un·​bid·​den | \ ˌən-ˈbi-dᵊn How to pronounce unbidden (audio) \
variants: or less commonly unbid \ ˌən-​ˈbid How to pronounce unbidden (audio) \

Definition of unbidden

: not bidden : unasked, uninvited barged in unbidden

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for unbidden



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of unbidden in a Sentence

thoughts that come to the mind unbidden she arrived, unbidden, to help out at the Red Cross center
Recent Examples on the Web The two experiences combined, unbidden, into a vertiginous sensation of time travel. Washington Post, 8 July 2021 For the past several months, when all major events were canceled, the Model A’s rolled, unbidden, through San Diego neighborhoods with drivers smiling and waving — and keeping their distance. San Diego Union-Tribune, 8 July 2021 The obsessions—the unbidden thoughts driving the compulsions—are comparatively less discussed. Krista Stevens, Longreads, 10 Mar. 2021 These came now, too, unbidden, a thousand jabs: one after the other, book after book, document after document, photograph after photograph. Timothy Snyder, The New York Review of Books, 3 Sep. 2020 Being told to eat something is jarring and unkind, the kind of unbidden comment that can stay with you for days, weeks, months, years. Your Fat Friend, SELF, 1 Sep. 2020 Our kids start waking up and doing their schoolwork, unbidden. Pamela Druckerman, The New York Review of Books, 12 May 2020 Kawakami, in her first book to be published in English, considers the agency that women exert over their bodies and charts the emotional underpinnings of physical changes—both intentional and unbidden—with humor and empathy. The New Yorker, 11 May 2020 And on Friday evening, two days before the beginning of Hanukkah, the refurbished menorah will be rededicated in a ceremony that will honor Hynes and others for reaching out to the congregation, unbidden, during a time of confusion and need. BostonGlobe.com, 20 Dec. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of unbidden

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for unbidden

Middle English unbiden, unbeden, from Old English unbeden, from un- + beden, past participle of biddan to entreat — more at bid entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About unbidden

Time Traveler for unbidden

Time Traveler

The first known use of unbidden was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near unbidden




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for unbidden

Last Updated

11 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Unbidden.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unbidden. Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for unbidden



English Language Learners Definition of unbidden

formal : not asked for or invited


Test Your Vocabulary

Dog Words Quiz

  • shiba puppy more or less demanding cuddles
  • Which of the following animals has a dog in its etymology?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!