free·​think·​er | \ ˈfrē-ˈthiŋ-kər How to pronounce freethinker (audio) \

Definition of freethinker

: a person who thinks freely or independently : one who forms opinions on the basis of reason independently of authority especially : one who rejects or is skeptical of religious dogma

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Other Words from freethinker

freethinking \ ˈfrē-​ˈthiŋ-​kiŋ How to pronounce freethinking (audio) \ noun or adjective

Examples of freethinker in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As a place that still evokes the ghosts of Huxley, Maslow, Campbell and countless other freethinkers, Esalen is often in danger of being imprisoned by its past, said Kripal. Wallace Baine,, "What’s next for the Esalen Institute?," 5 Sep. 2019 His chief contribution is to put on center stage a cast of skeptics and freethinkers whom historians often relegate to the wings. D.g. Hart, WSJ, "‘Skepticism and American Faith’ Review: Believe It or Not," 22 Aug. 2018 Nineteenth-century freethinkers, such as Susan B. Anthony, were leading advocates of abolitionism and feminism. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Kanye West’s Bastardization of “Free Thinkers”," 3 May 2018 The Dill Pickle Club, North State Street at about East Chestnut Street A century ago, the Dill Pickle Club was the place to be for bohemians, freethinkers and writers, among them Ben Hecht, Carl Sandburg and Theodore Dreiser. Meredith Heagney,, "Literary landmarks: Hunting down old haunts of Chicago writers," 21 May 2018 The writing is poised and tidy as well—too tidy, in fact, for a novel whose allegiances are with rebels and freethinkers. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "The Best New Fiction," 15 Sep. 2017 For those three years, the iconoclast, freethinker and reluctant voice of a generation proclaimed faith in salvation by Jesus Christ (despite his Jewish upbringing), with lyrics that drew a line in the sand. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "Bob Dylan’s Songs for the Soul, Revisited and Redeemed," 1 Nov. 2017 The central conflict in La Belle Sauvage pits freethinkers against fanatics, which is not simply a conflict between atheists and believers. Sarah Jones, New Republic, "Philip Pullman’s War Against the Fanatics," 30 Oct. 2017 For the last three years, atheist writers, freethinkers, foreigners, religious minorities, gay rights activists and others have been terrorized and killed in Bangladesh by shadowy figures who have struck with machetes and sped off on motorbikes. Geeta Anand And Julfikar Ali Manik, New York Times, "Bangladesh Says It Now Knows Who’s Killing the Bloggers," 8 June 2016

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

circa 1700, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of freethinker was circa 1700

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Cite this Entry

“Freethinker.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Mar. 2020.

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More Definitions for freethinker


How to pronounce freethinker (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of freethinker

: a person who forms his or her own opinions about important subjects (such as religion and politics) instead of accepting what other people say

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for freethinker

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with freethinker

Nglish: Translation of freethinker for Spanish Speakers

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