Definition of unload in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌənˈlōd/


[with object]
1Remove goods from (a vehicle, ship, container, etc.): she hadn’t finished unloading the car
More example sentences
  • When workers began industrial action and refused to unload a plane, two union delegates were sacked.
  • As for moving day, we started loading the first car at about 9.00 on Saturday morning and finished unloading the van and three cars by 3.00 that afternoon.
  • Quin watched the men finish unloading the truck, and head inside.
unpack, empty
1.1Remove (goods) from a vehicle, ship, container, etc. the men unloaded the wheat into the bays
More example sentences
  • Lorries and vans blocked two of Bolton busiest main roads, and tempers boiled over as Ashburner Street stallholders arrived to find they could not unload their goods.
  • You're on the highway for up to 11 hours at a stretch, not to mention putting in another three hours a day loading or unloading goods.
  • I now see people walking their dogs, delivery men unloading their goods, students heading to class.
remove, offload, discharge
1.2 [no object] (Of a vehicle, ship, container, etc.) have goods removed: the street was jammed with trucks unloading
More example sentences
  • Remarkably and against all odds, the drugs are sometimes seen when the truck unloads at the Michigan landfill.
  • Two trucks can unload at the same time while two others are being cleaned.
  • By the time he was fourteen he was a full fledged docker staggering under the crates his boyish frame hauled from the ships unloading at Algeciras.
1.3 informal Get rid of (something unwanted): he had unloaded his depreciating stock on his unsuspecting wife
More example sentences
  • I said nothing, so as not to spoil the evening, but I do not appreciate other people unloading their junk disguised as gifts on us.
  • But if you never really liked them all that well to begin with, this might be a good time to unload them.
  • We unloaded our spare supplies on them and wished them good luck.
sell, discard, jettison, offload, get rid of, dispose of;
palm something off (on someone), foist something (on someone), fob something off (on someone)
informal dump, ditch, get shut of
1.4 informal Give expression to (oppressive thoughts or feelings): the meeting had been a chance for her to unload some of her feelings about her son
More example sentences
  • It's like I couldn't unload my feelings somehow.
  • Each family member does have moments where they unload their thoughts.
  • This letter doesn't have a huge conclusion; I realize that unloading my fears is probably never going to change the world.
divulge, talk about, open up about, pour out, vent, give vent to, get something off one's chest
2Remove (ammunition) from a gun or (film) from a camera.
Example sentences
  • They only had a range of about three furlongs and the film had to be unloaded from the camera and rushed to a dark room on the track to be processed before it could be shown to the stewards.
  • The person over there opened the magazine and unloaded the bullets from it.
  • And with each gun she picked up she unloaded the paint bullets and replaced them with the real bullets.



Example sentences
  • But Judge Hyam, the Recorder of London, told Watson: ‘If you had been successful, suspicion would have fallen on innocent people - loaders and unloaders.’
  • All three had volunteered to go up as unloaders for the aerial dropping of supplies at Myola and there is a note in Parer's papers about the planes on the airstrip being parked wingtip to wingtip.
  • This is a truly Stakhanovite effort, by all the maintainers, the pilots, the fuellers and unloaders, and by Air Traffic Control.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: un·load

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