Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search



From Old French enfranchir (to set free, enfranchise), from en- (in) + franchir (to set free).


  • IPA(key): /ɛnˈfɹænt͡ʃaɪz/
  • (file)


enfranchise (third-person singular simple present enfranchises, present participle enfranchising, simple past and past participle enfranchised)

  1. To grant the franchise to an entity, specifically:
    1. To grant the privilege of voting to a person or group of people.
    2. To grant municipal or parliamentary rights to an entity such as a city or constituency.
    3. To grant freedom from slavery, duty or servitude.
      • 1842, Letitia Elizabeth Landon, Lady Anne Granard, volume 2, page 288:
        Parental control had been so decisive in Louisa's case that marriage bonds had not hitherto enfranchised her from the former; she, therefore, at the proper time of light, appeared on the arm of Signor Riccardini, and laid her purse on the lap of her mother (who she knew had at least three hundred pounds in possession), at the risk of being deemed extravagant by her husband.
  2. (property law, England & Wales, historical) to convert a copyhold estate into a freehold estate


Related terms[edit]