Definition of leeway in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈliːweɪ/


[mass noun]
1The amount of freedom to move or act that is available: the government had greater leeway to introduce reforms
More example sentences
  • Because of it she had been given more freedom and leeway then other daughters of kings.
  • Our readers have a fair amount of leeway in choosing where they earn those frequent-traveler points.
  • And I think the press is at least giving them leeway now to make those moves.
freedom, scope, room to manoeuvre, latitude, elbow room, slack, space, room, liberty, room to spare, room to operate, scope for initiative, freedom of action, freedom from restriction, a free hand, flexibility, independence, licence, self-determination, free rein, free play, unrestrictedness, indulgence, margin, play, give, laxity, leisure
informal wriggle room, wiggle room
French carte blanche
1.1Margin of safety: there is little leeway if anything goes wrong
More example sentences
  • Up here in the still vastness there is no margin for error, no wiggle room, no leeway between getting it right and dying.
2The sideways drift of a ship to leeward of the desired course: the leeway is only about 2°


make up (the) leeway

British Struggle out of a bad position, especially by recovering lost time: he never made up the leeway and was five lengths down at the finish
More example sentences
  • It has to make up the leeway elsewhere through its legendary cost-cutting programmes.
  • The Danehill Dancer filly quickly made up the leeway under Michael Hills to challenge with two of the seven furlongs to go.
  • Meldrum trailed Shamash by five shots after an opening 83 but just failed to make up the leeway with a 73.

Words that rhyme with leeway

freeway, keyway, seaway

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: lee¦way

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