done, made, brought about, undertaken, etc., of one's own accord or by free choice: a voluntary contribution.
of, pertaining to, or acting in accord with the will: voluntary cooperation.
of, pertaining to, or depending on voluntary action: voluntary hospitals.
acting or done without compulsion or obligation.
done by intention, and not by accident: voluntary manslaughter.
made without valuable consideration: a voluntary settlement.
Physiology. subject to or controlled by the will.
having the power of willing or choosing: a voluntary agent.
proceeding from a natural impulse; spontaneous: voluntary laughter.
noun, plural voluntaries.
something done voluntarily.
a piece of music, frequently spontaneous and improvised, performed as a prelude to a larger work, especially a piece of organ music performed before, during, or after an office of the church.

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin voluntārius, equivalent to volunt(ās) willingness, inclination (ultimately representing a formation with -tās -ty2 on the present participle of velle to want, wish; see will1, -ent) + -ārius -ary

voluntarily [vol-uhn-tair-uh-lee, vol-uhn-ter-] , adverb
voluntariness, noun
nonvoluntary, adjective
semivoluntary, adjective
unvoluntarily, adverb
unvoluntary, adjective

1. considered, purposeful, planned, intended, designed. See deliberate. 7. free, unforced, natural, unconstrained. Voluntary, spontaneous agree in applying to something that is a natural outgrowth or natural expression arising from circumstances and conditions. Voluntary implies having given previous consideration, or having exercised judgment: a voluntary confession; a voluntary movement; The offer was a voluntary one. Something that is spontaneous arises as if by itself from the nature of the circumstances or condition: spontaneous applause, combustion, expression of admiration. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To non-voluntary
World English Dictionary
voluntary (ˈvɒləntərɪ, -trɪ)
1.  performed, undertaken, or brought about by free choice, willingly, or without being asked: a voluntary donation
2.  (of persons) serving or acting in a specified function of one's own accord and without compulsion or promise of remuneration: a voluntary social worker
3.  done by, composed of, or functioning with the aid of volunteers: a voluntary association
4.  endowed with, exercising, or having the faculty of willing: a voluntary agent
5.  arising from natural impulse; spontaneous: voluntary laughter
6.  law
 a.  acting or done without legal obligation, compulsion, or persuasion
 b.  made without payment or recompense in any form: a voluntary conveyance
7.  (of the muscles of the limbs, neck, etc) having their action controlled by the will
8.  maintained or provided by the voluntary actions or contributions of individuals and not by the state: voluntary schools; the voluntary system
n , -taries
9.  music a composition or improvisation, usually for organ, played at the beginning or end of a church service
10.  work done without compulsion
11.  obsolete a volunteer, esp in an army
[C14: from Latin voluntārius, from voluntās will, from velle to wish]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

late 14c. (implied in voluntarily), from L. voluntarius "of one's free will," from voluntas "will," from the ancient accusative singular prp. of velle "to wish" (see will (v.)). Originally of feelings, later also of actions (c.1449).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

voluntary vol·un·tar·y (vŏl'ən-těr'ē)

  1. Arising from or acting on one's own free will.

  2. Normally controlled by or subject to individual volition, as of respiration.

  3. Capable of making choices; having the faculty of will.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature