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See more synonyms for unfetter on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to release from fetters.
  2. to free from restraint; liberate.
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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. 2018

Related Words

free, loose

Examples from the Web for unfettered

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He is a lover of truth, and advocates the only way to arrive at it, which is by unfettered thought.

    Life in London

    Edwin Hodder

  • The Word of God might be useful in its way, but only as studied with unfettered thought.

    Life in London

    Edwin Hodder

  • His will, like his imagination, wanders free and unfettered.

  • All of this has been accomplished since the energies of men were unfettered.

  • As for the third, he was wounded, though not badly, and we left him unfettered.

    Sir Ludar

    Talbot Baines Reed

British Dictionary definitions for unfettered


  1. released from physical or mental bonds; unrestrained
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verb (tr)
  1. to release from fetters, bonds, etc
  2. to release from restraint or inhibition
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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 unfettered



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

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper