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Meaning of LIBERAL

Pronunciation:  'liburul

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [n]  a person who favors a political philosophy of progress and reform and the protection of civil liberties
  2. [n]  a person who favors an economic theory of laissez-faire and self-regulating markets
  3. [adj]  tolerant of change; not bound by authoritarianism, orthodoxy, or tradition
  4. [adj]  showing or characterized by broad-mindedness; "a broad political stance"; "generous and broad sympathies"; "a liberal newspaper"; "tolerant of his opponent's opinions"
  5. [adj]  not literal; "a loose interpretation of what she had been told"; "a free translation of the poem"
  6. [adj]  given or giving freely; "was a big tipper"; "the bounteous goodness of God"; "bountiful compliments"; "a freehanded host"; "a handsome allowance"; "Saturday's child is loving and giving"; "a liberal backer of the arts"; "a munificent gift"; "her fond and openhanded grandfather"
  7. [adj]  having political or social views favoring reform and progress

LIBERAL is a 7 letter word that starts with L.


 Synonyms: big, bighearted, bounteous, bountiful, broad, broad-minded, civil-libertarian, free, freehanded, generous, giving, handsome, inexact, liberalistic, loose, neoliberal, openhanded, progressive, progressive, reformist, socialised, socialized, tolerant, welfare(a), welfare-statist, welfarist
 Antonyms: conservative, conservative, conservativist
 See Also: adult, grownup, latitudinarian, left, neoliberal, pluralist, Whig



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
  1. \Lib"er*al\ (l[i^]b"[~e]r*al), a. [F. lib['e]ral, L.
    liberalis, from liber free; perh. akin to libet, lubet, it
    pleases, E. lief. Cf. {Deliver}.]
    1. Free by birth; hence, befitting a freeman or gentleman;
       refined; noble; independent; free; not servile or mean;
       as, a liberal ancestry; a liberal spirit; liberal arts or
       studies. `` Liberal education.'' --Macaulay. `` A liberal
       tongue.'' --Shak.
    2. Bestowing in a large and noble way, as a freeman;
       generous; bounteous; open-handed; as, a liberal giver. ``
       Liberal of praise.'' --Bacon.
             Infinitely good, and of his good As liberal and free
             as infinite.                          --Milton.
    3. Bestowed in a large way; hence, more than sufficient;
       abundant; bountiful; ample; profuse; as, a liberal gift; a
       liberal discharge of matter or of water.
             His wealth doth warrant a liberal dower. --Shak.
    4. Not strict or rigorous; not confined or restricted to the
       literal sense; free; as, a liberal translation of a
       classic, or a liberal construction of law or of language.
    5. Not narrow or contracted in mind; not selfish; enlarged in
       spirit; catholic.
    6. Free to excess; regardless of law or moral restraint;
       licentious. `` Most like a liberal villain.'' --Shak.
    7. Not bound by orthodox tenets or established forms in
       political or religious philosophy; independent in opinion;
       not conservative; friendly to great freedom in the
       constitution or administration of government; having
       tendency toward democratic or republican, as distinguished
       from monarchical or aristocratic, forms; as, liberal
       thinkers; liberal Christians; the Liberal party.
             I confess I see nothing liberal in this `` order of
             thoughts,'' as Hobbes elsewhere expresses it.
    Note: Liberal has of, sometimes with, before the thing
          bestowed, in before a word signifying action, and to
          before a person or object on which anything is
          bestowed; as, to be liberal of praise or censure;
          liberal with money; liberal in giving; liberal to the
    {The liberal arts}. See under {Art}.
    {Liberal education}, education that enlarges and disciplines
       the mind and makes it master of its own powers,
       irrespective of the particular business or profession one
       may follow.
    Syn: Generous; bountiful; munificent; beneficent; ample;
         large; profuse; free.
    Usage: {Liberal}, {Generous}. Liberal is freeborn, and
           generous is highborn. The former is opposed to the
           ordinary feelings of a servile state, and implies
           largeness of spirit in giving, judging, acting, etc.
           The latter expresses that nobleness of soul which is
           peculiarly appropriate to those of high rank, -- a
           spirit that goes out of self, and finds its enjoyment
           in consulting the feelings and happiness of others.
           Generosity is measured by the extent of the sacrifices
           it makes; liberality, by the warmth of feeling which
           it manifests.
  2. \Lib"er*al\, n.
    One who favors greater freedom in political or religious
    matters; an opponent of the established systems; a reformer;
    in English politics, a member of the Liberal party, so
    called. Cf. {Whig}.
Thesaurus Terms
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