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n. & v. Chiefly British
Variant of license.


(ˈlaɪsəns) or


1. (Law) a certificate, tag, document, etc, giving official permission to do something
2. formal permission or exemption
3. liberty of action or thought; freedom
4. intentional disregard of or deviation from conventional rules to achieve a certain effect: poetic licence.
5. excessive freedom
6. licentiousness
[C14: via Old French and Medieval Latin licentia permission, from Latin: freedom, from licet it is allowed]


(ˈlaɪ səns)

n., v. -censed, -cens•ing. n.
1. formal permission from a governmental or other constituted authority to do something, as to carry on some business or profession.
2. a certificate, tag, plate, etc., giving proof of such permission; official permit: a driver's license.
3. permission to do or not to do something.
4. intentional deviation from rule, convention, or fact, as for the sake of literary or artistic effect: poetic license.
5. exceptional freedom allowed in a special situation.
6. excessive or undue freedom or liberty.
7. licentiousness.
8. the legal right to use a patent owned by another.
9. to issue or grant a license to.
10. to give permission to; authorize.
[1325–75; Middle English licence < Middle French < Medieval Latin licentia authorization, Latin: freedom =licent-, s. of licēns, present participle of licēre to be allowed + -ia -ia]
li′cens•a•ble, adj.
li′cens•er; esp. Law, li•cen•sor (ˈlaɪ sən sər, ˌlaɪ sənˈsɔr) n.


1. 'licence'

In British English, a licence is an official document which gives you permission to do, use, or own something.

I haven't got a television licence.
Keep your driving licence on you.
2. 'license' used as a noun

In American English, this word is spelled license.

A photo identification, such as a driver's license, is required.
3. 'license' used as a verb

In both British and American English, if you are licensed to do something, you have official permission to do it.

These men are licensed to carry firearms.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.licence - excessive freedomlicence - excessive freedom; lack of due restraint; "when liberty becomes license dictatorship is near"- Will Durant; "the intolerable license with which the newspapers break...the rules of decorum"- Edmund Burke
liberty - freedom of choice; "liberty of opinion"; "liberty of worship"; "liberty--perfect liberty--to think or feel or do just as one pleases"; "at liberty to choose whatever occupation one wishes"
2.licence - freedom to deviate deliberately from normally applicable rules or practices (especially in behavior or speech)
liberty - freedom of choice; "liberty of opinion"; "liberty of worship"; "liberty--perfect liberty--to think or feel or do just as one pleases"; "at liberty to choose whatever occupation one wishes"
poetic license - license used by a writer or artist to heighten the effect of their work
3.licence - a legal document giving official permission to do somethinglicence - a legal document giving official permission to do something
legal document, legal instrument, official document, instrument - (law) a document that states some contractual relationship or grants some right
building permit - a document authorizing the holder to construct a building of a particular kind on a particular lot
driver's licence, driver's license, driving licence, driving license - a license authorizing the bearer to drive a motor vehicle
fishing licence, fishing license, fishing permit - a license authorizing the bearer to fish during a specified period of time
game license, hunting licence, hunting license, hunting permit - a license authorizing the bearer to kill a certain type of animal during a specified period of time
learner's permit - a document authorizing the bearer to learn to drive an automobile
letter of mark and reprisal, letter of marque, letters of marque - a license to a private citizen to seize property of another nation
liquor licence, liquor license - a license authorizing the holder to sell alcoholic beverages
marriage licence, marriage license, wedding licence, wedding license - a license authorizing two people to marry
occupation licence, occupation license - a license to pursue a particular occupation
liberty chit, pass - a permit to enter or leave a military installation; "he had to show his pass in order to get out"
law, jurisprudence - the collection of rules imposed by authority; "civilization presupposes respect for the law"; "the great problem for jurisprudence to allow freedom while enforcing order"
Verb1.licence - authorize officially; "I am licensed to practice law in this state"
authorize, authorise, clear, pass - grant authorization or clearance for; "Clear the manuscript for publication"; "The rock star never authorized this slanderous biography"
franchise - grant a franchise to
charter - grant a charter to
accredit, recognise, recognize - grant credentials to; "The Regents officially recognized the new educational institution"; "recognize an academic degree"


1. certificate, document, permit, charter, warrant The painting was returned on a temporary import licence.
2. permission, the right, authority, leave, sanction, liberty, privilege, immunity, entitlement, exemption, prerogative, authorization, dispensation, a free hand, carte blanche, blank cheque The curfew gave the police licence to hunt people as if they were animals.
permission restriction, denial, prohibition
3. freedom, creativity, latitude, independence, liberty, deviation, leeway, free rein, looseness All that stuff about catching a giant fish was just a bit of poetic licence.
freedom restraint, constraint
4. laxity, abandon, disorder, excess, indulgence, anarchy, lawlessness, impropriety, irresponsibility, profligacy, licentiousness, unruliness, immoderation a world of licence and corruption
laxity moderation, strictness
under licence with permission, under a charter, under warrant, under a permit, with authorization, under a patent They made the Mig-21 jet fighter under licence from Russia.
leyfi; skírteini
duoti licencijąlicencijalicencijos turėtojasturintis teisę pardavinėti alkoholį
giấy phép


license1 (US) [ˈlaɪsəns]
A. N
1. (= permit) → permiso m, licencia f (Aut) → permiso m de conducir, carnet m (de conducir)
dog licencelicencia f para tener licencia
export licencepermiso m or licencia f de exportación
fishing licencepermiso m or licencia f de pesca
full licence (Aut) → carnet m or permiso m de conducir (definitivo)
import licencelicencia f or permiso m de importación
he lost his licence (Aut) → le retiraron el carnet or permiso
provisional licence (Aut) permiso o licencia de conducir que se obtiene antes de sacarse el carnet definitivo
they were married by special licencese casaron con una licencia especial
to manufacture sth under licencefabricar algo bajo licencia
see also driving C
see also television B
2. (= freedom)
2.1. (pej) such a policy would give people a licence to break the lawuna política semejante serviría de excusa para que la gente violase la ley
to give sb a licence to killdarle a algn licencia para matar
it's a licence to print moneyes una mina de oro
2.2. (Art, Literat) → licencia f
artistic/poetic licencelicencia artística/poética
you can allow some licence in translationse pueden aceptar algunas libertades al traducir
3. (= immorality) → libertinaje m
B. CPD licence fee N (Brit) (TV) cuota que debe pagarse para el uso de un televisor
licence holder N (Aut) → titular mf del carnet or permiso de conducir
licence number, licence plate N (Aut) → matrícula f, placa f, patente f (S. Cone)


[ˈlaɪsəns] (British) license (US) n
(= permit) (for driving a vehicle, owning a firearm, fishing)permis m; (for trading)licence f; (for TV)redevance f
import licence → licence f d'importation
export licence → licence f d'exportation
produced under licence → fabriqué(e) sous licence
(= excessive freedom) → licence f
to give sb licence to do sth → donner à qn la licence de faire qchlicence fee n (British) (for TV)redevance flicence number (British) license number (US) n
[driving licence] → numéro m de permis de conduire
(US) [car] → numéro m d'immatriculationlicence plate (British) license plate (US) nplaque f d'immatriculation


, (US) license
(= permit)Genehmigung f, → Erlaubnis f; (by authority) → behördliche Genehmigung, Konzession f; (Comm) → Lizenz f; (= driving licence)Führerschein m; (= road licence)Kfz-Steuer f; (= gun licence)Waffenschein m; (= hunting licence)Jagdschein m; (= marriage licence)Eheerlaubnis f; (= radio/television licence)(Rundfunk-/Fernseh)genehmigung f; (= dog licence)Hundemarke f; he hasn’t paid his (dog) licenceer hat seine Hundesteuer nicht bezahlt; you have to have a (television) licenceman muss Fernsehgebühren bezahlen; a licence to practise medicine (Brit), a license to practice medicine (US) → die Approbation, die staatliche Zulassung als Arzt; the restaurant has lost its licence (to sell drinks)das Restaurant hat seine Schankerlaubnis or Konzession verloren; we’ll get a late licence for the receptionfür den Empfang bekommen wir eine Genehmigung für verlängerte Ausschankzeiten; a licence to killein Freibrief mzum Töten; it is just a licence to print money (fig)es ist ein sehr lukratives Geschäft; to manufacture something under licenceetw in Lizenz herstellen; to give somebody licence to do somethingjdm erlauben, etw zu tun
(= freedom)Freiheit f; translated with considerable licencesehr frei übersetzt
(= excessive freedom)Zügellosigkeit f; there is too much licence in sexual matters/the cinema nowadaysin sexuellen Dingen/im Kino geht es heutzutage zu freizügig zu


licence fee
n (Brit TV) → ˜ Fernsehgebühr f
licence number, (US) license number
n (Aut) → Kraftfahrzeug- or Kfz-Kennzeichen nt
licence plate, (US) license plate
n (Aut) → Nummernschild nt


(Am) license1 [ˈlaɪsns] n
a. (permit) → autorizzazione f, permesso; (for car) → bollo, tassa di circolazione (also driving licence) (Am) (also driver's licence) → patente f di guida (Comm) → licenza; (for dog) → tassa (TV, Radio) → abbonamento; (amount paid) → canone m, abbonamento
they were married by special licence → si sono sposati con dispensa
provisional driving licence → foglio rosa
pilot's licence → brevetto (di pilota)
import licence → licenza di importazione
produced under licence → prodotto/a su licenza
b. (freedom) → libertà; (excessive freedom) → licenza, eccessiva libertà


(American) license (ˈlaisəns) noun
a (printed) form giving permission to do something (eg to keep a television set etc, drive a car, sell alcohol etc). a driving licence.
ˈlicense verb
to give a licence to or permit. He is licensed to sell alcohol.
ˈlicensed adjective
(of a shop, hotel etc) legally allowed to sell alcohol to customers. a licensed grocer.
licenˈsee noun
a person to whom a licence (especially to keep a licensed hotel or public house) has been given.

licence is a noun: a licence (not license) to sell alcohol.
license is a verb: licensed (not licenced) to drive a goods vehicle.


رُخْصَةٌ povolení tilladelse Lizenz άδεια licencia lupa permis dozvola licenza 免許 면허 vergunning tillatelse licencja licença разрешение licens ใบอนุญาต ehliyet giấy phép 执照


, licence
n. licencia, permiso;
medical ______ para ejercer la medicina.
References in classic literature ?
In this little lonesome dwelling, with some slender means that she possessed, and by the licence of the magistrates, who still kept an inquisitorial watch over her, Hester established herself, with her infant child.
We must become one flesh without any delay, Jane: there is but the licence to get--then we marry.
And yet I should have dearly liked, I own, to have touched her lips; to have questioned her, that she might have opened them; to have looked upon the lashes of her downcast eyes, and never raised a blush; to have let loose waves of hair, an inch of which would be a keepsake beyond price: in short, I should have liked, I do confess, to have had the lightest licence of a child, and yet to have been man enough to know its value.
In a similar feeling of delicacy, we were always blithe and light-hearted with the licence clients.
Raveloe was not a place where moral censure was severe, but it was thought a weakness in the Squire that he had kept all his sons at home in idleness; and though some licence was to be allowed to young men whose fathers could afford it, people shook their heads at the courses of the second son, Dunstan, commonly called Dunsey Cass, whose taste for swopping and betting might turn out to be a sowing of something worse than wild oats.
1st there was still no money, and Pickles was unable to buy a dog licence.
The very devil would be in it in that case," said Sancho; and letting off thirty "ohs," and sixty sighs, and a hundred and twenty maledictions and execrations on whomsoever it was that had brought him there, he raised himself, stopping half-way bent like a Turkish bow without power to bring himself upright, but with all his pains he saddled his ass, who too had gone astray somewhat, yielding to the excessive licence of the day; he next raised up Rocinante, and as for him, had he possessed a tongue to complain with, most assuredly neither Sancho nor his master would have been behind him.
But if you go away from well-governed states to Crito's friends in Thessaly, where there is great disorder and licence, they will be charmed to hear the tale of your escape from prison, set off with ludicrous particulars of the manner in which you were wrapped in a goatskin or some other disguise, and metamorphosed as the manner is of runaways; but will there be no one to remind you that in your old age you were not ashamed to violate the most sacred laws from a miserable desire of a little more life?
Nor can I truly say that I wearied of this beneficent and innocent life; I think instead that I daily enjoyed it more completely; but I was still cursed with my duality of purpose; and as the first edge of my penitence wore off, the lower side of me, so long indulged, so recently chained down, began to growl for licence.