un·furl | \ ˌən-ˈfər(-ə)l \
unfurled; unfurling; unfurls

Definition of unfurl 

transitive verb

: to release from a furled state

intransitive verb

: to open out from or as if from a furled state : unfold

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Examples of unfurl in a Sentence

after the protestors had unfurled their banner, it stretched from one side of the visitors' gallery to the other

Recent Examples on the Web

Protesters unfurled banners inside the Hart building Thursday as others staged a sit-in, wrapping themselves in shiny, silver space blankets. Marissa J. Lang, chicagotribune.com, "More than 500 arrested as women rally in D.C. to protest Trump's immigration policy," 28 June 2018 Even before the draft’s pomp and circumstance unfurled at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., Lyles’ name was already on deck — in Utah. Katherine Fominykh, baltimoresun.com, "In 'uphill battle' to secure NBA roster spot, UMBC hero Jairus Lyles is still an underdog," 12 July 2018 Photo via The Modern House With its twisting curves and unfurling exterior, you’d be forgiven for mistaking this home for a piece of abstract art. Alex Bazeley, Curbed, "Sculptural steel home built into a 19th-century railway bridge wants $1.4M," 9 July 2018 Joined by back-up singers, a harpist and the cosmos unfurling on the screen behind him, Miguel, clad in an all-white ensemble, breezed through the War & Leisure cuts while getting up close and personal with his fans. Hilary Hughes, Billboard, "Miguel Fused 'Sky Walker' & 'Come Through and Chill' For His BET Awards 2018 Performance," 24 June 2018 There, banners were unfurled, plastic containers and sticks became drums, and the kids and teachers paraded together, first around the park and then to the Tenderloin People’s Garden at the corner of Larkin and McAllister. Leah Garchik, San Francisco Chronicle, "Children explore how vegetable superpowers can help the homeless," 27 Mar. 2018 To harvest, snip the microgreens right above the soil line when their first true leaves unfurl (about 7 to 14 days after germination, depending on the green). Willi Evans Galloway, Good Housekeeping, "Microgreens—The Salad You Can Grow Inside Any Time Of The Year," 9 Nov. 2017 When my grandma came back from the store with a dozen Krispy Kremes, my eyes bugged out of my skull and my tongue unfurled from my mouth like a carpet and steam blew out of my ears. Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, "Are Homemade Doughnuts Worth the Effort and Fire Hazard?," 13 July 2018 The climber was among about 40 demonstrators who earlier unfurled a banner calling for abolishing the federal government's chief immigration enforcement agency, said Jay W. Walker, an organizer with Rise and Resist, which arranged the demonstration. Jennifer Peltz And Jake Pearson, The Christian Science Monitor, "Protester climbs up Statue of Liberty in defense of border families," 5 July 2018

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

1641, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for unfurl

Last Updated

19 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for unfurl

The first known use of unfurl was in 1641

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More Definitions for unfurl



English Language Learners Definition of unfurl

: to cause (something that is folded or rolled up) to open


un·furl | \ ˌən-ˈfərl \
unfurled; unfurling

Kids Definition of unfurl

: to open out from a rolled or folded state unfurl a flag

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Comments on unfurl

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


a magnificent or impressive array

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