un·​rest | \ˌən-ˈrest \

Definition of unrest 

: a disturbed or uneasy state : turmoil

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Examples of unrest in a Sentence

The country has experienced years of civil unrest. unrest gripped the city as the people nervously awaited the expected bombardment

Recent Examples on the Web

While the ruling Communist Party emphasizes improvements in industrial safety, the authorities remain extremely sensitive about the potential for social unrest. Christopher Bodeen, The Seattle Times, "22 dead in blast outside northern China chemical plant," 28 Nov. 2018 Add a little unrest to the markets, however, and the picture starts to change. Charley Grant, WSJ, "Pharma Stocks Soothe Stock-Market Malady," 23 Nov. 2018 If previous Anahata revolutions were any indication, the incendiary results would incite unrest elsewhere in the country, eventually leading to revolt and a total collapse of the government. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Google’s former PR boss Jessica Powell wrote a satirical novel about tech and published it all on Medium," 2 Oct. 2018 Nicaragua has been convulsed by unrest since April, when its leftist president proposed reducing pension benefits to cover a social security shortfall. NBC News, "Violence rings out at Nicaraguan church, university after nationwide strike," 14 July 2018 Because of the country's civil unrest, the two teams were reunited at a facility run by Mission of Hope Haiti, according to the church's Facebook post on Sunday. Deasia Paige, Detroit Free Press, "Stranded Troy Kensington Church mission members back from Haiti," 11 July 2018 As hate speech and dubious articles quickly began to surface in volume on Facebook in 2012 and 2013, many targeting Muslims and the Rohingya in particular, the government raised concerns that the site could be used to incite unrest. Timothy Mclaughlin, WIRED, "How Facebook’s Rise Fueled Chaos and Confusion in Myanmar," 6 July 2018 What links them is this overarching sorrow and unrest. Jesse Hamlin, San Francisco Chronicle, "SF Symphony brings ‘Boris Godunov’ to concert stage," 12 June 2018 The commanders, hoping to tamp down brewing unrest, pulled Company B off the front line and let the conspirators go unpunished. Michael M. Phillips, WSJ, "The One Time American Troops Fought Russians Was at the End of World War I—and They Lost," 9 Nov. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for unrest

Last Updated

4 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for unrest

The first known use of unrest was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for unrest



English Language Learners Definition of unrest

: a situation in which many of the people in a country are angry and hold protests or act violently


un·​rest | \ˌən-ˈrest \

Kids Definition of unrest

: a disturbed or uneasy state political unrest

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More from Merriam-Webster on unrest

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with unrest

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unrest

Spanish Central: Translation of unrest

Nglish: Translation of unrest for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of unrest for Arabic Speakers

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