Definition of unlettered in US English:



  • (of a person) poorly educated or illiterate.

    • ‘It seems common to consider the MFDP as a group of uneducated farmers or unlettered peasants, yet it was this party and these people who put their lives on the line in one of the most courageous acts of African political expression.’
    • ‘But on the whole, this is a great book to give to your colleagues in the humanities who think that anyone who does mathematics must be an unlettered philistine.’
    • ‘He was just as interested in its corrosive effect on those who claimed to bring civilization to the unlettered heathen.’
    • ‘‘No ego here and hence no opinion,’ claimed Muthal, the unlettered president.’
    • ‘Those confronting the Raj here were poor, unlettered peasants.’
    • ‘A red-haired Cuban refugee used to take offense at nearly everything I uttered, finding me unrefined, unlettered, vulgar, and a bore.’
    • ‘He's an unlettered, un-bookish ignoramus, remember?’
    • ‘She is enchanting but unlettered, wild and rough.’
    • ‘These units thus provided a continuous process of turning unlettered barbarians into literate Roman citizens.’
    • ‘A number of the interpretations are fairly literal, which suggests the perspective of an unlettered audience.’
    • ‘Indeed, he maintained, ‘an unlettered man with God's grace can do more for the building up of the church than many graduates’.’
    • ‘The immediate postwar era witnessed the proliferation of black community-based organizations, often led by unlettered men and women.’
    • ‘Your mention of scribes writing down whatever unlettered men have dictated does not prove anything; he did not dictate whilst others sat writing!’
    • ‘At the tea break I asked the prosecutor whether he could not but admire the fluency with which an apparently unlettered man was conducting his own defence.’
    • ‘The participants in these protests were unlettered peasants and tribals, and we know far more of their deeds than their words.’
    • ‘He was handsome, unlettered, and an excellent horseman.’
    • ‘He described himself as ‘unskilled in every way, an unlettered exile’.’
    • ‘And his unlettered parents and uncle also ‘supported my younger sister Madhavi’.’
    • ‘They come from all walks of life, all nations, rich and poor, educated and unlettered, religious and secular, respectable and underworld.’
    • ‘They of course demeaned themselves by demonstrating on the lawn outside the council room like a mob of unlettered students.’
    illiterate, uneducated, poorly educated, untaught, unschooled, untutored, untrained, uninstructed, unlearned, unread, uninformed, ignorant, unenlightened, unsophisticated, uncultivated, uncultured, philistine, benighted, vulgar, simple
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