1. to conquer
   Literally, to free:
    'Nehru turned them out in the liberation of Goa.' 'Liberation... did you say liberation!' (Dalrymple, 1998 — Goa was a Portuguese enclave in the subcontinent which India invaded and annexed)
   2. to steal
   Originally, a use by soldiers in the Second World War, when freeing occupied territories and looting property whose owner had vanished tended to go hand in hand:
    It's a gold watch... a liberated gold watch. (Price, 1978)
   Now in general use of thieving:
    'Are you going to be warm enough in that jacket?' 'I'm all right. I liberated it from a second-hand shop.' (Theroux, 1976)
   3. to permit or encourage to flout social convention
   Again the concept of setting free:
    The custom of keen gardeners who once shopped for bedding plants and potting compost was replaced by that of crossdressing businessmen and 'liberated people' who indulged in group sex in the swimming pool. (Daily Telegraph, 28 November 1998 — the proprietor of what had formerly been a garden centre said after his conviction for living off immoral earnings — 'I did not have sex parties. I had liberated parties')
   Whence liberation, as in women's liberation.
   4. peremptorily to dismiss from employment
   The victim is thereby freed from performing the arduous duties of office or employment:
    ... a papal decree was issued by which Dr Errington was 'liberated' from the Co-adjutorship of Westminster, together with the right of succession to the See. (Strachey, 1918 — Manning, lately an archdeacon in the Anglican Church, thus cleared the way for his own succession to Wiseman as Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster)

How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms. . 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Liberate — «Liberate» Сингл Disturbed из альбома Believe …   Википедия

  • Liberate — Lib er*ate ( [=a]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Liberated} ( [=a] t[e^]d); p. pr. & vb. n. {Liberating} ( [=a] t[i^]ng).] [L. liberatus, p. p. of liberare to free, fr. liber free. See {Liberal}, a., and cf. {Deliver}.] To release from restraint or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • liberate — I verb acquit, affranchise, bail out, deliver, discharge, disembroil, disengage, disenthrall, disimprison, dislodge, dismiss, emancipate, enfranchise, exculpate, exonerate, extract, franchise, free, give freedom, give liberty to, let go, let… …   Law dictionary

  • liberate — (v.) 1620s, from L. liberatus, pp. of liberare set free, from liber free (see LIBERAL (Cf. liberal)). Meaning to free an occupied territory from the enemy (often used ironically) is from 1942. Related: Liberated; liberating …   Etymology dictionary

  • liberate — release, *free, emancipate, manumit, deliver, discharge, enfranchise Analogous words: disengage, *detach: *extricate, disentangle, untangle, disencumber, disembarrass: *rescue, redeem, ransom, deliver Contrasted words: *imprison, incarcerate, im …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • liberate — [v] give freedom bail one out*, deliver, detach, discharge, disembarrass, emancipate, free, free up*, get out from under*, let loose*, let out*, loose, loosen, manumit, redeem, release, rescue, save, save one’s neck*, set free, unbind, unchain,… …   New thesaurus

  • liberate — ► VERB 1) set free, especially from imprisonment or oppression. 2) (liberated) free from social conventions, especially with regard to sexual roles. DERIVATIVES liberation noun liberationist noun liberator noun. ORIGIN Latin li …   English terms dictionary

  • liberate — [lib′ər āt΄] vt. liberated, liberating [< L liberatus, pp. of liberare, to set free, release < liber, free: see LIBERAL] 1. to release from slavery, enemy occupation, etc. 2. Slang to steal or loot, esp. from a defeated enemy in wartime 3.… …   English World dictionary

  • liberate — [[t]lɪ̱bəreɪt[/t]] ♦♦♦ liberates, liberating, liberated 1) VERB To liberate a place or the people in it means to free them from the political or military control of another country, area, or group of people. [V n] They planned to march on and… …   English dictionary

  • liberate — UK [ˈlɪbəreɪt] / US [ˈlɪbəˌreɪt] verb [transitive] Word forms liberate : present tense I/you/we/they liberate he/she/it liberates present participle liberating past tense liberated past participle liberated 1) a) to make a place or the people in… …   English dictionary

  • liberate — verb a) to free; to release from restraint or bondage; to set at liberty; to manumit; to disengage to liberate a slave or prisoner b) to …   Wiktionary

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