Definition of unhinge in English:



  • 1Make (someone) mentally unbalanced.

    ‘the loneliness had nearly unhinged him’
    • ‘I could be over-reacting about this, but if I'm being completely honest with you, the possibilities of what could've happened today have unhinged me a little.’
    • ‘Needless to say, the whole event with Debbie left me unhinged for a while.’
    • ‘Born of the Great Depression, the brothers were unhinged maniacs with no roots, no ties, no responsibilities, fighting back on behalf of the disenfranchised little man.’
    • ‘My mother was unhinged about potential optic damage.’
    • ‘But if, at times, she does appear to be over-the-top, I don't think it's because she's unhinged.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, a mentally unhinged former lover is stalking her, and the serial killer has struck again.’
    • ‘The artistically talented but intellectually unhinged cartoonist Tommy Tomorrow affirms the judgment: ‘This is brilliant.’’
    • ‘The experience seems to have unhinged him, since he bursts into the Hydrogen Cave ranting about a mysterious Referee X who is frustrating his attempts at publication.’
    • ‘Perhaps the blame for our fascination with the violent acts of unhinged minds should be laid to rest at the creaking door of the Bates motel.’
    • ‘Charles could look to the future with a reasonable optimism that he would secure a modest triumph over his occasionally unhinged enemies.’
    • ‘Radically unfit to raise her daughter, or even cross the street, Yuen comes unhinged and retreats into a fantasy world.’
    • ‘The shock unhinges their mother, whose hormones have already been scrambled by post-natal depression.’
    • ‘Is X going to think I am completely unhinged now?’
    • ‘Glenn Close is an actress with five Academy Award nominations under her belt, one of which is for the role for which I will always remember her: the mentally unhinged mistress in Fatal Attraction.’
    • ‘Completely unhinged by madness, she raised he hand and threw the dagger at Kathryn.’
    • ‘The thing is, you have to read the whole platform to see how dangerously unhinged these people really are.’
    • ‘Oh, I don't know - I tell people (a few select people) about my dreams, mainly trustworthy friends who won't then look at me as if I'm unhinged.’
    • ‘There does not seem to be a motive or a reason why, other than like I say, that this person was totally unhinged.’
    • ‘Eventually, being Orwell's widow unhinged her.’
    • ‘Inexplicable things happen to irrational people; unhinged persons zigzag across an unmoored world.’
    deranged, demented, unbalanced, out of one's mind, crazed, mad, insane
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    1. 1.1 Deprive of stability or fixity; throw into disorder.
      • ‘The one event that could unhinge the party's best efforts to retain financial and political control is a run on the RMB.’
      • ‘Instead of throwing the club from the top by unhinging your wrists immediately, you want to add lag by sharpening the angle created by the clubshaft and forearms.’
      • ‘Through impact, the right wrist unhinges as though you were throwing a ball.’
      • ‘Our grab for dominating the world's strategic petroleum reserves is now unhinging world stability, and I think other countries recognize this and are getting fearful and angry as well.’
      • ‘Publicity has the added power of buoying up participants, bringing in more volunteers, nudging bureaucrats, unhinging politicians, and adding momentum to a grassroots initiative.’
      • ‘First, try throwing the clubhead down at the ball by unhinging the wrists.’
      • ‘Placing both hands under the clasp, he used his remaining energy to unhinge it and throw the top of the box up.’
      • ‘But hinging and unhinging the wrists during the putting stroke makes it difficult to control distance.’
      • ‘At 30, he has the experience and sureness of touch to unhinge any team.’
      • ‘So focus on this one key move: Hinge the wrists before your hands reach shoulder height on the backswing, unhinge the wrists on the downswing and then hinge them again before your hands reach shoulder height on the follow-through.’
      disordered, diseased, deranged, disturbed, troubled, demented, unstable, unbalanced, unhinged, insane, crazed, distracted
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  • 2Take (a door) off its hinges.

    • ‘It was always a stunning room, a gleaming subterranean box of pale lacquer and smoked mirrors with a set of Lalique doors you'd unhinge and run off with in the middle of the night if you thought you could get away with it.’
    • ‘He shoots the door knob clean off the door and he kicks the door forward with all his strength, which nearly unhinges the door.’
    • ‘It was a two-story building with rotting blue painted shutters and a door that was only moments away from unhinging itself.’
    • ‘At least their examples complicate the theory that Motherwell's disobedience stems entirely from Butcher, the former Rangers defender renowned for unhinging dressing-room doors.’
    • ‘By pulling it, he'd not only cracked the plank in half, he'd unhinged the door itself.’