Definition of unsettled in English:

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Pronunciation: /ʌnˈsɛt(ə)ld/


1Lacking order or stability: an unsettled childhood
More example sentences
  • But as time passed, one began to wonder whether Diana could sustain romance of any kind, due to insecurities that she herself traced to an unsettled childhood.
  • According to NACRO, Joseph lived an unsettled childhood and exhibited clear signs of depression and suicidal thoughts.
  • He had an unsettled childhood and, like many ambitious Egyptians of limited means, in 1937 he chose a career in the army.
aimless, directionless, purposeless, without purpose, without a goal;
rootless, moving, wandering, nomadic, travelling, transient
1.1Worried and uneasy: she felt edgy and unsettled
More example sentences
  • They shuffled some more and looked about, uneasy, unsettled, on edge.
  • Caddy finally goes to bed, but, unsettled, Quentin wanders around, and happens to bump into Dalton.
  • Dr. Vincent, an old family friend, takes Paul fishing in order to help ease his mind, but Paul remains unsettled and decides to return home.
1.2Liable to change; unpredictable: a spell of unsettled weather
More example sentences
  • The bill justifies this premise by reference to ‘the uncertainty and unsettled character of all human knowledge.’
  • These are extraordinarily uncertain and unsettled times.
  • Gameplay is unpredictable; it shuttles back and forth, unsettled, dynamic, open to chance.
2Not yet resolved: one question remains unsettled
More example sentences
  • I look forward to seeing the DPP and the KMT cooperate to resolve unsettled human rights cases and bring justice to former political prisoners.
  • Nevertheless, the controversies over literary openness are far from being resolved, and many related issues remain unsettled.
  • Its sphere of application is public life, not private life. Where to draw this line between public and private for this purpose is itself an unsettled and controversial issue.
undecided, to be decided, unresolved, undetermined, uncertain, open, arguable, debatable, disputed, unanswered, open to debate, doubtful, in doubt, moot, up in the air, in (a state of) limbo, in a state of uncertainty, indefinite, inconclusive, unconfirmed, unsolved, ongoing, pending;
confused, problematic, vexed, ambiguous, equivocal, vague, borderline
informal iffy
2.1(Of a bill) not yet paid: they charge interest on debts that remain unsettled after 30 days
More example sentences
  • Zambia's monopoly electric company has found a new way to collect more than R600 million in unsettled bills - by rewarding its defaulting customers.
  • Bookkeeping accompanied by signed receipts would memorialise and facilitate credit transfers that remained unsettled for many years.
  • As at December 31 last year, councils owed their workers about K18 billion in unsettled arrears and the Government had since paid off half of the amount.
unpaid, payable, outstanding, owing, owed, to be paid, due, overdue, undischarged, in arrears, in the red, receivable;
North American  delinquent, past due
3(Of an area) having no settlers or inhabitants.
Example sentences
  • At first they were held in public houses, but as the attempts to eliminate them intensified, they moved to unsettled areas on the outskirts of settlement.
  • Some reservations closely followed traditional Ojibwa boundaries, while others were established in previously unsettled areas.
  • Generous with encouragement for preservation, the Colonial Office was stingy with funds to pay for policing vast unsettled areas.



Example sentences
  • Something of Woolf's poor state of mind in 1909 also made its way into her first novel, The Voyage Out, where protagonist Rachel Vinrace can find no answer to her feelings of unsettledness.
  • This feeling of unsettledness and that everything is uncertain is what I have.
  • This unsettledness of social location for the sources is not surprising, given our limited information about post-586 history.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: un|set¦tled

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