free rein

noun

Definition of free rein

: unrestricted liberty of action or decision

Examples of free rein in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Guests are handed aprons and a glass of champagne, then given free rein to squeeze through the aisles to taste each master chef's unique creation, literally right off the stove. Leena Kim, Town & Country, "What to Do in St. Moritz During January," 7 Jan. 2019 While both appear to be in good health for their age, the Republican Senate victory on Election Day would give Trump free rein to appoint a new justice who would serve for decades, if the opportunity arises in the next two years. Dylan Scott, Vox, "Republicans will hold on to their Senate majority," 7 Nov. 2018 Registration with the servers—which used certificates tied to mail.ru email addresses—gave the attackers essentially free rein to track the devices taken over and push malware to them. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Hyper-targeted attack against 13 iPhones dropped malicious apps via MDM," 13 July 2018 Raniere had free rein to indulge his interest in scientific experiments. Vanessa Grigoriadis, New York Times, "The ‘Sex Cult’ That Preached Empowerment," 30 May 2018 Legally, platforms have very free rein to take down user speech. Emily Stewart, Vox, "Trump keeps complaining about bias on Twitter — but what can he do about it? 8 experts weigh in.," 23 Aug. 2018 China’s leaders are inclined to tamp down instability, and have balked at giving market forces free rein in the equity markets. Shen Hong, WSJ, "Foreign Investors Invade China’s Cozy Treasury Market," 19 Nov. 2018 In a criminal investigation, the FBI would have free rein to talk to any potential witnesses or pursue any evidence necessary to determine whether criminal charges should be filed. Cindy Otis, Teen Vogue, "The FBI Investigation of Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh, Explained," 3 Oct. 2018 During a typical criminal investigation, the FBI would essentially have free rein. German Lopez, Vox, "The FBI’s limited investigation into the Kavanaugh sexual assault allegations, explained," 3 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'free rein.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of free rein

1640, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of free rein was in 1640

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