ir·​re·​cov·​er·​able ˌir-i-ˈkə-v(ə-)rə-bəl How to pronounce irrecoverable (audio)
: not capable of being recovered or rectified : irreparable
an irrecoverable loss
irrecoverableness noun
irrecoverably adverb

Examples of irrecoverable in a Sentence

unfortunately, he was destined to live out his days as an irrecoverable alcoholic one computer file proved to be irrecoverable after the crash
Recent Examples on the Web The resulting jet of propellant that vented into space acted as an impromptu rocket that could have pushed the spacecraft into an irrecoverable tumble. Michael Greshko, Scientific American, 19 Jan. 2024 The West in fact faces a crucial choice right now: support Ukraine so that its leaders can defend their territory and prepare for a 2025 offensive or cede an irrecoverable advantage to Russia. Jack Watling, Foreign Affairs, 3 Jan. 2024 Two of these horses were euthanized on the day of the Derby itself after suffering irrecoverable injuries, their trainers told The Associated Press. Justin Klawans, The Week, 9 May 2023 One line of thinking is that Russian forces would execute a swift, overwhelming strike meant to inflict massive and irrecoverable losses on the Ukrainian military that would spur a political capitulation (and possibly a change in government) in Kyiv. Nolan Peterson, WSJ, 20 Jan. 2022 Navalny has mounted a series of legal appeals against his poor treatment, but video camera evidence to prove his case has been unavailable, with officials claiming software failures, power surges and irrecoverable data, according to the report. Robyn Dixon, Washington Post, 14 Apr. 2023 Joe Ingles, who got his 10th start of the season Wednesday with Donovan Mitchell in the NBA’s concussion protocol, acknowledged that the Jazz are going through a tough stretch at the moment, but also tried to convey the notion that the team is not in some irrecoverable downward spiral. Eric Walden, The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 Jan. 2022 Customs Duties are irrecoverable, whereas import VAT paid by a business can in principle, be reclaimed, but not always. Robert Marchant, Forbes, 10 Jan. 2023 Still, vice versa, do not get caught by the ownership requirements, which could see businesses suffering irrecoverable costs if not planned correctly. Robert Marchant, Forbes, 1 Nov. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'irrecoverable.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of irrecoverable was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near irrecoverable

Cite this Entry

“Irrecoverable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


ir·​re·​cov·​er·​able ˌir-i-ˈkəv-(ə-)rə-bəl How to pronounce irrecoverable (audio)
: not capable of being recovered or made right
an irrecoverable loss
irrecoverably adverb

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