free1 W1S1 [fri:] adj
1¦(no cost)¦
2¦(not a prisoner)¦
3¦(not controlled)¦
4¦(not busy)¦
5¦(not being used)¦
6¦(not suffering)¦
7¦(not containing something)¦
9 feel free
10 free and easy
11 free spirit
12 give somebody a free hand/rein
13 there's no free lunch
14 it's a free country
15 get/take a free ride
16 be free with something
17 make free with something
18¦(not restricted)¦
1.) ¦(NO COST)¦
something that is free does not cost you any money
Admission is free for children under 9.
All students are offered free accommodation.
Send for our free information pack for more details.
There's a special free gift with this month's magazine.
not held, tied up, or kept somewhere as a prisoner
He knew he could be free in as little as three years.
With one leap he was free!
He walked out of the courtroom a free man .
They have called on the government to set all political prisoners free .
He was found not guilty and walked free from the court.
The animals are allowed to run free in the park.
Hundreds of dogs roam free on the streets.
break/pull/struggle free
She managed to break free from her attacker.
allowed to do or say whatever you want, or allowed to happen, without being controlled or restricted by anyone or anything
We had a free and open discussion about religion.
free to do sth
Remember, you are free to say no.
free from
Newspapers today are entirely free from government control.
Women are struggling to break free from tradition.
free of
I longed to be free of my family.
He became president following the country's first free elections last year.
We would all support the principle of free speech .
For the first time in its history, the country has a free press .
Patients are now allowed free access to their medical records.
The legislation will allow the free movement of goods through all the countries in Europe.
4.) ¦(NOT BUSY)¦
if you are free, or have some free time, you have no work, and nothing else that you must do
I'm free next weekend.
free for
Are you free for lunch tomorrow?
free to do sth
At last I was free to concentrate on my own research.
a free day/morning/half-hour etc
I haven't got a free day this week.
Children these days have very little free time .
something that is free is available to use because it is not already being used
Is this seat free?
I'm afraid we don't have any free tables this evening.
He used his free hand to unlock the door and open it.
not suffering from something
free of
At last she was free of pain.
free from
A lot of the patients are now free from symptoms.
pain-free/trouble-free etc
a stress-free life
not containing something
free from/of
All our drinks are free from artificial colourings and flavourings.
fat-free/dairy-free etc
a fat-free yoghurt
8.) ¦(TAX)¦
if something is free of tax, you do not have to pay tax on it
free of
This income should be free of tax.
tax-free/duty-free etc
tax-free earnings
an opportunity to buy duty-free goods
9.) feel free
spoken used to tell someone that they can do something
Feel free to ask questions.
'Can I use your bathroom?' 'Yes, feel free.'
10.) free and easy
relaxed, friendly, and without many rules
I knew that life wasn't going to be so free and easy now.
the free and easy atmosphere of university life
11.) free spirit
someone who lives as they want to rather than in the way that society considers normal
12.) give sb a free hand/rein
to let someone do whatever they want or need to do in a particular situation
The producer was given a free rein with the script.
13.) there's no free lunch also there's no such thing as a free lunch
used to say that you should not expect to get something good without having to pay for it or make any effort
14.) it's a free country
BrE used, usually humorously, to say that you are or should be allowed to do something, after someone has said that you should not do it
It's a free country. You can't stop me.
15.) get/take a free ride informal
to get something without paying for it or working for it, because other people are paying or working for it
They are encouraging all workers to join the union rather than just taking a free ride on those who do join.
16.) be free with sth
to be very generous with something
He seems to be very free with other people's money.
She is always free with her advice.
17.) make free with sth informal
to use something that belongs to someone else when you should not
I knew that they had been making free with our food.
something that is free is not held, blocked, or restricted
We opened both doors to allow a free flow of air through the building.
19.) ¦(CHEMICALS)¦
technical a free chemical substance is not combined with any other substance
the amount of free oxygen in the atmosphere
free 2
free2 W3 past tense and past participle freed present participle freeing
v [T]
2¦(not control)¦
3¦(allow somebody/something to move)¦
4¦(stop somebody suffering)¦
5¦(make available)¦
6¦(give somebody more time)¦
1.) ¦(RELEASE)¦
to allow someone to leave prison or somewhere they have been kept as a prisoner
= ↑release
He expects to be freed quite soon.
The terrorists have at last agreed to free the hostages.
free sb from sth
She was freed from prison last week.
to allow someone to say and do what they want, after controlling or restricting them in the past
free sb from/of sth
The press has now been freed from political control.
She longed to be freed of her responsibilities.
Art frees the imagination.
to move someone or something so that they are no longer held, fixed, or trapped
= ↑release
He struggled to free himself, but the ropes were too tight.
I couldn't free the safety catch.
free sb/sth from sth
All the victims have now been freed from the wreckage.
to stop someone suffering from something by removing it
free sb from sth
new drugs that can free people from pain
At last the country has been freed from its enormous debts.
5.) ¦(MAKE AVAILABLE)¦ also free sth<=>up
to make something available so that it can be used
I need to free up some of the disk space on my computer.
This should free some money for investment.
6.) ¦(GIVE SOMEBODY MORE TIME)¦ also free sb<=>up
to give someone time to do something by taking away other jobs that they have to do
free sb (up) to do sth
Taking away the burden of administration will free teachers to concentrate on teaching.
We have freed up some staff to deal with the backlog of work.
free 3
free3 adv
1.) without payment
Children under four can travel free.
You can get advice free from your local library.
for free
He offered to do the work for free.
All these services are available to the public free of charge .
2.) not fixed or held in a particular place or position
The ropes were now hanging free.
A gold chain swung free around his neck.
→↑freely, scot-free

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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