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[uhn-ik-spek-tid] /ˌʌn ɪkˈspɛk tɪd/
not expected; unforeseen; surprising:
an unexpected pleasure; an unexpected development.
Origin of unexpected
First recorded in 1580-90; un-1 + expect + -ed2
Related forms
unexpectedly, adverb
unexpectedness, noun
unanticipated. See sudden. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for unexpectedness
Historical Examples
  • Perhaps it was the unexpectedness of meeting a girl so charming that held him interested.

    The Night Riders Ridgwell Cullum
  • The unexpectedness of this misfire positively overcame his faculties.

    Chance Joseph Conrad
  • The unexpectedness of her answer made him hesitate, but finally he ventured, "How did it feel?"

    Glory of Youth Temple Bailey
  • He was a little bewildered by the unexpectedness of the thing.

    The Genius

    Margaret Horton Potter
  • For the rest, I think the real charm must have been in its unexpectedness.

  • The unexpectedness and irrelevancy of this for a moment startled Seth.

  • Because of the unexpectedness of this, and because of his wrath, Foma's heart shrank.

    Foma Gordyeff Maxim Gorky
  • They almost dropped their handbags at the unexpectedness of the meeting.

  • For a moment Stratton was taken aback by the unexpectedness of the question.

    Shoe-Bar Stratton

    Joseph Bushnell Ames
  • He had been startled by the unexpectedness of Bowser's appearance.

    The Adventures of Jimmy Skunk

    Thornton W. Burgess
British Dictionary definitions for unexpectedness


surprising or unforeseen
Derived Forms
unexpectedly, adverb
unexpectedness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for unexpectedness



1580s, from un- (1) "not" + past participle of expect. Related: Unexpectedly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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