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

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But this risks stoking resentment and social unrest. Charlie Campbell, Time, "What Would Korean Reunification Look Like? Five Glaring Problems to Overcome," 26 Apr. 2018 Feodora never fled from Germany due to unrest at home. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Who Was Princess Feodora, Queen Victoria's Little-Known Half-Sister?," 20 Jan. 2019 The new protests on Saturday highlight the challenge Mr. Macron faces to get yellow-vests to the negotiating table and put an end to the unrest. Noemie Bisserbe, WSJ, "Calls for Yellow-Vests to Debate, Not Demonstrate, Fall on Deaf Ears," 19 Jan. 2019 FamilyProportional Sans-Serif Before the Americans officially declared independence, the British were worried about what King George’s response to the unrest there would be. Ciara Nugent, Time, "What British People in 1776 Really Thought of American Independence," 3 July 2018 The department also has struggled against high levels of violent crime since the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray from injuries suffered in police custody led to unrest in 2015. Kevin Rector, baltimoresun.com, "Body-camera footage shows Baltimore police officer run toward gunfire, make arrest," 12 June 2018 It was charged with investigating the killings and human-rights violations that took place during the first six weeks of political unrest in Nicaragua. José De Córdoba, WSJ, "Panel Urges Probe Into Nicaraguan President’s Role in Killing Protesters," 21 Dec. 2018 Accusing Soros of being behind so many of today’s largest demonstrations of civil unrest is a method used to lessen the impact of these movements. Jameelah Nasheed, Teen Vogue, "After Years of George Soros Conspiracy Theories, Someone Targeted His Home with an Explosive Device," 23 Oct. 2018 But there has been no major outbreak of protests, thanks in large part to the police's heavy handedness in dealing with any sign of unrest. Hamza Hendawi, Fox News, "Amnesty calls Egypt an 'open-air prison' for critics," 18 Sep. 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

13 Feb 2019

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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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