scot-free









scot-free


adjective

  1. completely free from harm, restraint, punishment, or obligation: The driver of the car escaped from the accident scot-free. The judge let the defendant off scot-free.

adverb, adjective

  1. (predicative) without harm, loss, or penalty

adj.Old English scotfreo “exempt from royal tax,” from scot “royal tax,” from Old Norse skot “contribution,” literally “a shooting, shot; thing shot, missile,” from PIE *skeud- “to shoot, chase, throw” (see shoot (v.); the Old Norse verb form, skjota, has a secondary sense of “transfer to another; pay”) + freo (see free (adj.)). First element related to Old English sceotan “to pay, contribute,” Dutch schot, German Schoß “tax, contribution.” French écot “share” (Old French escot) is from Germanic.

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