Definition of unsavoury in English:

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Pronunciation: /ʌnˈseɪv(ə)ri/
(US unsavory)


1Disagreeable to taste, smell, or look at: they looked at the scanty, unsavoury portions of food doled out to them
More example sentences
  • The man adores me for goodness sake… how can I taint the way he feels about me by making such unsavoury noises and smells in his company?
  • Bright fluorescent lighting, self service, general uncleanliness and unsavoury smells are all part of the attraction and charm.
  • People are always trying to rid their body and house of the unsavory smells of meat.
1.1Disagreeable and unpleasant because morally disreputable: an unsavoury reputation
More example sentences
  • The eye-catching poster, memorable title and unsavoury reputation of this nasty little flick have kept it alive in the minds of movie goers for decades.
  • Some of his commissions have some pretty unsavoury characters with shady pasts.
  • ‘Some of the people visiting the house are very unsavoury characters,’ she said, speaking in 2003 when the Evening Press first exposed the brothel.
disreputable, unpleasant, disagreeable, nasty, mean, rough, seedy, sleazy, seamy, unwholesome, objectionable, offensive, obnoxious, repellent, repulsive, immoral;
degenerate, dishonourable, dishonest, unprincipled, unscrupulous, villainous, notorious, suspicious, suspect, dubious, base, low, rascally, despicable, coarse, gross, vulgar, boorish, churlish, rude, uncouth
informal shady, crooked, funny, iffy
British informal dodgy
literary noisome



Example sentences
  • At Urge there is a small back room, which really juts out halfway across the car park at the back, and the toilets rather unsavourily double up as private hook up spaces.
  • Jesse snorted unsavourily and grabbed herself a tray as she finally reached the counters, ‘That's because nothing interesting enough happened for it to progress to the level of ‘good’.
  • The quay-side was unsavourily ornamented with glittering fish-scales.


Example sentences
  • The council letter said the market had ‘an air of unsavouriness and seediness’.
  • That just adds a whole new level of unsavoriness to the proceedings.
  • Of course, this unsavoriness is not simply an American affair.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: un|savoury

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