unexpected

adjective

un·​ex·​pect·​ed ˌən-ik-ˈspek-təd How to pronounce unexpected (audio)
: not expected : unforeseen
unexpectedly adverb
unexpectedness noun

Example Sentences

an unexpected turn of events I'm sad that she's leaving, but it was not unexpected.
Recent Examples on the Web With the crop’s resurgence, the Lowcountry is in the midst of an unexpected, blue-hued revival. Latria Graham, Smithsonian Magazine, 2 Dec. 2022 But Tumblr’s users and staff know something about unexpected business deals with ominous implications. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, 18 Nov. 2022 The unexpected cost of raising kids can strain savings and supplemental benefits for retired adults. Marc Ramirez, USA TODAY, 18 Nov. 2022 Get a plan that includes the unexpected Kathryn Ellywicz doesn't just make a list of who will get a gift. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, 18 Nov. 2022 However, be warned that there may be some unexpected terrain: return fees and high shipping costs. Jaclyn Peiser, Washington Post, 18 Nov. 2022 This past February, the rising star Blxst got an unexpected text: Anthony Saleh, Kendrick Lamar’s manager, wanted to connect him with his client — and soon enough, the two artists were on FaceTime. Cydney Lee, Billboard, 17 Nov. 2022 Parker returns to his childhood home in the during the holidays after the unexpected death of his father. Kimberlee Speakman, Peoplemag, 17 Nov. 2022 An unexpected essential from FoG: a knit with an unfinished collar that feels nonchalantly cool. Sara Klausing, Men's Health, 17 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'unexpected.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1586, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of unexpected was circa 1586

Dictionary Entries Near unexpected

Cite this Entry

“Unexpected.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unexpected. Accessed 29 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition

unexpected

adjective

un·​ex·​pect·​ed ˌən-ik-ˈspek-təd How to pronounce unexpected (audio)
: not expected : unforeseen
an unexpected happening
unexpectedly adverb
unexpectedness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on unexpected

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
Name That Thing

You know what it looks like… but what is it called?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ