[free-duh m]


Origin of freedom

before 900; Middle English fredom, Old English frēodōm. See free, -dom
Related formsnon·free·dom, nouno·ver·free·dom, nounun·free·dom, noun

Synonyms for freedom

1. Freedom, independence, liberty refer to an absence of undue restrictions and an opportunity to exercise one's rights and powers. Freedom emphasizes the opportunity given for the exercise of one's rights, powers, desires, or the like: freedom of speech or conscience; freedom of movement. Independence implies not only lack of restrictions but also the ability to stand alone, unsustained by anything else: Independence of thought promotes invention and discovery. Liberty, though most often interchanged with freedom, is also used to imply undue exercise of freedom: He took liberties with the text. 9. openness, ingenuousness. 12. license. 16. run. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for unfreedom

Contemporary Examples of unfreedom

Historical Examples of unfreedom

  • Here, again, the ideas of freedom and unfreedom find a part to play.

    Domesday Book and Beyond

    Frederic William Maitland

  • Merchet was the most striking consequence of unfreedom, but manorial documents are wont to connect it with several others.

    Villainage in England

    Paul Vinogradoff

British Dictionary definitions for unfreedom



personal liberty, as from slavery, bondage, serfdom, etc
liberation or deliverance, as from confinement or bondage
the quality or state of being free, esp to enjoy political and civil liberties
(usually foll by from) the state of being without something unpleasant or bad; exemption or immunityfreedom from taxation
the right or privilege of unrestricted use or accessthe freedom of a city
autonomy, self-government, or independence
the power or liberty to order one's own actions
philosophy the quality, esp of the will or the individual, of not being totally constrained; able to choose between alternative actions in identical circumstances
ease or frankness of manner; candourshe talked with complete freedom
excessive familiarity of manner; boldness
ease and grace, as of movement; lack of effort

Word Origin for freedom

Old English frēodōm
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 unfreedom



Old English freodom "freedom, state of free will; charter, emancipation, deliverance;" see free (adj.) + -dom. Freedom-rider recorded 1961, in reference to civil rights activists in U.S. trying to integrate bus lines.

It has been said by some physicians, that life is a forced state. The same may be said of freedom. It requires efforts, it presupposes mental and moral qualities of a high order to be generally diffused in the society where it exists. [John C. Calhoun, speech, U.S. House of Representatives, Jan. 31, 1816]

Freedom Rider Situation Cuts Into Montgomery Juke, Game Revenues [headline, "Billboard," July 24, 1961]

Freedom fighter attested by 1903 (originally with reference to Cuba).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper