verb (used with object)

to release from fetters.
to free from restraint; liberate.

Origin of unfetter

First recorded in 1325–75, unfetter is from the Middle English word unfeteren. See un-2, fetter
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for unfetter

Historical Examples of unfetter

  • Unfetter your thoughts from notions, prejudices and limitations.

    Supreme Personality

    Delmer Eugene Croft

  • The red sand in the glass began to fall again, and its liberation seemed to unfetter my paralysed limbs.

    The Strong Arm

    Robert Barr

  • Scattergood was thinking, and to think, with him, meant so to unfetter his feet that he could wriggle his toes pleasurably.

    Scattergood Baines

    Clarence Budington Kelland

  • To secure true progress, we must unfetter genius, and chain down mediocrity.

    Cannibals all!

    George Fitzhugh

British Dictionary definitions for unfetter


verb (tr)

to release from fetters, bonds, etc
to release from restraint or inhibition
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

Word Origin and History for unfetter

mid-14c., from un- (2) "opposite of" + fetter (v.). The figurative sense is recorded from late 14c. Related: Unfettered; unfettering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper