Share this entry

Share this page

unity

Line breaks: unity
Pronunciation: /ˈjuːnɪti
 
/

Definition of unity in English:

noun (plural unities)

[mass noun]
1The state of being united or joined as a whole: European unity ways of preserving family unity
More example sentences
  • Today, though, the economic unity of the extended family has broken down.
  • Germany's economic unity was to be preserved, though this was undermined by the decision that each power could take reparations from its own occupied territories.
  • It is highly unlikely that they would allow any internal or external factor to trifle with their unity or a united platform to promote and preserve their interests.
Synonyms
1.1The state of forming a complete and harmonious whole, especially in an artistic context: the repeated phrase gives the piece unity and cohesion
More example sentences
  • There Schlegel turned his attention not just to the production of harmonious unity in individual works of art but also to their reception by the spectator.
  • With a poetic twist on artistic unity, this film evokes the thought that we are subject to a very similar imprisonment, even in the comfort of our own culture.
  • I nearly fell back as it all suddenly came together for me, the pins and pieces of a great puzzle falling into harmonious unity.
Synonyms
1.2 [count noun] A thing forming a complex whole: they speak of the three parts as a unity
More example sentences
  • So does the Bible teach that the human person is a psychosomatic unity which perishes completely with death?
  • Yet we don't count up two diamonds from the deuce and two from the trey, but treat each card as a complete unity.
  • Naturalism could, however, conflict with the demands of the setting, as in the stained glass at Fairford church, where the stone mullions cut across compositions designed as a unity.
Synonyms
oneness, singleness, wholeness, entity, integrity, undividedness, cohesion, coherence, congruity, congruence, uniformity, homogeneity, identity, sameness
2 Mathematics The number one: the slope of each dotted line is less than unity
More example sentences
  • All these proofs use complex numbers and roots of unity, as does the author's.
  • Selecting different values of the base value a, there turns out to be only one value of a such that the gradient of the graph is unity at x = 0.
  • In fact, he even may have gained speed on rivals, thanks to specific properties of the two cube roots of unity that are complex numbers.
3 [count noun] Each of the three dramatic principles requiring limitation of the supposed time of a drama to that occupied in acting it or to a single day ( unity of time), use of one scene throughout ( unity of place), and concentration on the development of a single plot ( unity of action).
Example sentences
  • Nevertheless, the plays are far removed from the classical pattern: they rarely present a unity of action, time and place.
  • The plot, observing the classical unity of time by taking place in a 24-hour period, is the barest of sketches, a pretext for the feelings of sadness, world-weariness, and desperate hope.
  • Sophocles' play was for Aristotle an exemplary tragedy, both formally, in terms of unity of action, and in its tragic story.

Origin

Middle English: from Old French unite, from Latin unitas, from unus 'one'.

Words that rhyme with unity

community, immunity, importunity, impunity, opportunity

Definition of unity in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day resilient
Pronunciation: rəˈzilyənt
adjective
able to recoil or spring back into shape…