Definition of liberty
1 : the quality or state of being free:a : the power to do as one pleasesb : freedom from physical restraintc : freedom from arbitrary or despotic (see despot 2) controld : the positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privilegese : the power of choice
3 : an action going beyond normal limits: such asa : a breach of etiquette or propriety : familiarity took undue liberties with a strangerb : risk, chance took foolish liberties with his healthc : a violation of rules or a deviation from standard practice took liberties in the way he played the gamed : a distortion of fact The movie takes many liberties with the actual events.
4 : a short authorized absence from naval duty usually for less than 48 hours
Examples of liberty in a Sentence
a nation that values liberty and democracy
soldiers willing to die in defense of liberty
They gave him the liberty to handle the problem himself.
hard-won liberties such as freedom of the press
Recent Examples of liberty from the Web
But perhaps the best reason to legalize hard drugs is that people who wish to consume them have the same liberty to determine their own well-being as those who consume alcohol, or marijuana, or anything else.
Small communities settled along the Ohio River and tested the liberties of citizenship that were forged from the new constitution of the United States.
Still living in New York City at the time, Aquilon, unhappily at liberty, took to spending evenings visiting Sterzin at his apartment on the Upper West Side.
Indeed, our struggle against slave power marks the real beginning of our commitment to liberty and equality, in word, if not always in deed.
Mr. Sanborn is right, however, to be skeptical of the explanations offered up by a government populated by so many for whom political-correctness, position, power and money seem more important than the country and our liberty.
Employing a variety of genders beyond man and woman across the world, people who don’t identify with the gender they were assigned at birth have been working for centuries to guarantee their liberties since ancient times.
While authorities praise the technique, defense lawyers and civil liberties advocates decry it for entangling law-abiding people in investigations because of their family ties.
The first lady would not be the last famous person to walk the grounds – although, unlike her, the others didn’t have the liberty to leave the same day.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'liberty'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Synonym Discussion of liberty
Definition of Liberty
city in northwestern Missouri north-northeast of Kansas City population 29,149
LIBERTY Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of liberty for English Language Learners
: the state or condition of people who are able to act and speak freely
: the power to do or choose what you want to
: a political right
LIBERTY Defined for Kids
Definition of liberty for Students
: able to act or speak freely I'm not at liberty to discuss the project.
Legal Definition of liberty
1a : freedom from external (as governmental) restraint, compulsion, or interference in engaging in the pursuits or conduct of one's choice to the extent that they are lawful and not harmful to others b : enjoyment of the rights enjoyed by others in a society free of arbitrary or unreasonable limitation or interference
2 : freedom from physical restraint
3 : freedom from subjection to the will of another claiming ownership or services
4 : right the right to a fair trial is a fundamental liberty secured by the Fourteenth Amendment — W. R. LaFave and J. H. Israel
Seen and Heard
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