un·​prom·​is·​ing | \ ˌən-ˈprä-mə-siŋ How to pronounce unpromising (audio) \

Definition of unpromising

: appearing unlikely to prove worthwhile or result favorably an unpromising beginning

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from unpromising

unpromisingly \ ˌən-​ˈprä-​mə-​siŋ-​lē How to pronounce unpromising (audio) \ adverb

Examples of unpromising in a Sentence

Things got off to an unpromising start. She can do a lot with unpromising material.
Recent Examples on the Web Retribution is similarly unpromising as justification for impeachment. Michael Blake, The Conversation, "Is impeaching President Trump ‘pointless revenge’? Not if it sends a message to future presidents," 13 Jan. 2021 Amid such an unpromising start to the year, farmers caught a break from Mother Nature. Evan Ramstad, Star Tribune, "For Minnesota farmers, 2020 was nothing like they expected and surprisingly profitable," 9 Jan. 2021 My first experience of live music during the pandemic took place in an unpromising locale: the Del Mar Fairgrounds, north of San Diego. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, "Notable Performances and Recordings of 2020," 12 Dec. 2020 Creating a meaningful presidency from such unpromising beginnings will take extraordinary political skill, missteps by his political enemies and luck. Stephen Collinson, CNN, "The challenges facing Joe Biden in 2021," 3 Jan. 2021 The results have been far from unpromising, notwithstanding the fog machine of an unimaginative and conformist press. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "A Laptop Window on the Oligarchy," 20 Oct. 2020 The raw statistical material is unpromising, but politics, at the highest level, is just talk. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "How Trump Could Win," 11 Sep. 2020 The results were so clearly unpromising that the researchers ended the hydroxychloroquine arm of their study prematurely. Grace Huckins, Wired, "The FDA Revokes Its Emergency Use Authorization for Hydroxychloroquine," 17 June 2020 Then hang on for many years while keeping an eye out for any unpromising developments. Dallas News, "Motley Fool: There are plenty of reasons to invest in Gilead Sciences," 7 June 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of unpromising

1640, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about unpromising

Time Traveler for unpromising

Time Traveler

The first known use of unpromising was in 1640

See more words from the same year

Statistics for unpromising

Last Updated

26 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Unpromising.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unpromising. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for unpromising



English Language Learners Definition of unpromising

: not likely to be successful or good

More from Merriam-Webster on unpromising

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unpromising

Nglish: Translation of unpromising for Spanish Speakers

Comments on unpromising

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Who Knew?

Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!