[uhn-skroo-pyuh-luh s]


not scrupulous; unrestrained by scruples; conscienceless; unprincipled.

Origin of unscrupulous

First recorded in 1795–1805; un-1 + scrupulous
Related formsun·scru·pu·lous·ly, adverbun·scru·pu·lous·ness, un·scru·pu·los·i·ty [uhn-skroo-pyuh-los-i-tee] /ʌnˌskru pyəˈlɒs ɪ ti/, noun

Synonyms for unscrupulous

Unscrupulous, unprincipled refer to lack of moral standards or conscience to guide one's conduct. The unscrupulous person is without scruples of conscience, and disregards, or has contempt for, laws of right or justice with which he or she is perfectly well acquainted, and which should restrain his or her actions: unscrupulous in methods of making money, in taking advantage of the unfortunate. The unprincipled person is without moral principles or ethical standards in his or her conduct or actions: an unprincipled rogue; unprincipled conduct.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for unscrupulous

Contemporary Examples of unscrupulous

Historical Examples of unscrupulous

  • Now it was another and older man, daring, intelligent, unscrupulous.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • She had wept because she was heroic and unscrupulous and full of love for both her children.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • Some were so unscrupulous as to bring their lunches with them.

    Pee-wee Harris

    Percy Keese Fitzhugh

  • Unscrupulous employers often endeavor to control the votes of their employes.

    The Railroad Question

    William Larrabee

  • He looked what he was: a bold and unscrupulous leader of his men.

    The Bluff of the Hawk

    Anthony Gilmore

British Dictionary definitions for unscrupulous



without scruples; unprincipled
Derived Formsunscrupulously, adverbunscrupulousness or unscrupulosity (ʌnˌskruːpjʊˈlɒsɪtɪ), 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 unscrupulous

1803, from un- (1) "not" + scrupulous.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper