independent

adjective
in·​de·​pen·​dent | \ ˌin-də-ˈpen-dənt How to pronounce independent (audio) \

Definition of independent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not dependent: such as
a(1) : not subject to control by others : self-governing
(2) : not affiliated with a larger controlling unit an independent bookstore
b(1) : not requiring or relying on something else : not contingent an independent conclusion
(2) : not looking to others for one's opinions or for guidance in conduct
(3) : not bound by or committed to a political party
c(1) : not requiring or relying on others (as for care or livelihood) independent of her parents
(2) : being enough to free one from the necessity of working for a living a person of independent means
d : showing a desire for freedom an independent manner
e(1) : not determined by or capable of being deduced or derived from or expressed in terms of members (such as axioms or equations) of the set under consideration especially : having linear independence an independent set of vectors
(2) : having the property that the joint probability (as of events or samples) or the joint probability density function (as of random variables) equals the product of the probabilities or probability density functions of separate occurrence
2 capitalized : of or relating to the Independents
3a : main sense 5 an independent clause
b : neither deducible from nor incompatible with another statement independent postulates

independent

noun

Definition of independent (Entry 2 of 2)

1 capitalized : a sectarian of an English religious movement for congregational autonomy originating in the late 16th century, giving rise to Congregationalists, Baptists, and Friends, and forming one of the major political groupings of the period of Cromwell
2 : one that is independent especially, often capitalized : one that is not bound by or definitively committed to a political party

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Other Words from independent

Adjective

independently adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for independent

Adjective

free, independent, sovereign, autonomous mean not subject to the rule or control of another. free stresses the complete absence of external rule and the full right to make all of one's own decisions. you're free to do as you like independent implies a standing alone; applied to a state it implies lack of connection with any other having power to interfere with its citizens, laws, or policies. the colony's struggle to become independent sovereign stresses the absence of a superior power and implies supremacy within a thing's own domain or sphere. separate and sovereign armed services autonomous stresses independence in matters pertaining to self-government. in this denomination each congregation is regarded as autonomous

Examples of independent in a Sentence

Adjective

The country recently became independent. They have a good deal of independent authority. She has an independent income. Another laboratory has provided independent confirmation of the test results. She is a very independent person. She has an independent mind. They lead an independent life.

Noun

She registered to vote as an Independent.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

There's a murder mystery at the center of it, but the real thrill is watching Murphy live such an imperfect, independent life. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "The CW’s In the Dark Is a Compelling Look at the Blind Experience," 4 Apr. 2019 Becoming a successful and financially independent young woman so early on comes with responsibilities, which can take away from life’s innocence. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Gigi Hadid Tears Up While Discussing How She's Dealt with Fame," 3 Apr. 2019 Renowned for jubilant colored gems, Pomellato was founded in 1967 for the independent career woman, one who would need pieces to transition from work to evening—and was able to buy her own jewelry. Liz Cantrell, Town & Country, "Jane Fonda Speaks Out About Female Empowerment on International Women's Day," 8 Mar. 2019 The number is generated by tapping independent research related to each investment. Simon Clark, WSJ, "U2’s Bono and TPG Launch Company to Measure ‘Impact Investments’," 23 Jan. 2019 In one item, the talking, singing fish represents nostalgia, DIY hackery, and corporations taking independent developer ideas and turning it to profit. Dami Lee, The Verge, "The Verge 2018 tech report card: Gadgets," 30 Dec. 2018 As the show's creator continues to tease out clues regarding upcoming episodes, some fans have done independent research, presenting their theory on a possible new romance. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, ""Riverdale" Fans Believe Archie and Josie Could Become a Couple," 19 Dec. 2018 Confident, independent, thoughtful, feminine, and natural. Minna Shim, Harper's BAZAAR, "Channel French Girl Chic With This Brand," 28 Mar. 2019 And at the end of the day of hearings there was not one scintilla or -- TOLLIVER: And that is why people are asking for an independent -- THIESSEN: Hold on, hold on, hold on. Fox News, "Kavanaugh's high school friend reacts to fiery testimony," 28 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At issue is the 50-member delegation representing civil society, experts, independents, tribal leaders and women which the government has been objecting to. Jamey Keaten, The Seattle Times, "Major powers report progress on new Syria constitution body," 18 Dec. 2018 Every single one of us, Republicans, Democrats, independents, from the biggest of cities, the smallest of towns, the people of Texas want to do and will do the great work of this country. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Read the Full Transcript of Beto O'Rourke’s Concession Speech," 7 Nov. 2018 The late slate includes Alaska, where a combative gubernatorial race is on after Gov. Bill Walker, an independent, suspended his re-election bid less than three weeks before the election. Vivian Salama, WSJ, "Trump Agenda on the Line as Voters Head to the Polls," 6 Nov. 2018 Now, amid tough economic times, three gubernatorial candidates—one Democrat and two Republicans—are challenging Gov. Bill Walker, an independent who is running for re-election. Kelsey Brugger, Scientific American, "Alaska Wants to Fight Warming While Still Drilling for Oil," 12 July 2018 The numbers weren’t much different for independents, with 47 percent undecided and 53 percent dissatisfied with the ballot lineup. John Wildermuth, San Francisco Chronicle, "Newsom leads governor’s poll, with Cox and Villaraigosa fighting for second," 23 May 2018 Support for impeachment among independents dropped from 48% last September to 36% in December. Karl Rove, WSJ, "The Shutdown and the Next Election," 16 Jan. 2019 Trump’s job approval rating, according to Gallup, has dipped to 40 percent, mostly because of declining support among independents. Bill Barrow, The Seattle Times, "Jimmy Carter cautions Democrats not to scare off moderates," 11 Sep. 2018 Among independents who lean toward neither party in battleground districts, 55 percent approve of the Mueller investigation while 42 percent disapprove. Emily Guskin, Washington Post, "Trump is battling Mueller investigation to a draw in court of public opinion," 12 July 2018

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

Adjective

1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1644, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for independent

Last Updated

17 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for independent

The first known use of independent was in 1611

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More Definitions for independent

independent

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of independent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not controlled or ruled by another country
: not controlled by other people
: not requiring or relying on other people for help or support

independent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of independent (Entry 2 of 2)

: someone or something that is not connected to others of the same kind
politics : a person who does not belong to a political party

independent

adjective
in·​de·​pen·​dent | \ ˌin-də-ˈpen-dənt How to pronounce independent (audio) \

Kids Definition of independent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not under the control or rule of another an independent country
2 : not connected with something else an independent bookstore
3 : not depending on anyone else for money to live on
4 : thinking freely : not looking to others for guidance an independent thinker

Other Words from independent

independently adverb

independent

noun

Kids Definition of independent (Entry 2 of 2)

: an independent person

independent

adjective
in·​de·​pen·​dent

Legal Definition of independent

1 : not dependent on others (as parents) for livelihood especially : not a dependent declared she was independent on her financial aid form
2a : not affiliated with another usually larger unit an independent adjuster
b : not contingent on something else an independent promise

Other Words from independent

independence noun
independently adverb

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Comments on independent

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