Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “unfortunate”

See all translations

unfortunate

adjective uk   /ʌnˈfɔː.tʃən.ət/ us    /-ˈfɔːr-/

unfortunate adjective (UNLUCKY)

B2 unlucky or having bad effects: She has inherited her father's large nose, which is very unfortunate. [+ (that)] It was just unfortunate (that) he phoned exactly as our guests were arriving.
More examples

unfortunate adjective (NOT SUITABLE)

formal (of remarks or behaviour) unsuitable in a way that could cause embarrassment or offence: The housing director's remark that "the homeless could do more to help themselves" was unfortunate to say the least.

unfortunate

noun [C] uk   /ʌnˈfɔː.tʃən.ət/ us    /-ˈfɔːr-/ formal or humorous
an unlucky person who is in a bad situation: He was one of the poor unfortunates who invested in the company and now finds himself a few thousand pounds poorer.
(Definition of unfortunate from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of unfortunate?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “unfortunate” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

thug

a man who acts violently, especially to commit a crime

Word of the Day

The way we move (Verbs for walking and running)

by Kate Woodford,
March 25, 2015
​​​ This week we’re looking at interesting ways to describe the way that people move. Most of the verbs that we’ll be considering describe how fast or slow people move. Others describe the attitude or state of mind of the person walking or running. Some describe both. Starting with verbs for walking slowly,

Read More 

crossfit noun

March 23, 2015
high-intensity strength training Two women in strappy dresses discussed how much weight they could snatch

Read More