Spontaneous Spon*ta"ne*ous (sp[o^]n*t[=a]"n[-e]*[u^]s), a. [L. spontaneus, fr. sponte of free will, voluntarily.] 1. Proceeding from natural feeling, temperament, or disposition, or from a native internal proneness, readiness, or tendency, without constraint; as, a spontaneous gift or proposition. [1913 Webster]

2. Proceeding from, or acting by, internal impulse, energy, or natural law, without external force; as, spontaneous motion; spontaneous growth. [1913 Webster]

3. Produced without being planted, or without human labor; as, a spontaneous growth of wood. [1913 Webster]

{Spontaneous combustion}, combustion produced in a substance by the evolution of heat through the chemical action of its own elements; as, the spontaneous combustion of waste matter saturated with oil.

{Spontaneous generation}. (Biol.) See under {Generation}. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Voluntary; uncompelled; willing.

Usage: {Spontaneous}, {Voluntary}. What is voluntary is the result of a volition, or act of choice; it therefore implies some degree of consideration, and may be the result of mere reason without excited feeling. What is spontaneous springs wholly from feeling, or a sudden impulse which admits of no reflection; as, a spontaneous burst of applause. Hence, the term is also applied to things inanimate when they are produced without the determinate purpose or care of man. ``Abstinence which is but voluntary fasting, and . . . exercise which is but voluntary labor.'' --J. Seed. [1913 Webster]

Spontaneous joys, where nature has its play, The soul adopts, and owns their firstborn away. --Goldsmith. [1913 Webster] -- {Spon*ta"ne*ous*ly}, adv. -- {Spon*ta"ne*ous*ness}, n. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • spontaneously — adv. Spontaneously is used with these verbs: ↑arise, ↑erupt, ↑generate, ↑happen, ↑ignite, ↑occur, ↑react …   Collocations dictionary

  • spontaneously — spontaneous ► ADJECTIVE 1) performed or occurring as a result of an unpremeditated impulse and without external stimulus. 2) open, natural, and uninhibited. 3) (of a process or event) occurring without apparent external cause. 4) Biology (of… …   English terms dictionary

  • spontaneously — adverb 1. in a spontaneous manner (Freq. 2) this shift occurs spontaneously • Derived from adjective: ↑spontaneous 2. without advance preparation he spoke ad lib • Syn: ↑ad lib, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • spontaneously — adverb see spontaneous …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • spontaneously — See spontaneous. * * * …   Universalium

  • spontaneously — adverb In a spontaneous manner; naturally; voluntarily …   Wiktionary

  • spontaneously — I (Roget s IV) modif. Syn. instinctively, impulsively, automatically, directly, at once; see also immediately , unconsciously . II (Roget s Thesaurus II) adverb Of one s own free will: freely, voluntarily, willfully, willingly. Idioms: of one s… …   English dictionary for students

  • spontaneously — adv. in a spontaneous manner; naturally, instinctively; without prior planning, without premeditation, impromptu …   English contemporary dictionary

  • spontaneously — spon·ta·ne·ous·ly …   English syllables

  • spontaneously — See: spontaneous …   English dictionary

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