American English

Definition of liberal adjective from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    , NAmE//ˈlɪbrəl//
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    respecting other opinions
  1. 1willing to understand and respect other people's behavior, opinions, etc., especially when they are different from your own; believing people should be able to choose how they behave liberal attitudes/views/opinions
  2. politics
  3. 2wanting or allowing a lot of political and economic freedom and supporting gradual social, political, or religious change Some politicians want more liberal trade relations with Europe. liberal democracy liberal theories a liberal politician
  4. 3Liberal connected with the Liberal Party, a political party in Canada
  5. generous
  6. 4liberal (with something) generous; given in large amounts synonym lavish She is very liberal with her money. I think Sam is too liberal with his criticism (= he criticizes people too much). Divorced fathers should have liberal access to their children. We ate cake with liberal amounts of whipped cream.
  7. education
  8. 5concerned with increasing someone's general knowledge and experience rather than particular skills a liberal education
  9. not exact
  10. 6not completely accurate or exact synonym free a liberal translation of the text a liberal interpretation of the law
    adverb Apply the cream liberally. The word “original” is liberally interpreted in copyright law.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: liberal