Will he nill he
Will Will, v. i. To be willing; to be inclined or disposed; to be pleased; to wish; to desire. [1913 Webster]

And behold, there came a leper and worshiped him, saying, Lord if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus . . . touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. --Matt. viii. 2, 3. [1913 Webster]

Note: This word has been confused with will, v. i., to choose, which, unlike this, is of the weak conjugation. [1913 Webster]

{Will I, nill I}, or {Will ye, hill ye}, or {Will he, nill he}, whether I, you, or he will it or not; hence, without choice; compulsorily; -- commonly abbreviated to {willy nilly}. ``If I must take service willy nilly.'' --J. H. Newman. ``Land for all who would till it, and reading and writing will ye, nill ye.'' --Lowell. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Will he nill he — Nill Nill, v. i. To be unwilling; to refuse to act. [1913 Webster] The actions of the will are velle and nolle, to will and nill. Burton. [1913 Webster] {Will he, nill he}, whether he wills it or not; usually contracted to {willy nilly}. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • will he, nill he — phrasal see will I, nill I …   Useful english dictionary

  • Will I nill I — Will Will, v. i. To be willing; to be inclined or disposed; to be pleased; to wish; to desire. [1913 Webster] And behold, there came a leper and worshiped him, saying, Lord if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus . . . touched him,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • nill-he — will he, nill he see will v.1 50 b …   Useful english dictionary

  • will I, nill I — phrasal or will he, nill he or will ye, nill ye : whether I, he, or you will it or not : willy nilly …   Useful english dictionary

  • Nill — Nill, v. i. To be unwilling; to refuse to act. [1913 Webster] The actions of the will are velle and nolle, to will and nill. Burton. [1913 Webster] {Will he, nill he}, whether he wills it or not; usually contracted to {willy nilly}. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Will — Will, v. i. To be willing; to be inclined or disposed; to be pleased; to wish; to desire. [1913 Webster] And behold, there came a leper and worshiped him, saying, Lord if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus . . . touched him, saying, I …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Will ye hill ye — Will Will, v. i. To be willing; to be inclined or disposed; to be pleased; to wish; to desire. [1913 Webster] And behold, there came a leper and worshiped him, saying, Lord if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus . . . touched him,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • will-he — will he, nill he see will v.1 50 b …   Useful english dictionary

  • nill — [[t]nɪl[/t]] v. archaic 1) to be unwilling: will he, nill he[/ex] 2) to refuse or reject • Etymology: bef. 900; ME nillen, OE nyllan, contr. of phrase ne willan; see no I, will I, willy nilly …   From formal English to slang

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