un·​learned | \ ˌən-ˈlər-nəd for senses 1 & 2 How to pronounce unlearned (audio) , -ˈlərnd for sense 3 How to pronounce unlearned (audio) \

Definition of unlearned

1 : possessing inadequate learning or education especially : deficient in scholarly attainments
2 : characterized by or revealing ignorance
3 : not gained by study or training

Choose the Right Synonym for unlearned

ignorant, illiterate, unlettered, untutored, unlearned mean not having knowledge. ignorant may imply a general condition or it may apply to lack of knowledge or awareness of a particular thing. an ignorant fool ignorant of nuclear physics illiterate applies to either an absolute or a relative inability to read and write. much of the population is still illiterate unlettered implies ignorance of the knowledge gained by reading. an allusion meaningless to the unlettered untutored may imply lack of schooling in the arts and ways of civilization. strange monuments built by an untutored people unlearned suggests ignorance of advanced subjects. poetry not for academics but for the unlearned masses

Examples of unlearned in a Sentence

although the people of the farming community were largely an unlearned lot, they wanted an advanced education for their children
Recent Examples on the Web Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter ahead of Cannes, Loznitsa explained why the unlearned lessons of the past always come back to haunt us. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, 21 May 2022 And, today, the Biden Administration is learning that lessons from the 2014 Red Hill fuel leak went unlearned. Craig Hooper, Forbes, 7 Dec. 2021 The hegemony that the Mexican identity has over how a Latino should look and be in Phoenix — and in the U.S. — forces this kind of unlearned environment for Salvadorans and other Latinos. AZCentral.com, 12 Nov. 2021 George Floyd, a blank piece of paper, unlearned characters in the Bible. Dallas News, 4 May 2021 And yet, the lessons inherent in those works remain unlearned. Michael Bennett, Washington Post, 17 Oct. 2020 Wary skeptics warned of a trap, born from lessons that went unlearned in 2016’s earned media giveaway to the then-Republican nominee. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 15 Oct. 2020 The scion of a respected family of Shiite scholars, he was once derided as unlearned and brutish by fellow Shiite public figures. Washington Post, 15 May 2018 The scion of a respected family of Shiite scholars, he was once derided as unlearned and brutish by fellow Shiite public figures. Washington Post, 15 May 2018 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'unlearned.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of unlearned

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of unlearned was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

3 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Unlearned.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unlearned. Accessed 1 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for unlearned



Kids Definition of unlearned

1 \ ˌən-​ˈlər-​nəd \ : not educated
2 \ -​ˈlərnd \ : not based on experience : instinctive Breathing is unlearned behavior.


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