unfair

adjective
un·​fair | \ ˌən-ˈfer How to pronounce unfair (audio) \

Definition of unfair

1 : marked by injustice, partiality, or deception : unjust
2 : not equitable in business dealings

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from unfair

unfairness noun

Examples of unfair in a Sentence

It's unfair for them to be allowed to leave early if we can't. It seems unfair to single her out for criticism. The company has been accused of unfair labor practices.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Say it with me: The anthem protests are designed to highlight the unfair treatment of African-Americans by police around the country. Chris Cillizza, CNN, "Donald Trump's 26 most astonishing comments on his way to the G7 summit," 8 June 2018 But the precarious nature of domestic work and the fragility of domestic workers’ financial stability is evidence of the unfair way this country treats its most vulnerable people. Mariana Viera, Teen Vogue, "Domestic Workers Like My Mom Deserve Protection and Security," 26 Mar. 2019 International observers declared the 2018 parliamentary elections free but unfair, as Mr. Orban’s party abused state resources to campaign. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "A European Rebuke for Orban," 21 Mar. 2019 In a lot of ways, strikers are only judged by their goal total, and that’s sometimes fair, sometimes unfair. Jonathan Tannenwald, Philly.com, "Union's Jim Curtin backs C.J. Sapong again amid 10-game goal drought," 5 July 2018 Trump says China's trade policies give its companies an unfair advantage in the global marketplace. Nathan Bomey, USA TODAY, "How President Trump's Chinese tariffs affect American consumers," 6 July 2018 This proposal protects their constituents from unscrupulous competitors trying to take an unfair advantage. John Cherwa, latimes.com, "Racing! Goodbye to the winter/spring Santa Anita meeting," 25 June 2018 Israel has long had a tense relationship with the council, accusing it of unfair bias while ignoring or underplaying rights violations by other countries — including its own members. Washington Post, "After US, Israel also backs away from UN human rights body," 22 June 2018 Haley also cited with the U.S. sees as the body's unfair bias against Israel. CBS News, "U.S. exiting UN Human Rights Council," 19 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'unfair.' 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 unfair

1700, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about unfair

Statistics for unfair

Last Updated

13 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for unfair

The first known use of unfair was in 1700

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for unfair

unfair

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of unfair

: treating people in a way that favors some over others : not fair, honest, or just

unfair

adjective
un·​fair | \ ˌən-ˈfer How to pronounce unfair (audio) \

Kids Definition of unfair

: not fair, honest, or just an unfair trial

Other Words from unfair

unfairly adverb We were treated unfairly.
unfairness noun

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on unfair

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with unfair

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unfair

Spanish Central: Translation of unfair

Nglish: Translation of unfair for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of unfair for Arabic Speakers

Comments on unfair

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

WORD OF THE DAY

likely to have or produce good results

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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