Free (a): costing nothing. Ex: Admission is free Source

Free (adv): without payment. Ex: Children under five travel free. Source

Chargeable (a): of a sum of money) that must be paid by somebody. Ex: Any expenses you may incur will be chargeable to the company. Source

However, "Chargeably" means "At great cost; expensively." Source

So, Is "Chargeable" an antonym of "Free" in term of adjective?

So, can we say "Admission is chargeable"

However, "Chargeably" is not an antonym of "Free" in term of adverb right?

  • 1
    I see where you are coming from. Free is definite in its meaning, without ambiguity: without cost. Chargeable is ambiguous since it means can be charged (or not), so is not strictly the opposite meaning. Cost or charge would be antonyms of free. Free admission <> Charged admission
    – Peter
    Jan 2 '16 at 15:58
  • 2
    Your source's definition of "chargeably" is listed in other online references as obsolete, and it seems to be using "chargeably" to mean "costly." See this modern listing for "chargeable" for comparison: merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chargeable I would ask, "Is admission free or do you charge for it?" Jan 2 '16 at 19:54
  • @MarkHubbard, what about "priced"? "priced is opposite of "free"?
    – Tom
    Jan 3 '16 at 0:12
  • I can't suggest any direct antonym of free that has the same grammatical role. If you want to say admission to some event is not free you can say "There is a charge for admission." Or "admission is $5".
    – The Photon
    Jan 3 '16 at 5:48
  • @Tom, Unfortunately, "priced" begs for a modifier, such as "well-priced, fairly priced," and so forth. It is not by itself the opposite of "free," although it is a good, short word to use in the right application (e. g., to head a column in an Excel spreadsheet). However, Peter's suggestion of "cost" might be better there, if it included an amount. Back to your original question, I agree with you that "chargeable" can be an antonym of "free" in the right instance. And yes, you can correctly say, "Admission is chargeable." But I am at a loss to think of a verb to be modified by "chargeably." Jan 3 '16 at 15:09

In some areas, like software, the antonym of "free" is "premium". Consider "free apps" vs. "premium apps".

"Priced" can be used without a modifier as a veneral antonym, but it's rare.

You can also use "not free", in many cases/contexts it would be the correct choice. For example "Higher education in the US is not free".

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