un·​of·​fi·​cial | \ ˌən-ə-ˈfi-shəl How to pronounce unofficial (audio) 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 Hamilton County election officials didn’t finish counting ballots on Election Day and released its unofficial totals on the evening of Nov. 4. Mj Slaby, The Indianapolis Star, "Hamilton Southeastern school board member files for election recount after 20 vote margin," 19 Nov. 2020 Typically, the unofficial holiday kicks off the day after Thanksgiving with a focus on in-store offerings, but with social distancing still of the utmost importance, the bulk of this year’s fun is happening earlier than ever online. Alexis Bennett, Vogue, "The Best Black Friday Sales Are Happening Online This Year," 19 Nov. 2020 The campaign aims to redefine the Friday after Thanksgiving — an unofficial starting gun for the holiday shopping season, marked by steep discounts and large crowds flooding big-name retailers like Walmart (WMT) and Best Buy (BBY). Chauncey Alcorn, CNN, "Google and Wyclef Jean team up to help Black-owned businesses get through the holidays," 19 Nov. 2020 The unofficial voter turnout rate released on Election Day was 68.5%. Courtney Astolfi, cleveland, "Narrowly-approved Cleveland Heights-University Heights school tax increase headed for a recount, final election results show," 18 Nov. 2020 The pair had once exchanged rings at an unofficial wedding ceremony orchestrated by the staff. Jessica Contrera, Washington Post, "The virus was spreading inside a home for disabled women. Could it be stopped?," 18 Nov. 2020 The campaign’s formal efforts to gain the secretary of state’s endorsement began on Jan. 10, when Kirkland emailed Deputy Secretary of State Jordan Fuchs, assuming that Raffensperger would welcome the opportunity to serve in an unofficial role. Jessica Huseman, ProPublica, "Trump Campaign Officials Started Pressuring Georgia’s Secretary of State Long Before the Election," 18 Nov. 2020 According to unofficial numbers released by the secretary of the state, Biden managed to flip as many as 34 towns from red to blue, while Trump’s overall performance — roughly 39% of all voters — stayed within a percentage point of his 2016 showing. Michael Hamad,, "Trumpism isn’t going away in Connecticut. Here’s why.," 17 Nov. 2020 The unofficial breakdown of the votes those votes was 1,643 for Trump, 865 for Biden and 16 for Libertarian Jo Jorgensen, according to Gabriel Sterling, a top elections official. Kate Brumback, Star Tribune, "Georgia official says Sen. Lindsey Graham asked him about tossing ballots," 17 Nov. 2020

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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Time Traveler for unofficial

Time Traveler

The first known use of unofficial was in 1784

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Statistics for unofficial

Last Updated

22 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Unofficial.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for unofficial


How to pronounce unofficial (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unofficial

: not formally chosen by an official decision or vote
: not done or made in a formal way by someone in a position of authority
: not having the authority to make a statement, decision, etc.


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 How to pronounce unofficial (audio) \

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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