un·​us·​able | \ ˌən-ˈyü-zə-bəl How to pronounce unusable (audio) \

Definition of unusable

: not capable of being used or fit for use : not usable unusable documentary footage The lavatory, totally unusable, was full of snow which had blasted in through the keyhole.— Katharine Sim

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Other Words from unusable

unusably \ ˌən-​ˈyü-​zə-​blē How to pronounce unusably (audio) \ adverb

Examples of unusable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web That high-profile event was dismissed as an anomaly, but a new analysis of transplant data finds that a startling number of lifesaving organs are lost or delayed while being shipped on commercial flights, the delays often rendering them unusable. NBC News, "Lost luggage: How lifesaving organs for transplant go missing in transit," 8 Feb. 2020 Rubén Díaz León, the town’s emergency manager, said another middle school and an elementary school were also probably unusable, as a result of serious internal cracking. New York Times, "After Homes Collapse in Earthquake, Puerto Ricans Ask: Are We Safe?," 8 Jan. 2020 Kushy Punch has said the cartridges were old, unusable, and not meant for distribution. BostonGlobe.com, "From New York City to Nebraska farm country to California, authorities have seized at least 510,000 marijuana vape cartridges and arrested more than 120 people in the past two years, according to an Associated Press tally derived from interviews, court records, news accounts, and official releases.," 3 Dec. 2019 But decades after being conceived, the project remains incomplete and unusable, little more than a refuge for the clams and barnacles that have made the machinery their home. Washington Post, "How Venice’s plan to protect itself from flooding became a disaster in itself," 19 Nov. 2019 However, one of the life rafts was punctured by the wreckage rendering it unusable, and the floor of the second life raft failed, leaving only the inflated tubes for people to hang onto. Julia Hollingsworth, CNN, "Most of 95 people killed in Kiribati ferry disaster died from hunger, dehydration and hypothermia, inquiry finds," 9 Oct. 2019 For example, floods affecting agricultural land in low lying coastal areas can leave it unusable for farming, pushing inhabitants to leave the area for good. Jack Guy, CNN, "Climate crisis 'forcing 20 million people a year from their homes'," 1 Dec. 2019 This would leave residents’ garages virtually unusable for their vehicles. Letter Writers, Twin Cities, "Letters: Quit kicking the can down the crumbling road," 17 Aug. 2019 The flood, which occurred after the show’s crew had left on Saturday night, affected the dressing rooms of the principal actors, and damaged their costumes, which were unusable at the two performances on Sunday. Michael Paulson, New York Times, "Blackout Bruises Broadway Box Office," 15 July 2019

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

1825, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for unusable

Time Traveler

The first known use of unusable was in 1825

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Last Updated

16 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Unusable.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unusable. Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for unusable


How to pronounce unusable (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of unusable

: not good enough to be used : not usable

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More from Merriam-Webster on unusable

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unusable

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with unusable

Spanish Central: Translation of unusable

Nglish: Translation of unusable for Spanish Speakers

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