un·​of·​fi·​cial | \ˌən-ə-ˈfi-shəl also -ō- \

Definition of unofficial 

: not authorized or acknowledged by a government, group, class, or society : not official unofficial results an unofficial policy

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Other Words from unofficial

unofficially adverb

Examples of unofficial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

For this video, The Wall Street Journal spent time in official and unofficial Catholic communities to learn more about how China’s Catholics view the deal. Paolo Bosonin, WSJ, "The Pope, the Party and the Cardinal: Catholicism in China," 25 Oct. 2018 The edge of the bedroom mirror is still adorned with loads of credentials from the football camps he was invited to, and the official and unofficial visits to various college campuses. Mac Engel, star-telegram, "A parent's pain over his imprisoned football star son," 10 July 2018 The debate over official data is one facet of a still broader set of questions: How should sports data from any source, official or unofficial, be regulated, monitored and purchased? New York Times, "When Sports Betting Is Legal, the Value of Game Data Soars," 2 July 2018 National chains have deals to go with the unofficial holiday. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "Celebrate National French Fry day with what else, french fry deals," 13 July 2018 Leon Day is an unofficial holiday celebrated in the United States on June 25, which is the halfway mark to Christmas. Cassie Armstrong,, "Leon Day: How to observe in Central Florida," 25 June 2018 On April 20, a date that is known as an unofficial holiday for marijuana users, DommLife hosted a fashion show to help connect patients with organizations and vendors. Lauren Castle, azcentral, "Phoenix couple opens spa-like space for medical marijuana patients," 7 May 2018 Friday is May the 4th, which has become an unofficial Star Wars holiday for fans worldwide. William Axford, Houston Chronicle, "Hip hop, Walking Dead & Deadpool: Check out these unique Star Wars cosplay mashups," 4 May 2018 In keeping with the unofficial sci-fi holiday, Best Buy is discounting all its Star Wars related stuff. Popmech Editors, Popular Mechanics, "Today's Best Deals: Star Wars Stuff...Everywhere," 4 May 2018

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

1784, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for unofficial

Last Updated

21 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for unofficial

The first known use of unofficial was in 1784

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More Definitions for unofficial


un·​of·​fi·​cial | \ˌən-ə-ˈfi-shəl\

Kids Definition of unofficial

: not official

Other Words from unofficial

unofficially adverb


un·​of·​fi·​cial | \ˌən-ə-ˈfish-əl \

Medical Definition of unofficial 

: not official specifically : of, relating to, or being a drug not described in the United States Pharmacopeia and National Formulary — compare nonofficial, official

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Comments on unofficial

What made you want to look up unofficial? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


noxious or harmful

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