lei·​sure | \ ˈlē-zhər How to pronounce leisure (audio) , ˈle-, ˈlā- How to pronounce leisure (audio) \

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

Traveling overseas for leisure didn’t become legal in China until the 90s. Isabelle Niu, Quartz, "How Chinese tourists are reshaping the global travel economy," 13 Sep. 2019 Mobility is difficult and expensive, access to health care is scarce and there are few options for leisure. New York Times, "Amid Outrage Over Rainforest Fires, Many in the Amazon Remain Defiant," 26 Aug. 2019 Keep in mind it’s a different world here during the city’s cold white winters, which is why outdoor parks in Montreal are especially popular for quiet leisure during warmer, greener parts of the year. Brent Schrotenboer, USA TODAY, "First time in Montreal? Here are 5 things you should do," 21 Aug. 2019 Yes, those wistful thoughts about forgone travel for leisure and family activities do plague me quite a bit. Michelle Singletary, Washington Post, "Four pieces of retirement advice you should question," 23 July 2019 In addition to traveling for leisure, Norman also has used his time to help others this summer. Julius Long And Jill Martin, CNN, "Washington cornerback Josh Norman leaped over a bull in Pamplona," 12 July 2019 Sichuan Airlines and StarLux are among carriers boosting jet orders from Asia as more people in the region take to the skies for leisure and business. Seattle Times News Services, The Seattle Times, "Farnborough Air Show: GE still unconvinced about demand for 797," 16 July 2018 Completed this year, the multilevel residence is outfitted with a wine bar, a game room and other amenities to create a space ideal for leisure and play. Neal J. Leitereg, latimes.com, "Home of the Week: Beverly Hills contemporary caters to a leisurely lifestyle," 7 July 2018 This put working-class men and women in closer contact than ever before, on the job, in transit, and in the new spaces for leisure—the cinema, the soda fountain, the amusement park—that sprang up to absorb their pocket change. Jess Bergman, The New Republic, "The Birth of Breakups," 18 June 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

22 Sep 2019

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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 How to pronounce leisure (audio) \

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 spread over or through

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