From earlier unkembed, unkemmed, from Middle English unkempt (“uncombed”), equivalent to un- + kempt. Compare Old Norse úkembdr (uncombed; unkempt"; > Icelandic ókembdur), German ungekämmt (“unkempt”), Dutch ongekamd. More at kemb.
- (of hair) Uncombed; dishevelled
- (by extension) Disorderly; untidy; messy; not kept up
- (figuratively) Rough; unpolished
dishevelled; untidy; dirty; not kept up