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will2

[wil] /wɪl/
noun
1.
the faculty of conscious and especially of deliberate action; the power of control the mind has over its own actions:
the freedom of the will.
2.
power of choosing one's own actions:
to have a strong or a weak will.
3.
the act or process of using or asserting one's choice; volition:
My hands are obedient to my will.
4.
wish or desire:
to submit against one's will.
5.
purpose or determination, often hearty or stubborn determination; willfulness:
to have the will to succeed.
6.
the wish or purpose as carried out, or to be carried out:
to work one's will.
7.
disposition, whether good or ill, toward another.
8.
Law.
  1. a legal declaration of a person's wishes as to the disposition of his or her property or estate after death, usually written and signed by the testator and attested by witnesses.
  2. the document containing such a declaration.
verb (used with object), willed, willing.
9.
to decide, bring about, or attempt to effect or bring about by an act of the will:
He can walk if he wills it.
10.
to purpose, determine on, or elect, by an act of will:
If he wills success, he can find it.
11.
to give or dispose of (property) by a will or testament; bequeath or devise.
12.
to influence by exerting will power:
She was willed to walk the tightrope by the hypnotist.
verb (used without object), willed, willing.
13.
to exercise the will:
To will is not enough, one must do.
14.
to decide or determine:
Others debate, but the king wills.
Idioms
15.
at will,
  1. at one's discretion or pleasure; as one desires:
    to wander at will through the countryside.
  2. at one's disposal or command.
Origin
900
before 900; (noun) Middle English will(e), Old English will(a); cognate with Dutch wil, German Wille, Old Norse vili, Gothic wilja; (v.) Middle English willen, Old English willian to wish, desire, derivative of the noun; akin to will1
Related forms
willer, noun
Synonyms
3. choice. 4. pleasure, disposition, inclination. 5. resolution, decision. Will, volition refer to conscious choice as to action or thought. Will denotes fixed and persistent intent or purpose: Where there's a will there's a way. Volition is the power of forming an intention or the incentive for using the will: to exercise one's volition in making a decision. 9. determine. 11. leave.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for at will

will1

/wɪl/
verb (past) would takes an infinitive without to or an implied infinitive
1.
esp with you, he, she, it, they, or a noun as subject. used as an auxiliary to make the future tense Compare shall (sense 1)
2.
used as an auxiliary to express resolution on the part of the speaker I will buy that radio if it's the last thing I do
3.
used as an auxiliary to indicate willingness or desire will you help me with this problem?
4.
used as an auxiliary to express compulsion, as in commands you will report your findings to me tomorrow
5.
used as an auxiliary to express capacity or ability this rope will support a load
6.
used as an auxiliary to express probability or expectation on the part of the speaker that will be Jim telephoning
7.
used as an auxiliary to express customary practice or inevitability boys will be boys
8.
(with the infinitive always implied) used as an auxiliary to express desire: usually in polite requests stay if you will
9.
what you will, whatever you like
10.
(informal) will do, a declaration of willingness to do what is requested
Word Origin
Old English willan; related to Old Saxon willian, Old Norse vilja, Old High German wollen, Latin velle to wish, will

will2

/wɪl/
noun
1.
the faculty of conscious and deliberate choice of action; volition related adjectives voluntary volitive
2.
the act or an instance of asserting a choice
3.
  1. the declaration of a person's wishes regarding the disposal of his or her property after death related adjective testamentary
  2. a revocable instrument by which such wishes are expressed
4.
anything decided upon or chosen, esp by a person in authority; desire; wish
5.
determined intention where there's a will there's a way
6.
disposition or attitude towards others he bears you no ill will
7.
at will, at one's own desire, inclination, or choice
8.
with a will, heartily; energetically
9.
with the best will in the world, even with the best of intentions
verb (mainly transitive; often takes a clause as object or an infinitive)
10.
(also intransitive) to exercise the faculty of volition in an attempt to accomplish (something) he willed his wife's recovery from her illness
11.
to give (property) by will to a person, society, etc he willed his art collection to the nation
12.
(also intransitive) to order or decree the king wills that you shall die
13.
to choose or prefer wander where you will
14.
to yearn for or desire to will that one's friends be happy
Derived Forms
willer, noun
Word Origin
Old English willa; related to Old Norse vili, Old High German willeo (German Wille), Gothic wilja, Old Slavonic volja
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for at will

will

v.

Old English *willan, wyllan "to wish, desire, want" (past tense wolde), from Proto-Germanic *welljan (cf. Old Saxon willian, Old Norse vilja, Old Frisian willa, Dutch willen, Old High German wellan, German wollen, Gothic wiljan "to will, wish, desire," Gothic waljan "to choose"). The Germanic words are from PIE *wel-/*wol- "be pleasing" (cf. Sanskrit vrnoti "chooses, prefers," varyah "to be chosen, eligible, excellent," varanam "choosing;" Avestan verenav- "to wish, will, choose;" Greek elpis "hope;" Latin volo, velle "to wish, will, desire;" Old Church Slavonic voljo, voliti "to will," veljo, veleti "to command;" Lithuanian velyti "to wish, favor," pa-vel-mi "I will," viliuos "I hope;" Welsh gwell "better").

Cf. also Old English wel "well," literally "according to one's wish;" wela "well-being, riches." The use as a future auxiliary was already developing in Old English. The implication of intention or volition distinguishes it from shall, which expresses or implies obligation or necessity. Contracted forms, especially after pronouns, began to appear 16c., as in sheele for "she will." The form with an apostrophe is from 17c.

n.

Old English will, willa, from Proto-Germanic *weljon (cf. Old Saxon willio, Old Norse vili, Old Frisian willa, Dutch wil, Old High German willio, German wille, Gothic wilja "will"), related to *willan "to wish" (see will (v.)). The meaning "written document expressing a person's wishes about disposition of property after death" is first recorded late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with at will
Freely, as one pleases, as in The grounds are open to the public and one can wander about at will, or With this thermostat you can adjust the room temperature at will. [ 1300s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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