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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce unwittingly (audio)

Dictionary definition of unwittingly

Carried out without conscious awareness, knowledge, or intention.
"Visitors to the website unwittingly downloaded pernicious malware."

Detailed meaning of unwittingly

When someone does something unwittingly, it means they did it inadvertently or without realizing what they were doing at the time. This term suggests that the person was not fully conscious of the consequences or implications of their actions. For example, if someone unintentionally offended a colleague with a thoughtless comment, they might have done so unwittingly, as they didn't intend to cause offense. "Unwittingly" underscores the element of unawareness or lack of intent, highlighting that the person's actions were accidental or unconscious.

Example sentences containing unwittingly

1. He unwittingly insulted her by making a comment about her hometown.
2. She unwittingly revealed the surprise party when talking to the guest of honor.
3. The teacher unwittingly gave away the answer during his explanation.
4. I unwittingly wore the team colors of our biggest rival to the game.
5. She unwittingly deleted important files while cleaning up her computer.
6. The employee unwittingly spread rumors, thinking they were true facts.

History and etymology of unwittingly

The adverb 'unwittingly' is formed by adding the suffix '-ly' to the word 'unwitting,' which has its roots in Old English. The Old English term 'witan' meant 'to know' or 'to be aware,' and when combined with the prefix 'un-,' meaning 'not,' it formed 'unwitan,' which originally meant 'not knowing' or 'unaware.' Over time, 'unwitting' came to describe actions or events that are carried out without conscious awareness, knowledge, or intention. The addition of '-ly' transforms it into an adverb, 'unwittingly,' which emphasizes the manner in which something is done. The etymology of 'unwittingly' underscores the lack of conscious awareness or intention in the actions or behaviors it describes.

Quiz: Find the meaning of unwittingly

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Further usage examples of unwittingly

1. He unwittingly bought a counterfeit product online, mistaking it for genuine.
2. During the meeting, she unwittingly disclosed sensitive information.
3. I unwittingly found myself in the middle of a heated political debate.
4. The actor unwittingly signed a contract with several limiting clauses.
5. He unwittingly became the subject of the documentary he was filming.
6. She unwittingly contributed to the problem by ignoring the signs.
7. They unwittingly boarded the wrong train and ended up miles away.
8. The hacker unwittingly left a trace, leading investigators to him.
9. By complaining, he unwittingly drew more attention to the issue.
10. I unwittingly offended him by using a term he considered disrespectful.
11. She unwittingly fueled the controversy with her offhand remarks.
12. They unwittingly scheduled the event on a major holiday.
13. The politician unwittingly admitted fault during a live interview.
14. He unwittingly ate food he was allergic to, causing a reaction.
15. The journalist unwittingly captured a crime while filming a segment.
16. I unwittingly stepped into a complex situation, complicating things further.
17. He unwittingly played a part in his own downfall by trusting the wrong person.
18. She unwittingly entered the restricted area, unaware of the rules.
19. Unwittingly, they became pawns in a larger scheme by following orders.
20. He unwittingly broke the law by parking in a restricted zone.
21. During the tour, she unwittingly walked into a restricted area.
22. The scientist unwittingly contaminated the sample, ruining the experiment.
23. She unwittingly set off the alarm by opening the emergency exit.
24. I unwittingly agreed to terms that put me at a disadvantage later on.



Quiz categories containing unwittingly



unknowingly, intentionally, deliberately, consciously


SAT 15 (Scholastic Assessment Test), Irregular and Unpredictable, Unclear and Uncertain

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