unkind
Pronunciation
  • IPA: /ʌnˈkaɪnd/
Adjective

unkind (comparative unkinder, superlative unkindest)

  1. Lacking kindness, sympathy, benevolence, gratitude, or similar; cruel, harsh or unjust; ungrateful. [From mid-14thC.]
    • circa 1599 William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar (play), Act III, Scene 2,
      Judge, O you gods, how dearly Caesar loved him!
      This was the most unkindest cut of all;
      For when the noble Caesar saw him stab,
      Ingratitude, more strong than traitors’ arms,
      Quite vanquish’d him: then burst his mighty heart;
    • 1720, Alexander Pope (translator), The Iliad of Homer, London: W. Bowyer and Bernard Lintott, Volume 6, Book 24, lines 968-971, p. 189,
      Yet was it ne’er my Fate, from thee to find
      A Deed ungentle, or a Word unkind:
      When others curst the Auth’ress of their Woe,
      Thy Pity check’d my Sorrows in their Flow:
    • 1814, Jane Austen, Mansfield Park, Chapter 2,
      Nobody meant to be unkind, but nobody put themselves out of their way to secure her comfort.
    • 1950 July 3, Politicians Without Politics, Life, page 16 ↗,
      Despite the bursitis, Dewey got in a good round of golf, though his cautious game inspired a reporter to make one of the week′s unkindest remarks: “He plays golf like he plays politics — straight down the middle, and short.”
    • 1974, Laurence William Wylie, Village in the Vaucluse, 3rd Edition, page 175 ↗,
      We had to learn that to refuse such gifts, which represented serious sacrifice, was more unkind than to accept them.
    • 2000, Edward W. Said, On Lost Causes, in Reflections on Exile and Other Essays, page 540 ↗,
      In the strictness with which he holds this view he belongs in the company of the novelists I have cited, except that he is unkinder and less charitable than they are.
  2. (obsolete) Not kind; contrary to nature or type; unnatural. [From 13thC.]
    • 1582, Stephen Batman (translator), Batman vppon Bartholomeus Anglicus His Booke De Proprietatibus Rerum, London, Book 7, Chapter 33,
      […] A Feauer is an vnkinde heate, that commeth out of the heart, and passeth into all the members of the bodye, and grieueth the working of the bodye.
    • 1617, John Davies of Hereford, Wits Bedlam, London, Epigram 116,
      Crowes will not feed their yong til 9. daies old,
      Because their vnkind colour makes them doubt
      Them to be theirs;
  3. (obsolete) Having no race or kindred; childless.
    • 1593, William Shakespeare, Venus and Adonis (Shakespeare poem),
      O, had thy mother borne so hard a mind,
      She had not brought forth thee, but died unkind.
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