li‧cence S3 W2 British English ; license American English


[countable] an official document giving you permission to own or do something for a period of time [↪ permit]COLLOCATIONS COLLOCATIONS
do something without a licence a licence to do something apply for a licence grant/issue a licence renew a licence lose your licence (=have your licence taken away) driving licence British English driver's license American English licence fee British English (=the money a licence costs) licence holder British English (=a person who has a licence)
The dealers applied for an export licence.
He was arrested for driving without a license.
The Tennessee Valley Authority applied for a license to operate the facility.
The owner of land could grant a licence to cut and remove timber.
I forgot to renew my licence.
Persistent offenders face losing their licence.
driving licence


[uncountable and countable] an agreement with a company or organization giving permission to make, sell or use their product
under licence
Guinness is brewed under licence in South Africa.
single-user/10-user/site licence (=permission for computer software to be used by a certain number of people or in a certain place only)


[uncountable] freedom to do or say what you think is best:
Headteachers should be allowed greater licence in the exercise of their power.

artistic/poetic licence

A the way in which a painter or writer changes the facts of the real world to make their story, description, or picture of events more interesting or more beautiful


[uncountable and countable] the freedom or opportunity to behave in a way that is wrong or immoral
licence to do something
Police say it gives youngsters licence to break the law.

licence to print money

an opportunity to make a lot of money without much work or effort - especially used to show disapproval

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