- given, done, bestowed, or obtained without charge or payment; free; voluntary.
- being without apparent reason, cause, or justification: a gratuitous insult.
- Law. given without receiving any return value.
Origin of gratuitous
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for gratuitous
And, in a gratuitous show of homicidal prowess, Moses kills two assassins he meets while wandering in the desert of Sinai.Meet Moses the Swashbuckling Israelite
December 14, 2014
But God forbid a TV series premieres pushing out gratuitous emotion and gratuitous feeling.‘Red Band Society’ Is Really Freaking Sad (And May Be TV’s Best New Drama)
September 17, 2014
The Israeli soldiers, my age, sat impassively on a bench while babies cried and a man complained about gratuitous humiliation.Gaza, You're No Good For My Marriage
August 9, 2014
His story is largely devoid of wanton violence and gratuitous sex.What Would You Do if the World Was Over?
August 5, 2014
There was justified violence—going after al Qaeda—and then there was gratuitous violence.Ahmed Abu Khattala Arrest Spoils GOP’s Benghazi Party
June 18, 2014
The attack must have all the shocking senselessness of gratuitous blasphemy.The Secret Agent
He scorned a dedication, that misnomer for gratuitous advertising.
Arthur, I need not ask if you are innocent; it would be a gratuitous insult to you.
Apparently, Mr. Galloway did not like this gratuitous suggestion.
That act, according to the canons of the church, must be gratuitous.Roman Catholicism in Spain
- given or received without payment or obligation
- without cause; unjustified
- law given or made without receiving any value in returna gratuitous agreement
Word Origin and History for gratuitous
1650s, "freely bestowed," from Latin gratuitus "done without pay, spontaneous, voluntary," from gratus "pleasing, agreeable," from gratia "favor" (see grace). Sense of "uncalled for, done without good reason" is first recorded 1690s.