from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A political entity whose political status is less than that of a fully sovereign nation-state, as with the former Congo Free State and the former Irish Free State.
- n. A Federal state, with allegiance to a larger entity, as currently with Germany, and earlier, the relationship between the states of the Holy Roman Empire and the Emperor, and later, the states of the German Empire under the Hohenzollerns.
- n. An independent or autonomous political entity whose formal status and relationship to other states is undefined.
- n. An approximate synonym for republic or commonwealth, as with the former Orange Free State, and especially as used for the current United Kingdom to refer to the Commonwealth period under Cromwell.
- n. A condition of not being supported or constrained by outside forces.
You see, they thought the cash and arms they'd been giving him were to be used in the Free Soil campaign in Kansas; when he sprang it on 'em that he was planning to invade Virginia, arm the blacks, set up a free state in the hills, hold slave-owners hostage, and dare the U.S.
Blood had been spilled by them, and he was determined that for every free state man who had been murdered he would have the life of a slave-holder in revenge.
Some of these comforters came from the city of Bienne, a little free state within that of Berne, and amongst others a young man of the name of Wildremet whose family was of the first rank, and had the greatest credit in that city.
In a free country they could do no harm; they would be always obliged to modify and transform themselves and would never gain a real empire either in the world of politics or intellect The great Pombal, who may be called the Cavour of Portugal, took his conception of a free state from England, like the Italian statesman, but he did not understand that persecution is an unfortunate way of inaugurating liberty.
The great question was: should Kansas be a free state or a slave one, and since it was up to the residents to decide, and America being devoted to democracy, both factions rushed in "voters" from the free North and the slave South (Missouri, mostly), elections were rigged, ballot-boxes were stuffed, and before you knew it fighting and raiding had broken out between the free Staters and the "Border Ruffians" of the slavery party.
By the admission of California to the Union as a free state the non-slave states were greatly strengthened.