un·wed | \ˌən-ˈwed \

Definition of unwed 

1 : not married an unwed mother unwed couples

2 : of or relating to unmarried persons an unwed pregnancy

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Synonyms & Antonyms for unwed


single, unattached, unmarried


attached, espoused, hitched, married, wedded (also wed)

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Examples of unwed in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Spanish officials at homes for unwed pregnant women and hospital clinics allegedly took newborns from mothers who were considered leftists or communists and gave them to families connected to the Franco regime. Jeannette Neumann, WSJ, "Spain’s ‘Stolen Babies’ Trial Explores a Franco Legacy," 26 June 2018 The boy who was sold was born to an unwed teenage girl, Mandal said. Vidhi Doshi, Washington Post, "Nun from Mother Teresa’s charity in India arrested on suspicion of selling baby," 6 July 2018 Born in New York in 1940, she was raised by her unwed mother and an aunt, immigrant garment-factory workers from Latvia whose relatives were killed in the Holocaust. John Wilkens, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Exhibit curator found her way in the world, now helps others," 8 July 2018 But unwed mothers and babies born out of wedlock face stigma in the socially conservative country. Vidhi Doshi, Washington Post, "Nun from Mother Teresa’s charity in India arrested on suspicion of selling baby," 6 July 2018 Ciminierti was a single unwed mother in the 1930s and her baby was taken away from her without her knowing. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "100-year-old mother meets daughter taken away for adoption," 4 July 2018 Geraldine was an unwed teenager when Nakesha was born in 1970. Benjamin Weiser, New York Times, "A ‘Bright Light,’ Dimmed in the Shadows of Homelessness," 3 Mar. 2018 The school, formerly a maternity hospital for unwed mothers, will get a new home in West Boise. Maria L. La Ganga, idahostatesman, "A historic Boise home for pregnant teens finally has buyers. Here's what they plan," 29 May 2018 The poverty rate for kids who are born to unwed teenage mothers who don’t finish high school is 78 percent. Jennifer Wright, Harper's BAZAAR, "Why Does Trump Want Teenage Girls to Get Pregnant?," 22 May 2018

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

1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for unwed

Last Updated

20 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for unwed

The first known use of unwed was in 1513

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for unwed

Spanish Central: Translation of unwed

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a state of commotion or excitement

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