Definition of unbeknownst
1 : happening or existing without the knowledge of someone specified —usually used with to unbeknownst to us rumors were flying
2 : unknown
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Examples of unbeknownst in a sentence
unbeknownst to me, my mother was planning a party
Recent Examples of unbeknownst from the web
But unbeknownst to him or his powerful agent, Scott Boras, the Reds tried to slip Jenkins through waivers around the holidays, when major league teams were mostly quiet.
Tragedy awaits this family; unbeknownst to them, the daughter of the house has just drowned.
That sentiment would surely have horrified those who, unbeknownst to me at the time, had spent the preceding decade battling my educators and their ilk on the history fields of the culture wars.
In 1992, the University of Mississippi Press discovered a copy of the manuscript and published it, unbeknownst to Hamilton’s family.
Maybe, unbeknownst to you, your husband's mother was a horrible parent.
Martine, unbeknownst to Bill and his wife, feared dogs the way other people fear the abyss.
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Did You Know?
Unbeknownst derives from beknown, an obsolete synonym of known. But for a word with a straightforward history, unbeknownst and its older and less common variant unbeknown have created quite a flap among usage commentators. Despite widespread use (including appearances in the writings of Charles Dickens, A.E. Housman, and E.B. White), the two words have been called everything from "obsolete" to "vulgar." Our evidence, however, shows that both can be considered standard.
Origin and Etymology of unbeknownst
1un- + obsolete English beknown known; unbeknownst, irregular from unbeknown
First Known Use: 1636
UNBEKNOWNST Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
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