Also found in: Thesaurus, Legal.


1. Narrow-minded; bigoted.
2. Archaic Ungenerous, mean, or stingy.
3. Archaic
a. Lacking education in the liberal arts.
b. Ill-bred; vulgar.

[Latin illīberālis : in-, not; see in-1 + līberālis, liberal; see liberal.]

il·lib′er·al·ism n.
il·lib′er·al′i·ty (-ə-răl′ĭ-tē), il·lib′er·al·ness n.
il·lib′er·al·ly adv.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.illiberality - a disposition not to be liberal (generous) with money
stinginess - a lack of generosity; a general unwillingness to part with money
liberality, liberalness - the trait of being generous in behavior and temperament
References in classic literature ?
Let the calum- niators of the colored race despise themselves for their baseness and illiberality of spirit, and hence- forth cease to talk of the natural inferiority of those who require nothing but time and opportunity to attain to the highest point of human excellence.
The illiberality of parents, in allowance towards their children, is an harmful error; makes them base; acquaints them with shifts; makes them sort with mean company; and makes them surfeit more when they come to plenty.
If then we adhere to our original notion and bear in mind that our guardians, setting aside every other business, are to dedicate themselves wholly to the maintenance of freedom in the State, making this their craft, and engaging in no work which does not bear on this end, they ought not to practise or imitate anything else; if they imitate at all, they should imitate from youth upward only those characters which are suitable to their profession-- the courageous, temperate, holy, free, and the like; but they should not depict or be skilful at imitating any kind of illiberality or baseness, lest from imitation they should come to be what they imitate.
Weil thus forcefully reminds readers of the insecurity, instability, and illiberality of the years immediately following the revolution.
Today's collegians, having grown up in a world poisoned by the illiberality of political correctness, can almost be forgiven for their errors.
In fact, such illiberality has been a constant in the Church's 2000-year history.
The defense of it faces objections familiar to human rights theory such as undue burdensomeness, unclaimability, and infeasibility, as well as some less familiar objections such as illiberality, intolerability, and ideals of the family.
However from another angle, ecumenical mission reveals a tendency of illiberality as well.
He makes the unusual allegation that Henshaw has failed to act with gentility towards a pauper and later he says of the preference for Higgins's judgment "the illiberality of which conduct must strike every candid man & merits no other notice than that of contempt such partiality in a public concern is beneath a Gentleman.