unicorn

noun
uni·​corn | \ ˈyü-nə-ˌkȯrn How to pronounce unicorn (audio) \
plural unicorns

Definition of unicorn

1a : a mythical, usually white animal generally depicted with the body and head of a horse with long flowing mane and tail and a single often spiraled horn in the middle of the forehead
b : an animal mentioned in the Bible that is usually considered an aurochs, a one-horned rhinoceros, or an antelope
2 : something unusual, rare, or unique There's the elusive unicorn: headphones that do everything well and work in any situation.— Damon Darlin In Washington, D.C., truth is now a veritable unicorn.— Marilyn M. Singleton … he's like baseball's version of a unicorn—a true two-way player.— Tony Paul
3 business : a start-up that is valued at one billion dollars or more … a tech unicorn in Michigan is even more of a rarity, far from Silicon Valley's investor echo chamber.— Scott Martin The blockbuster initial public offering is expected to kick off a revitalized market this year, encouraging IPO debuts by other unicorns, the privately held start-ups whose hefty venture capital funds have allowed them to avoid Wall Street and the legal requirements of a public offering.— Jon Swartz

Illustration of unicorn

Illustration of unicorn

Examples of unicorn in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

His latest series, Happy! , allows Chris to go back to his comedic roots — this time though, with an imaginary unicorn as his co-star. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, "Every Question You Have About 'Happy!' Star Christopher Meloni’s Wife and Two Kids, Answered," 27 Mar. 2019 Whatever the gift a plush FAO Schwarz unicorn to ride or a NY Yankee Gucci cap one rule applies: thank-you cards are a must. Lauren Sanchez, Vogue, "8 Tips from Calligraphists to Improve Your Penmanship Before Thank-You Card Time," 25 Dec. 2018 David Kert, an employee at Faces Nightclub, attended the event dressed in a unicorn jumpsuit. Kayla Fitzgerald, sacbee, "Why Sac Pride parade is a place where participants 'can feel free and not judged'," 10 June 2018 Strangely, the narwhal, a deep-diving Arctic whale known for its unicorn-like tooth, fall into neither of these categories. National Geographic, "Why Humpback Whale Babies Whisper to Mom," 8 June 2018 Cedric Johnson created his complex, swirling pattern with colored pencils, markers, and acrylic paint, while Aurie Ramirez painted her flying unicorn with pastel watercolors. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "Method Soap Bottles Get a Colorful Makeover Thanks to Oakland’s Creative Growth Art Center," 5 Feb. 2019 Gabriella is carrying what looks like the pink version of Jacques's bag, as well as a stuffed unicorn toy. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Monaco's Princess Charlene Shares a Sweet Back-to-School Photo of Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques," 7 Jan. 2019 But there’s also a surprising sophistication hiding beneath its candy kingdoms and flying rainbow unicorns. Verge Staff, The Verge, "The Verge’s guide to tolerable family streaming entertainment," 21 Nov. 2018 Weiss also created North West’s unicorn-themed birthday party earlier this year. Vogue, "Inside Kylie Jenner’s Fabulous First Birthday Party for Daughter Stormi," 11 Feb. 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for unicorn

Middle English unicorne, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin unicornis, from Latin, having one horn, from uni- + cornu horn — more at horn

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More Definitions for unicorn

unicorn

noun

English Language Learners Definition of unicorn

: an imaginary animal that looks like a horse and has a straight horn growing from the middle of its forehead

unicorn

noun
uni·​corn | \ ˈyü-nə-ˌkȯrn How to pronounce unicorn (audio) \

Kids Definition of unicorn

: an imaginary animal that looks like a horse with one horn in the middle of the forehead

unicorn

adjective
uni·​corn | \ ˈyü-nə-ˌkȯ(ə)rn How to pronounce unicorn (audio) \

Medical Definition of unicorn

: having a single horn or hornlike process a unicorn uterus

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More from Merriam-Webster on unicorn

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with unicorn

Spanish Central: Translation of unicorn

Nglish: Translation of unicorn for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of unicorn for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about unicorn

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