un·​pack | \ ˌən-ˈpak How to pronounce unpack (audio) \
unpacked; unpacking; unpacks

Definition of unpack

transitive verb

1a : to remove the contents of unpack a suitcase
b : unburden, reveal must … unpack my heart with words— William Shakespeare
2 : to remove or undo from packing or a container unpacked his gear
3 : to analyze the nature of by examining in detail : explicate unpack a concept
4 : decompress sense 2 unpack a compressed file

intransitive verb

: to engage in unpacking a container

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Other Words from unpack

unpacker noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for unpack



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Examples of unpack in a Sentence

It's been a year since I moved here and I still haven't unpacked all of my books. I unpacked my suitcase as soon as I arrived home. By the time we got to the hotel, I was too tired to unpack. She's good at unpacking complex concepts.
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Recent Examples on the Web Leary, 47, was unpacking after the family moved to a new house and almost didn’t answer her phone. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "She’s been bounced through more than a dozen foster homes. And she’s just 6," 24 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile, in the present day, the Big Three are unpacking boxes and adjusting to their new lives. Dan Snierson, EW.com, "This Is Us season 4 first-look photos: Jack meets Rebecca's parents, Kevin has a new movie," 15 Aug. 2019 In her new book Because Internet, linguist Gretchen McCulloch unpacks those norms one by one. Constance Grady, Vox, "The internet has changed the way we talk. In Because Internet, a linguist shows us how.," 2 Aug. 2019 Having never owned human remains before, Scragg unpacked the delivery with some trepidation. Oscar Schwartz, WIRED, "There’s a Thriving Market for Human Body Parts on Instagram," 21 Aug. 2019 Almost time to unpack that Union Jack bunting all over again. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "What Will Princess Eugenie's Name Be After Her Wedding? It's a Mouthful," 25 July 2018 After 15 years, The Brady Bunch kids reunited for HGTV’s A Very Brady Renovation, and its 90-minute premiere left a lot to unpack. Selena Barrientos, House Beautiful, "A Very Brady Renovation," 10 Sep. 2019 There’s obviously a lot to unpack within that final scene. Sydney Bucksbaum, EW.com, "The 100 boss breaks down season 6 finale deaths, mysteries, and that cliffhanger," 7 Aug. 2019 When people talk about being outdoorsy, there’s a lot to unpack. Erin Berger, Outside Online, "How to Be a Beginner (and Get Over Your Ego)," 19 July 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

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Statistics for unpack

Last Updated

6 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for unpack

The first known use of unpack was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for unpack


How to pronounce unpack (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unpack

: to take something out of a suitcase, box, etc.
: to make (something) easier to understand by breaking it up into smaller parts that can be examined separately


un·​pack | \ ˌən-ˈpak How to pronounce unpack (audio) \
unpacked; unpacking

Kids Definition of unpack

1 : to separate and remove things that are packed Will you unpack the groceries?
2 : to open and remove the contents of I unpacked my suitcase.

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More from Merriam-Webster on unpack

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unpack

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with unpack

Spanish Central: Translation of unpack

Nglish: Translation of unpack for Spanish Speakers

Comments on unpack

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an agreement to stop fighting a war

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