Definition of unilateral
1 a : done or undertaken by one person or party b : of, relating to, or affecting one side of a subject : one-sided c : constituting or relating to a contract or engagement by which an express obligation to do or forbear is imposed on only one party
2 a : having parts arranged on one side <a unilateral raceme> b : occurring on, performed on, or affecting one side of the body or one of its parts <unilateral exophthalmos>
3 : unilineal
4 : having only one side
Examples of unilateral in a sentence
Our country is prepared to take unilateral action.
Did You Know?
The world is a smaller place than it used to be, and we get uncomfortable when a single nation adopts a policy of unilateralism—that is, acting independently with little regard for what the rest of the world thinks. A unilateral invasion of another country, for instance, usually looks like a grab for power and resources. But occasionally the world welcomes a unilateral action, as when the U.S. announced unilateral nuclear-arms reductions in the early 1990s. Previously, such reductions had only happened as part of bilateral ("two-sided") agreements with the old Soviet Union. Multilateral agreements, on issues such as climate change, often involve most of the world's nations.
First Known Use of unilateral
UNILATERAL Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of unilateral for English Language Learners
: involving only one group or country
Legal Definition of unilateral
1 : done or undertaken by one party <a unilateral mistake as to the terms>
2 : of, relating to, or affecting one side of a subject
3 : containing a promise to perform made by only one party especially because the other has already performed (as by paying an amount) <an option contract is unilateral>
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