un·bend | \ˌən-ˈbend \
unbent\ˌən-ˈbent \; unbending

Definition of unbend 

transitive verb

1 : to free from flexure : make or allow to become straight unbend a bow

2 : to cause to relax : to set at ease for a time unbend the mind from study

3a : to unfasten from a spar or stay unbend a sail

b : to cast loose : untie unbend a rope

intransitive verb

1 : to relax one's severity, stiffness, or austerity

2 : to cease to be bent : become straight

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Synonyms & Antonyms for unbend


straighten, uncurl


bend, crook, curl, curve

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Examples of unbend in a Sentence

He was bending and unbending his fingers. His fingers were bending and unbending. He unbent a little at the party.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Right-to-try laws indulge the fear that unbending bureaucrats in Washington have kept patients from medical cures with an excess of red tape. Daniel Engber, Slate Magazine, "Charlie Gard’s saga exposed a flaw in our perception of medicine: We are too quick to think new treatments will work.," 25 July 2017 Tilica is unbending in her focus, and uncompromising when accepting what’s possible. Sam Mellinger, kansascity.com, "They said he’d never be able to learn. With mom’s help, he has a college scholarship," 12 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'unbend.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of unbend

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for unbend

The first known use of unbend was in the 13th century

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English Language Learners Definition of unbend

: to make (something) straight or to become straight

: to stop being serious or tense

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Comments on unbend

What made you want to look up unbend? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to reject or criticize sharply

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