verb (used with object)

to forget or lose knowledge of.
to discard or put aside certain knowledge as being false or binding: to unlearn preconceptions.

verb (used without object)

to lose or discard knowledge.

Origin of unlearn

First recorded in 1400–50, unlearn is from the late Middle English word unlernen. See un-2, learn
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for unlearnt

Historical Examples of unlearnt

  • Soon she would have unlearnt all the sweet grammar of earth.

  • All the years spent in working in the cottage at home have to be unlearnt—all the old habits replaced by new ones.

    The Toilers of the Field

    Richard Jefferies

  • He liked these Ojibways, and had unlearnt his first disgust of their uncleanly habits, though as yet he could not imitate them.

    Fort Amity

    Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

  • That there is much in all existing classifications which requires to be unlearnt is certain.

    Man and His Migrations

    R. G. (Robert Gordon) Latham

  • I gained more respect for myself than I had before:—I understood that I had unlearnt how to wish, without even wanting to do so.

    Friedrich Nietzsche

    Georg Brandes

British Dictionary definitions for unlearnt


unlearned (ʌnˈlɜːnd)


denoting knowledge or skills innately present and therefore not learnt
not learnt or taken notice ofunlearnt lessons


verb -learns, -learning, -learned (-ˈlɜːnd) or -learnt

to try to forget (something learnt) or to discard (accumulated knowledge)
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