There are 2 main definitions of livery in English:

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livery 1

Pronunciation: /ˈlɪv(ə)ri/

noun (plural liveries)

1A special uniform worn by a servant, an official, or a member of a City Company: yeomen of the guard wearing a royal red and gold livery [mass noun]: pageboys in scarlet and green livery
More example sentences
  • Several servants and guards dressed in Iven liveries quickly rushed out to the carriages and directed them to the house that her parents had employed.
  • As president, Jefferson dressed down, but he did fit out the servants in snappy livery of blue and red cloth with silver trimmings.
  • Servants in their traditional livery continued about their tasks, sable bands about their arms in honor.
informal get-up, gear, togs, clobber, duds, kit
formal apparel
literary raiment, array
archaic vestments
1.1A special design and colour scheme used on the vehicles, aircraft, or products of a particular company: the city’s trams are painted in a red and white livery
More example sentences
  • In Frankfurt the plane will have its livery changed to the colours of the new owner.
  • The idea behind the competition was to design a livery with an environmental message that would encourage more people to switch from using their cars to public transport.
  • The type of aircraft and the livery applied allow identification of the time frame.
2North American short for livery stable.
Example sentences
  • Pet care Pet Owners, vets, kennels, stables, breeders, grooms, catteries, pet shops, liveries, and animal welfare all use our health supplements.
  • If you don't want to be involved with the day-to-day care of your horse; then put him/her on full livery where every need will be catered for, but be prepared to pay heavily for this luxury.
  • The deal was done, I would pay for half her shoeing, alternate bags of feed, livery (not including hay and straw) all worming and vaccinations.
3(In the UK) the members of a City livery company collectively.
4 historical A provision of food or clothing for servants.
5 (in full livery of seisin) British historical The ceremonial procedure at common law of conveying freehold land to a grantee.
Example sentences
  • And it retains aristocratic liveries, a ceremonial jargon derived from Norman French and a strict code of manners that can be traced to the laws of chivalry.


at livery

(Of a horse) kept for the owner and fed and cared for at a fixed charge.
Example sentences
  • My Lord, on the question of horses used for hunting kept at livery, our survey showed about 10,100 horses kept at livery or in riding stables and used for hunting.
  • Keeping horses at livery and going out hunting are expensive pursuits that are totally unaffordable by those claiming penury status.



Pronunciation: /ˈlɪvərɪd/
sense 1.
Example sentences
  • The staff, liveried in braided uniforms which perhaps were some sort of nod to the Raj (and why not in saris, we wondered), were quite accustomed to speaking English to customers.
  • Even in the cyber age, nothing much has changed in the coffee houses, not the menu or the waiters liveried in red-white and wearing a gilt-edged, crisp headgear and certainly not the coffee.
  • Many of the traditions survive in the modern firm: liveried commissionaires still take visitors' soggy umbrellas and hand them back, dried and furled, when they leave.


Middle English: from Old French livree 'delivered', feminine past participle of livrer, from Latin liberare 'liberate' (in medieval Latin 'hand over'). The original sense was 'the dispensing of food, provisions, or clothing to servants'; hence sense 4, also 'allowance of provender for horses', surviving in the phrase at livery and in livery stable. sense 1 arose because medieval nobles provided matching clothes to distinguish their servants from others'.

  • liberty from Late Middle English:

    The root of liberty is Latin liber ‘free’, the source also of liberal (Middle English) , libertine (Late Middle English), and livery (Middle English), and deliver. During the French Revolution the rallying cry was ‘liberty, equality, fraternity’. Supporters of change wore the cap of liberty, a red conical cap of a type that had originally been given to Roman slaves when they were freed.

Words that rhyme with livery

quivery, shivery
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There are 2 main definitions of livery in English:

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livery 2

Pronunciation: /ˈlɪv(ə)ri/


1Resembling liver in colour or consistency: he was short with livery lips
More example sentences
  • Then Gran fusses him and Sixth licks keenly at her livery hand, hoping to find more.
1.1 informal Liverish: port always makes you livery
2 dialect (Of soil) heavy.
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