- not known; not within the range of one's knowledge, experience, or understanding; strange; unfamiliar.
- not discovered, explored, identified, or ascertained: the unknown parts of Antarctica.
- not widely known; not famous; obscure: an unknown writer.
- a thing, influence, area, factor, or person that is unknown: the many unknowns in modern medicine; The director cast an unknown in the leading role.
- Mathematics. a symbol representing an unknown quantity: in algebra, analysis, etc., frequently represented by a letter from the last part of the alphabet, as x, y, or z.
Origin of unknown
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for unknown
While Faal and Njie are in U.S. custody, the whereabouts of the other survivors is unknown.The Shadowy U.S. Veteran Who Tried to Overthrow a Country
January 6, 2015
The police suspect that the other unaccounted for 643,000 bitcoins, were removed from customer accounts via an unknown party.Japanese Bitcoin Heist ‘an Inside Job,’ Not Hackers Alone
Nathalie-Kyoko Stucky, Jake Adelstein
January 1, 2015
Until recently, the hacker collective known as Lizard Squad was all but unknown.The Attack on the Hidden Internet
December 29, 2014
I believe that my case is being interfered with by unknown elements inside Iran.An American Marine in Iran’s Prisons Goes on Hunger Strike
December 18, 2014
We are not concerned or jittered about an unknown candidate.Liberian Senatorial Elections Defy Ebola
December 1, 2014
A few years only back, every Carolinian rode to town, and the motor was unknown.'Tis Sixty Years Since
Charles Francis Adams
"And they come from a bitter heart," answered the unknown knight.
Then he was but a penniless, monk-bred lad, unknown and unfriended.
Like the Admirable Crichton, no art is to her unknown, no accomplishment by her neglected.The Bacillus of Beauty
It is merely a case of not liking him less, but of liking my unknown man more.Her Father's Daughter
- not known, understood, or recognized
- not established, identified, or discoveredan unknown island
- not famous; undistinguishedsome unknown artist
- unknown quantity a person or thing whose action, effect, etc, is unknown or unpredictable
- an unknown person, quantity, or thing
- maths a variable, or the quantity it represents, the value of which is to be discovered by solving an equation; a variable in a conditional equation3y = 4x + 5 is an equation in two unknowns
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
Word Origin and History for unknown
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper