un·​con·​ven·​tion·​al | \ ˌən-kən-ˈvench-nəl How to pronounce unconventional (audio) , -ˈven(t)-shə-nᵊl \

Definition of unconventional

: not conventional : not bound by or in accordance with convention : being out of the ordinary an unconventional outfit an unconventional thinker

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Other Words from unconventional

unconventionality \ ˌən-​kən-​ˌven(t)-​shə-​ˈna-​lə-​tē How to pronounce unconventionality (audio) \ noun
unconventionally adverb

Examples of unconventional in a Sentence

Her lifestyle is rather unconventional. the Shakers acquired their name because of their unconventional practice of dancing with shaking movements during worship
Recent Examples on the Web Not an unconventional approach to campaigning that took Castro to places not normally visited during a White House race. Tom Benning, Dallas News, "Texan Julián Castro withdraws from Democratic presidential race," 2 Jan. 2020 Primal, on Adult Swim, received critical acclaim for its unconventional narrative approach that completely lacked dialogue. Andrew R. Chow, Time, "Adult Animation Is Pushing New Boundaries. A Look Inside Its Evolution from The Simpsons to BoJack Horseman," 20 Dec. 2019 In their recent paper, Sarkar and collaborators took an unconventional approach to the analysis. Quanta Magazine, "No Dark Energy? No Chance, Cosmologists Contend," 17 Dec. 2019 The schedule is somewhat unconventional as some evenings there are two performances; the show is about 90 minutes in length. Matthew J. Palm, orlandosentinel.com, "Don’t wait if you want tickets to ‘Hamilton’ spoof ‘Spamilton’," 13 Dec. 2019 The Ravens’ first single-digit win since Week 6 was unconventional by their standards, defined as much by what Jackson did with his right arm as by what defensive end Chris Wormley did with his left. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, "With Ravens’ last-second win vs. 49ers, Lamar Jackson shows they can still win ugly, too," 1 Dec. 2019 All-electric designs have helped every Tesla vehicle stand out from its competition, but Tesla's Cybertruck is unconventional even by Tesla's standards. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Elon Musk: Tesla Cybertruck already has 200,000 pre-orders," 25 Nov. 2019 His offense was unconventional: scoops, floaters, push shots. David Woods, Indianapolis Star, "Roosevelt Jones bringing his Butler grit and smarts to IU Kokomo basketball," 24 Oct. 2019 Moreover, Yang may have effectively taken the unconventional/entrepreneurial candidate’s lane away from Steyer. Mike Hofman, Fortune, "Democratic Debate: How to Watch, Start Time—and 8 Key Things to Watch for During It," 15 Oct. 2019

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

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First Known Use of unconventional

1835, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for unconventional

Time Traveler

The first known use of unconventional was in 1835

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Statistics for unconventional

Last Updated

13 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Unconventional.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unconventional. Accessed 23 January 2020.

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More Definitions for unconventional


How to pronounce unconventional (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unconventional

: very different from the things that are used or accepted by most people : not traditional or usual : not conventional

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More from Merriam-Webster on unconventional

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unconventional

Spanish Central: Translation of unconventional

Nglish: Translation of unconventional for Spanish Speakers

Comments on unconventional

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


out of the ordinary or unreasonable

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