un·​hap·​py | \ˌən-ˈha-pē \

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

The woman was unhappy with the review and stomped out of the station without completing a statement. Andy Attina / Cleveland.com, cleveland.com, "Man asks for marijuana back after being cited for possession: Mayfield Heights Police Blotter," 9 May 2018 One of the main reasons parents turn their child forward-facing is that they are concerned that their child is unhappy and uncomfortable staying in a rear-facing position because their legs touch the back of the seat. Staff Report, Houston Chronicle, "Who’s the safest passenger in the vehicle? Keep your baby rear-facing as long as possible," 24 Apr. 2018 The race has encountered mushers unhappy with a personal-conduct rule that includes a gag rule, criticism over dead dogs and dog care, the loss of sponsors and a dog-doping scandal involving Dallas Seavey, who subsequently skipped the 2018 race. Beth Bragg, Anchorage Daily News, "28 mushers enter 2019 Iditarod, the smallest first-day signup this century," 1 July 2018 The delays left some Intel engineers unhappy with Mr. Krzanich’s leadership, a person familiar with the situation said. Ted Greenwald, WSJ, "Intel’s Chip Stumble Is Letting Rivals Pull Ahead," 24 June 2018 Making her parents unhappy contributed to Jesus’s suffering on the cross, she was told. Sarah Stankorb, Marie Claire, "The Daughters' Great Escape," 15 June 2018 Several did not appear unhappy in their confinement but looked longingly at the skyline of the cities across San Francisco Bay. Johnny Miller, San Francisco Chronicle, "Rockers rebuffed over RFK wake," 6 June 2018 An analyst commented on the plunging stock during the question-and-answer portion of the presentation, saying that investors appear unhappy with the pace of Flannery's turnaround plan. Richard Clough, chicagotribune.com, "GE plunges most in six months as CEO sees no 'quick fix' to woes," 23 May 2018 Madrid Last summer saw anti-tourist protests from Madrileños, unhappy that their city was overrun with visitors. Meredith Carey, Condé Nast Traveler, "Spain Cracked Down Hard on Airbnb Last Week," 16 May 2018

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

3 Nov 2018

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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 \
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 clear from alleged fault or guilt

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