un·​time·​ly | \ ˌən-ˈtīm-lē How to pronounce untimely (audio) \

Definition of untimely

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : at an inopportune time : unseasonably
2 : before the due, natural, or proper time : prematurely went untimely to the grave



Definition of untimely (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : inopportune, unseasonable an untimely joke untimely frost
2 : occurring or done before the due, natural, or proper time : too early : premature an untimely death

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Other Words from untimely


untimeliness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for untimely

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of untimely in a Sentence

Adjective the untimely arrival of our guests caught us by surprise
Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb The script returns to James Dean’s untimely demise again and again, but for Cher, Jimmy Dean is an artistic rebirth. Elle Carroll, Vulture, 20 May 2021 These include past management missteps, including an expensive—and untimely—acquisition of Piedmont Natural Gas in 2016, given the market’s ever-increasing focus on environmental issues as well as the aforementioned coal ash spill. Jinjoo Lee, WSJ, 18 May 2021 The Dutchman’s 20th-place finish Saturday was largely due to an untimely yellow just after his final stop that trapped him a lap down after running in the top-10 almost all night. Nathan Brown, The Indianapolis Star, 3 May 2021 Moreland was asked if the surprise off-day Monday would be untimely given the A’s momentum. Matt Kawahara, San Francisco Chronicle, 19 Apr. 2021 Against such an enemy, plants deploy poisons powerful enough to stunt insect growth or bring about the bugs’ untimely demise. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 25 Mar. 2021 First of all, with Dr. Melendez's untimely passing came a bittersweet ending to his love story with Dr. Claire Browne (Antonia Thomas). Tierney Mcafee, Country Living, 26 Oct. 2020 Moore untimely took over starting duties in the final six games and earned second-team GNAC honors. Michelle Gardner, The Arizona Republic, 30 Sep. 2020 Before Justice Antonin Scalia’s untimely passing, the court looked ready to rule in Friedrichs’ favor. Orange County Register, 22 Jan. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Delance has a penchant for untimely penalties, too. Edgar Thompson, orlandosentinel.com, 6 Dec. 2020 But he was dismayed by the manner in which the Wolverines' secondary collapsed against the Spartans and Hoosiers, allowing big plays and picking up untimely penalties. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, 18 Nov. 2020 Meanwhile, a talented defense tends to do itself in with a lack of discipline and untimely penalties that help keep opponents in the game. Mike Jones, USA TODAY, 3 Nov. 2020 There were some untimely penalties, which gave Rutgers life on its scoring drives. Jon Blau, The Indianapolis Star, 2 Nov. 2020 The in-between, though, saw Auburn’s defense give up some big plays and commit untimely penalties that extended drives. Tom Green | Tgreen@al.com, al, 24 Oct. 2020 Radulov scored many big goals for the Stars in 2019-20 but took many untimely penalties and was goalless in the final eight postseason games. Matthew Defranks, Dallas News, 5 Oct. 2020 Once again, untimely penalties on both sides of the ball also hurt the Cardinals again. Bob Mcmanaman, The Arizona Republic, 28 Sep. 2020 In track, Rush was a discus thrower and shot putter and about two weeks before his untimely death had taken part in statewide track competitions in Charleston. Mike Nolan, chicagotribune.com, 7 July 2021

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for untimely

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The first known use of untimely was in the 13th century

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Last Updated

2 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Untimely.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/untimely. Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for untimely



English Language Learners Definition of untimely

: happening or done sooner than you expect : occurring before the proper or right time
: happening or done at a time that is not suitable or appropriate


un·​time·​ly | \ ˌən-ˈtīm-lē How to pronounce untimely (audio) \

Kids Definition of untimely

1 : happening or done before the expected, natural, or proper time The game came to an untimely end.
2 : coming at the wrong time an untimely joke


un·​time·​ly | \ ˌən-ˈtīm-lē \

Legal Definition of untimely

: not timely especially : not made or filed within a period of time specified by procedural rule an untimely petition

Other Words from untimely

untimeliness noun
untimely adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on untimely

Nglish: Translation of untimely for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of untimely for Arabic Speakers


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