lei·​sure | \ˈlē-zhər, ˈle-, ˈlā- \

Definition of leisure 

1 : freedom provided by the cessation of activities especially : time free from work or duties increase of leisure, diminution of hustle are the ends to be sought — Bertrand Russell

at leisure or at one's leisure

: in one's leisure time : at one's convenience read the book at her leisure

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Other Words from leisure

leisure adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for leisure


decompression, ease, relaxation, repose, rest


exertion, labor, toil, work

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Examples of leisure in a Sentence

I don't have much time for leisure. upon retiring, the elderly couple looked forward to a life of well-deserved leisure

Recent Examples on the Web

Created in 1948 by the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights outlines international human rights applicable to every country and person, including access to health resources, education, employment, food, and leisure. Eva Lewis, Teen Vogue, "I Traveled to Paris to Advocate for Human Rights in Chicago's South Side," 27 Nov. 2018 As crystalline a forecast of impending leisure as the Weekender aspires to be, there’s really no way to tell what the next few days are going to look like in America. Michael Andor Brodeur, BostonGlobe.com, "The Weekender: Michael Che, Kyrie Irving, and kittens," 28 June 2018 The rankings were based on infrastructure, median home value, health, crime rate, leisure, environment, poverty rate and education level (the percentage of the city population with at least a bachelor's degree). Lainey Seyler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee was named the No. 10 worst city in the U.S. Here's why that's bunk," 13 June 2018 Acclaimed poet and memoirist Hampl investigates leisure or loafing or wasting time, a commodity many of us both desire and fear. Dannye Romine Powell, charlotteobserver, "Slipping into the sleeves of other lives: 8 memoirs to read now and 4 to watch for," 2 June 2018 Business fares climbed 8 percent last week from a year earlier, even as ticket prices for leisure travel were little changed, said Susan Donofrio, a Macquarie Group analyst. Mary Schlangenstein, The Seattle Times, "Get ready for higher fares and fees to give sagging U.S. airline profits a lift," 3 Sep. 2018 In the 1970s, the visual artist Constant Nieuwenhuys built on these concepts to imagine New Babylon, a utopian, anti-capitalist network of cities composed entirely of leisure spaces. Diana Budds, Curbed, "Play it forward," 18 July 2018 The council narrowly endorses the measure that allows go-cups as part of an entertainment and leisure district in the city's downtown area, according to the report. Kevin Litten, NOLA.com, "The 'go-cup' has migrated from New Orleans to Mississippi: report," 4 June 2018 For example, Marriott has found that home-sharing customers are generally leisure travelers who stay twice as long as typical hotel customers. Dee-ann Durbin, The Seattle Times, "Rooms with new views: Hotels try their hand in home-sharing," 2 Oct. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for leisure

Middle English leiser, from Anglo-French leisir, from leisir to be permitted, from Latin licēre — see license entry 1

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Statistics for leisure

Last Updated

15 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for leisure

The first known use of leisure was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for leisure



English Language Learners Definition of leisure

: time when you are not working : time when you can do whatever you want to do

: enjoyable activities that you do when you are not working


lei·​sure | \ˈlē-zhər \

Kids Definition of leisure

: free time

at leisure or at someone's leisure

1 : in a way that is not hurried

2 : when there is free time available

3 : not busy

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Comments on leisure

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


to make faulty or ineffective

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