unfettered

adjective
un·​fet·​tered | \ˌən-ˈfe-tərd \

Definition of unfettered 

: free, unrestrained unfettered access

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A fetter is a chain or shackle for the feet (as on a prisoner), or, more broadly, anything that confines or restrains. The word derives from Middle English "feter" and shares a relationship with Old English fot, meaning "foot." In current English "unfettered" typically suggests that someone or something is figuratively "unchained," or unrestrained in progress or spirit. The poet John Donne is believed to have been the first to use "unfettered" in this way, in his 1601 work The Progress of the Soule: "To an unfetterd soules quick nimble hast / Are falling stars, and hearts thoughts, but slow pac'd."

Examples of unfettered in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

State media remain Orwellian, but the internet is unrestricted and social-media apps allow for unfettered communication. The Economist, "How a victorious Bashar al-Assad is changing Syria," 28 June 2018 President Trump let loose on Mexico and congressional Democrats in a series of early morning tweets Monday as a caravan of Central American immigrants makes its way largely unfettered through Mexico on its way to the United States’ southern border. Fox News, "Trumps slams Mexico and Dems as caravan of immigrants heads to US southern border," 2 Oct. 2018 My point being is that these companies have operated largely unfettered for a long long time. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Is it time for a ‘slow food’ movement for the internet?," 12 Sep. 2018 Grafton Tanner has a critique of the Time Well Spent movement from the left: In a time when free-market capitalism is the only game in town, massively centralized tech companies have virtually unfettered reign. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Twitter’s case for keeping Alex Jones is falling apart," 10 Aug. 2018 Any nuclear deal will hinge on the North’s willingness to allow unfettered outside inspections of the country’s warheads and nuclear fuel, much of which is likely kept in a vast complex of underground facilities. BostonGlobe.com, "An upbeat Trump is hopeful for a ‘nice’ outcome from summit with Kim," 11 June 2018 Any nuclear deal will hinge on North Korea's willingness to allow unfettered outside inspections of the country's warheads and nuclear fuel, much of which is likely kept in a vast complex of underground facilities. chicagotribune.com, "Trump, Kim arrive in Singapore ahead of high-stakes summit," 10 June 2018 Any nuclear deal will hinge on North Korea's willingness to allow unfettered outside inspections of the country's warheads and nuclear fuel, much of which is likely kept in a vast complex of underground facilities. CBS News, "North Korea summit: Kim Jong Un arrives in Singapore for talks with Trump," 10 June 2018 Any nuclear deal will hinge on North Korea’s willingness to allow unfettered outside inspections of the country’s warheads and nuclear fuel, much of which is likely kept in a vast complex of underground facilities. Foster Klug, The Seattle Times, "Final preparations begin for Trump-Kim high-stakes summit," 10 June 2018

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

circa 1631, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near unfettered

unfertilized

unfestive

unfetter

unfettered

unfeued

unfigured

unfiled

Statistics for unfettered

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for unfettered

The first known use of unfettered was circa 1631

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More Definitions for unfettered

unfettered

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of unfettered

: not controlled or restricted

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