- 1[transitive, intransitive] unfold (something) to spread open or flat something that has previously been folded; to become open and flat to unfold a map She unfolded her arms. opposite fold
- 2[intransitive, transitive] to be gradually made known; to gradually make something known to other people The audience watched as the story unfolded before their eyes. Dramatic events were about to unfold. unfold something (to somebody) She unfolded her tale to us. Word Origin Old English unfealdan (from un- and the verb fold).Extra examples Now the full story was beginning to unfold. He unfolded his arms and stood up. She unfolded the letter and read it yet again. The audience watched the story unfold before their eyes. The collapsible ladder unfolds quickly and locks into place for added safety.
BrE BrE//ʌnˈfəʊld//; NAmE NAmE//ʌnˈfoʊld//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they unfold
BrE BrE//ʌnˈfəʊld//; NAmE NAmE//ʌnˈfoʊld//he / she / it unfolds
BrE BrE//ʌnˈfəʊldz//; NAmE NAmE//ʌnˈfoʊldz//past simple unfolded
BrE BrE//ʌnˈfəʊldɪd//; NAmE NAmE//ʌnˈfoʊldɪd//past participle unfolded
BrE BrE//ʌnˈfəʊldɪd//; NAmE NAmE//ʌnˈfoʊldɪd//-ing form unfolding
BrE BrE//ʌnˈfəʊldɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//ʌnˈfoʊldɪŋ//