V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: exemption or immunity from harm, especially punishment or retribution, as a result of one's actions or words

Synonyms: license, exemption, immunity


Tips: Impunity is a great word to describe anyone who is given license to say or do something that others would not have license to do. (See usage examples.) Note the root word punity, which has the same origin as punished. When you add the negative im-, "not," impunity has the connotation of not being punished for what you say or do.

Usage Examples:

Freedom of speech enables people to say and do controversial and often disturbing things with impunity. (exemption from liability or punishment)

Crime is so rampant that it feels like criminals are terrorizing the city with impunity. (license, exemption, immunity)

Since he had diplomatic immunity, he walked around and did as he pleased with impunity. (license, exemption, immunity)

Since the Senator was a POW and experienced war first-hand, he felt like he was able to criticize the war with impunity. (license, exemption, immunity, without questioning)

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