/ (ʌnˈhiːdɪd) /
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noticed or heard but disregarded
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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


What does unheeded mean?

Unheeded means disregarded or ignored, despite having been heard or noted.

An unheeded warning is one that was given and heard but ignored.

To heed something is to listen to it, pay careful attention to it, or otherwise observe or acknowledge it in some way—and often to take action on it.

To heed a warning is to listen to it and do what it says to do (or not do what it says not to do). To heed a request is honor it—to do what is requested. To heed calls for reform is to acknowledge them, and, sometimes, to actually follow through and make reforms.

Unheeded is often paired with the verb go, as in Don’t let her advice go unheeded or My requests have gone unheeded. 

Example: I’m sure it will be one of my many unheeded requests—no one does what I ask them around here.

Where does unheeded come from?

The first records of the word unheeded come from the 1600s. The base word, heed, is first recorded from before 900. It comes from the Old English word hēdan, which is related to the German hüten, meaning “to guard” or “to protect.” The prefix un- means “not.”

Today, unheeded can sometimes sound old-fashioned, and terms like ignored and disregarded are more commonly used. However, unheeded is perhaps more likely than disregarded and ignored to appear before a noun, as in unheeded warnings. (You could say disregarded warnings, but you’d more likely say warnings that were disregarded.)

Did you know ... ?

What are some synonyms for unheeded?

What are some words that share a root or word element with unheeded

What are some words that often get used in discussing unheeded?

How is unheeded used in real life?

Unheeded is especially used in the context of warnings, advice, requests, and calls for some kind of action that were ignored.



Try using unheeded!

Which of the following terms is NOT a synonym of unheeded?

A. disregarded
B. ignored
C. dismissed
D. followed

How to use unheeded in a sentence