not curtained.
uncut adj. 1 not cut. 2 (of a book) with the pages not cut open or
with untrimmed margins. 3 (of a book, film, etc.) complete;
uncensored. 4 (of a stone, esp. a diamond) not shaped by
cutting. 5 (of fabric) having its pile-loops intact (uncut
undamaged adj. not damaged; intact.
undated adj. not provided or marked with a date.
undaunted adj. not daunted. ЬЬundauntedly adv. undauntedness n.
undecagon n. = HENDECAGON. [L undecim eleven, after decagon]
undeceive v.tr. (often foll. by of) free (a person) from a misconception,
deception, or error.
undecided adj. 1 not settled or certain (the question is undecided). 2
hesitating; irresolute (undecided about their relative merits).
adj. not decipherable.
adj. not declared.
adj. not defeated.
adj. (esp. of a lawsuit) not defended.
undefiled adj. not defiled; pure.
undefined adj. 1 not defined. 2 not clearly marked; vague, indefinite.
ЬЬundefinable adj. undefinably adv.
adj. 1 not delivered or handed over. 2 not set free or
released. 3 a (of a pregnant woman) not yet having given birth.
b (of a child) not yet born.
adj. not demanding; easily satisfied. ЬЬundemandingness n.
adj. not democratic. ЬЬundemocratically adv.
adj. not demonstrated.
adj. not expressing feelings etc. outwardly; reserved.
ЬЬundemonstratively adv. undemonstrativeness n.
adj. 1 unable to be denied or disputed; certain. 2 excellent
(was of undeniable character). ЬЬundeniableness n. undeniably
undenied adj. not denied.
adj. not to be depended upon; unreliable.
under prep., adv., & adj. --prep. 1 a in or to a position lower
than; below; beneath (fell under the table; under the left eye).
b within, on the inside of (a surface etc.) (wore a vest under
his shirt). 2 a inferior to; less than (a captain is under a
major; is under 18). b at or for a lower cost than (was under
њ20). 3 a subject or liable to; controlled or bound by (lives
under oppression; under pain of death; born under Saturn; the
country prospered under him). b undergoing (is under repair).
c classified or subsumed in (that book goes under biology; goes
under many names). 4 at the foot of or sheltered by (hid under
the wall; under the cliff). 5 planted with (a crop). 6 powered
by (sail, steam, etc.). 7 following (another player in a card
game). 8 archaic attested by (esp. under one's hand and seal =
signature). --adv. 1 in or to a lower position or condition
(kept him under). 2 colloq. in or into a state of
unconsciousness (put him under for the operation). --adj. lower
(the under jaw). Ьunder age see AGE. under one's arm see
ARM(1). under arms see ARM(2). under one's belt see BELT.
under one's breath see BREATH. under canvas see CANVAS. under
a cloud see CLOUD. under control see CONTROL. under the
counter see COUNTER(1). under cover see COVER n. 4. under
fire see FIRE. under foot see FOOT. under hatches see
HATCH(1). under a person's nose see NOSE. under the rose see
ROSE(1). under separate cover in another envelope. under the
sun anywhere in the world. under water in and covered by water.
under way in motion; in progress. under the weather see
WEATHER. ЬЬundermost adj. [OE f. Gmc]
under- prefix in senses of UNDER: 1 below, beneath (undercarriage;
underground). 2 lower in status; subordinate (under-secretary).
3 insufficiently, incompletely (undercook; underdeveloped). [OE
v.intr. do less well than might be expected (esp.
scholastically). ЬЬunderachievement n. underachiever n.
underact v. 1 tr. act (a part etc.) with insufficient force. 2 intr.
act a part in this way.
underarm adj. & adv. 1 Sport, esp. Cricket with the arm below
shoulder-level. 2 under the arm. 3 in the armpit.
n. (pl. -ies) the under surface of an animal, vehicle, etc.,
esp. as an area vulnerable to attack.
underbid v. & n. --v.tr. (-bidding; past and past part. -bid) 1 make a
lower bid than (a person). 2 (also absol.) Bridge etc. bid less
on (one's hand) than its strength warrants. --n. 1 such a bid.
2 the act or an instance of underbidding.
n. 1 the person who makes the bid next below the highest. 2
Bridge etc. a player who underbids.
underbody n. (pl. -ies) the under surface of the body of an animal,
underbred adj. 1 ill-bred, vulgar. 2 not of pure breeding.
n. US undergrowth in a forest.
n. 1 a wheeled structure beneath an aircraft, usu. retracted
when not in use, to receive the impact on landing and support
the aircraft on the ground etc. 2 the supporting frame of a
undercart n. Brit. colloq. the undercarriage of an aircraft.
v.tr. 1 charge too little for (a thing) or to (a person). 2
give less than the proper charge to (a gun, an electric battery,
n. a subordinate social class.
underclay n. a clay bed under a coal seam.
n. a terrace or lower cliff formed by a landslip.
n.pl. clothes worn under others, esp. next to the skin.
n. underclothes collectively.
undercoat n. 1 a a preliminary layer of paint under the finishing coat.
b the paint used for this. 2 an animal's under layer of hair or
down. 3 a coat worn under another. ЬЬundercoating n.
adj. (usu. attrib.) 1 surreptitious. 2 engaged in spying,
esp. by working with or among those to be observed (undercover
n. a crypt. [ME f. UNDER- + croft crypt f. MDu. crofte cave
f. med.L crupta for L crypta: see CRYPT]
n. 1 a current below the surface. 2 an underlying often
contrary feeling, activity, or influence (an undercurrent of
undercut v. & n. --v.tr. (-cutting; past and past part. -cut) 1 sell
or work at a lower price or lower wages than. 2 Golf strike (a
ball) so as to make it rise high. 3 a cut away the part below
or under (a thing). b cut away material to show (a carved
design etc.) in relief. 4 render unstable or less firm,
undermine. --n. 1 Brit. the underside of a sirloin. 2 US a
notch cut in a tree-trunk to guide its fall when felled. 3 any
space formed by the removal or absence of material from the
lower part of something.
adj. 1 not fully developed; immature. 2 (of a country etc.)
below its potential economic level. 3 Photog. not developed
sufficiently to give a normal image. ЬЬunderdevelopment n.
underdog n. 1 a dog, or usu. a person, losing a fight. 2 a person who
is in a state of inferiority or subjection.
underdone adj. 1 not thoroughly done. 2 (of food) lightly or
v.tr. & intr. dress too plainly or too lightly.
n. (pl. -emphases) an insufficient degree of emphasis.
ЬЬunderemphasize v.tr. (also -ise).
adj. not fully employed. ЬЬunderemployment n.
v. & n. --v.tr. form too low an estimate of. --n. an
estimate that is too low. ЬЬunderestimation n.
v.tr. Photog. expose (film) for too short a time or with
insufficient light. ЬЬunderexposure n.
underfed adj. insufficiently fed.
underfelt n. felt for laying under a carpet.
attrib.adj. situated or operating beneath the floor (underfloor
underflow n. an undercurrent.
underfoot adv. 1 under one's feet. 2 on the ground. 3 in a state of
subjection. 4 so as to obstruct or inconvenience.
n. a piece of underclothing.
undergird v.tr. 1 make secure underneath. 2 strengthen, support.
adj. & n. --adj. 1 (of painting on porcelain etc.) done before
the glaze is applied. 2 (of colours) used in such painting.
--n. underglaze painting.
undergo v.tr. (3rd sing. present -goes; past -went; past part. -gone)
be subjected to; suffer; endure. [OE undergan (as UNDER-,
undergrad n. colloq. = UNDERGRADUATE. [abbr.]
n. a student at a university who has not yet taken a first
adv., adj., n., & v. --adv. 1 beneath the surface of the
ground. 2 in or into secrecy or hiding. --adj. 1 situated
underground. 2 secret, hidden, esp. working secretly to subvert
a ruling power. 3 unconventional, experimental (underground
press). --n. 1 an underground railway. 2 a secret group or
activity, esp. aiming to subvert the established order. --v.tr.
lay (cables) below ground level.
n. a dense growth of shrubs etc., esp. under large trees.
underhand adj. & adv. --adj. 1 secret, clandestine, not above-board. 2
deceptive, crafty. 3 Sport, esp. Cricket underarm. --adv. in
an underhand manner. [OE (as UNDER-, HAND)]
adj. & adv. = UNDERHAND.
underhung adj. 1 (of the lower jaw) projecting beyond the upper jaw. 2
having an underhung jaw.
v. & n. --v.tr. (past and past part. -laid) lay something
under (a thing) to support or raise it. --n. a thing laid
under another, esp. material laid under a carpet or mattress as
protection or support. [OE underlecgan (as UNDER-, LAY(1))]
past of UNDERLIE.
n. & v.tr. = SUBLEASE.
underlet v.tr. (-letting; past and past part. -let) 1 sublet. 2 let at
less than the true value.
underlie v.tr. (-lying; past -lay; past part. -lain) 1 (also absol.)
lie or be situated under (a stratum etc.). 2 (also absol.)
(esp. as underlying adj.) (of a principle, reason, etc.) be the
basis of (a doctrine, law, conduct, etc.). 3 exist beneath the
superficial aspect of. [OE underlicgan (as UNDER-, LIE(1))]
underline v. & n. --v.tr. 1 draw a line under (a word etc.) to give
emphasis or draw attention or indicate italic or other special
type. 2 emphasize, stress. --n. 1 a line drawn under a word
etc. 2 a caption below an illustration.
n. underclothes esp. of linen.
underling n. usu. derog. a subordinate.
pres. part. of UNDERLIE.
adj. having too few people as crew or staff.
adj. Brit. mentioned at a later place in a book etc.
undermine v.tr. 1 injure (a person, reputation, influence, etc.) by
secret or insidious means. 2 weaken, injure, or wear out
(health etc.) imperceptibly or insidiously. 3 wear away the
base or foundation of (rivers undermine their banks). 4 make a
mine or excavation under. ЬЬunderminer n. underminingly adv.
[ME f. UNDER- + MINE(2)]
prep., adv., n., & adj. --prep. 1 at or to a lower place than,
below. 2 on the inside of, within. --adv. 1 at or to a lower
place. 2 inside. --n. the lower surface or part. --adj.
lower. [OE underneothan (as UNDER + neothan: cf. BENEATH)]
adj. insufficiently nourished. ЬЬundernourishment n.
underpaid past and past part. of UNDERPAY.
n.pl. an undergarment, esp. men's, covering the lower part of
the body and part of the legs.
n. 1 a lower part, esp. of an animal. 2 a subordinate part in
a play etc.
underpass n. 1 a road etc. passing under another. 2 a crossing of this
underpay v.tr. (past and past part. -paid) pay too little to (a person)
or for (a thing). ЬЬunderpayment n.
underpin v.tr. (-pinned, -pinning) 1 support from below with masonry
etc. 2 support, strengthen.
v.tr. (usu. foll. by with) plant or cultivate the ground about
(a tall plant) with smaller ones.
underplay v. 1 tr. play down the importance of. 2 intr. & tr. Theatr.
a perform with deliberate restraint. b underact.
underplot n. a subordinate plot in a play etc.
adj. having an insufficient or very small population.
v.tr. price lower than what is usual or appropriate.
adj. 1 less privileged than others. 2 not enjoying the normal
standard of living or rights in a society.
n. production of less than is usual or required.
adj. containing less alcohol than proof spirit does.
underprop v.tr. (-propped, -propping) 1 support with a prop. 2 support,
v.tr. 1 quote a lower price than (a person). 2 quote a lower
price than others for (goods etc.).
underrate v.tr. have too low an opinion of.
v. & n. --v.tr. = UNDERLINE v. --n. = UNDERLINE n. 1.
undersea adj. below the sea or the surface of the sea, submarine.
underseal v. & n. --v.tr. seal the under-part of (esp. a motor vehicle
against rust etc.). --n. a protective coating for this.
n. (pl. -ies) a subordinate official, esp. a junior minister
or senior civil servant.
undersell v.tr. (past and past part. -sold) 1 sell at a lower price than
(another seller). 2 sell at less than the true value.
underset v. & n. --v.tr. (-setting; past and past part. -set) place
something under (a thing). --n. Naut. an undercurrent.
adj. having unusually weak sexual desires.
n. a deputy sheriff.
n. esp. US an undergarment worn under a shirt; a vest.
v. & n. --v.tr. (past and past part. -shot) 1 (of an
aircraft) land short of (a runway etc.). 2 shoot short of or
below. --n. the act or an instance of undershooting.
n. US short underpants; trunks.
undershot adj. 1 (of a water-wheel) turned by water flowing under it. 2
n. = SUBSHRUB.
underside n. the lower or under side or surface.
adj. whose signature is appended (we, the undersigned, wish to
adj. of less than the usual size.
n. a skirt worn under another; a petticoat.
adj. 1 supported from above. 2 (of a vehicle chassis) hanging
lower than the axles.
undersold past and past part. of UNDERSELL.
undersow v.tr. (past part. -sown) 1 sow (a later-growing crop) on land
already seeded with another crop. 2 (foll. by with) sow land
already seeded with (a crop) with a later-growing crop.
v. (past and past part. -spent) 1 tr. spend less than (a
specified amount). 2 intr. & refl. spend too little.
adj. having too few staff.
v. (past and past part. -stood) 1 tr. perceive the meaning of
(words, a person, a language, etc.) (does not understand what
you say; understood you perfectly; cannot understand French). 2
tr. perceive the significance or explanation or cause of (do not
understand why he came; could not understand what the noise was
about; do not understand the point of his remark). 3 tr. be
sympathetically aware of the character or nature of, know how to
deal with (quite understand your difficulty; cannot understand
him at all; could never understand algebra). 4 tr. a (often
foll. by that + clause) infer esp. from information received,
take as implied, take for granted (I understand that it begins
at noon; I understand him to be a distant relation; am I to
understand that you refuse?). b (absol.) believe or assume from
knowledge or inference (he is coming tomorrow, I understand). 5
tr. supply (a word) mentally (the verb may be either expressed
or understood). 6 intr. have understanding (in general or in
particular). Ьunderstand each other 1 know each other's views
or feelings. 2 be in agreement or collusion. ЬЬunderstandable
adj. understandably adv. understander n. [OE understandan (as
n. & adj. --n. 1 a the ability to understand or think;
intelligence. b the power of apprehension; the power of
abstract thought. 2 an individual's perception or judgement of
a situation etc. 3 an agreement; a thing agreed upon, esp.
informally (had an understanding with the rival company;
consented only on this understanding). 4 harmony in opinion or
feeling (disturbed the good understanding between them). 5
sympathetic awareness or tolerance. --adj. 1 having
understanding or insight or good judgement. 2 sympathetic to
others' feelings. ЬЬunderstandingly adv. [OE (as UNDERSTAND)]
v.tr. 1 express in greatly or unduly restrained terms. 2
represent as being less than it actually is. ЬЬunderstatement
n. understater n.
n. & v. --n. a tendency of a motor vehicle to turn less sharply
than was intended. --v.intr. have such a tendency.
past and past part. of UNDERSTAND.
n. (pl. -eys) 1 a layer of vegetation beneath the main canopy
of a forest. 2 the plants forming this.
n. & v. esp. Theatr. --n. (pl. -ies) a person who studies
another's role or duties in order to act at short notice in the
absence of the other. --v.tr. (-ies, -ied) 1 study (a role
etc.) as an understudy. 2 act as an understudy to (a person).
adj. without sufficient subscribers, participants, etc.
n. the lower or under surface.
undertake v.tr. (past -took; past part. -taken) 1 bind oneself to
perform, make oneself responsible for, engage in, enter upon
(work, an enterprise, a responsibility). 2 (usu. foll. by to +
infin.) accept an obligation, promise. 3 guarantee, affirm (I
will undertake that he has not heard a word).
n. 1 a person whose business is to make arrangements for
funerals. 2 also a person who undertakes to do something. 3
hist. an influential person in 17th-century England who
undertook to procure particular legislation, esp. to obtain
supplies from the House of Commons if the king would grant some
n. 1 work etc. undertaken, an enterprise (a serious
undertaking). 2 a pledge or promise. 3 the management of
funerals as a profession.
n. a subtenant. ЬЬundertenancy n. (pl. -ies).
n.pl. colloq. underclothes.
undertint n. a subdued tint.
undertone n. 1 a subdued tone of sound or colour. 2 an underlying
quality. 3 an undercurrent of feeling.
undertook past of UNDERTAKE.
undertow n. a current below the surface of the sea moving in the
opposite direction to the surface current.
n. Bridge a trick by which the declarer falls short of his or
v.tr. (-values, -valued, -valuing) 1 value insufficiently. 2
underestimate. ЬЬundervaluation n.
undervest n. Brit. an undergarment worn on the upper part of the body; a
adj. & adv. --adj. situated or done under water. --adv. under
underwear n. underclothes.
adj. & n. --adj. weighing less than is normal or desirable.
--n. insufficient weight.
underwent past of UNDERGO.
v.tr. joc. fail to impress. [after OVERWHELM]
underwing n. a wing placed under or partly covered by another.
underwood n. undergrowth.
underwork v. 1 tr. impose too little work on. 2 intr. do too little
n. 1 the part of society comprising those who live by organized
crime and immorality. 2 the mythical abode of the dead under
the earth. 3 the antipodes.
v. (past -wrote; past part. -written) 1 a tr. sign, and accept
liability under (an insurance policy, esp. on shipping etc.).
b tr. accept (liability) in this way. c intr. practice (marine)
insurance. 2 tr. undertake to finance or support. 3 tr. engage
to buy all the stock in (a company etc.) not bought by the
public. 4 tr. write below (the underwritten names).
adj. Med. (of a testicle) remaining in the abdomen instead of
descending normally into the scrotum.
adj. not deserved (as reward or punishment). ЬЬundeservedly
adj. not deserving. ЬЬundeservingly adv.
adj. (esp. of a bankrupt or a debt) not discharged.
n. lack of discipline.
adj. lacking discipline; not disciplined.
adj. not revealed or made known.
adj. that cannot be discovered.
adj. not discovered.
adj. not showing good judgement.
adj. not disguised. ЬЬundisguisedly adv.
adj. not dismayed.
adj. not disputed or called in question.
adj. not dissolved.
adj. (often foll. by from) indistinguishable.
adj. not distinguished; mediocre.
adj. not distributed. Ьundistributed middle Logic a fallacy
resulting from the failure of the middle term of a syllogism to
refer to all the members of a class.
adj. not disturbed or interfered with.
undivided adj. not divided or shared; whole, entire (gave him my
undo v.tr. (3rd sing. present -does; past -did; past part. -done) 1
a unfasten or untie (a coat, button, parcel, etc.). b unfasten
the clothing of (a person). 2 annul, cancel (cannot undo the
past). 3 ruin the prospects, reputation, or morals of. [OE
undon (as UN-(2), DO(1))]
undock v.tr. 1 (also absol.) separate (a spacecraft) from another in
space. 2 take (a ship) out of a dock.
adj. 1 US not having the appropriate document. 2 not proved by
or recorded in documents.
undoing n. 1 ruin or a cause of ruin. 2 the process of reversing what
has been done. 3 the action of opening or unfastening.
adj. not domesticated.
undone adj. 1 not done; incomplete (left the job undone). 2 not
fastened (left the buttons undone). 3 archaic ruined.
adj. that cannot be doubted; indubitable.
undoubted adj. certain, not questioned, not regarded as doubtful.
undrained adj. not drained.
undraped adj. 1 not covered with drapery. 2 naked.
undreamed adj. (also undreamt) (often foll. by of) not dreamed or thought
of or imagined.
undress v. & n. --v. 1 intr. take off one's clothes. 2 tr. take the
clothes off (a person). --n. 1 ordinary dress as opposed to
full dress or uniform. 2 casual or informal dress.
undressed adj. 1 not or no longer dressed; partly or wholly naked. 2 (of
leather etc.) not treated. 3 (of food) not having a dressing.
adj. unfit for drinking.
undue adj. 1 excessive, disproportionate. 2 not suitable. 3 not
owed. Ьundue influence Law influence by which a person is
induced to act otherwise than by his or her own free will, or
without adequate attention to the consequences. ЬЬunduly adv.
undulant adj. moving like waves; fluctuating. Ьundulant fever
brucellosis in humans. [L undulare (as UNDULATE)]
undulate v. & adj. --v. intr. & tr. have or cause to have a wavy motion
or look. --adj. wavy, going alternately up and down or in and
out (leaves with undulate margins). ЬЬundulately adv. [LL
undulatus f. L unda wave]
n. 1 a wavy motion or form, a gentle rise and fall. 2 each
wave of this. 3 a set of wavy lines.
adj. 1 undulating, wavy. 2 of or due to undulation.
undutiful adj. not dutiful. ЬЬundutifully adv. undutifulness n.
unearned adj. not earned. Ьunearned income income from interest
payments etc. as opposed to salary, wages, or fees. unearned
increment an increase in the value of property not due to the
owner's labour or outlay.
unearth v.tr. 1 a discover by searching or in the course of digging or
rummaging. b dig out of the earth. 2 drive (a fox etc.) from
unearthly adj. 1 supernatural, mysterious. 2 colloq. absurdly early or
inconvenient (an unearthly hour). 3 not earthly.
unease n. lack of ease, discomfort, distress.
uneasy adj. (uneasier, uneasiest) 1 disturbed or uncomfortable in mind
or body (passed an uneasy night). 2 disturbing (had an uneasy
suspicion). ЬЬuneasily adv. uneasiness n.
uneatable adj. not able to be eaten, esp. because of its condition (cf.
uneaten adj. not eaten; left undevoured.
adj. not economic; incapable of being profitably operated etc.
adj. not economical; wasteful.
adj. not edifying, esp. uninstructive or degrading.
unedited adj. not edited.
adj. not educated. ЬЬuneducable adj.
adj. (of a candidate, party, etc.) holding views likely to
bring defeat at an election.
adj. not embellished or decorated.
adj. not emotional; lacking emotion. ЬЬunemotionally adv.
adj. not emphatic. ЬЬunemphatically adv.
adj. & n. --adj. unfitted for paid employment. --n. an
unemployable person. ЬЬunemployability n.
adj. 1 not having paid employment; out of work. 2 not in use.
n. 1 the state of being unemployed. 2 the condition or extent
of this in a country or region etc. (the North has higher
unemployment). Ьunemployment benefit a payment made by the
State or (in the US) a trade union to an unemployed person.
adj. not enclosed.
adj. 1 (of an estate) not having any liabilities (e.g. a
mortgage) on it. 2 having no encumbrance; free.
unending adj. having or apparently having no end. ЬЬunendingly adv.
unendowed adj. not endowed.
adj. that cannot be endured. ЬЬunendurably adv.
unengaged adj. not engaged; uncommitted.
adj. 1 not characteristic of the English. 2 not English.
adj. not enjoyable.
adj. not enlightened.
adj. not enterprising.
adj. not enthusiastic. ЬЬunenthusiastically adv.
adj. not enviable. ЬЬunenviably adv.
unenvied adj. not envied.
unequal adj. 1 (often foll. by to) not equal. 2 of varying quality. 3
lacking equal advantage to both sides (an unequal bargain).
v.tr. (also -ise) make unequal.
adj. superior to all others.
adj. not equipped.
adj. not ambiguous, plain, unmistakable. ЬЬunequivocally adv.
unerring adj. not erring, failing, or missing the mark; true, certain.
ЬЬunerringly adv. unerringness n.
UNESCO abbr. (also Unesco) United Nations Educational, Scientific, and
adj. not escorted.
adj. & n. --adj. 1 not essential (cf. INESSENTIAL). 2 not of
the first importance. --n. an unessential part or thing.
adj. not established.
unethical adj. not ethical, esp. unscrupulous in business or professional
conduct. ЬЬunethically adv.
adj. not evangelical.
uneven adj. 1 not level or smooth. 2 not uniform or equable. 3 (of a
contest) unequal. ЬЬunevenly adv. unevenness n. [OE unefen
(as UN-(1), EVEN(1))]
adj. not eventful. ЬЬuneventfully adv. uneventfulness n.
adj. not examined.
adj. having no precedent or parallel.
adj. with which no fault can be found; entirely satisfactory.
ЬЬunexceptionableness n. unexceptionably adv.
adj. not out of the ordinary; usual, normal. ЬЬunexceptionally
adj. not easily excited. ЬЬunexcitability n.
adj. not exciting; dull.
adj. not carried out or put into effect.
adj. 1 not used up, expended, or brought to an end. 2 not
adj. not expected; surprising. ЬЬunexpectedly adv.
unharbour v.tr. Brit. dislodge (a deer) from a covert.
unharmed adj. not harmed.
unharmful adj. not harmful.
adj. not harmonious.
unharness v.tr. remove a harness from.
unhasp v.tr. free from a hasp or catch; unfasten.
unhatched adj. (of an egg etc.) not hatched.
adj. harmful to health, unwholesome. ЬЬunhealthfulness n.
unhealthy adj. (unhealthier, unhealthiest) 1 not in good health. 2 a (of
a place etc.) harmful to health. b unwholesome. c sl.
dangerous to life. ЬЬunhealthily adv. unhealthiness n.
unheard adj. 1 not heard. 2 (usu. unheard-of) unprecedented, unknown.
unheated adj. not heated.
unheeded adj. not heeded; disregarded.
unheedful adj. heedless; taking no notice.
unheeding adj. not giving heed; heedless. ЬЬunheedingly adv.
unhelpful adj. not helpful. ЬЬunhelpfully adv. unhelpfulness n.
adj. not heralded; unannounced.
unheroic adj. not heroic. ЬЬunheroically adv.
adj. without hesitation. ЬЬunhesitatingly adv.
adj. not hindered.
unhinge v.tr. 1 take (a door etc.) off its hinges. 2 (esp. as unhinged
adj.) unsettle or disorder (a person's mind etc.), make (a
adj. not historic or historical.
adj. not historical. ЬЬunhistorically adv.
unhitch v.tr. 1 release from a hitched state. 2 unhook, unfasten.
unholy adj. (unholier, unholiest) 1 impious, profane, wicked. 2
colloq. dreadful, outrageous (made an unholy row about it). 3
not holy. ЬЬunholiness n. [OE unhalig (as UN-(1), HOLY)]
adj. not honoured.
unhook v.tr. 1 remove from a hook or hooks. 2 unfasten by releasing a
hook or hooks.
unhoped adj. (foll. by for) not hoped for or expected.
unhorse v.tr. 1 throw or drag from a horse. 2 (of a horse) throw (a
rider). 3 dislodge, overthrow.
unhouse v.tr. deprive of shelter; turn out of a house.
unhuman adj. 1 not human. 2 superhuman. 3 inhuman, brutal.
unhung(1) adj. 1 not (yet) executed by hanging. 2 not hung up (for
unhung(2) past and past part. of UNHANG.
unhurried adj. not hurried. ЬЬunhurriedly adv.
unhurt adj. not hurt.
unhusk v.tr. remove a husk or shell from.
adj. not hygienic. ЬЬunhygienically adv.
adj. not hyphenated.
uni n. (pl. unis) esp. Austral. & NZ colloq. a university.
uni- comb. form one; having or consisting of one. [L f. unus one]
Uniat adj. & n. (also Uniate) --adj. of or relating to any community
of Christians in E. Europe or the Near East that acknowledges
papal supremacy but retains its own liturgy etc. --n. a member
of such a community. [Russ. uniyat f. uniya f. L unio UNION]
uniaxial adj. having a single axis. ЬЬuniaxially adv.
adj. with a single legislative chamber.
UNICEF abbr. United Nations Children's (orig. International Children's
adj. (of an organism, organ, tissue, etc.) consisting of a
unicolour adj. (also unicoloured) of one colour.
unicorn n. 1 a a fabulous animal with a horse's body and a single
straight horn. b a heraldic representation of this, with a
twisted horn, a deer's feet, a goat's beard, and a lion's tail.
c used in old translations of the Old Testament for the Hebrew
re'em, a two-horned animal, probably a wild ox. 2 a a pair of
horses and a third horse in front. b an equipage with these. 3
(in full unicorn whale or sea-unicorn) the narwhal. [ME f. OF
unicorne f. L unicornis f. UNI- + cornu horn, transl. Gk
unicuspid adj. & n. --adj. with one cusp. --n. a unicuspid tooth.
unicycle n. a single-wheeled cycle, esp. as used by acrobats.
unidea'd adj. having no ideas.
unideal adj. not ideal.
adj. unable to be identified.
adj. not identified.
adj. having (only) one dimension.
adj. having only one direction of motion, operation, etc.
ЬЬunidirectionality n. unidirectionally adv.
n. the act or an instance of unifying; the state of being
unified. ЬUnification Church a religious organization founded
in 1954 in Korea by Sun Myung Moon (cf. MOONIE). ЬЬunificatory
uniflow adj. involving flow (esp. of steam or waste gases) in one
uniform adj., n., & v. --adj. 1 not changing in form or character; the
same, unvarying (present a uniform appearance; all of uniform
size and shape). 2 conforming to the same standard, rules, or
pattern. 3 constant in the course of time (uniform
acceleration). 4 (of a tax, law, etc.) not varying with time or
place. --n. uniform distinctive clothing worn by members of the
same body, e.g. by soldiers, police, and schoolchildren.
--v.tr. 1 clothe in uniform (a uniformed officer). 2 make
uniform. ЬЬuniformly adv. [F uniforme or L uniformis (as UNI-,
adj. & n. --adj. of the theory that geological processes are
always due to continuously and uniformly operating forces. --n.
a holder of this theory. ЬЬuniformitarianism n.
n. (pl. -ies) 1 being uniform; sameness, consistency. 2 an
instance of this. ЬAct of Uniformity hist. any of four acts
(esp. that of 1662) for securing uniformity in public worship
and the use of a particular Book of Common Prayer. [ME f. OF
uniformit‚ or LL uniformitas (as UNIFORM)]
unify v.tr. (also absol.) (-ies, -ied) reduce to unity or uniformity.
Ьunified field theory Physics a theory that seeks to explain all
the field phenomena (e.g. gravitation and electromagnetism: see
FIELD n. 9) formerly treated by separate theories. ЬЬunifier
n. [F unifier or LL unificare (as UNI-, -FY)]
adj. 1 performed by or affecting only one person or party
(unilateral disarmament; unilateral declaration of
independence). 2 one-sided. 3 (of the parking of vehicles)
restricted to one side of the street. 4 (of leaves) all on the
same side of the stem. 5 (of a line of descent) through
ancestors of one sex only. ЬЬunilaterally adv.
n. 1 unilateral disarmament. 2 US the pursuit of a foreign
policy without allies. ЬЬunilateralist n. & adj.
adj. of or in only one language. ЬЬunilingually adv.
adj. consisting of one letter.
adj. not illuminated.
adj. (esp. of a book) without illustrations.
adj. Bot. & Zool. single-chambered.
adj. impossible to imagine. ЬЬunimaginably adv.
adj. lacking imagination; stolid, dull. ЬЬunimaginatively adv.
adj. not impaired.
adj. not impassioned.
adj. giving no opportunity for censure; beyond reproach or
question. ЬЬunimpeachably adv.
unimpeded adj. not impeded. ЬЬunimpededly adv.
n. lack of importance.
adj. not important.
adj. unimpressive. ЬЬunimposingly adv.
adj. not impressed.
adj. not impressionable.
adj. not impressive. ЬЬunimpressively adv. unimpressiveness
adj. 1 not made better. 2 not made use of. 3 (of land) not
used for agriculture or building; not developed.
adj. 1 not incorporated or united. 2 not formed into a
adj. not infected.
adj. not inflamed.
adj. not inflammable.
adj. 1 Gram. (of a language) not having inflections. 2 not
changing or varying. 3 not bent or deflected.
adj. (often foll. by by) not influenced.
adj. having little or no influence.
adj. not informative; giving little information.
adj. 1 not informed or instructed. 2 ignorant, uneducated.
adj. that cannot be inhabited. ЬЬuninhabitableness n.
adj. not inhabited.
adj. not inhibited. ЬЬuninhibitedly adv. uninhibitedness n.
adj. not initiated; not admitted or instructed.
uninjured adj. not injured.
adj. 1 not inspired. 2 (of oratory etc.) commonplace.
adj. not inspiring. ЬЬuninspiringly adv.
adj. not instructed or informed.
adj. that cannot be insured.
uninsured adj. not insured.
adj. not intelligent. ЬЬunintelligently adv.
adj. not intelligible. ЬЬunintelligibility n.
unintelligibleness n. unintelligibly adv.
adj. not intended.
adj. not intentional. ЬЬunintentionally adv.
adj. 1 not interested. 2 unconcerned, indifferent.
ЬЬuninterestedly adv. uninterestedness n.
adj. not interesting. ЬЬuninterestingly adv.
adj. that cannot be interpreted.
adj. that cannot be interrupted.
adj. not interrupted. ЬЬuninterruptedly adv.
adj. Biol. having a single nucleus.
adj. not inventive. ЬЬuninventively adv. uninventiveness n.
adj. not investigated.
uninvited adj. not invited. ЬЬuninvitedly adv.
adj. not inviting, unattractive, repellent. ЬЬuninvitingly
uninvoked adj. not invoked.
adj. not involved.
union n. 1 a the act or an instance of uniting; the state of being
united. b (the Union) hist. the uniting of the English and
Scottish crowns in 1603, of the English and Scottish parliaments
in 1707, or of Great Britain and Ireland in 1801. 2 a a whole
resulting from the combination of parts or members. b a
political unit formed in this way, esp. the US, the UK, the
USSR, or South Africa. 3 = trade union. 4 marriage, matrimony.
5 concord, agreement (lived together in perfect union). 6
(Union) a a general social club and debating society at some
universities and colleges. b the buildings or accommodation of
such a society. 7 Math. the totality of the members of two or
more sets. 8 Brit. hist. a two or more parishes consolidated
for the administration of the poor laws. b (in full union
workhouse) a workhouse erected by this. 9 Brit. an association
of independent (esp. Congregational or Baptist) churches for
purposes of cooperation. 10 a part of a flag with a device
emblematic of union, normally occupying the upper corner next to
the staff. 11 a joint or coupling for pipes etc. 12 a fabric
of mixed materials, e.g. cotton with linen or silk.
Ьunion-bashing Brit. colloq. active opposition to trade unions
and their rights. union catalogue a catalogue of the combined
holdings of several libraries. union down (of a flag) hoisted
with the union below as a signal of distress. Union Jack (or
flag) the national ensign of the United Kingdom formed by the
union of the crosses of St George, St Andrew, and St Patrick.
union jack (in the US) a jack consisting of the union from the
national flag. union shop a shop, factory, trade, etc., in
which employees must belong to a trade union or join one within
an agreed time. union suit US a single undergarment for the
body and legs; combinations. [ME f. OF union or eccl.L unio
unity f. L unus one]
unionist n. 1 a a member of a trade union. b an advocate of trade
unions. 2 (usu. Unionist) an advocate of union, esp.: a a
person opposed to the rupture of the parliamentary union between
Great Britain and Northern Ireland (formerly between Great
Britain and Ireland). b hist. a person who opposed secession
during the American Civil War. ЬЬunionism n. unionistic adj.
unionize v.tr. & intr. (also -ise) bring or come under trade-union
organization or rules. ЬЬunionization n.
adj. (also -ised) not ionized.
uniparous adj. 1 producing one offspring at a birth. 2 Bot. having one
axis or branch.
uniped n. & adj. --n. a person having only one foot or leg. --adj.
one-footed, one-legged. [UNI- + pes pedis foot]
adj. (of the Deity) existing only as one person.
uniplanar adj. lying in one plane.
unipod n. a one-legged support for a camera etc. [UNI-, after TRIPOD]
unipolar adj. 1 (esp. of an electric or magnetic apparatus) showing only
one kind of polarity. 2 Biol. (of a nerve cell etc.) having
only one pole. ЬЬunipolarity n.
unique adj. & n. --adj. 1 of which there is only one; unequalled;
having no like, equal, or parallel (his position was unique;
this vase is considered unique). 2 disp. unusual, remarkable
(the most unique man I ever met). --n. a unique thing or
person. ЬЬuniquely adv. uniqueness n. [F f. L unicus f. unus
unironed adj. (esp. of clothing, linen, etc.) not ironed.
uniserial adj. Bot. & Zool. arranged in one row.
unisex adj. (of clothing, hairstyles, etc.) designed to be suitable
for both sexes.
unisexual adj. 1 a of one sex. b Bot. having stamens or pistils but not
both. 2 unisex. ЬЬunisexuality n. unisexually adv.
unison n. & adj. --n. 1 Mus. a coincidence in pitch of sounds or
notes. b this regarded as an interval. 2 Mus. a combination of
voices or instruments at the same pitch or at pitches differing
by one or more octaves (sang in unison). 3 agreement, concord
(acted in perfect unison). --adj. Mus. coinciding in pitch.
Ьunison string a string tuned in unison with another string and
meant to be sounded with it. ЬЬunisonant adj. unisonous adj.
[OF unison or LL unisonus (as UNI-, sonus SOUND(1))]
unissued adj. not issued.
unit n. 1 a an individual thing, person, or group regarded as single
and complete, esp. for purposes of calculation. b each of the
(smallest) separate individuals or groups into which a complex
whole may be analysed (the family as the unit of society). 2 a
quantity chosen as a standard in terms of which other quantities
may be expressed (unit of heat; SI unit; mass per unit volume).
3 Brit. the smallest share in a unit trust. 4 a device with a
specified function forming part of a complex mechanism. 5 a
piece of furniture for fitting with others like it or made of
complementary parts. 6 a group with a special function in an
organization. 7 a group of buildings, wards, etc., in a
hospital. 8 the number 'one'. Ьunit cell Crystallog. the
smallest repeating group of atoms, ions, or molecules in a
crystal. unit cost the cost of producing one item of
manufacture. unit-holder Brit. a person with a holding in a
unit trust. unit price the price charged for each unit of goods
supplied. unit trust Brit. an investment company investing
combined contributions from many persons in various securities
and paying them dividends in proportion to their holdings. [L
unus, prob. after DIGIT]
Unitarian n. & adj. --n. 1 a person who believes that God is not a
Trinity but one person. 2 a member of a religious body
maintaining this and advocating freedom from formal dogma or
doctrine. --adj. of or relating to the Unitarians.
ЬЬUnitarianism n. [mod.L unitarius f. L unitas UNITY]
unitary adj. 1 of a unit or units. 2 marked by unity or uniformity.
ЬЬunitarily adv. unitarity n.
unite v. 1 tr. & intr. join together; make or become one; combine. 2
tr. & intr. join together for a common purpose or action (united
in their struggle against injustice). 3 tr. & intr. join in
marriage. 4 tr. possess (qualities, features, etc.) in
combination (united anger with mercy). 5 intr. & tr. form or
cause to form a physical or chemical whole (oil will not unite
with water). ЬUnited Brethren Eccl. the Moravians. United
Kingdom Great Britain and Northern Ireland (until 1922, Great
Britain and Ireland). United Nations (orig., in 1942) those
united against the Axis powers in the war of 1939-45, (later) a
supranational peace-seeking organization of these and many other
States. United Provinces hist. 1 the seven provinces united in
1579 and forming the basis of the republic of the Netherlands.
2 an Indian administrative division formed by the union of Agra
and Oudh and called Uttar Pradesh since 1950. United Reformed
Church a Church formed in 1972 from the English Presbyterian and
Congregational Churches. United States (in full United States
of America) a federal republic of 50 States, mostly in N.
America and including Alaska and Hawaii. ЬЬunitedly adv.
unitive adj. unitively adv. [ME f. L unire unit- f. unus one]
unity n. (pl. -ies) 1 oneness; being one, single, or individual;
being formed of parts that constitute a whole; due
interconnection and coherence of parts (disturbs the unity of
the idea; the pictures lack unity; national unity). 2 harmony
or concord between persons etc. (lived together in unity). 3 a
thing forming a complex whole (a person regarded as a unity). 4
Math. the number 'one', the factor that leaves unchanged the
quantity on which it operates. 5 Theatr. each of the three
dramatic principles requiring limitation of the supposed time of
a drama to that occupied in acting it or to a single day (unity
of time), use of one scene throughout (unity of place), and
concentration on the development of a single plot (unity of
action). [ME f. OF unit‚ f. L unitas -tatis f. unus one]
Univ. abbr. University.
univalent adj. & n. --adj. 1 Chem. having a valency of one. 2 Biol. (of
a chromosome) remaining unpaired during meiosis. --n. Biol. a
univalent chromosome. [UNI- + valent- pres. part. stem (as
univalve adj. & n. Zool. --adj. having one valve. --n. a univalve
universal adj. & n. --adj. 1 of, belonging to, or done etc. by all
persons or things in the world or in the class concerned;
applicable to all cases (the feeling was universal; met with
universal approval). 2 Logic (of a proposition) in which
something is asserted of all of a class (opp. PARTICULAR).
--n. 1 Logic a universal proposition. 2 Philos. a a term or
concept of general application. b a nature or essence signified
by a general term. Ьuniversal agent an agent empowered to do
all that can be delegated. universal compass a compass with
legs that may be extended for large circles. universal coupling
(or joint) a coupling or joint which can transmit rotary power
by a shaft at any selected angle. universal language an
artificial language intended for use by all nations. universal
proposition Logic a proposition in which the predicate is
affirmed or denied of all members of a class (opp. particular
proposition). universal suffrage a suffrage extending to all
adults with minor exceptions. universal time = GREENWICH MEAN
TIME. ЬЬuniversality n. universalize v.tr. (also -ise).
universalization n. universally adv. [ME f. OF universal or L
universalis (as UNIVERSE)]
n. Theol. 1 a person who holds that all mankind will
eventually be saved. 2 a member of an organized body of
Christians who hold this. ЬЬuniversalism n. universalistic
universe n. 1 all existing things; the whole creation; the cosmos. 2
all mankind. 3 Statistics & Logic all the objects under
consideration. Ьuniverse of discourse Logic = sense 3. [F
univers f. L universum neut. of universus combined into one,
whole f. UNI- + versus past part. of vertere turn]
n. (pl. -ies) 1 an educational institution designed for
instruction, examination, or both, of students in many branches
of advanced learning, conferring degrees in various faculties,
and often embodying colleges and similar institutions. 2 the
members of this collectively. 3 a team, crew, etc.,
representing a university. Ьat university studying at a
university. [ME f. OF universit‚ f. L universitas -tatis the
whole (world), in LL college, guild (as UNIVERSE)]
univocal adj. & n. --adj. (of a word etc.) having only one proper
meaning. --n. a univocal word. ЬЬunivocality n. univocally
unjoin v.tr. detach from being joined; separate.
unjoined adj. not joined.
unjoint v.tr. 1 separate the joints of. 2 disunite.
unjust adj. not just, contrary to justice or fairness. ЬЬunjustly
adv. unjustness n.
adj. not justifiable. ЬЬunjustifiably adv.
adj. not justified.
unkempt adj. 1 untidy, of neglected appearance. 2 uncombed,
dishevelled. ЬЬunkemptly adv. unkemptness n. [UN-(1) +
archaic kempt past part. of kemb comb f. OE cemban]
unkept adj. 1 (of a promise, law, etc.) not observed; disregarded. 2
not tended; neglected.
adj. that cannot be killed.
unkind adj. 1 not kind. 2 harsh, cruel. 3 unpleasant. ЬЬunkindly
adv. unkindness n.
unking v.tr. 1 deprive of the position of king; dethrone. 2 deprive
(a country) of a king.
unkink v. 1 tr. remove the kinks from; straighten. 2 intr. lose
kinks; become straight.
unknit v.tr. (unknitted, unknitting) separate (things joined, knotted,
unknot v.tr. (unknotted, unknotting) release the knot or knots of,
adj. & n. --adj. that cannot be known. --n. 1 an unknowable
thing. 2 (the Unknowable) the postulated absolute or ultimate
unknowing adj. & n. --adj. (often foll. by of) not knowing; ignorant,
unconscious. --n. ignorance (cloud of unknowing).
ЬЬunknowingly adv. unknowingness n.
unknown adj. & n. --adj. (often foll. by to) not known, unfamiliar (his
purpose was unknown to me). --n. 1 an unknown thing or person.
2 an unknown quantity (equation in two unknowns). Ьunknown
country see COUNTRY. unknown quantity a person or thing whose
nature, significance, etc., cannot be determined. Unknown
Soldier an unidentified representative member of a country's
armed forces killed in war, given burial with special honours in
a national memorial. unknown to without the knowledge of (did
it unknown to me). Unknown Warrior = Unknown Soldier.
adj. (US unlabeled) not labelled; without a label.
adj. (US unlabored) not laboured.
unlace v.tr. 1 undo the lace or laces of. 2 unfasten or loosen in
unlade v.tr. 1 take the cargo out of (a ship). 2 discharge (a cargo
etc.) from a ship.
unladen adj. not laden. Ьunladen weight the weight of a vehicle etc.
when not loaded with goods etc.
adj. not ladylike.
unlaid(1) adj. not laid.
unlaid(2) past and past part. of UNLAY.
adj. not lamented.
unlash v.tr. unfasten (a thing lashed down etc.).
unlatch v. 1 tr. release the latch of. 2 tr. & intr. open or be opened
in this way.
unlawful adj. not lawful; illegal, not permissible. ЬЬunlawfully adv.
unlay v.tr. (past and past part. unlaid) Naut. untwist (a rope).
[UN-(2) + LAY(1)]
unleaded adj. 1 (of petrol etc.) without added lead. 2 not covered,
weighted, or framed with lead. 3 Printing not spaced with
unlearn v.tr. (past and past part. unlearned or unlearnt) 1 discard
from one's memory. 2 rid oneself of (a habit, false
adj. not well educated; untaught, ignorant. ЬЬunlearnedly adv.
adj. (also unlearnt) that has not been learnt.
unleash v.tr. 1 release from a leash or restraint. 2 set free to
engage in pursuit or attack.
adj. not leavened; made without yeast or other raising agent.
unless conj. if not; except when (shall go unless I hear from you;
always walked unless I had a bicycle). [ON or IN + LESS, assim.
adj. 1 illiterate. 2 not well educated.
adj. not liberated.
adj. not licensed, esp. without a licence to sell alcoholic
unlighted adj. 1 not provided with light. 2 not set burning.
unlike adj. & prep. --adj. 1 not like; different from (is unlike both
his parents). 2 uncharacteristic of (such behaviour is unlike
him). 3 dissimilar, different. --prep. differently from (acts
quite unlike anyone else). Ьunlike signs Math. plus and minus.
ЬЬunlikeness n. [perh. f. ON ЈlЎkr, OE ungelic: see LIKE(1)]
adj. (also unlikable) not easy to like; unpleasant.
unlikely adj. (unlikelier, unlikeliest) 1 improbable (unlikely tale). 2
(foll. by to + infin.) not to be expected to do something (he's
unlikely to be available). 3 unpromising (an unlikely
candidate). ЬЬunlikelihood n. unlikeliness n.
unlimited adj. without limit; unrestricted; very great in number or
quantity (has unlimited possibilities; an unlimited expanse of
sea). ЬЬunlimitedly adv. unlimitedness n.
adj. 1 (of paper etc.) without lines. 2 (of a face etc.)
adj. (of a garment etc.) without lining.
unlink v.tr. 1 undo the links of (a chain etc.). 2 detach or set free
by undoing or unfastening a link or chain.
adj. not liquidated.
unlisted adj. not included in a published list, esp. of Stock Exchange
prices or of telephone numbers.
unlit adj. not lit.
unlivable adj. that cannot be lived or lived in.
adj. 1 appearing to be uninhabited. 2 unused by the
unload v.tr. 1 (also absol.) remove a load from (a vehicle etc.). 2
remove (a load) from a vehicle etc. 3 remove the charge from (a
firearm etc.). 4 colloq. get rid of. 5 (often foll. by on)
colloq. a divulge (information). b (also absol.) give vent to
(feelings). ЬЬunloader n.
unlock v.tr. 1 a release the lock of (a door, box, etc.). b release
or disclose by unlocking. 2 release thoughts, feelings, etc.,
from (one's mind etc.).
unlocked adj. not locked.
adj. unexpected, unforeseen.
unloose v.tr. (also unloosen) loose; set free.
unlovable adj. not lovable.
unloved adj. not loved.
unlovely adj. not attractive; unpleasant, ugly. ЬЬunloveliness n.
unloving adj. not loving. ЬЬunlovingly adv. unlovingness n.
unlucky adj. (unluckier, unluckiest) 1 not fortunate or successful. 2
wretched. 3 bringing bad luck. 4 ill-judged. ЬЬunluckily adv.
unmade adj. 1 not made. 2 destroyed, annulled.
unmake v.tr. (past and past part. unmade) undo the making of;
destroy, depose, annul.
adj. not malleable.
unman v.tr. (unmanned, unmanning) 1 deprive of supposed manly
qualities (e.g. self-control, courage); cause to weep etc.,
discourage. 2 deprive (a ship etc.) of men.
adj. not (easily) managed, manipulated, or controlled.
ЬЬunmanageableness n. unmanageably adv.
unmanly adj. not manly. ЬЬunmanliness n.
unmanned adj. 1 not manned. 2 overcome by emotion etc.
adj. 1 without good manners. 2 (of actions, speech, etc.)
showing a lack of good manners. ЬЬunmannerliness n.
unmarked adj. 1 not marked. 2 not noticed.
adj. not marketable.
unmarried adj. not married; single.
unmask v. 1 tr. a remove the mask from. b expose the true character
of. 2 intr. remove one's mask. ЬЬunmasker n.
adj. that cannot be matched. ЬЬunmatchably adv.
unmatched adj. not matched or equalled.
unmatured adj. not yet matured.
unmeaning adj. having no meaning or significance; meaningless.
ЬЬunmeaningly adv. unmeaningness n.
unmeant adj. not meant or intended.
adj. that cannot be measured. ЬЬunmeasurably adv.
adj. 1 not measured. 2 limitless.
adj. not melodious; discordant. ЬЬunmelodiously adv.
unmelted adj. not melted.
adj. not memorable. ЬЬunmemorably adv.
adj. & n. --adj. that cannot (properly) be mentioned. --n. 1
(in pl.) joc. a undergarments. b archaic trousers. 2 a person
or thing not to be mentioned. ЬЬunmentionability n.
unmentionableness n. unmentionably adv.
adj. not mentioned.
adj. not merchantable.
adj. merciless. ЬЬunmercifully adv. unmercifulness n.
unmerited adj. not merited.
unmet adj. (of a quota, demand, goal, etc.) not achieved or
adj. Brit. (of a road etc.) not made with road-metal.
adj. not methodical. ЬЬunmethodically adv.
adj. not metrical.
adj. not military.
unmindful adj. (often foll. by of) not mindful. ЬЬunmindfully adv.
adj. that cannot or should not be missed.
adj. that cannot be mistaken or doubted, clear.
ЬЬunmistakability n. unmistakableness n. unmistakably adv.
adj. not mistaken; right, correct.
adj. 1 not mitigated or modified. 2 absolute, unqualified (an
unmitigated disaster). ЬЬunmitigatedly adv.
unmixed adj. not mixed. Ьunmixed blessing a thing having advantages
and no disadvantages.
adj. not modified.
adj. not modulated.
adj. not molested.
unmoor v.tr. 1 (also absol.) release the moorings of (a vessel). 2
weigh all but one anchor of (a vessel).
unmoral adj. not concerned with morality (cf. IMMORAL). ЬЬunmorality
n. unmorally adv.
adj. not motherly.
adj. without motivation; without a motive.
unmounted adj. not mounted.
unmourned adj. not mourned.
unmoved adj. 1 not moved. 2 not changed in one's purpose. 3 not
affected by emotion. ЬЬunmovable adj. (also unmoveable).
unmown adj. not mown.
unmuffle v.tr. 1 remove a muffler from (a face, bell, etc.). 2 free of
something that muffles or conceals.
adj. not complaining. ЬЬunmurmuringly adv.
unmusical adj. 1 not pleasing to the ear. 2 unskilled in or indifferent
to music. ЬЬunmusicality n. unmusically adv. unmusicalness n.
adj. not mutilated.
unmuzzle v.tr. 1 remove a muzzle from. 2 relieve of an obligation to
unnail v.tr. unfasten by the removal of nails.
adj. that cannot be named, esp. too bad to be named.
unnamed adj. not named.
unnatural adj. 1 contrary to nature or the usual course of nature; not
normal. 2 a lacking natural feelings. b extremely cruel or
wicked. 3 artificial. 4 affected. ЬЬunnaturally adv.
adj. not navigable. ЬЬunnavigability n.
adj. & n. --adj. 1 not necessary. 2 more than is necessary
(with unnecessary care). --n. (pl. -ies) (usu. in pl.) an
unnecessary thing. ЬЬunnecessarily adv. unnecessariness n.
unneeded adj. not needed.
adj. not neighbourly. ЬЬunneighbourliness n.
unnerve v.tr. deprive of strength or resolution. ЬЬunnervingly adv.
adj. not easily seen or noticed. ЬЬunnoticeably adv.
unnoticed adj. not noticed.
adj. 1 not marked with a number. 2 not counted. 3 countless.
UNO abbr. United Nations Organization.
adj. not objectionable; acceptable. ЬЬunobjectionableness n.
adj. not obliging; unhelpful, uncooperative.
adj. not obscured.
adj. not observable; imperceptible.
adj. not observant. ЬЬunobservantly adv.
adj. not observed. ЬЬunobservedly adv.
adj. not obstructed.
adj. that cannot be obtained.
adj. not making oneself or itself noticed. ЬЬunobtrusively
adv. unobtrusiveness n.
adj. not occupied.
adj. not offending; harmless, innocent. ЬЬunoffended adj.
adj. 1 not officially authorized or confirmed. 2 not
characteristic of officials. Ьunofficial strike a strike not
formally approved by the strikers' trade union. ЬЬunofficially
unoiled adj. not oiled.
unopened adj. not opened.
unopposed adj. not opposed.
adj. not ordained.
adj. not ordinary.
adj. (also -ised) not organized (cf. DISORGANIZE).
adj. lacking originality; derivative. ЬЬunoriginality n.
adj. not ornamental; plain.
adj. not ornamented.
adj. not orthodox. ЬЬunorthodoxly adv. unorthodoxy n.
adj. not ostentatious. ЬЬunostentatiously adv.
unowned adj. 1 unacknowledged. 2 having no owner.
unpack v.tr. 1 (also absol.) open and remove the contents of (a
package, luggage, etc.). 2 take (a thing) out from a package
etc. ЬЬunpacker n.
unpaged adj. with pages not numbered.
unpaid adj. (of a debt or a person) not paid.
unpainted adj. not painted.
unpaired adj. 1 not arranged in pairs. 2 not forming one of a pair.
adj. 1 not pleasant to taste. 2 (of an idea, suggestion, etc.)
disagreeable, distasteful. ЬЬunpalatability n. unpalatableness
adj. having no parallel or equal.
adj. that cannot be pardoned. ЬЬunpardonableness n.
adj. contrary to proper parliamentary usage. Ьunparliamentary
language oaths or abuse.
adj. not pasteurized.
adj. not patented.
adj. not patriotic. ЬЬunpatriotically adv.
unpaved adj. not paved.
unpeeled adj. not peeled.
unpeg v.tr. (unpegged, unpegging) 1 unfasten by the removal of pegs.
2 cease to maintain or stabilize (prices etc.).
unpeople v. & n. --v.tr. depopulate. --n.pl. unpersons.
adj. not perceived; unobserved.
adj. not perceptive. ЬЬunperceptively adv. unperceptiveness
adj. not perfected.
adj. not perforated.
adj. not performed.
adj. not perfumed.
unperson n. a person whose name or existence is denied or ignored.
adj. not able to be persuaded; obstinate.
adj. not persuaded.
adj. not persuasive. ЬЬunpersuasively adv.
adj. not perturbed. ЬЬunperturbedly adv.
adj. (also unphilosophic) 1 not according to philosophical
principles. 2 lacking philosophy. ЬЬunphilosophically adv.
adj. (also unphysiologic) not in accordance with normal
physiological functioning. ЬЬunphysiologically adv.
unpick v.tr. undo the sewing of (stitches, a garment, etc.).
unpicked adj. 1 not selected. 2 (of a flower) not plucked.
adj. not picturesque.
unpin v.tr. (unpinned, unpinning) 1 unfasten or detach by removing a
pin or pins. 2 Chess release (a piece that has been pinned).
unpitied adj. not pitied.
unpitying adj. not pitying. ЬЬunpityingly adv.
adj. that cannot be placed or classified (his accent was
unplaced adj. not placed, esp. not placed as one of the first three
finishing in a race etc.
unplanned adj. not planned.
unplanted adj. not planted.
adj. not plausible.
adj. 1 Sport (of a ball) that cannot be struck or returned. 2
that cannot be played. ЬЬunplayably adv.
adj. not pleasant; displeasing; disagreeable. ЬЬunpleasantly
adv. unpleasantness n.
adj. not pleasing. ЬЬunpleasingly adv.
adj. not ploughed.
unplucked adj. not plucked.
unplug v.tr. (unplugged, unplugging) 1 disconnect (an electrical
device) by removing its plug from the socket. 2 unstop.
unplumbed adj. 1 not plumbed. 2 not fully explored or understood.
unpoetic adj. (also unpoetical) not poetic.
unpointed adj. 1 having no point or points. 2 a not punctuated. b (of
written Hebrew etc.) without vowel points. 3 (of masonry or
brickwork) not pointed.
adj. 1 not polished; rough. 2 without refinement; crude.
unpolitic adj. impolitic, unwise.
adj. not concerned with politics. ЬЬunpolitically adv.
unpolled adj. 1 not having voted at an election. 2 not included in an
adj. not polluted.
unpopular adj. not popular; not liked by the public or by people in
general. ЬЬunpopularity n. unpopularly adv.
adj. not populated.
adj. 1 (foll. by of) not in possession of. 2 not possessed.
adj. 1 not practical. 2 (of a person) not having practical
skill. ЬЬunpracticality n. unpractically adv.
adj. (US unpracticed) 1 not experienced or skilled. 2 not put
adj. 1 having no precedent; unparalleled. 2 novel.
adj. that cannot be predicted. ЬЬunpredictability n.
unpredictableness n. unpredictably adv.
adj. not predicted or foretold.
adj. not prejudiced.
adj. not previously thought over, not deliberately planned,
unintentional. ЬЬunpremeditatedly adv.
adj. not prepared (in advance); not ready. ЬЬunpreparedly adv.
adj. not prepossessing; unattractive.
adj. (esp. of drugs) not prescribed.
adj. not presentable.
unpressed adj. not pressed, esp. (of clothing) unironed.
adj. not presuming; modest.
adj. not presumptuous.
adj. unpretentious. ЬЬunpretendingly adv. unpretendingness n.
adj. not making a great display; simple, modest.
ЬЬunpretentiously adv. unpretentiousness n.
unpriced adj. not having a price or prices fixed, marked, or stated.
unprimed adj. not primed.
adj. lacking or not based on good moral principles.
adj. that cannot be printed, esp. because too indecent or
libellous or blasphemous. ЬЬunprintably adv.
unprinted adj. not printed.
adj. not privileged.
adj. causing no difficulty. ЬЬunproblematically adv.
adj. not proclaimed.
adj. that cannot be procured.
adj. not productive. ЬЬunproductively adv. unproductiveness
adj. 1 contrary to professional standards of behaviour etc. 2
not belonging to a profession; amateur. ЬЬunprofessionally adv.
adj. not profitable. ЬЬunprofitableness n. unprofitably adv.
adj. not progressive.
adj. not likely to turn out well. ЬЬunpromisingly adv.
adj. that cannot be pronounced. ЬЬunpronounceably adv.
adj. not propitious. ЬЬunpropitiously adv.
adj. not prosperous. ЬЬunprosperously adv.
adj. not protected. ЬЬunprotectedness n.
adj. not protesting. ЬЬunprotestingly adv.
adj. that cannot be proved. ЬЬunprovability n. unprovableness
unproved adj. (also unproven) not proved.
adj. (usu. foll. by with) not furnished, supplied, or equipped.
adj. (of a person or act) without provocation.
adj. not published. ЬЬunpublishable adj.
adj. not punctual. ЬЬunpunctuality n.
adj. not punctuated.
adj. that cannot be punished.
adj. not punished.
adj. not purified.
adj. colloq. (of a book) so engrossing that one has to go on
adj. 1 not competent (unqualified to give an answer). 2 not
legally or officially qualified (an unqualified practitioner).
3 not modified or restricted; complete (unqualified assent;
adj. that cannot be quenched. ЬЬunquenchably adv.
adj. not quenched.
adj. that cannot be disputed or doubted. ЬЬunquestionability
n. unquestionableness n. unquestionably adv.
adj. 1 not disputed or doubted; definite, certain. 2 not
adj. 1 asking no questions. 2 done etc. without asking
questions. ЬЬunquestioningly adv.
unquote v.tr. (as int.) (in dictation, reading aloud, etc.) indicate
the presence of closing quotation marks (cf. QUOTE v. 5 b).
unquoted adj. not quoted, esp. on the Stock Exchange.
unravel v. (unravelled, unravelling; US unraveled, unraveling) 1 tr.
cause to be no longer ravelled, tangled, or intertwined. 2 tr.
probe and solve (a mystery etc.). 3 tr. undo (a fabric, esp. a
knitted one). 4 intr. become disentangled or unknitted.
adj. that cannot be reached. ЬЬunreachableness n. unreachably
unread adj. 1 (of a book etc.) not read. 2 (of a person) not
adj. 1 too dull or too difficult to be worth reading. 2
illegible. ЬЬunreadability n. unreadably adv.
adj. 1 not ready. 2 not prompt in action. ЬЬunreadily adv.
adj. archaic lacking good advice; rash (Ethelred the Unready).
[UN-(1) + REDE, assim. to UNREADY(1)]
unreal adj. 1 not real. 2 imaginary, illusory. 3 US & Austral. sl.
incredible, amazing. ЬЬunreality n. unreally adv.
adj. not realistic. ЬЬunrealistically adv.
adj. that cannot be realized.
adj. not realized.
unreason n. lack of reasonable thought or action. [ME, = injustice, f.
UN-(1) + REASON]
adj. 1 going beyond the limits of what is reasonable or
equitable (unreasonable demands). 2 not guided by or listening
to reason. ЬЬunreasonableness n. unreasonably adv.
adj. not reasoned.
adj. not reasoning. ЬЬunreasoningly adv.
adj. not receptive.
adj. not reciprocated.
adj. not calculated or taken into account.
adj. not reclaimed.
adj. (also -isable) that cannot be recognized.
ЬЬunrecognizableness n. unrecognizably adv.
adj. (also -ised) not recognized.
adj. not recompensed.
adj. not reconciled.
adj. 1 not reconciled or converted to the current political
orthodoxy. 2 not rebuilt.
adj. not recorded. ЬЬunrecordable adj.
adj. not rectified.
adj. that cannot be redeemed. ЬЬunredeemably adv.
adj. not redeemed.
adj. not redressed.
unreel v.tr. & intr. unwind from a reel.
unreeve v.tr. (past unrove) withdraw (a rope etc.) from being reeved.
unrefined adj. not refined.
adj. not thoughtful. ЬЬunreflectingly adv. unreflectingness
adj. not reformed.
adj. not regarded.
adj. not regenerate; obstinately wrong or bad. ЬЬunregeneracy
n. unregenerately adv.
adj. not registered.
adj. not regulated.
adj. not rehearsed.
unrelated adj. not related. ЬЬunrelatedness n.
unrelaxed adj. not relaxed.
adj. 1 not relenting or yielding. 2 unmerciful. 3 not abating
or relaxing. ЬЬunrelentingly adv. unrelentingness n.
adj. not reliable; erratic. ЬЬunreliability n. unreliableness
n. unreliably adv.
adj. 1 lacking the relief given by contrast or variation. 2
not aided or assisted. ЬЬunrelievedly adv.
adj. 1 not concerned with religion. 2 irreligious.
adj. not remarkable; uninteresting. ЬЬunremarkably adv.
adj. not remembered; forgotten.
adj. never relaxing or slackening, incessant. ЬЬunremittingly
adv. unremittingness n.
adj. bringing no, or not enough, profit or income.
ЬЬunremuneratively adv. unremunerativeness n.
adj. that cannot be renewed. ЬЬunrenewed adj.
adj. not repealed.
adj. 1 that cannot be done, made, or said again. 2 too
indecent to be said again. ЬЬunrepeatability n.
adj. not repentant, impenitent. ЬЬunrepentantly adv.
adj. not reported.
adj. not representative. ЬЬunrepresentativeness n.
adj. not represented.
adj. not reproved.
adj. not requested or asked for.
adj. (of love etc.) not returned. ЬЬunrequitedly adv.
unreserve n. lack of reserve; frankness.
adj. 1 not reserved (unreserved seats). 2 without
reservations; absolute (unreserved confidence). 3 free from
reserve (an unreserved nature). ЬЬunreservedly adv.
adj. not resisted. ЬЬunresistedly adv.
adj. not resisting. ЬЬunresistingly adv. unresistingness n.
adj. (of a problem, conflict, etc.) that cannot be resolved.
adj. 1 a uncertain how to act, irresolute. b uncertain in
opinion, undecided. 2 (of questions etc.) undetermined,
undecided, unsolved. 3 not broken up or dissolved.
ЬЬunresolvedly adv. unresolvedness n.
adj. not responsive. ЬЬunresponsively adv. unresponsiveness
unrest n. 1 lack of rest. 2 restlessness, disturbance, agitation.
unrested adj. not refreshed by rest.
unrestful adj. not restful. ЬЬunrestfully adv.
unresting adj. not resting. ЬЬunrestingly adv.
adj. not restored.
adj. not restrained. ЬЬunrestrainedly adv. unrestrainedness
adj. not restricted. ЬЬunrestrictedly adv. unrestrictedness
adj. 1 not reciprocated or responded to. 2 not having returned
or been returned.
adj. not revealed; secret.
adj. (esp. of a decision etc.) not reversed.
unrevised adj. not revised; in an original form.
unrevoked adj. not revoked or annulled; still in force.
adj. not rewarded.
adj. not rewarding or satisfying.
unrhymed adj. not rhymed.
adj. not rhythmical. ЬЬunrhythmically adv.
unridable adj. that cannot be ridden.
unridden adj. not ridden.
unriddle v.tr. solve or explain (a mystery etc.). ЬЬunriddler n.
unrig v.tr. (unrigged, unrigging) 1 remove the rigging from (a ship).
2 dial. undress.
adj. not righteous; unjust, wicked, dishonest. ЬЬunrighteously
adv. unrighteousness n. [OE unrihtwis (as UN-(1), RIGHTEOUS)]
unrip v.tr. (unripped, unripping) open by ripping.
unripe adj. not ripe. ЬЬunripeness n.
unrisen adj. that has not risen.
adj. (US unrivaled) having no equal; peerless.
unrivet v.tr. (unriveted, unriveting) 1 undo, unfasten, or detach by
the removal of rivets. 2 loosen, relax, undo, detach.
unrobe v.tr. & intr. 1 disrobe. 2 undress.
unroll v.tr. & intr. 1 open out from a rolled-up state. 2 display or
be displayed in this form.
adj. not romantic. ЬЬunromantically adv.
unroof v.tr. remove the roof of.
unroofed adj. not provided with a roof.
unroot v.tr. 1 uproot. 2 eradicate.
unrope v. 1 tr. detach by undoing a rope. 2 intr. Mountaineering
detach oneself from a rope.
unrounded adj. not rounded.
unrove past of UNREEVE.
unroyal adj. not royal.
unruffled adj. 1 not agitated or disturbed; calm. 2 not physically
unruled adj. 1 not ruled or governed. 2 not having ruled lines.
unruly adj. (unrulier, unruliest) not easily controlled or
disciplined, disorderly. ЬЬunruliness n. [ME f. UN-(1) + ruly
UNRWA abbr. United Nations Relief and Works Agency.
unsaddle v.tr. 1 remove the saddle from (a horse etc.). 2 dislodge from
unsafe adj. not safe. ЬЬunsafely adv. unsafeness n.
unsaid(1) adj. not said or uttered.
unsaid(2) past and past part. of UNSAY.
adj. not salaried.
adj. not saleable. ЬЬunsaleability n.
unsalted adj. not salted.
adj. not sanctified.
adj. not sanctioned.
adj. not sanitary.
adj. not satisfactory; poor, unacceptable. ЬЬunsatisfactorily
adv. unsatisfactoriness n.
adj. not satisfied. ЬЬunsatisfiedness n.
adj. not satisfying. ЬЬunsatisfyingly adv.
adj. 1 Chem. (of a compound, esp. a fat or oil) having double
or triple bonds in its molecule and therefore capable of further
reaction. 2 not saturated. ЬЬunsaturation n.
unsaved adj. not saved.
unsavoury adj. (US unsavory) 1 disagreeable to the taste, smell, or
feelings; disgusting. 2 disagreeable, unpleasant (an unsavoury
character). 3 morally offensive. ЬЬunsavourily adv.
unsay v.tr. (past and past part. unsaid) retract (a statement).
unsayable adj. that cannot be said.
adj. that cannot be scaled.
unscarred adj. not scarred or damaged.
unscathed adj. without suffering any injury.
unscented adj. not scented.
adj. not scheduled.
adj. not scholarly. ЬЬunscholarliness n.
adj. 1 uneducated, untaught. 2 not sent to school. 3
untrained, undisciplined. 4 not made artificial by education.
adj. 1 not in accordance with scientific principles. 2 not
familiar with science. ЬЬunscientifically adv.
v.tr. restore from a scrambled state, esp. interpret (a
scrambled transmission etc.). ЬЬunscrambler n.
adj. 1 a (esp. of coal) not passed through a screen or sieve.
b not investigated or checked, esp. for security or medical
problems. 2 not provided with a screen. 3 not shown on a
unscrew v. 1 tr. & intr. unfasten or be unfastened by turning or
removing a screw or screws or by twisting like a screw. 2 tr.
loosen (a screw).
adj. (of a speech etc.) delivered without a prepared script.
adj. against or not in accordance with Scripture.
adj. having no scruples, unprincipled. ЬЬunscrupulously adv.
unseal v.tr. break the seal of; open (a letter, receptacle, etc.).
unsealed adj. not sealed.
adj. inscrutable. ЬЬunsearchableness n. unsearchably adv.
adj. not searched.
adj. 1 not appropriate to the season. 2 untimely, inopportune.
ЬЬunseasonableness n. unseasonably adv.
adj. 1 not flavoured with salt, herbs, etc. 2 (esp. of timber)
not matured. 3 not habituated.
unseat v.tr. 1 remove from a seat, esp. in an election. 2 dislodge
from a seat, esp. on horseback.
adj. 1 that cannot be expressed in words. 2 indescribably bad
or objectionable. ЬЬunspeakableness n. unspeakably adv.
adj. not specialized.
adj. not specified.
adj. not spectacular; dull. ЬЬunspectacularly adv.
unspent adj. 1 not expended or used. 2 not exhausted or used up.
unspilled adj. not spilt.
unspilt adj. not spilt.
adj. not spiritual; earthly, worldly. ЬЬunspirituality n.
unspiritually adv. unspiritualness n.
unspoiled adj. 1 unspoilt. 2 not plundered.
unspoilt adj. not spoilt.
unspoken adj. 1 not expressed in speech. 2 not uttered as speech.
adj. not sportsmanlike; not fair or generous. ЬЬunsportingly
adv. unsportingness n.
unspotted adj. 1 a not marked with a spot or spots. b morally pure. 2
unsprung adj. not provided with a spring or springs; not resilient.
unstable adj. (unstabler, unstablest) 1 not stable. 2 changeable. 3
showing a tendency to sudden mental or emotional changes.
Ьunstable equilibrium a state in which a body when disturbed
tends to move farther from equilibrium. ЬЬunstableness n.
unstained adj. not stained.
unstamped adj. 1 not marked by stamping. 2 not having a stamp affixed.
adj. not starched.
unstated adj. not stated or declared.
adj. not statesmanlike.
adj. contrary to a statute or statutes. ЬЬunstatutably adv.
adj. not steadfast.
unsteady adj. (unsteadier, unsteadiest) 1 not steady or firm. 2
changeable, fluctuating. 3 not uniform or regular.
ЬЬunsteadily adv. unsteadiness n.
unstick v. & n. --v. (past and past part. unstuck) 1 tr. separate (a
thing stuck to another). 2 Aeron. colloq. a intr. take off.
b tr. cause (an aircraft) to take off. --n. Aeron. colloq.
the moment of take-off. Ьcome unstuck colloq. come to grief,
unthought adj. (often foll. by of) not thought of.
adj. unthinking, unmindful; thoughtless. ЬЬunthoughtfully adv.
unthread v.tr. 1 take the thread out of (a needle etc.). 2 find one's
way out of (a maze).
unthrifty adj. 1 wasteful, extravagant, prodigal. 2 not thriving or
flourishing. ЬЬunthriftily adv. unthriftiness n.
unthrone v.tr. dethrone.
untidy adj. (untidier, untidiest) not neat or orderly. ЬЬuntidily
adv. untidiness n.
untie v.tr. (pres. part. untying) 1 undo (a knot etc.). 2 unfasten
the cords etc. of (a package etc.). 3 release from bonds or
attachment. [OE untigan (as UN-(2), TIE)]
untied adj. not tied.
until prep. & conj. = TILL(1). °Used esp. when beginning a sentence
and in formal style, e.g. until you told me, I had no idea; he
resided there until his decease. [orig. northern ME untill f.
ON und as far as + TILL(1)]
unto prep. archaic = TO prep. (in all uses except as the sign of
the infinitive); (do unto others; faithful unto death; take unto
oneself). [ME f. UNTIL, with TO replacing northern TILL(1)]
untold adj. 1 not told. 2 not (able to be) counted or measured
(untold misery). [OE unteald (as UN-(1), TOLD)]
adj. & n. --adj. that may not or cannot be touched. --n. a
member of a hereditary Hindu group held to defile members of
higher castes on contact. °Use of the term, and social
restrictions accompanying it, were declared illegal under the
Indian constitution in 1949. ЬЬuntouchability n.
untouched adj. 1 not touched. 2 not affected physically, not harmed,
modified, used, or tasted. 3 not affected by emotion. 4 not
adj. that cannot be traced. ЬЬuntraceably adv.
untraced adj. not traced.
untrained adj. not trained.
adj. not trammelled, unhampered.
adj. not transferable.
adj. that cannot be translated satisfactorily.
ЬЬuntranslatability n. untranslatably adv.
adj. that cannot be transported.
adj. (US untraveled) 1 that has not travelled. 2 that has not
been travelled over or through.
adj. (of a disease etc.) that cannot be treated.
untreated adj. not treated.
untried adj. 1 not tried or tested. 2 inexperienced. 3 not yet tried
by a judge.
untrodden adj. not trodden, stepped on, or traversed.
adj. not troubled; calm, tranquil.
untrue adj. 1 not true, contrary to what is the fact. 2 (often foll.
by to) not faithful or loyal. 3 deviating from an accepted
standard. ЬЬuntruly adv. [OE untreowe etc. (as UN-(1), TRUE)]
untruss v.tr. unfasten (a trussed fowl).
adj. not trustworthy. ЬЬuntrustworthiness n.
untruth n. (pl. untruths) 1 the state of being untrue, falsehood. 2 a
false statement (told me an untruth). [OE untreowth etc. (as
adj. not truthful. ЬЬuntruthfully adv. untruthfulness n.
untuck v.tr. free (bedclothes etc.) from being tucked in or up.
untunable adj. (of a piano etc.) that cannot be tuned.
untuned adj. 1 not in tune, not made tuneful. 2 (of a radio receiver
etc.) not tuned to any one frequency. 3 not in harmony or
untuneful adj. not tuneful. ЬЬuntunefully adv. untunefulness n.
unturned adj. 1 not turned over, round, away, etc. 2 not shaped by
untutored adj. uneducated, untaught.
untwine v.tr. & intr. untwist, unwind.
untwist v.tr. & intr. open from a twisted or spiralled state.
untying pres. part. of UNTIE.
unusable adj. not usable.
unused adj. 1 a not in use. b never having been used. 2 (foll. by
to) not accustomed.
unusual adj. 1 not usual. 2 exceptional, remarkable. ЬЬunusually adv.
adj. inexpressible; beyond description (unutterable torment; an
unutterable fool). ЬЬunutterableness n. unutterably adv.
unuttered adj. not uttered or expressed.
adj. not vaccinated.
unvalued adj. 1 not regarded as valuable. 2 not having been valued.
adj. not vanquished.
unvaried adj. not varied.
adj. 1 not varnished. 2 (of a statement or person) plain and
straightforward (the unvarnished truth).
unvarying adj. not varying. ЬЬunvaryingly adv. unvaryingness n.
unveil v. 1 tr. remove a veil from. 2 tr. remove a covering from (a
statue, plaque, etc.) as part of the ceremony of the first
public display. 3 tr. disclose, reveal, make publicly known. 4
intr. remove one's veil.
adj. 1 not provided with a means of ventilation. 2 not
adj. that cannot be verified.
adj. not verified.
unversed adj. (usu. foll. by in) not experienced or skilled.
unviable adj. not viable. ЬЬunviability n.
adj. not violated.
unvisited adj. not visited.
adj. not vitiated.
unvoiced adj. 1 not spoken. 2 Phonet. not voiced.
unwaged adj. not receiving a wage; out of work.
unwanted adj. not wanted.
unwarlike adj. not warlike.
unwarmed adj. not warmed.
unwarned adj. not warned or forewarned.
adj. indefensible, unjustifiable. ЬЬunwarrantableness n.
adj. 1 unauthorized. 2 unjustified.
unwary adj. 1 not cautious. 2 (often foll. by of) not aware of
possible danger etc. ЬЬunwarily adv. unwariness n.
unwashed adj. 1 not washed. 2 not usually washed or clean. Ьthe great
unwashed colloq. the rabble.
unwatched adj. not watched.
adj. not watchful.
unwatered adj. not watered.
adj. not wavering. ЬЬunwaveringly adv.
unweaned adj. not weaned.
adj. that cannot be worn.
unwearied adj. 1 not wearied or tired. 2 never becoming weary,
indefatigable. 3 unremitting. ЬЬunweariedly adv.
unweary adj. not weary.
adj. 1 persistent. 2 not causing or producing weariness.
unwed adj. unmarried.
unwedded adj. unmarried. ЬЬunweddedness n.
unweeded adj. not cleared of weeds.
unweighed adj. 1 not considered; hasty. 2 (of goods) not weighed.
unwelcome adj. not welcome or acceptable. ЬЬunwelcomely adv.
unwell adj. 1 not in good health; (somewhat) ill. 2 indisposed.
unwept adj. 1 not wept for. 2 (of tears) not wept.
unwetted adj. not wetted.
unwhipped adj. 1 not punished by or as by whipping. 2 Brit. not subject
to a party whip.
adj. 1 not promoting, or detrimental to, physical or moral
health. 2 unhealthy, insalubrious. 3 unhealthy-looking.
ЬЬunwholesomely adv. unwholesomeness n.
unwieldy adj. (unwieldier, unwieldiest) cumbersome, clumsy, or hard to
manage, owing to size, shape, or weight. ЬЬunwieldily adv.
unwieldiness n. [ME f. UN-(1) + wieldy active (now dial.) f.
unwilling adj. not willing or inclined; reluctant. ЬЬunwillingly adv.
unwillingness n. [OE unwillende (as UN-(1), WILLING)]
unwind v. (past and past part. unwound) 1 a tr. draw out (a thing
that has been wound). b intr. become drawn out after having
been wound. 2 intr. & tr. colloq. relax.
unwinking adj. 1 not winking. 2 watchful, vigilant. ЬЬunwinkingly adv.
adj. that cannot be won.
unwisdom n. lack of wisdom, folly, imprudence. [OE unwisdom (as UN-(1),
up adv., prep., adj., n., & v. --adv. 1 at, in, or towards a
higher place or position (jumped up in the air; what are they
doing up there?). 2 to or in a place regarded as higher, esp.:
a northwards (up in Scotland). b Brit. towards a major city or
a university (went up to London). 3 colloq. ahead etc. as
indicated (went up front). 4 a to or in an erect position or
condition (stood it up). b to or in a prepared or required
position (wound up the watch). c in or into a condition of
efficiency, activity, or progress (stirred up trouble; the house
is up for sale; the hunt is up). 5 Brit. in a stronger or
winning position or condition (our team was three goals up; am
њ10 up on the transaction). 6 (of a computer) running and
available for use. 7 to the place or time in question or where
the speaker etc. is (a child came up to me; went straight up to
the door; has been fine up till now). 8 at or to a higher price
or value (our costs are up; shares are up). 9 a completely or
effectually (burn up; eat up; tear up; use up). b more loudly
or clearly (speak up). 10 in a state of completion; denoting
the end of availability, supply, etc. (time is up). 11 into a
compact, accumulated, or secure state (pack up; save up; tie
up). 12 out of bed (are you up yet?). 13 (of the sun etc.)
having risen. 14 happening, esp. unusually or unexpectedly
(something is up). 15 taught or informed (is well up in
French). 16 (usu. foll. by before) appearing for trial etc.
(was up before the magistrate). 17 (of a road etc.) being
repaired. 18 (of a jockey) in the saddle. 19 towards the
source of a river. 20 inland. 21 (of the points etc. in a
game): a registered on the scoreboard. b forming the total
score for the time being. 22 upstairs, esp. to bed (are you
going up yet?). 23 (of a theatre-curtain) raised etc. to reveal
the stage. 24 (as int.) get up. 25 (of a ship's helm) with
rudder to leeward. 26 in rebellion. --prep. 1 upwards along,
through, or into (climbed up the ladder). 2 from the bottom to
the top of. 3 along (walked up the road). 4 a at or in a
higher part of (is situated up the street). b towards the
source of (a river). --adj. 1 directed upwards (up stroke). 2
Brit. of travel towards a capital or centre (the up train; the
up platform). 3 (of beer etc.) effervescent, frothy. --n. a
spell of good fortune. --v. (upped, upping) 1 intr. colloq.
start up; begin abruptly to say or do something (upped and hit
him). 2 intr. (foll. by with) raise; pick up (upped with his
stick). 3 tr. increase or raise, esp. abruptly (upped all their
prices). Ьbe all up with be disastrous or hopeless for (a
person). on the up and up colloq. 1 Brit. steadily improving.
2 esp. US honest(ly); on the level. something is up colloq.
something unusual or undesirable is afoot or happening. up
against 1 close to. 2 in or into contact with. 3 colloq.
confronted with (up against a problem). up against it colloq.
in great difficulties. up-anchor Naut. weigh anchor. up and
about (or doing) having risen from bed; active. up-and-coming
colloq. (of a person) making good progress and likely to
succeed. up and down 1 to and fro (along). 2 in every
direction. 3 colloq. in varying health or spirits. up-and-over
(of a door) opened by being raised and pushed back into a
horizontal position. up draught an upward draught, esp. in a
chimney. up for available for or being considered for (office
etc.). up hill and down dale up and down hills on an arduous
journey. up in arms see ARM(2). up-market adj. & adv. towards
or relating to the dearer or more affluent sector of the market.
up the pole see POLE(1). ups and downs 1 rises and falls. 2
alternate good and bad fortune. up the spout see SPOUT. up
stage at or to the back of a theatre stage. up sticks see
STICK(1). up-stroke a stroke made or written upwards. up to 1
until (up to the present). 2 not more than (you can have up to
five). 3 less than or equal to (sums up to њ10). 4 incumbent
on (it is up to you to say). 5 capable of or fit for (am not up
to a long walk). 6 occupied or busy with (what have you been up
to?). up to date see DATE(1). up to the mark see MARK(1). up
to the minute see MINUTE(1). up to snuff see SNUFF(2). up to
one's tricks see TRICK. up to a person's tricks see TRICK. up
with int. expressing support for a stated person or thing.
what's up? colloq. 1 what is going on? 2 what is the matter?
[OE up(p), uppe, rel. to OHG uf]
up- prefix in senses of UP, added: 1 as an adverb to verbs and
verbal derivations, = 'upwards' (upcurved; update). 2 as a
preposition to nouns forming adverbs and adjectives (up-country;
uphill). 3 as an adjective to nouns (upland; up-stroke). [OE
up(p)-, = UP]
Upanishad n. each of a series of philosophical compositions concluding
the exposition of the Vedas. [Skr. f. upa near + ni-sad sit
upas n. 1 (in full upas-tree) a a Javanese tree, Antiaris toxicaria,
yielding a milky sap used as arrow-poison. b Mythol. a Javanese
tree thought to be fatal to whatever came near it. c a
pernicious influence, practice, etc. 2 the poisonous sap of
upas and other trees. [Malay upas poison]
upbeat n. & v. --n. an unaccented beat in music. --adj. colloq.
optimistic or cheerful.
upbraid v.tr. (often foll. by with, for) chide or reproach (a person).
ЬЬupbraiding n. [OE upbredan (as UP-, bredan = bregdan BRAID in
obs. sense 'brandish')]
n. the bringing up of a child; education. [obs. upbring to
rear (as UP-, BRING)]
upcast n. & v. --n. 1 the act of casting up; an upward throw. 2
Mining a shaft through which air leaves a mine. 3 Geol. =
UPTHROW. --v.tr. (past and past part. upcast) cast up.
upcoming adj. esp. US forthcoming; about to happen.
adv. & adj. inland; towards the interior of a country.
update v. & n. --v.tr. bring up to date. --n. 1 the act or an
instance of updating. 2 an updated version; a set of updated
information. ЬЬupdater n.
up-end v.tr. & intr. set or rise up on end.
upfield adv. in or to a position nearer to the opponents' end of a
football etc. field.
upfold n. Geol. an anticline.
upfront adv. & adj. colloq. --adv. (usu. up front) 1 at the front; in
front. 2 (of payments) in advance. --adj. 1 honest, open,
frank. 2 (of payments) made in advance. 3 at the front or most
upgrade v. & n. --v.tr. 1 raise in rank etc. 2 improve (equipment,
machinery, etc.) esp. by replacing components. --n. 1 the act
or an instance of upgrading. 2 an upgraded piece of equipment
etc. Ьon the upgrade 1 improving in health etc. 2 advancing,
progressing. ЬЬupgrader n.
upgrowth n. the process or result of growing upwards.
upheaval n. 1 a violent or sudden change or disruption. 2 Geol. an
upward displacement of part of the earth's crust. 3 the act or
an instance of heaving up.
upheave v. 1 tr. heave or lift up, esp. forcibly. 2 intr. rise up.
uphill adv., adj., & n. --adv. in an ascending direction up a hill,
slope, etc. --adj. 1 sloping up; ascending. 2 arduous,
difficult (an uphill task). --n. an upward slope.
uphold v.tr. (past and past part. upheld) 1 confirm or maintain (a
decision etc., esp. of another). 2 give support or countenance
to (a person, practice, etc.). ЬЬupholder n.
upholster v.tr. 1 provide (furniture) with upholstery. 2 furnish (a room
etc.) with furniture, carpets, etc. Ьwell-upholstered joc. (of
a person) fat. [back-form. f. UPHOLSTERER]
n. a person who upholsters furniture, esp. professionally.
[obs. upholster (n.) f. UPHOLD (in obs. sense 'keep in
repair') + -STER]
n. 1 textile covering, padding, springs, etc., for furniture.
2 an upholsterer's work.
upkeep n. 1 maintenance in good condition. 2 the cost or means of
upland n. & adj. --n. the higher or inland parts of a country. --adj.
of or relating to these parts.
uplift v. & n. --v.tr. 1 raise; lift up. 2 elevate or stimulate
morally or spiritually. --n. 1 the act or an instance of being
raised. 2 Geol. the raising of part of the earth's surface. 3
colloq. a morally or spiritually elevating influence. 4 support
for the bust etc. from a garment. ЬЬuplifter n. uplifting adj.
(esp. in sense 2 of v.).
upmost var. of UPPERMOST.
upon prep. = ON. ° Upon is sometimes more formal, and is preferred
in once upon a time and upon my word, and in uses such as row
upon row of seats and Christmas is almost upon us. [ME f. UP +
ON prep., after ON upp ]
upper(1) adj. & n. --adj. 1 higher in place; situated above another
part (the upper atmosphere; the upper lip). 2 higher in rank or
dignity etc. (the upper class). 3 situated on higher ground
(Upper Egypt). --n. the part of a boot or shoe above the sole.
Ьon one's uppers colloq. extremely short of money. upper case
see CASE(2). upper class the highest class of society, esp. the
aristocracy. upper-class adj. of the upper class. the upper
crust colloq. the aristocracy. upper-cut n. an upwards blow
delivered with the arm bent. --v.tr. hit with an upper-cut.
the upper hand dominance or control. Upper House the higher
house in a legislature, esp. the House of Lords. the upper
regions 1 the sky. 2 heaven. upper works the part of a ship
that is above the water when fully laden. [ME f. UP + -ER(2)]
upper(2) n. sl. a stimulant drug, esp. an amphetamine. [UP v. +
uppermost adj. & adv. --adj. (also upmost) 1 highest in place or rank.
2 predominant. --adv. at or to the highest or most prominent
uppish adj. esp. Brit. colloq. self-assertive or arrogant.
ЬЬuppishly adv. uppishness n.
uppity adj. colloq. uppish, snobbish. [fanciful f. UP]
upraise v.tr. raise to a higher level.
upright adj. & n. --adj. 1 erect, vertical (an upright posture; stood
upright). 2 (of a piano) with vertical strings. 3 (of a person
or behaviour) righteous; strictly honourable or honest. 4 (of a
picture, book, etc.) greater in height than breadth. --n. 1 a
post or rod fixed upright esp. as a structural support. 2 an
upright piano. ЬЬuprightly adv. uprightness n. [OE upriht (as
uprise v.intr. (uprose, uprisen) rise (to a standing position, etc.).
uprising n. a rebellion or revolt.
uproar n. a tumult; a violent disturbance. [Du. oproer f. op up +
roer confusion, assoc. with ROAR]
adj. 1 very noisy. 2 provoking loud laughter. ЬЬuproariously
adv. uproariousness n.
uproot v.tr. 1 pull (a plant etc.) up from the ground. 2 displace (a
person) from an accustomed location. 3 eradicate, destroy.
uprose past of UPRISE.
uprush n. an upward rush, esp. Psychol. from the subconscious.
var. of UPSY-DAISY.
upset v., n., & adj. --v. (upsetting; past and past part. upset) 1
tr. & intr. overturn or be overturned. 2 tr. disturb the
composure or digestion of (was very upset by the news; ate
something that upset me). 3 tr. disrupt. 4 tr. shorten and
thicken (metal, esp. a tire) by hammering or pressure. --n. 1
a condition of upsetting or being upset (a stomach upset). 2 a
surprising result in a game etc. --adj. disturbed (an upset
stomach). Ьupset price the lowest acceptable selling price of a
property in an auction etc.; a reserve price. ЬЬupsetter n.
upshot n. the final or eventual outcome or conclusion.
adv. & adj. --adv. 1 with the upper part where the lower part
should be; in an inverted position. 2 in or into total disorder
(everything was turned upside down). --adj. (also upside-down
attrib.) that is positioned upside down; inverted. Ьupside-down
cake a sponge cake baked with fruit in a syrup at the bottom,
and inverted for serving. [ME, orig. up so down, perh. = 'up
as if down']
upsides adv. Brit. colloq. (foll. by with) equal with (a person) by
revenge, retaliation, etc. [upside = top part]
upsilon n. the twelfth letter of the Greek alphabet. [Gk, = slender U
f. psilos slender, with ref. to its later coincidence in sound
with Gk oi]
upstage adj., adv., & v. --adj. & adv. 1 nearer the back of a theatre
stage. 2 snobbish(ly). --v.tr. 1 (of an actor) move upstage
to make (another actor) face away from the audience. 2 divert
attention from (a person) to oneself; outshine.
upstairs adv., adj., & n. --adv. to or on an upper floor. --adj.
(also upstair) situated upstairs. --n. an upper floor.
adj. 1 standing up. 2 strong and healthy. 3 honest or
upstart n. & adj. --n. a person who has risen suddenly to prominence,
esp. one who behaves arrogantly. --adj. 1 that is an upstart.
2 of or characteristic of an upstart.
upstate n., adj., & adv. US --n. part of a State remote from its large
cities, esp. the northern part. --adj. of or relating to this
part. --adv. in or to this part. ЬЬupstater n.
upstream adv. & adj. --adv. against the flow of a stream etc. --adj.
upsurge n. an upward surge; a rise (esp. in feelings etc.).
upswept adj. 1 (of the hair) combed to the top of the head. 2 curved
or sloped upwards.
upswing n. an upward movement or trend.
int. (also ups-a-daisy) expressing encouragement to a child who
is being lifted or has fallen. [earlier up-a-daisy: cf.
uptake n. 1 colloq. understanding; comprehension (esp. quick or slow
on the uptake). 2 the act or an instance of taking up.
upthrow n. 1 the act or an instance of throwing upwards. 2 Geol. an
upward dislocation of strata.
upthrust n. 1 upward thrust, e.g. of a fluid on an immersed body. 2
Geol. = UPHEAVAL.
uptight adj. colloq. 1 nervously tense or angry. 2 US rigidly
uptown adj., adv., & n. US --adj. of or in the residential part of a
town or city. --adv. in or into this part. --n. this part.
upturn n. & v. --n. 1 an upward trend; an improvement. 2 an
upheaval. --v.tr. turn up or upside down.
UPU abbr. Universal Postal Union.
upward adv. & adj. --adv. (also upwards) towards what is higher,
superior, larger in amount, more important, or earlier. --adj.
moving, extending, pointing, or leading upward. Ьupwards of
more than (found upwards of forty specimens). [OE upweard(es)
(as UP, -WARD)]
upwardly adv. in an upward direction. Ьupwardly mobile able or aspiring
to advance socially or professionally.
upwarp n. Geol. a broad surface elevation; an anticline.
upwind adj. & adv. against the direction of the wind.
uracil n. Biochem. a pyrimidine derivative found in living tissue as
a component base of RNA. [UREA + ACETIC]
uraemia n. (US uremia) Med. a morbid condition due to the presence in
the blood of urinary matter normally eliminated by the kidneys.
ЬЬuraemic adj. [Gk ouron urine + haima blood]
uraeus n. the sacred serpent as an emblem of power represented on the
head-dress of Egyptian divinities and sovereigns. [mod.L f. Gk
ouraios, repr. the Egypt. word for 'cobra']
n. & adj. --n. Philol. a family of Finno-Ugric, Turkic,
Mongolian, and other agglutinative languages of N. Europe and
Asia. --adj. 1 of or relating to this family of languages. 2
of or relating to the Ural and Altaic mountain ranges in the
USSR and central Asia.
uranium n. Chem. a radioactive grey dense metallic element occurring
naturally in pitchblende, and capable of nuclear fission and
therefore used as a source of nuclear energy. °Symb.: U.
ЬЬuranic adj. [mod.L, f. URANUS: cf. tellurium]
urano-(1) comb. form the heavens. [Gk ouranos heaven(s)]
urano-(2) comb. form uranium.
n. the branch of astronomy concerned with describing and
mapping the stars, planets, etc. ЬЬuranographer n.
Uranus n. a planet discovered by Herschel in 1781, the outermost of
the solar system except Neptune and Pluto. [L f. Gk Ouranos
heaven, Uranus, in Gk Mythol. the son of Gaea (Earth) and father
of Kronos (Saturn), the Titans, etc.]
urban adj. of, living in, or situated in a town or city (an urban
population) (opp. RURAL). Ьurban district Brit. hist. a
group of urban communities governed by an elected council.
urban guerrilla a terrorist operating in an urban area. urban
renewal slum clearance and redevelopment in a city or town.
urban sprawl the uncontrolled expansion of urban areas. [L
urbanus f. urbs urbis city]
urbane adj. courteous; suave; elegant and refined in manner.
ЬЬurbanely adv. urbaneness n. [F urbain or L urbanus: see
urbanism n. 1 urban character or way of life. 2 a study of urban life.
urbanite n. a dweller in a city or town.
urbanity n. 1 an urbane quality; refinement of manner. 2 urban life.
[F urbanit‚ or L urbanitas (as URBAN)]
urbanize v.tr. (also -ise) 1 make urban. 2 destroy the rural quality of
(a district). ЬЬurbanization n. [F urbaniser (as URBAN)]
urceolate adj. Bot. having the shape of a pitcher, with a large body and
small mouth. [L urceolus dimin. of urceus pitcher]
urchin n. 1 a mischievous child, esp. young and raggedly dressed. 2 =
sea urchin. 3 archaic a a hedgehog. b a goblin. [ME hirchon,
urcheon f. ONF herichon, OF heri‡on ult. f. L (h)ericius
Urdu n. a language related to Hindi but with many Persian words, an
official language of Pakistan and also used in India. [Hind.
(zaban i) urdu (language of the) camp, f. Pers. urdu f. Turki
ordu: see HORDE]
-ure suffix forming: 1 nouns of action or process (censure; closure;
seizure). 2 nouns of result (creature; scripture). 3
collective nouns (legislature; nature). 4 nouns of function
(judicature; ligature). [from or after OF -ure f. L -ura]
urea n. Biochem. a soluble colourless crystalline nitrogenous
compound contained esp. in the urine of mammals. ЬЬureal adj.
[mod.L f. F ur‚e f. Gk ouron urine]
uremia US var. of URAEMIA.
ureter n. the duct by which urine passes from the kidney to the
bladder or cloaca. ЬЬureteral adj. ureteric adj. ureteritis
n. [F uretЉre or mod.L ureter f. Gk oureter f. oureo urinate]
urethane n. Chem. a crystalline amide, ethyl carbamate, used in
plastics and paints. [F ur‚thane (as UREA, ETHANE)]
urethra n. (pl. urethrae or urethras) the duct by which urine is
discharged from the bladder. ЬЬurethral adj. urethritis n.
[LL f. Gk ourethra (as URETER)]
urge v. & n. --v.tr. 1 (often foll. by on) drive forcibly; impel;
hasten (urged them on; urged the horses forward). 2 (often
foll. by to + infin. or that + clause) encourage or entreat
earnestly or persistently (urged them to go; urged them to
action; urged that they should go). 3 (often foll. by on, upon)
advocate (an action or argument etc.) pressingly or emphatically
(to a person). 4 adduce forcefully as a reason or justification
(urged the seriousness of the problem). 5 ply (a person etc.)
hard with argument or entreaty. --n. 1 an urging impulse or
tendency. 2 a strong desire. ЬЬurger n. [L urgere press,
urgent adj. 1 requiring immediate action or attention (an urgent need
for help). 2 importunate; earnest and persistent in demand.
ЬЬurgency n. urgently adv. [ME f. F (as URGE)]
URI abbr. upper respiratory infection.
-uria comb. form forming nouns denoting that a substance is (esp.
excessively) present in the urine. [mod.L f. Gk -ouria (as
uric adj. of or relating to urine. Ьuric acid a crystalline acid
forming a constituent of urine. [F urique (as URINE)]
urinal n. 1 a sanitary fitting, usu. against a wall, for men to
urinate into. 2 a place or receptacle for urination. [ME f. OF
f. LL urinal neut. of urinalis (as URINE)]
n. (pl. urinalyses) the chemical analysis of urine esp. for
urinary adj. 1 of or relating to urine. 2 affecting or occurring in
the urinary system (urinary diseases).
urinate v.intr. discharge urine. ЬЬurination n. [med.L urinare (as
urine n. a pale-yellow fluid secreted as waste from the blood by the
kidneys, stored in the bladder, and discharged through the
urethra. ЬЬurinous adj. [ME f. OF f. L urina]
urn n. & v. --n. 1 a vase with a foot and usu. a rounded body,
esp. for storing the ashes of the cremated dead or as a vessel
or measure. 2 a large vessel with a tap, in which tea or coffee
etc. is made or kept hot. 3 poet. anything in which a dead body
or its remains are preserved, e.g. a grave. --v.tr. enclose in
an urn. ЬЬurnful n. (pl. -fuls). [ME f. L urna, rel. to
uro-(1) comb. form urine. [Gk ouron urine]
uro-(2) comb. form tail. [Gk oura tail]
urochord n. the notochord of a tunicate.
urodele n. any amphibian of the order Urodela, having a tail when in
the adult form, including newts and salamanders. [URO-(2) + Gk
adj. of or relating to urinary and genital products or organs.
urology n. the scientific study of the urinary system. ЬЬurologic adj.
uropygium n. the rump of a bird. [med.L f. Gk ouropugion]
uroscopy n. Med. hist. the examination of urine, esp. in diagnosis.
n. = the Great Bear (see BEAR(2)). [L, = greater bear]
n. = the Little Bear (see BEAR(2)). [L, = lesser bear]
ursine adj. of or like a bear. [L ursinus f. ursus bear]
Ursuline n. & adj. --n. a nun of an order founded by St Angela in 1535
for nursing the sick and teaching girls. --adj. of or relating
to this order. [St Ursula, the founder's patron saint]
urticaria n. Med. nettle-rash. [mod.L f. L urtica nettle f. urere
urticate v.tr. sting like a nettle. ЬЬurtication n. [med.L urticare f.
L urtica: see URTICARIA]
US abbr. 1 United States (of America). 2 Under-Secretary. 3
us pron. 1 objective case of WE (they saw us). 2 colloq. = WE
(it's us again). 3 colloq. = ME(1) (give us a kiss). [OE us f.
USA abbr. 1 United States of America. 2 US United States Army.
usable adj. that can be used. ЬЬusability n. usableness n.
USAF abbr. United States Air Force.
usage n. 1 a manner of using or treating; treatment (damaged by rough
usage). 2 habitual or customary practice, esp. as creating a
right, obligation, or standard. [ME f. OF f. us USE n.]
usance n. the time allowed by commercial usage for the payment of
foreign bills of exchange. [ME f. OF (as USE)]
USDAW abbr. (in the UK) Union of Shop, Distributive, and Allied
use v. & n. --v.tr. 1 cause to act or serve for a purpose; bring
into service; avail oneself of (rarely uses the car; use your
discretion). 2 treat (a person) in a specified manner (they
used him shamefully). 3 exploit for one's own ends (they are
just using you). 4 (in past; foll. by to + infin.) did or had
in the past (but no longer) as a customary practice or state (I
used to be an archaeologist; it used not (or did not use) to
rain so often). 5 (as used adj.) second-hand. 6 (as used
predic. adj.) (foll. by to) familiar by habit; accustomed (not
used to hard work). 7 apply (a name or title etc.) to oneself.
--n. 1 the act of using or the state of being used; application
to a purpose (put it to good use; is in daily use; worn and
polished with use). 2 the right or power of using (lost the use
of my right arm). 3 a the ability to be used (a torch would be
of use). b the purpose for which a thing can be used (it's no
use talking). 4 custom or usage (long use has reconciled me to
it). 5 the characteristic ritual and liturgy of a church or
diocese etc. 6 Law hist. the benefit or profit of lands, esp.
in the possession of another who holds them solely for the
beneficiary. Ьcould use colloq. would be glad to have; would
be improved by having. have no use for 1 be unable to find a
use for. 2 dislike or be impatient with. make use of 1 employ,
apply. 2 benefit from. use and wont established custom. use a
person's name quote a person as an authority or reference etc.
use up 1 consume completely, use the whole of. 2 find a use for
(something remaining). 3 exhaust or wear out e.g. with
overwork. [ME f. OF us, user, ult. f. L uti us- use]
useful adj. 1 a of use; serviceable. b producing or able to produce
good results (gave me some useful hints). 2 colloq. highly
creditable or efficient (a useful performance). Ьmake oneself
useful perform useful services. useful load the load carried by
an aircraft etc. in addition to its own weight. ЬЬusefully adv.
useless adj. 1 serving no purpose; unavailing (the contents were made
useless by damp; protest is useless). 2 colloq. feeble or
ineffectual (am useless at swimming). ЬЬuselessly adv.
user n. 1 a person who uses (esp. a particular commodity or service,
or a computer). 2 colloq. a drug addict. 3 Law the continued
use or enjoyment of a right etc. Ьright of user Law 1 a right
to use. 2 a presumptive right arising from the user.
user-friendly esp. Computing (of a machine or system) designed
to be easy to use.
usher n. & v. --n. 1 a person who shows people to their seats in a
hall or theatre etc. 2 a doorkeeper at a court etc. 3 Brit. an
officer walking before a person of rank. 4 archaic or joc. an
assistant teacher. --v.tr. 1 act as usher to. 2 (usu. foll.
by in) announce or show in etc. (ushered us into the room;
ushered in a new era). ЬЬushership n. [ME f. AF usser, OF
uissier, var. of huissier f. med.L ustiarius for L ostiarius f.
usherette n. a female usher esp. in a cinema.
USM abbr. Stock Exch. Unlisted Securities Market.
USN abbr. United States Navy.
n. esp. Ir. & Sc. whisky. [Ir. & Sc. Gael. uisge beatha
water of life: cf. WHISKY]
USS abbr. United States Ship.
USSR abbr. Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
usual adj. 1 such as commonly occurs, or is observed or done;
customary, habitual (the usual formalities; it is usual to tip
them; forgot my keys as usual). 2 (prec. by the, my, etc.)
colloq. a person's usual drink etc. ЬЬusually adv. usualness
n. [ME f. OF usual, usuel or LL usualis (as USE)]
n. (also usucapion) (in Roman and Scots law) the acquisition of
a title or right to property by uninterrupted and undisputed
possession for a prescribed term. [OF usucap(t)ion or L
usucap(t)io f. usucapere acquire by prescription f. usu by use
+ capere capt- take]
usufruct n. & v. --n. (in Roman and Scots law) the right of enjoying the
use and advantages of another's property short of the
destruction or waste of its substance. --v.tr. hold in
usufruct. ЬЬusufructuary adj. & n. [med.L usufructus f. L usus
(et) fructus f. usus USE + fructus FRUIT]
usurer n. a person who practises usury. [ME f. AF usurer, OF usureor
f. usure f. L usura: see USURY]
usurious adj. of, involving, or practising usury. ЬЬusuriously adv.
usurp v. 1 tr. seize or assume (a throne or power etc.) wrongfully.
2 intr. (foll. by on, upon) encroach. ЬЬusurpation n. usurper
n. [ME f. OF usurper f. L usurpare seize for use]
usury n. 1 the act or practice of lending money at interest, esp.
Law at an exorbitant rate. 2 interest at this rate. Ьwith
usury rhet. or poet. with increased force etc. [ME f. med.L
usuria f. L usura (as USE)]
UT abbr. 1 universal time. 2 US Utah (in official postal use).
ute n. Austral. & NZ sl. a utility truck. [abbr.]
utensil n. an implement or vessel, esp. for domestic use (cooking
utensils). [ME f. OF utensile f. med.L, neut. of L utensilis
usable (as USE)]
uterine adj. 1 of or relating to the uterus. 2 born of the same mother
but not the same father (sister uterine). [ME f. LL uterinus
uterus n. (pl. uteri) the womb. ЬЬuteritis n. [L]
utile adj. useful; having utility. [ME f. OF f. L utilis f. uti
adj. & n. --adj. 1 designed to be useful for a purpose rather
than attractive; severely practical. 2 of utilitarianism. --n.
an adherent of utilitarianism.
n. 1 the doctrine that actions are right if they are useful or
for the benefit of a majority. 2 the doctrine that the greatest
happiness of the greatest number should be the guiding principle
utility n. (pl. -ies) 1 the condition of being useful or profitable.
2 a useful thing. 3 = public utility. 4 (attrib.) a severely
practical and standardized (utility furniture). b made or
serving for utility. Ьutility room a room equipped with
appliances for washing, ironing, and other domestic work.
utility vehicle (or truck etc.) a vehicle capable of serving
various functions. [ME f. OF utilit‚ f. L utilitas -tatis (as
utilize v.tr. (also -ise) make practical use of; turn to account; use
effectively. ЬЬutilizable adj. utilization n. utilizer n. [F
utiliser f. It. utilizzare (as UTILE)]
-ution suffix forming nouns, = -ATION (solution). [F f. L -utio]
utmost adj. & n. furthest, extreme, or greatest (the utmost limits;
showed the utmost reluctance). --n. (prec. by the) the utmost
point or degree etc. Ьdo one's utmost do all that one can. [OE
ut(e)mest (as OUT, -MOST)]
Utopia n. an imagined perfect place or state of things. [title of a
book (1516) by Thomas More: mod.L f. Gk ou not + topos place]
Utopian adj. & n. (also utopian) --adj. characteristic of Utopia;
idealistic. --n. an idealistic reformer. ЬЬUtopianism n.
utricle n. a small cell or sac in an animal or plant, esp. one in the
inner ear. ЬЬutricular adj. [F utricule or L utriculus dimin.
of uter leather bag]
utter(1) attrib.adj. complete, total, absolute (utter misery; saw the
utter absurdity of it). ЬЬutterly adv. utterness n. [OE
utera, uttra, compar. adj. f. ut OUT: cf. OUTER]
utter(2) v.tr. 1 emit audibly (uttered a startled cry). 2 express in
spoken or written words. 3 Law put (esp. forged money) into
circulation. ЬЬutterable adj. utterer n. [ME f. MDu. uteren
make known, assim. to UTTER(1)]
utterance n. 1 the act or an instance of uttering. 2 a thing spoken. 3
a the power of speaking. b a manner of speaking. 4 Linguistics
an uninterrupted chain of spoken or written words not
necessarily corresponding to a single or complete grammatical
uttermost adj. furthest, extreme.
U-turn n. 1 the turning of a vehicle in a U-shaped course so as to
face in the opposite direction. 2 a reversal of policy.