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[kuh n-sen-shoo-uh l] /kənˈsɛn ʃu əl/
formed or existing merely by consent:
a consensual transaction.
Physiology. (of an action) involuntarily correlative with a voluntary action, as the contraction of the iris when the eye is opened.
Origin of consensual
1745-55; < Latin consēnsu-, stem of consēnsus consensus + -al1
Related forms
consensually, adverb
nonconsensual, adjective
nonconsensually, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for consensual
  • consensual apparently, but it's way more complicated than that.
  • Some claim a credo can help to galvanise an electorate bored by consensual centrism.
  • His punishment was reduced because of the consensual nature of the crime.
  • The arrangement made between adjuncts and universities is a consensual transaction between buyer and seller.
  • The intimate invasion of people's lives and psyches is itself, of course, often a consensual act.
  • The declarations of party policy are bland expressions of consensual virtue.
  • Both parties did indeed call the affair between boss and subordinate consensual.
  • So let's find a consensual way to navigate the world that allows progress but mitigates risk.
  • They established protocols and an anarchist and consensual approach to governance.
  • State companies compete at home and their decision-making is consensual rather than dictatorial.
British Dictionary definitions for consensual


(law) (of a contract, agreement, etc) existing by consent
(law) (of a sexual activity) performed with the consent of all parties involved
(of certain reflex actions of a part of the body) responding to stimulation of another part
Derived Forms
consensually, adverb
Word Origin
from consensus + -al1
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 consensual

1754, "having to do with consent," from stem of Latin consensus (see consensus) + -al (1). Meaning "by consent" is attested from 1800.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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consensual in Medicine

consensual con·sen·su·al (kən-sěn'shōō-əl)

  1. Of or relating to a reflexive response of one body structure following stimulation of another, such as the concurrent constriction of one pupil in response to light shined in the other.

  2. Of or relating to involuntary movement of a body part accompanying voluntary movement of another.

con·sen'su·al·ly adv.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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