un·​hap·​py | \ ˌən-ˈha-pē How to pronounce unhappy (audio) \

Definition of unhappy

1 : not fortunate : unlucky an unhappy coincidence
2 : not cheerful or glad : sad, wretched
3a : causing or subject to misfortune : inauspicious
b : infelicitous, inappropriate an unhappy choice

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Other Words from unhappy

unhappiness noun

Examples of unhappy in a Sentence

I can see that he's unhappy, but I don't know why. I've never seen her looking so unhappy. For three unhappy days we were all stuck in the house because of the blizzard. an unhappy choice of career The movie's hero meets an unhappy fate.
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Recent Examples on the Web

But criticisms of SafeSport often dominate town hall discussions among professionals unhappy with U.S. Equestrian. Brent Schrotenboer, USA TODAY, "Horse trainer's suicide has equestrian community questioning sexual abuse investigations," 9 July 2019 Clearly unhappy with the decision, Jesus walked off the field of play before taking out his frustration on the video assistant referee (VAR) monitor which fell to the ground. James Masters, CNN, "Copa America: Jair Bolsonaro takes center stage as Brazil seals title," 8 July 2019 And a happy wife even translates into a longer life, as people with unhappy spouses die sooner. Olivia Campbell, Good Housekeeping, "I've Struggled With Depression, So I Can't Always Be The "Happy" Mom," 8 July 2019 To paraphrase Anna Karenina: Happy relationships are all alike; every unhappy relationship is happy in its own way. Elena Nicolaou, refinery29.com, "The Most Achy-Breaky Songs About Cheating," 5 July 2019 But Malaysian government sources had told Reuters that prime minister Mahathir Mohamad was unhappy that his country’s land was helping its wealthier neighbor grow in size. Mary Hui, Quartz, "Singapore needs sand, but its neighbors refuse to sell," 4 July 2019 The most recent figures provided by the state’s Department of Education validates that unhappy premise. John Horgan, The Mercury News, "Horgan: State data show public school funding disparity persists," 4 July 2019 Championship or no championship, Irving apparently had been unhappy for a while. Troy L. Smith, cleveland.com, "How Kyrie’s drama took him from Cleveland to Boston to Brooklyn," 1 July 2019 Violence broke out late last week, as citizens unhappy with the ruling of the Georgian Dream party were spurred into action by the appearance of a Russian official in the Georgian parliament. Ani Chkhikvadze, The New Republic, "Why Georgia Brings Out Putin’s Insecurities," 25 June 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for unhappy

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for unhappy

The first known use of unhappy was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for unhappy



English Language Learners Definition of unhappy

: sad, depressed, or disappointed : not happy
: causing or involving feelings of sadness : not pleasant or joyful
: not appropriate or lucky


un·​hap·​py | \ ˌən-ˈha-pē How to pronounce unhappy (audio) \
unhappier; unhappiest

Kids Definition of unhappy

1 : not cheerful : sad an unhappy person
2 : not pleased or satisfied We were unhappy with the hotel room.
3 : full of or showing feelings of sadness or misery an unhappy childhood an unhappy face
4 : not fortunate : unlucky an unhappy coincidence
5 : not suitable : inappropriate an unhappy choice

Other Words from unhappy

unhappily \ -​ˈha-​pə-​lē \ adverb
unhappiness \ -​ˈha-​pē-​nəs \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on unhappy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unhappy

Spanish Central: Translation of unhappy

Nglish: Translation of unhappy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of unhappy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on unhappy

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


to form ideas or theories about something

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