willful

or wil·ful

[wil-fuhl]

adjective

deliberate, voluntary, or intentional: The coroner ruled the death willful murder.
unreasonably stubborn or headstrong; self-willed.

Nearby words

  1. willemstad,
  2. willendorf,
  3. willesden,
  4. willet,
  5. willey,
  6. willfully,
  7. william,
  8. william and mary,
  9. william i,
  10. william ii

Origin of willful

1150–1200; Middle English; Old English wilful willing. See will2, -ful

SYNONYMS FOR willful
1. volitional. 2. intransigent; contrary, refractory, pigheaded, inflexible, obdurate, adamant. Willful, headstrong, perverse, wayward refer to one who stubbornly insists upon doing as he or she pleases. Willful suggests a stubborn persistence in doing what one wishes, especially in opposition to those whose wishes or commands ought to be respected or obeyed: that willful child who disregarded his parents' advice. One who is headstrong is often foolishly, and sometimes violently, self-willed: reckless and headstrong youths. The perverse person is unreasonably or obstinately intractable or contrary, often with the express intention of being disagreeable: perverse out of sheer spite. Wayward in this sense has the connotation of rash wrongheadedness that gets one into trouble: a reform school for wayward girls.

Related forms
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for willfulness


British Dictionary definitions for willfulness

willful

adjective

the US spelling of wilful
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

Word Origin and History for willfulness

willful

adj.

c.1200, "strong-willed," from will (n.) + -ful. Willfully is late Old English wilfullice "of one's own free will, voluntarily;" bad sense of "on purpose" is attested from late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper