free·​hand | \ ˈfrē-ˌhand How to pronounce freehand (audio) \

Definition of freehand

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: done without mechanical aids or devices freehand drawing

free hand

\ ˈfrē-ˈhand How to pronounce free hand (audio) \

Definition of free hand (Entry 2 of 2)

: freedom of action or decision

Other Words from freehand


freehand adverb

Synonyms for freehand

Synonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of freehand in a Sentence

Adjective She took a course in freehand drawing. Noun gave him free hand in managing the club
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective On set, 19-year-old artist Chella Man felt right at home in the second floor bathroom painted by Keith Haring; both Haring and Chella use a fluid, often abstract yet heavily emotive, freehand style to express themselves. Sean Bennett, Teen Vogue, 21 June 2018 And throughout, all kinds of brushes and tools enable an entire palette’s worth of colors to flow, stutter, twist, suffuse and fold, while freehand additions à la de Kooning — and Mr. Green’s earlier work, as well — occasionally flit about. New York Times, 16 Mar. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Fine said a president should have a free hand to fire an inspector general for poor performance, not just misconduct. Lisa Rein, Anchorage Daily News, 12 Aug. 2022 In its absence, Amazon is left with a mostly free hand to utilize brute force to meet its delivery promises. Brian Callaci, The New Republic, 25 Mar. 2022 Working one side at a time, use the concave side of your roller tool to press the screen into the groove in the frame, using your free hand to hold the screen taut to prevent bunching. Kamron Sanders, Better Homes & Gardens, 16 June 2022 My phone fit just right in the slot for easy access, giving me a free hand. Brett Williams, Men's Health, 24 May 2022 Sanders is accused of taking deliberate aim and shooting victims while using his free hand to steady his weapon, which was outfitted with a switch to fire automatically, Murphy added. William Lee, Chicago Tribune, 22 May 2022 That fight ended with Elkins wrapped around Connelly like a strait jacket, punching his face from behind while Connelly uses his one free hand to throw punches over his shoulder, into Elkins’ face. Gregg Doyel, The Indianapolis Star, 19 May 2022 Raise your free hand toward the ceiling, and hold this position. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, 20 May 2021 The same can be said for this tee toss game, which is perfect for any rec room or backyard (preferably with an ice-cold cruiser in your free hand). Editors Of Men's Health, Men's Health, 6 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of freehand


1841, in the meaning defined above


1890, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About freehand

Time Traveler for freehand

Time Traveler

The first known use of freehand was in 1841

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near freehand

free gunnery


free hand

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for freehand

Cite this Entry

“Freehand.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Sep. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for freehand


adjective or adverb
free·​hand | \ ˈfrē-ˌhand How to pronounce freehand (audio) \

Kids Definition of freehand

: done without mechanical aids a freehand drawing


Test Your Vocabulary

The Great British Vocabulary Quiz

  • union jack speech bubble
  • Named after Sir Robert Peel, what are British police called?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!