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See more synonyms for unguarded on Thesaurus.com
  1. not guarded; unprotected; undefended.
  2. open; frank; guileless: an unguarded manner.
  3. exposed to attack or capture by the opponent without recourse by the player, as a card, chess piece, etc.: an unguarded queen of clubs; an unguarded pawn.
  4. not cautious or discreet; careless: In an unguarded moment he had told her about his affair.
  5. without a safeguard, as a cover, barrier, or shield, for protection: an unguarded buzz saw.
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Origin of unguarded

First recorded in 1585–95; un-1 + guarded
Related formsun·guard·ed·ly, adverbun·guard·ed·ness, noun


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for unguarded

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Come, if you have done it in an unguarded moment there is no help for it!

    A Hero of Our Time

    M. Y. Lermontov

  • Clearetus the captain learnt of this place, that it was but a little one and unguarded.



  • She knew music too, and in an unguarded moment Peter admitted that he had studied.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • Yet here in the turret, unguarded by insulation, I could say nothing.

  • In other words, he bided his time, and when he did strike, struck at an unguarded place.

    In the Days of Drake

    J. S. Fletcher

British Dictionary definitions for unguarded


  1. unprotected; vulnerable
  2. guileless; open; frank
  3. incautious or careless
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Derived Formsunguardedly, adverbunguardedness, 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 unguarded


1590s, "not furnished with a guard," from un- (1) "not" + guarded. Sense of "not on one's guard, not taking heed" is attested from 1630s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper