Meaning of wilfully in English:


Pronunciation /ˈwɪlf(ə)li/


  • 1With the intention of causing harm; deliberately.

    ‘she denies four charges of wilfully neglecting a patient’
    • ‘he admitted wilfully ill-treating animals’
    • ‘At the end of Henry IV, in a re-enactment of Hamlet's murder of Polonius, Henry wilfully thrusts his sword into Belcredi.’
    • ‘As long as he does nothing wilfully provocative, he has considerable freedom to redefine his personal position on matters of faith and conscience.’
    • ‘The Act also covers persons who knowingly or wilfully (within the timeframe specified for their retention) destroy, deface or conceal from the Revenue any documents.’
    • ‘You don't accept the possibility that a government may one day wilfully misuse this information.’
    • ‘The government had in fact wilfully stood in the way of families reuniting, and had aggressively prevented parents reuniting with their children.’
  • 2With a stubborn and determined intention to do as one wants, regardless of the consequences.

    ‘he had wilfully ignored the evidence’
    • ‘the business seems willfully headed toward extinction’
    • ‘The Miami Herald columnist has produced a series of hysterical and wilfully absurd novels.’
    • ‘She's the 19-year-old author of a wilfully eccentric, impossible to categorise debut album.’
    • ‘Its lyrics are repetitious, its sound wilfully dated, its messages straightforward.’
    • ‘His astonishing debut feature is one of the most wilfully obscure pieces of genre-busting cinema in a very long time.’
    • ‘He was a crucial figure in bringing new repertoire to a theatre which had almost wilfully avoided truly significant premieres in the previous four decades of its existence.’