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[uhn-skroo] /ʌnˈskru/
verb (used with object)
to draw or loosen a screw from (a hinge, bracket, etc.).
to unfasten or withdraw by turning, as a screw or lid.
to open (a jar, bottle, etc.) by turning the lid or cover.
verb (used without object)
to permit of being unscrewed.
Origin of unscrew
First recorded in 1595-1605; un-2 + screw Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for unscrew
Historical Examples
  • It was the work of only a few seconds to unscrew the bells, which he placed on the desk.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • Experiment 12.2 unscrew the bell from a doorbell or a telephone.

    Common Science Carleton W. Washburne
  • It was the work of but a minute to unscrew the spark plugs from the tops of the cylinders.

  • After a long whispered consultation, they resolved to unscrew the hinges.

  • In silence she began to unscrew it, and he, seeing what she was trying to do, helped her.

    The Flaming Jewel Robert W. Chambers
  • Now, boy, unscrew the top of this, and hold it in your hand.

    The King's Esquires George Manville Fenn
  • The girl brings it into the kitchen, and proceeds to unscrew the top.

    Peck's Sunshine George W. Peck
  • It took him no long time to find out how to unscrew the handle.

    Man And His Ancestor Charles Morris
  • I got a screw-driver and handed it over to her telling her to unscrew the lock.

    The Van Dwellers

    Albert Bigelow Paine
  • "Sure, I'm glad," said Lise, and began to unscrew the top of the salt shaker.

British Dictionary definitions for unscrew


(transitive) to draw or remove a screw from (an object)
(transitive) to loosen (a screw, lid, etc) by rotating continuously, usually in an anticlockwise direction
(intransitive) (esp of an engaged threaded part) to become loosened or separated: the lid wouldn't unscrew
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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