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[uhn-wil-ing] /ʌnˈwɪl ɪŋ/
not willing; reluctant; loath; averse:
an unwilling partner in the crime.
opposed; offering resistance; stubborn or obstinate; refractory:
an unwilling captive.
Origin of unwilling
before 900; Old English unwillende (not recorded in ME); see un-1, willing
Related forms
unwillingly, adverb
unwillingness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for unwillingly
  • But it has also been a punishment, to which many went unwillingly-and left when they could.
  • Except for the small number truly addicted to gambling, people gamble voluntarily, but pay taxes only unwillingly.
  • She also contributed, however unwillingly, to the wrong side of a violent war raging across our southern border.
  • On the other hand, his team did follow the evidence and willingly or unwillingly, he presented the results.
  • They say that their students demand it, and feel that they must unwillingly oblige.
  • Heads of establishments sometimes will not agree to a change in cover jobs, or they do so unwillingly.
  • After you are unwillingly made part of the group, you have to unsubscribe to stop receiving alerts.
  • Further, it makes no difference whether the contractor complies willingly or unwillingly.
  • The presence of a code of ethics does not presume that those who sign it do so unwillingly and need to be kept in line.
  • Moreover, a claim of unjust enrichment requires proof that plaintiff conferred benefits unknowingly or unwillingly.
British Dictionary definitions for unwillingly


unfavourably inclined; reluctant
performed, given, or said with reluctance
Derived Forms
unwillingly, adverb
unwillingness, noun
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 unwillingly



Old English unwillende, from un- (1) "not" + willing. Re-formed 16c. Related: Unwillingly; unwillingness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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