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

Twitter will no longer give political leaders free rein to rant on the social-media platform. oregonlive.com, "Twitter plans to police Donald Trump’s tweets, adding warning label for ‘abusive behavior’," 28 June 2019 In return, Bulger was given free rein to get away with robbery, drug dealing, extortion and the alleged murders of 19 people. CBS News, "Whitey Bulger's girlfriend moved to halfway house in Massachusetts to serve out sentence," 20 June 2019 Diner were presented with abbreviated menus of Tex-Mex favorites pulled from the premier location, Original Ninfa's on Navigation, and given free rein to order at will. Amber Elliott, Houston Chronicle, "Media stars and a former Texans player taste-test new Original Ninfa's Uptown on VIP night," 7 June 2019 Local government officials enjoyed relatively free rein for much of the post-Mao period as long as the economy grew and tax revenue came in. Jeremy Wallace, Washington Post, "Is Xi Jinping now a ‘leader for life,’ like Mao? Here’s why this is dangerous.," 27 Feb. 2018 Neville reportedly has been given free rein and prodigious budget to bring home a World Cup champion. Liz Clarke, courant.com, "The US World Cup team’s greatest challenge: rising European powers," 14 June 2019 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

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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Statistics for free rein

Last Updated

3 Jul 2019

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The first known use of free rein was in 1640

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