: to release from slavery
"This 27.5-acre parcel was purchased by an African-American man ... who was manumitted from slavery by his father...." — Janice Hayes-Williams, The Capital (Annapolis, Maryland), 17 May 2013
"A slave woman and her children were manumitted by her husband, who had probably bought them to free them." — Michael E. Ruane, The Chicago Tribune, 1 Mar. 2017
Did You Know?
To set someone free from captivity is in effect to release that person from the hand, or control, of the captor. You can use this analogy to remember that manumit derives ultimately from the Latin noun manus, meaning "hand," and the Latin verb mittere, meaning "to let go" or "send." The two roots joined hands in Latin to form the verb manumittere (meaning "to free from slavery"), which in turn passed into Anglo-French as manumettre and eventually into Middle English as manumitten. Manus has handed down other words to English as well. One of them is emancipate, which is both a relative and synonym of manumit.
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