adjective, un·kind·er, un·kind·est.

lacking in kindness or mercy; severe.

Origin of unkind

Middle English word dating back to 1200–50; see origin at un-1, kind1
Related formsun·kind·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for unkind

Contemporary Examples of unkind

Historical Examples of unkind

  • If you think that, ma'am, it's very cruel and unkind of you to send me away.

  • She did not wish to be unkind, but her one absorbing idea at this moment was of solitude.

    The Dream

    Emile Zola

  • It would be so unkind if she did not answer immediately: she must answer.

    Night and Morning, Complete

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • He thinks, though he has all honour for my mother, that she is unkind to us both.

    Clarissa, Volume 3 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • I take it unkind of you that you have not so much as dipped ensign to me on leaving.

    Micah Clarke

    Arthur Conan Doyle

British Dictionary definitions for unkind



lacking kindness; unsympathetic or cruel
archaic, or dialect
  1. (of weather) unpleasant
  2. (of soil) hard to cultivate
Derived Formsunkindly, adverbunkindness, 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 unkind

early 13c. (implied in unkindly), "strange, foreign, unnatural," from un- (1) "not" + kind (adj.). Meaning "lacking in kindness" is recorded from mid-14c. Related: Unkindly; unkindness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper