Try Our Apps


Supposedly vs. Supposably


[uhn-kon-shuh s] /ʌnˈkɒn ʃəs/
not conscious; without awareness, sensation, or cognition.
temporarily devoid of consciousness.
not perceived at the level of awareness; occurring below the level of conscious thought:
an unconscious impulse.
not consciously realized, planned, or done; without conscious volition or intent:
an unconscious social slight.
not endowed with mental faculties:
the unconscious stones.
the unconscious, Psychoanalysis. the part of the mind containing psychic material that is only rarely accessible to awareness but that has a pronounced influence on behavior.
Origin of unconscious
1705-15; 1915-20 for def 6; un-1 + conscious
Related forms
unconsciously, adverb
unconsciousness, noun
quasi-unconscious, adjective
quasi-unconsciously, adverb
self-unconscious, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for unconscious
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But he seemed to be unconscious of them, and sat down in the verandah by Evelyn.

    The Angel of Pain E. F. Benson
  • Yet his voice was unbroken and he was, indeed, unconscious of the tears.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • Her two companions and unconscious dependents were governed by her mood.

  • The edge of the ice-cake had taken Tiakens under the chin and he was unconscious.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • These became the unconscious Praetorians of their ill-gotten domains.

    Coningsby Benjamin Disraeli
British Dictionary definitions for unconscious


lacking normal sensory awareness of the environment; insensible
not aware of one's actions, behaviour, etc: unconscious of his bad manners
characterized by lack of awareness or intention: an unconscious blunder
coming from or produced by the unconscious: unconscious resentment
(psychoanal) the part of the mind containing instincts, impulses, images, and ideas that are not available for direct examination See also collective unconscious Compare subconscious, preconscious
Derived Forms
unconsciously, 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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for unconscious

1712, "unaware, not marked by conscious thought," from un- (1) "not" + conscious. Meaning "temporarily insensible, knocked out" is recorded from 1860. In psychology, the noun the unconscious (1884) is a loan-translation of German das Unbewusste. The adjective in this sense is recorded from 1912.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
unconscious in Medicine

unconscious un·con·scious (ŭn-kŏn'shəs)

  1. Of or in a state of unconsciousness; not conscious.

  2. Occurring in the absence of conscious awareness or thought, as an emotion or motive.

  3. Without conscious control; involuntary or unintended.

In psychoanalytic theory, the division of the mind containing elements of psychic makeup, such as memories or repressed desires, that are not subject to conscious perception or control but that often affect conscious thoughts and behavior.
un·con'scious·ly adv.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
unconscious in Culture

unconscious definition

The part of the psyche lying far below consciousness and not easily raised into consciousness. In Freudian psychology, the unconscious cannot be directly observed with the conscious mind, but it has its own processes and deeply affects conscious thought.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for unconscious

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for unconscious

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for unconscious