- subject to individual will or judgment without restriction; contingent solely upon one's discretion: an arbitrary decision.
- decided by a judge or arbiter rather than by a law or statute.
- having unlimited power; uncontrolled or unrestricted by law; despotic; tyrannical: an arbitrary government.
- capricious; unreasonable; unsupported: an arbitrary demand for payment.
- Mathematics. undetermined; not assigned a specific value: an arbitrary constant.
- arbitraries, Printing. (in Britain) peculiar(def 9).
Origin of arbitrary
Related Words for arbitrarinessintolerance, zeal, bigotry, hatred, extremism, zealotry, madness, abandonment, dogma, unruliness, bias, infatuation, transport, stubbornness, obstinacy, passion, injustice, tenacity, partisanship, enthusiasm
Examples from the Web for arbitrariness
Contemporary Examples of arbitrariness
Moreover, once Greendale is saved, they quickly call of their engagement further revealing its arbitrariness.‘Community’ Season Finale: Greendale Stares into the Abyss, Again
April 18, 2014
Historical Examples of arbitrariness
The assumption has been that arbitrariness was the chief feature of the whole process.The Bible and Life
Edwin Holt Hughes
Without work, he would develop into a monster of caprice and arbitrariness.Pedagogics as a System
The commonalty freed us from the orders and arbitrariness of individuals.The Ego and His Own
All law is supposed to be just, otherwise it is arbitrariness and not law.Elements of Morals
It is needless to point out the arbitrariness of this comparison.Secret Societies of the Middle Ages
- founded on or subject to personal whims, prejudices, etc; capricious
- having only relative application or relevance; not absolute
- (of a government, ruler, etc) despotic or dictatorial
- maths not representing any specific valuean arbitrary constant
- law (esp of a penalty or punishment) not laid down by statute; within the court's discretion
Word Origin for arbitrary
early 15c., "deciding by one's own discretion," from Old French arbitraire (14c.) or directly from Latin arbitrarius "depending on the will, uncertain," from arbiter (see arbiter). The original meaning gradually descended to "capricious" and "despotic" (1640s). Related: Arbitrarily; arbitrariness.