[uhn-ree-duh-buh l]


not readable; undecipherable; scribbled: His scrawl was almost unreadable.
not interesting to read; dull; tedious; an unreadable treatise.
extraordinarily difficult to read or comprehend; obscure; incomprehensible: an unreadable dream; an unreadable expression.

Nearby words

  1. unraped,
  2. unravel,
  3. unreachable,
  4. unreactive,
  5. unread,
  6. unready,
  7. unreal,
  8. unrealistic,
  9. unreality,
  10. unrealizable

Origin of unreadable

First recorded in 1795–1805; un-1 + readable

Related formsun·read·a·bil·i·ty, un·read·a·ble·ness, nounun·read·a·bly, adverb

Can be confusedillegible illiterate unreadable

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

Examples from the Web for unreadable

British Dictionary definitions for unreadable



illegible; undecipherable
difficult or tedious to read
Derived Formsunreadability or unreadableness, noununreadably, adverb

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 unreadable



c.1810, of written material, "dull, distasteful," from un- (1) "not" + readable. Meaning "illegible" is from 1830.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper