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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web From this vantage point, some of the second-guessing seems unfair and over the top. oregonlive, "Goe: The Oregon Ducks leave no question while pounding overmatched Nevada," 8 Sep. 2019 Nick Chubb is poised to have such a big year that adding Kareem Hunt to the backfield midway through the season will seem unfair. Scott Patsko, cleveland.com, "Why the Cleveland Browns will go 13-3 in 2019 and reach the AFC Championship," 6 Sep. 2019 RT Jordan Reid Pinpointing one person on MSU’s jumbled, languishing offensive line is somewhat unfair. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State football stock watch: Jacub Panasiuk adds pass-rush presence," 1 Sep. 2019 The derogatory labeling of San Franciscan sports fans as wine-sippers was objectively unfair. Peter Hartlaub, SFChronicle.com, "A day that lives in infamy: Wine comes to Candlestick Park in 1977," 7 Aug. 2019 Now, the reality is that the criticism around the gig economy isn’t entirely unfair. Diksha Madhok, Quartz India, "Silicon Valley CEOs? Swiggy feels made-in-India managers will deliver better," 12 June 2019 Juul’s defenders and advocates for e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation device, argue that the regulatory policy in the United States has been unfair to both the company and to a larger public health message. Matt Richtel, New York Times, "Juul Illegally Marketed E-Cigarettes, F.D.A. Says," 9 Sep. 2019 The 22-year-old has stated various reasons for leaving, including unfair editing. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "Audrey and Jeremy Roloff Share a Bunch of Photos From Jacob and Isabel's Wedding," 8 Sep. 2019 Neither is more in the wrong than the other; the only thing that's unfair is that one of them has someone else to go to, while the other is left high and dry. Todd Mccarthy, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Hope Gap': Film Review | TIFF 2019," 7 Sep. 2019

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.

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First Known Use of unfair

1700, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for unfair

Time Traveler

The first known use of unfair was in 1700

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Statistics for unfair

Last Updated

26 Oct 2019

Cite this Entry

“Unfair.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unfair?utm_campaign=sd&utm_medium=serp&utm_source=jsonld. Accessed 22 November 2019.

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More Definitions for unfair


How to pronounce unfair (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unfair

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


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.

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More from Merriam-Webster on unfair

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unfair

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with 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).


not agreeing with established beliefs

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