Definition of unsay in English:



  • Withdraw or retract (a statement)

    ‘once something has been said, it cannot be unsaid’
    ‘I cannot unsay it now’
    • ‘Ballmer now, however, seems to be going some way to unsaying this.’
    • ‘The things he'd said couldn't be unsaid, not with a million apologies… She'd been basing the last few months of her life on a lie.’
    • ‘After all, I didn't have a time machine, and I couldn't unsay what I had said, though what I had said was one of those things that clearly required erasing.’
    • ‘I kept thinking, oh my God, I am way out of my depth, but, I just couldn't unsay it.’
    • ‘I realised that I could get away with unsaying those words.’
    • ‘However, no sooner had the parliament spoken than there were attempts to unsay its words.’
    • ‘I've always thought this and I've never unsaid a word of it.’
    • ‘Her eyes sidled up to Herr Bormann, who was perusing his fork, with such intent that she wished she could unsay her words.’
    • ‘I hope that none of us, even after the end of the metaphysics of the subject, would want to entirely unsay that old Mozartian thought, or fail to appreciate the art that made it possible.’
    • ‘Despite much mature retrospection, I can't unsay those mean comments to Mom, undo what 18 years of smoking did to my lungs, nor unwrite the cringe-inducing history of my high school social life.’
    • ‘Does he not realise how words said are hard to be unsaid.’
    • ‘Because once everything's been said about a subject what is left for new writers but the pleasure of unsaying it all?’
    • ‘Oprah proved herself a worthy word queen by recognizing that what has been said cannot be unsaid.’
    • ‘Gill may have recanted, but what's said cannot be unsaid, and Ferguson must now deal with the notion that his future is more publicly on the agenda.’
    • ‘The three words silently reverberated in the air, wanting to be taken back but Val knew it couldn't be unsaid.’
    • ‘The arguments they have put forward are known to the HLF and can't be unsaid.’
    • ‘Amy wished that she could unsay what she had just said, but couldn't help feel what she had said was right.’
    • ‘Second, we must revoke it - that is, unsay or cancel it.’
    • ‘A lot was said during that divisive leadership campaign which cannot be unsaid.’
    • ‘‘In a book, once you say things, you can't unsay them,’ Witeck warns.’
    take back, withdraw, unsay, recant, disown, disavow, disclaim, abjure, repudiate, renounce, reverse, revoke, rescind, annul, cancel, go back on, backtrack on, do a u-turn on, row back on
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