Set someone free vs free someone

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Senior Member
Español - España

I've looked this up everywhere in Google, but I can't find a clear distinction between "set someone free" vs "free someone". Even here in the dictionaries you can find a similar example about "free a prisoner" or "set a prisoner free". Is there any nuance about one or the other? Are any of them typical from BE or AE?

  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Usually there's no difference but "set something/someone" free might be a bit more literary and the terse "free someone" probably would be the choice to write on a sign carried by protestors. (In my experience, of course)
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