give me liberty or give me death

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From American patriot Patrick Henry's famous quotation.

Phrase[edit]

give me liberty or give me death

  1. (idiomatic) A set-phrase indicating enormous displeasure at any over-authoritarian policy or law.

Translations[edit]

Usage notes[edit]

An enormous variety of expressions fit the pattern "give me ___, or give me ___" with the latter often being death despite the lack of such strenuous conviction. Nearly any formulaic expression in this pattern is an allusion to this original phrase.