unilateral

adjective
uni·​lat·​er·​al | \ ˌyü-ni-ˈla-tə-rəl How to pronounce unilateral (audio) , -ˈla-trəl \

Definition of unilateral

1a : 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
2a : 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

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Other Words from unilateral

unilaterally adverb

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.

Examples of unilateral in a Sentence

Our country is prepared to take unilateral action.
Recent Examples on the Web There are several legal reasons why the president doesn’t have unilateral authority, including that the statutory language in the Higher Education Act of 1965 is ambiguous. Zack Friedman, Forbes, 26 May 2021 The questions ask voters to end a governor’s emergency disaster declaration after 21 days and to give lawmakers the unilateral authority to extend or end it with a majority vote. BostonGlobe.com, 13 May 2021 For the first time in U.S. history, all 50 states are under simultaneous emergency declarations that accord varying degrees of unilateral authority to governors. John Haughey, Washington Examiner, 25 Feb. 2021 But the state’s unilateral decision to do so has resulted in hardship for many individuals and their caretakers. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 7 Apr. 2021 The Turkish Presidency’s Directorate of Communications issued a statement Sunday explaining that Turkey’s unilateral decision resulted from the agreement being used to protect LGBT rights. Time, 22 Mar. 2021 Unable to get Oklahoma City health officials on the phone, Silver made the unilateral decision to call off the Thunder-Jazz game. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, 13 Mar. 2021 Trump’s signature 2017 tax cuts, his unilateral use of money to build the southern border wall and his withdrawal of troops from Syria. Alan Fram, Anchorage Daily News, 8 May 2021 That included voting to oppose Trump's signature 2017 tax cuts, his unilateral use of money to build the southern border wall and his withdrawal of troops from Syria. Alan Fram, ajc, 8 May 2021

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

1802, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for unilateral

Time Traveler

The first known use of unilateral was in 1802

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Statistics for unilateral

Last Updated

6 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Unilateral.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unilateral. Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for unilateral

unilateral

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of unilateral

: involving only one group or country

unilateral

adjective
uni·​lat·​er·​al | \ ˌyü-ni-ˈlat-ə-rəl, -ˈla-trəl How to pronounce unilateral (audio) \

Medical Definition of unilateral

: occurring on, performed on, or affecting one side of the body or one of its parts unilateral exophthalmos

Other Words from unilateral

unilaterally \ -​ē How to pronounce unilateral (audio) \ adverb

unilateral

adjective
uni·​lat·​er·​al | \ ˌyü-nə-ˈla-tə-rəl How to pronounce unilateral (audio) \

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

Other Words from unilateral

unilaterally adverb

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