un·​pre·​pared | \ˌən-pri-ˈperd \

Definition of unprepared 

: not prepared was unprepared for class … they were woefully unprepared to take on the responsibilities expected of them.— Richard M. Ketchum

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Other Words from unprepared

unpreparedness \ ˌən-​pri-​ˈper-​əd-​nəs also  -​ˈperd-​nəs \ noun

Examples of unprepared in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Back home in Puerto Rico, officials say the island remains in desperate need of help and is woefully unprepared should another storm hit soon. Barnini Chakraborty, Fox News, "Trump-bashing Puerto Rican mayor reportedly facing FBI corruption probe," 18 June 2018 Focusing too much on managing day-to-day operations, they are caught unprepared and therefore put their businesses at risk by taking reactive rather than proactive, strategic approaches. James S. Cassel, miamiherald, "In today’s uncertain times, planning for the unexpected is critical | Miami Herald," 22 Apr. 2018 Many of them had dreamed of this moment for years, yet were still wholly unprepared for it. Author: Rick Maese, Anchorage Daily News, "Capitals, and Washington, celebrate a Stanley Cup victory decades in the making," 8 June 2018 For the unprepared, locks, suits and more are available to buy at a stand outside. New York Times, "Things to Do in NYC: Astoria for a Pool Day, and Open-Mic Night Plus Dumplings in Chinatown," 12 July 2018 More children may end up lost or traumatized in a system unprepared for the spike in children in need of placement and care. Dianna M. Náñez, azcentral, "Is one lawsuit a path to justice and reunification for separated migrant families?," 23 June 2018 Despite being wildly unprepared, this trip started me on the path toward some incredible outdoor experiences. Colleen Stinchcombe, SELF, "11 Pro Tips for Packing for Your First Backpacking Trip," 28 May 2018 On a chilly Wednesday, about 15 women took the steep wooden stairs to participate in an impromptu speaking workshop with Kara Levy, who encourages the women to stand in front of the group and answer, unprepared, complex questions. Flora Tsapovsky, San Francisco Chronicle, "Forget co-working: Women flock to ‘gathering space’ communities," 2 May 2018 Portugal, expecting another cagey display, were unprepared. SI.com, "World Cup Countdown: 8 Weeks to Go - Morocco Give Africa Their Moment in the Mexican Sun," 27 Apr. 2018

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

1528, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for unprepared

The first known use of unprepared was in 1528

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More Definitions for unprepared


un·​pre·​pared | \ˌən-pri-ˈperd\

Kids Definition of unprepared

: not being or made ready

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More from Merriam-Webster on unprepared

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unprepared

Spanish Central: Translation of unprepared

Nglish: Translation of unprepared for Spanish Speakers

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