release

To release something or someone is to set it free, like a caged animal or a prisoner. “I shall be released” is a famous refrain from a 1967 Bob Dylan song that has come to symbolize political freedom around the world.

Release, which is a noun and a verb, has many different meanings. As a noun, it can mean a liberation, an unfastening, or the condition of being made available, like a movie or a CD. “When is the new Spiderman movie being released?” you might ask your best friend. As a verb, it can mean to relieve of suffering or obligation, like a debt. But it can also mean to lay off from a job, or surrender. “Release me from having to watch this terrible movie!” you could end up saying about the 16th Spiderman sequel. And who would blame you?

PRIMARY MEANINGS OF: release

1
vn
grant freedom to; free from confinement
the act of liberating someone or something
2
vn
prepare and issue for public distribution or sale
merchandise issued for sale or public showing (especially a record or film)
3
vn
part with a possession or right
a formal written statement of relinquishment
4
n
activity that frees or expresses creative energy or emotion
5
n
(music) the act or manner of terminating a musical phrase or tone
FULL DEFINITIONS OF: release
1

v grant freedom to; free from confinement

Synonyms:
free, liberate, loose, unloose, unloosen
Antonyms:
confine, detain
deprive of freedom; take into confinement
Types:
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unspell
release from a spell
unchain
make free
bail
release after a security has been paid
run
set animals loose to graze
bail out
free on bail
parole
release a criminal from detention and place him on parole

v release, as from one's grip

Synonyms:
let go, let go of, relinquish
Antonyms:
hold, take hold
have or hold in one's hands or grip
Types:
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discharge, muster out
release from military service
unclasp
release from a clasp
pop
release suddenly
toggle
release by a toggle switch
unhand
remove the hand from
bring out, let out
bring out of a specific state
unleash
release or vent
let loose, loose, unleash
turn loose or free from restraint
unleash
release from a leash
disengage, withdraw
release from something that holds fast, connects, or entangles
deactivate
remove from active military status or reassign
demob, demobilise, demobilize
retire from military service
demobilise, demobilize, inactivate
release from military service or remove from the active list of military service
cannon
fire a cannon
uncork
release
unlock
set free or release

v eliminate (a substance)

“the plant releases a gas”
Synonyms:
discharge, eject, exhaust, expel
Types:
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cough out, cough up, expectorate, spit out, spit up
discharge (phlegm or sputum) from the lungs and out of the mouth
blow
free of obstruction by blowing air through
ejaculate
eject semen
abort
terminate a pregnancy by undergoing an abortion
ovulate
produce and discharge eggs
egest, eliminate, excrete, pass
eliminate from the body
bleed, hemorrhage, shed blood
lose blood from one's body
eruct, spew, spew out
eject or send out in large quantities, also metaphorical
fester, maturate, suppurate
ripen and generate pus
breathe, emit, pass off
expel (gases or odors)
belch, bubble, burp, eruct
expel gas from the stomach
force out
emit or cause to move with force of effort
emanate, exhale, give forth
give out (breath or an odor)
cough
exhale abruptly, as when one has a chest cold or congestion
miscarry
suffer a miscarriage
flow, menstruate
undergo menstruation
perspire, sudate, sweat
excrete perspiration through the pores in the skin
exudate, exude, ooze, ooze out, transude
release (a liquid) in drops or small quantities
make, make water, micturate, pass water, pee, pee-pee, piddle, piss, puddle, relieve oneself, spend a penny, take a leak, urinate, wee, wee-wee
eliminate urine
urinate
pass after the manner of urine
empty, evacuate, void
excrete or discharge from the body
ca-ca, crap, defecate, make, shit, stool, take a crap, take a shit
have a bowel movement
barf, be sick, cast, cat, chuck, disgorge, honk, puke, purge, regorge, regurgitate, retch, sick, spew, spue, throw up, upchuck, vomit, vomit up
eject the contents of the stomach through the mouth
ptyalise, ptyalize, spew, spit, spue
expel or eject (saliva or phlegm or sputum) from the mouth
spit out, splutter, sputter
spit up in an explosive manner
radiate
send out real or metaphoric rays
bubble
form, produce, or emit bubbles

v generate and separate from cells or bodily fluids

release a hormone into the blood stream”
Synonyms:
secrete
Types:
water
secrete or form water, as tears or saliva
Type of:
exudate, exude, ooze, ooze out, transude
release (a liquid) in drops or small quantities

v release (gas or energy) as a result of a chemical reaction or physical decomposition

Synonyms:
free, liberate
Type of:
bring forth, generate
bring into existence

v let (something) fall or spill from a container

Synonyms:
turn
Types:
deflate
release contained air or gas from
throw
throw (a die) out onto a flat surface
shoot
throw dice, as in a crap game
Type of:
channel, channelise, channelize, transfer, transmit, transport
send from one person or place to another

n the act of liberating someone or something

Synonyms:
freeing, liberation
Types:
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jail delivery
the use of force to liberate prisoners
deregulating, deregulation
the act of freeing from regulation (especially from governmental regulations)
relief
the act of freeing a city or town that has been besieged
disentanglement, extrication, unsnarling, untangling
the act of releasing from a snarled or tangled condition
emancipation
freeing someone from the control of another; especially a parent's relinquishing authority and control over a minor child
clearing
the act of freeing from suspicion
manumission
the formal act of freeing from slavery
parole
(law) a conditional release from imprisonment that entitles the person to serve the remainder of the sentence outside the prison as long as the terms of release are complied with
probation
(law) a way of dealing with offenders without imprisoning them; a defendant found guilty of a crime is released by the court without imprisonment subject to conditions imposed by the court
purgation, purge, purging
the act of clearing yourself (or another) from some stigma or charge
exoneration, vindication
the act of vindicating or defending against criticism or censure etc.
whitewash
a specious or deceptive clearing that attempts to gloss over failings and defects
Type of:
accomplishment, achievement
the action of accomplishing something

n a process that liberates or discharges something

“there was a sudden release of oxygen”
“the release of iodine from the thyroid gland”
Types:
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emission
the release of electrons from parent atoms
photoemission
an emission of photoelectrons (especially from a metallic surface)
field emission
the emission of electrons that are stripped from parent atoms by a high electric field
photoelectric emission
the release or absorption of quanta above a certain energy level
radiation, radioactivity
the spontaneous emission of a stream of particles or electromagnetic rays in nuclear decay
secondary emission
the emission of electrons from a surface that is bombarded by higher energy primary electrons
thermal emission, thermionic emission
the emission of electrons from very hot substances
Type of:
action, activity, natural action, natural process
a process existing in or produced by nature (rather than by the intent of human beings)

n the act of allowing a fluid to escape

Synonyms:
spill, spillage
Type of:
flow, stream
the act of flowing or streaming; continuous progression

n a device that when pressed will release part of a mechanism

Synonyms:
button
Type of:
device
an instrumentality invented for a particular purpose

n the termination of someone's employment (leaving them free to depart)

Synonyms:
discharge, dismissal, dismission, firing, liberation, sack, sacking
Types:
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superannuation
the act of discharging someone because of age (especially to cause someone to retire from service on a pension)
conge, congee
an abrupt and unceremonious dismissal
removal
dismissal from office
deactivation, inactivation
breaking up a military unit (by transfers or discharges)
honorable discharge
a discharge from the armed forces with a commendable record
dishonorable discharge
a discharge from the armed forces for a grave offense (as sabotage or espionage or cowardice or murder)
Section Eight
a discharge from the US Army based on unfitness or character traits deemed undesirable
purge
an abrupt or sudden removal of a person or group from an organization or place
Type of:
conclusion, ending, termination
the act of ending something

n euphemistic expressions for death

Synonyms:
departure, exit, expiration, going, loss, passing
Type of:
death, decease, expiry
the event of dying or departure from life
2

v prepare and issue for public distribution or sale

Synonyms:
bring out, issue, publish, put out
Types:
edit
supervise the publication of
Type of:
air, bare, publicise, publicize
make public

v make (information) available for publication

release the list with the names of the prisoners”
Synonyms:
free
Types:
declassify
lift the restriction on and make available again
Type of:
issue, supply
circulate or distribute or equip with

v make (assets) available

release the holdings in the dictator's bank account”
Synonyms:
free, unblock, unfreeze
Antonyms:
block, freeze, immobilise, immobilize
prohibit the conversion or use of (assets)
Type of:
issue, supply
circulate or distribute or equip with

n merchandise issued for sale or public showing (especially a record or film)

“a new release from the London Symphony Orchestra”
Type of:
merchandise, product, ware
commodities offered for sale

n an announcement distributed to members of the press in order to supplement or replace an oral presentation

Synonyms:
handout, press release
Type of:
announcement, promulgation
a public statement containing information about an event that has happened or is going to happen
3

v part with a possession or right

Synonyms:
free, give up, relinquish, resign
Types:
derequisition
release from government control
give, sacrifice
endure the loss of
Type of:
give, hand, pass, pass on, reach, turn over
place into the hands or custody of

n a formal written statement of relinquishment

Synonyms:
discharge, waiver
Types:
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exemption, granting immunity, immunity
an act exempting someone
fix
an exemption granted after influence (e.g., money) is brought to bear
official immunity
personal immunity accorded to a public official from liability to anyone injured by actions that are the consequence of exerting official authority
sovereign immunity
an exemption that precludes bringing a suit against the sovereign government without the government's consent
testimonial immunity, use immunity
an exemption that displaces the privilege against self-incrimination; neither compelled testimony or any fruits of it can be used against the witness who therefore can no longer fear self-incrimination
Type of:
relinquishing, relinquishment
the act of giving up and abandoning a struggle or task etc.

n a legal document evidencing the discharge of a debt or obligation

Synonyms:
acquittance
Type of:
instrument, legal document, legal instrument, official document
(law) a document that states some contractual relationship or grants some right
4

n activity that frees or expresses creative energy or emotion

Synonyms:
outlet, vent
Type of:
activity
any specific behavior
5

n (music) the act or manner of terminating a musical phrase or tone

Synonyms:
tone ending
Types:
explosion, plosion
the terminal forced release of pressure built up during the occlusive phase of a stop consonant
Type of:
conclusion, ending, termination
the act of ending something
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