not fit; not adapted or suited; unsuitable: He was unfit for his office.
unqualified or incompetent.
not physically fit or in due condition.
Biology. pertaining to an organism or population that is not adapted to prevailing conditions or is not producing offspring in sufficient numbers to maintain its contribution to the gene pool of the next generation.

verb (used with object)

to render unfit or unsuitable; disqualify.

Origin of unfit

First recorded in 1535–45; un-1 + fit1
Related formsun·fit·ness, noun

Synonyms for unfit

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for unfit

Contemporary Examples of unfit

Historical Examples of unfit

  • With such deep yearning in his soul, he was unfit for heaven.

    Other Tales and Sketches

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • The unfit brought in for strength are weakness and destruction.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • When I discovered that I was unfit to hold that trust any longer, I quit.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • This craft was unfit for her duty, but time pressed, and no better offered.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • If there are yellow streaks in the lean of the bacon, it is rusty, and unfit to eat.

British Dictionary definitions for unfit



(postpositive often foll by for) unqualified, incapable, or incompetentunfit for military service
(postpositive often foll by for) unsuitable or inappropriatethe ground was unfit for football
in poor physical condition
Derived Formsunfitness, 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

Word Origin and History for unfit

1540s, "not suitable" (in reference to things), from un- (1) "not" + past participle of fit (see fit (adj.)). Related: Unfitness. In reference to persons or human qualities, attested from 1550s. The verb meaning "to render unfit" is recorded from 1610s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper