\ ˈyü-nət How to pronounce unit (audio) \

Definition of unit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the first and least natural number : one
b : a single quantity regarded as a whole in calculation
2 : a determinate quantity (as of length, time, heat, or value) adopted as a standard of measurement: such as
a : an amount of work used in education in calculating student credits
b : an amount of a biologically active agent (such as a drug or antigen) required to produce a specific result — compare international unit
3a : a single thing, person, or group that is a constituent of a whole
b : a part of a military establishment that has a prescribed organization (as of personnel and materiel)
c : a piece or complex of apparatus serving to perform one particular function
d : a part of a school course focusing on a central theme
e : a local congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses
f : a small molecule especially when combined in a larger molecule repeating units of a polymer
g : an area in a medical facility and especially a hospital that is specially staffed and equipped to provide a particular type of care an intensive care unit



Definition of unit (Entry 2 of 2)

: being, relating to, or measuring one unit

Examples of unit in a Sentence

Noun The family is the basic unit of society. The search party broke up into smaller units. Their army unit guarded the border. Feet and meters are units of length. The dollar is the principal unit of American currency.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Exxon launched a unit in February that would invest $3 billion through 2025 on lower-emission energy technologies, mostly in carbon-capture and storage projects. Dieter Holger, WSJ, 1 June 2021 Tuesday’s demonstration, with Carl and Hinkebein watching out a window as a Deuce Drones unit named Zoe flew to the roof overhead, offered just a small, sweet taste of that future. al, 1 June 2021 The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office used a helicopter, a dive team and a drone unit to search for the child. orlandosentinel.com, 1 June 2021 While serving, Ernst lead a unit that drove convoys through the Middle East during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Sarah Elbeshbishi, USA TODAY, 31 May 2021 On Location: May 28, 202100:0000:0003:10GO LIVEFacebookTwitterEmailEmbedSpeedNormalAutoplay A man has been arrested after a woman’s body was found in a duffel bag that had been hidden inside of a storage unit for several months. Jon Haworth, ABC News, 30 May 2021 The Orioles have received only 15 such starts in their other 41 games, often leaving Hyde to make difficult decisions with his bullpen, a unit that was one of the league’s best in the season’s early weeks before imploding. Nathan Ruiz, baltimoresun.com, 30 May 2021 When war broke out, their German language skills were recognized as an asset by the British, and they were recruited into a secret unit Prime Minister Winston Churchill named X Troop, wrote Leah Garrett, the author of a book on the subject. Richard Galant, CNN, 30 May 2021 Edward trained with a tank destroyer unit at Fort Hood, Texas, and went to Europe in October 1944. Steve Bowersox, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, 28 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The chicken-and-biscuits concept Biscuit Belly has signed its first and second multi-unit development agreements, announcing 10 new locations spread throughout Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama. Dahlia Ghabour, The Courier-Journal, 20 May 2021 Some are surrounded by iron gates; several front lawns bustle with ornaments; a few multi-unit buildings are sprinkled among the single-family homes. Susie Neilson, San Francisco Chronicle, 6 May 2021 Mark Fineman, with Cook Inlet Housing Authority, said the organization has found efficiencies in its multi-unit affordable housing projects that are already underway. Alex Demarban, Anchorage Daily News, 29 Apr. 2021 Multi-unit residential developers can also utilize Notch. Lisa Chamoff, Forbes, 28 Apr. 2021 So did other elements that come with building infrastructure in workplaces and multi-unit dwellings, de Llanos said, such as building ramps to meet federal disability requirements. Rob Nikolewski, San Diego Union-Tribune, 31 Mar. 2021 Records show Stincone lives in a multi-unit apartment in 3300 block of SE Third St., south of E. Atlantic Blvd. Wayne K. Roustan, sun-sentinel.com, 30 Mar. 2021 Tomeeka Brown, 44; Anthony Johnson, 35; Dequan Moore, 23; and Eve Moore, 7; were found inside a multi-unit residence in the 300 block of North Randolph Street. Justin L. Mack, The Indianapolis Star, 16 Mar. 2021 Florida, Georgia, New Mexico, South Carolina and Texas are part of the company’s multi-unit franchise growth initiative. Tandra Smith | Tsmith@al.com, al, 5 Mar. 2021

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


1570, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1633, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for unit


back-formation from unity

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Statistics for unit

Last Updated

5 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

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

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More Definitions for unit



English Language Learners Definition of unit

: a single thing, person, or group that is a part of something larger
: a part of a hospital where a particular type of care is provided
: a particular amount of length, time, money, etc., that is used as a standard for counting or measuring


\ ˈyü-nət How to pronounce unit (audio) \

Kids Definition of unit

1 : a single thing, person, or group forming part of a whole There are 36 units in my apartment building.
2 : the least whole number : one
3 : a fixed quantity (as of length, time, or value) used as a standard of measurement An inch is a unit of length.
4 : a part of a school course with a central theme


\ ˈyü-nət How to pronounce unit (audio) \

Medical Definition of unit

1 : an amount of a biologically active agent (as a drug or antigen) required to produce a specific result under strictly controlled conditions a unit of penicillin — see international unit
2 : a small molecule especially when combined in a larger molecule repeating units of a polymer
3 : an area in a medical facility and especially a hospital that is specially staffed and equipped to provide a particular type of care an intensive care unit

More from Merriam-Webster on unit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unit

Nglish: Translation of unit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of unit for Arabic Speakers


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