freedom

noun
free·​dom | \ ˈfrē-dəm How to pronounce freedom (audio) \

Essential Meaning of freedom

1 : the power to do what you want to do : the ability to move or act freely religious freedom academic freedom See More ExamplesHe thinks children these days have too much freedom. She has the freedom to do as she likes. freedom of choice freedom of speech/expression [=the right to express your opinions freely] freedom of the press [=the right to publish books, newspapers, etc., without being controlled by the government]Hide
2 : the state of not being a slave, prisoner, etc. a political prisoner struggling to win his freedom
3 : the state of not having or being affected by something unpleasant, painful, or unwanted

Full Definition of freedom

1 : the quality or state of being free: such as
a : the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action
b : liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another : independence
c : the quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous freedom from care
d : unrestricted use gave him the freedom of their home
e : ease, facility spoke the language with freedom
f : the quality of being frank, open, or outspoken answered with freedom
g : improper familiarity
h : boldness of conception or execution
2a : a political right

Choose the Right Synonym for freedom

freedom, liberty, license mean the power or condition of acting without compulsion. freedom has a broad range of application from total absence of restraint to merely a sense of not being unduly hampered or frustrated. freedom of the press liberty suggests release from former restraint or compulsion. the released prisoner had difficulty adjusting to his new liberty license implies freedom specially granted or conceded and may connote an abuse of freedom. freedom without responsibility may degenerate into license

Examples of freedom in a Sentence

Or Bugs would do the impossible by jumping out of the frame and landing on the drawing board of the cartoonist who was at work creating him. This freedom to transcend the laws of basic physics, to hop around in time and space, and to skip from one dimension to another has long been a crucial aspect of imaginative poetry. — Billy Collins, Wall Street Journal, 28-29 June 2008 I can see that my choices were never truly mine alone—and that that is how it should be, that to assert otherwise is to chase after a sorry sort of freedom. — Barack Obama, Dreams from My Father, (1995) 2004 It's the beginning of summer.  … For many adults who are really closet kids, this means that their blood hums with a hint of freedom — Anna Quindlen, Newsweek, 18 June 2001 He thinks children these days have too much freedom. She has the freedom to do as she likes. a political prisoner struggling to win his freedom
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Recent Examples on the Web Moving on my own to L.A. from Grand Rapids, MI, at 18 opened my eyes to the endless opportunities and creative freedom I was surrounded by. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 9 Jan. 2022 By-the-glass options give me freedom to be whimsical, unbound by the barriers of business. Bon Appétit, 8 Jan. 2022 Bradley had 14 points by intermission with a variety of Rams covering him, many on iso sets that gave him freedom to operate. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 8 Jan. 2022 The realization that life after Guantánamo was not quite freedom from Guantánamo crept up on Adayfi during his first year in Serbia. Washington Post, 7 Jan. 2022 At home, with no money to pay for his wife’s freedom, Mr. Tumburkai was trying not to panic. Drew Hinshaw, WSJ, 7 Jan. 2022 What wonder, though, that history is on repeat, social progress ephemeral and freedom a flickering hope. New York Times, 7 Jan. 2022 The United States is a country that has long stood for free speech, but this freedom was never intended to be untethered from its corresponding reality of being morally upright people who bear an immense responsibility to our neighbors. Jason Thacker, The Week, 6 Jan. 2022 Speaking with Fast Company, the CEO emphasized that the four-day schedule gives employees more freedom to make choices about how to spend their time. Maria Pasquini, PEOPLE.com, 6 Jan. 2022

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'freedom.' 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 freedom

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for freedom

see free entry 1

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Time Traveler for freedom

Time Traveler

The first known use of freedom was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near freedom

freedman

freedom

freedom fighter

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Statistics for freedom

Last Updated

12 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Freedom.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/freedom. Accessed 17 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for freedom

freedom

noun
free·​dom | \ ˈfrē-dəm How to pronounce freedom (audio) \

Kids Definition of freedom

1 : the condition of having liberty The slaves won their freedom.
2 : ability to move or act as desired freedom of choice
3 : release from something unpleasant freedom from care
4 : the quality of being very frank : candor spoke with freedom
5 : a political right freedom of speech

freedom

noun
free·​dom

Legal Definition of freedom

1 : the quality or state of being free: as
a : the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action
b : liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another
c : the quality or state of being exempt or released from something onerous
2a : a political or civil right

More from Merriam-Webster on freedom

Nglish: Translation of freedom for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of freedom for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about freedom

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