Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[uhn-red-ee] /ʌnˈrɛd i/
not ready; not made ready:
The new stadium is as yet unready for use.
not in a state of readiness; unprepared:
emotionally unready for success.
lacking in presence of mind, as when a quick decision or a sharp answer is required:
Awkward situations often found him unready.
British Dialect. not dressed.
not prompt or quick.
Origin of unready
First recorded in 1250-1300, unready is from the Middle English word unredy. See un-1, ready
Related forms
unreadiness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for unreadiness
Historical Examples
  • Violent revolutions may be charged up to the unreadiness of statesmen.

    A Preface to Politics

    Walter Lippmann
  • The penalty which had to be paid for this unreadiness was heavy.

    The War in the Air; Vol. 1 Walter Raleigh.
  • Bonaparte had rightly calculated upon the unreadiness of his enemy.

  • unreadiness is a great vice in the Turkish bath appended to these institutions.

    The Turkish Bath Robert Owen Allsop
  • She sees his unreadiness to answer, and attributes it to a wrong cause.

    Alas! Rhoda Broughton
  • There was no apology for her situation, no trace of alarm or shame or unreadiness.

    54-40 or Fight

    Emerson Hough
  • An additional point in favour of White Poplar for the latter purpose is its unreadiness to burn.

  • It is no doubt this unreadiness that causes little children to like twice-told tales and foregone conclusions in their games.

    Ceres' Runaway Alice Meynell
  • During the Dutch war the unreadiness of the ships, more particularly in respect to victualling, was the cause of great trouble.

  • To this pitch of unreadiness the technique of "divide and disturb" had brought us—but it had, none the less, failed.

    Proclaim Liberty! Gilbert Seldes
British Dictionary definitions for unreadiness


not ready or prepared
slow or hesitant to see or act
(archaic) not dressed
Derived Forms
unreadily, adverb
unreadiness, 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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for unreadiness



mid-14c., "not prepared," from un- (1) "not" + ready. In English history, applied to Anglo-Saxon King Æðelræd II (968-1016), where it preserves the fuller original sense of Old English ungeræd "ill-advised, rede-less, no-counsel" and plays on the king's name (which means "good-counsel"). The epithet is attested from early 13c. Old English ræda "advise, counsel" is related to read (v.). Rede "counsel" survived in poetic usage to 17c. An attempted revival by Scott (19c.) failed, though it is used in Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for unreadiness

Word Value for unreadiness

Scrabble Words With Friends