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Origin of freelance

Definition for freelance (2 of 2)

free lance

noun

a mercenary soldier or military adventurer of the Middle Ages, often of knightly rank, who offered his services to any state, party, or cause.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for freelance

British Dictionary definitions for freelance

freelance
/ (ˈfriːˌlɑːns) /

noun

  1. Also called: freelancer a self-employed person, esp a writer or artist, who is not employed continuously but hired to do specific assignments
  2. (as modifier)a freelance journalist
a person, esp a politician, who supports several causes or parties without total commitment to any one
(in medieval Europe) a mercenary soldier or adventurer

verb

to work as a freelance on (an assignment, etc)

adverb

as a freelance

Word Origin for freelance

C19 (in sense 3): later applied to politicians, writers, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012