unkindness

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

unkind +‎ -ness

Noun[edit]

unkindness (countable and uncountable, plural unkindnesses)

  1. (uncountable) The state or quality of being unkind.
  2. (countable) An unkind act.
  3. (countable) The collective noun for ravens
    • 2006, Kate Forsyth, The Shining City: Book Two of Rhiannon's Ride, Roc (2006), ISBN 9781101043530, unnumbered page:
      All Olwynne could remember, though, was her father falling away from her into some deep pit, his black wings bent over his face, and then hundreds of ravens, an unkindness of ravens, plummeting from the sky to peck out her eyes.
    • 2007, Elizabeth Haydon, The Thief Queen's Daughter, Starscape Books (2007), ISBN 9780765347732, page 228:
      "There's an unkindness of ravens that roosts on top of the guild. Their numbers are growing by the day. Aren't they spectacular?
    • 2010, Rick Burroughs, Alan Wake, Tor Books (2010), ISBN 9780765328434, page 38:
      A raven cawed somewhere up ahead, and its cry was answered by others, an unkindness of ravens on all sides.
    • For more examples of usage of this term, see the citations page.