in·​de·​pen·​dence | \ ˌin-də-ˈpen-dən(t)s How to pronounce independence (audio) \

Definition of independence

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the quality or state of being independent
2 archaic : competence sense 2


geographical name
In·​de·​pen·​dence | \ ˌin-də-ˈpen-dən(t)s How to pronounce Independence (audio) \

Definition of Independence (Entry 2 of 2)

city in western Missouri east of Kansas City population 116,830

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Synonyms & Antonyms for independence

Synonyms: Noun

self-dependence, self-reliance, self-subsistence, self-sufficiency, self-support

Antonyms: Noun

dependence (also dependance), reliance

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Examples of independence in a Sentence


She asserted her independence from her parents by getting her own apartment. He has shown a fierce independence of spirit. A month after independence, elections were held.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But Beijing has held up the slogan as evidence that the protesters support independence. New York Times, "Protests Put Hong Kong on Collision Course with China’s Communist Party," 12 Aug. 2019 But that independence is under threat in the eyes of many Hongkongers. Riley Beggin, Vox, "Hong Kong protests continue for a 10th week in face of Beijing’s threats," 11 Aug. 2019 For months, rumors have circulated that Chinese tech giant Huawei was hard at work on a homegrown operating system, an increasingly necessary step toward independence after US sanctions prompted Google to sever ties. Garrett M. Graff, WIRED, "Huawei's HarmonyOS Is No Android Replacement," 9 Aug. 2019 The Hindu-nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by the prime minister, Narendra Modi, had long argued that Jammu & Kashmir’s special status was an error, dating from soon after India’s independence. The Economist, "India abruptly ends the last special protection enjoyed by Kashmir," 8 Aug. 2019 Since Islamic law permits women to own and manage their own property, ever more Saudi women see employment as the path to financial independence. Alainna Liloia, The Conversation, "Saudi women are fighting for their freedom – and their hard-won victories are growing," 8 Aug. 2019 On Thursday, Democrats and Republicans remained sharply divided, with Holcomb's camp claiming vindication and his opponents questioning the inspector general's independence. Tony Cook, Indianapolis Star, "Inspector general OKs casino boss's private flights for Gov. Eric Holcomb," 8 Aug. 2019 But there’s an upside to the lack of investors: total independence. Jessica Iredale, Town & Country, "Ralph Rucci: The Rise, and Fall and Rise Again of an American Couturier," 7 Aug. 2019 Foster someone's independence by encouraging them to spread their wings. Tribune Content Agency,, "Horoscope for Aug. 3, 2019: Happy birthday Evangeline Lilly; Aquarius, contentment can be contagious," 3 Aug. 2019

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


1640, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for independence

Last Updated

16 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for independence

The first known use of independence was in 1640

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English Language Learners Definition of independence

: freedom from outside control or support : the state of being independent
: the time when a country or region gains political freedom from outside control


in·​de·​pen·​dence | \ ˌin-də-ˈpen-dəns How to pronounce independence (audio) \

Kids Definition of independence

: the quality or state of not being under the control of, reliant on, or connected with someone or something else

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Comments on independence

What made you want to look up independence? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a usually brief trip or an expedition

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