See more synonyms for unworldly on Thesaurus.com
  1. not worldly; not seeking material advantage; spiritually minded.
  2. naive; unsophisticated; provincial.
  3. not terrestrial; unearthly.

Origin of unworldly

First recorded in 1700–10; un-1 + worldly
Related formsun·world·li·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for unworldly

Contemporary Examples of unworldly

  • Only the unworldly could still think this was, at its worst, only an unseemly platonic relationship rather than a serious bonding.

  • When she arrived at the academy, Fernandez was 17 and, Sousa told me, a shy, unworldly country girl.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Hugo and the Hottie

    Bryan Curtis

    October 8, 2009

Historical Examples of unworldly

  • Mother, you are too charitable for this earth—too unworldly altogether.

    The Rise of Roscoe Paine

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • It looked unreal, a painting of unworldly quiet and desolation.

    The Hills of Home

    Alfred Coppel

  • Those people had been right who had called Sir Denis unworldly.

    Mary Gray

    Katharine Tynan

  • He evidently thought of me as of one unworldly and unpractical.

  • She was wholly absorbed in her study of this unworldly and untaught nature.


    Frances Hodgson Burnett

British Dictionary definitions for unworldly


  1. not concerned with material values or pursuits
  2. lacking sophistication; naive
  3. not of this earth or world
Derived Formsunworldliness, 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 unworldly

1707, from un- (1) "not" + worldly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper