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Free will   /fri wɪl/   Listen
Free will

noun
1.
The power of making free choices unconstrained by external agencies.  Synonym: discretion.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Free will" Quotes from Famous Books



... in Darwinism for free will, or any other sort of will, the Neo-Darwinists held that there is no such thing as self-control. Yet self-control is just the one quality of survival value which Circumstantial Selection must invariably and inevitably develop ...
— Back to Methuselah • George Bernard Shaw

... made a partial preparation in an engagement to meet the justice of the peace who had performed her marriage ceremony. The engagement was conditioned upon his failure to persuade the gypsy to accompany him of her own free will. ...
— The Redemption of David Corson • Charles Frederic Goss

... rain and sunshine, storm and snow, through the terribly cold and gloomy Siberia. Before and behind them rode Cossacks, who would not let them rest as they dragged their chains through the mud and mire of the road. Frequently women and children followed of their own free will to share their husbands' and fathers' fate during their forced labour in the mines. Now there is a great improvement. The labour, indeed, is just as hard, but the journey out is less trying. The unfortunate people are now forwarded in special ...
— From Pole to Pole - A Book for Young People • Sven Anders Hedin

... insisted. "Did you ever tell her how the thing came to pass? Does she know that the quarrel was forced upon you—that you took heavy odds—that you did not of your own free will avoid the consequences? Does she know that you loved her before you knew who ...
— The Bars of Iron • Ethel May Dell

... our own experience. For if we reflect on our past life, is it not a wonder that we thought, desired, did and said that which we were not able to foresee? How far different our course would have been, had we been left to our own free will! Now only do we understand it, and see how constantly God's present care and providence were over us, so that we could neither think nor speak nor will anything except as He gave us leave. As it is said in Wisdom vii, "In His hands are both we and our words"; [Wisd. ...
— Works of Martin Luther - With Introductions and Notes (Volume I) • Martin Luther

... other way?" persisted Musard. "He is mad. He must have been possessed. You heard his story; his hallucinations were those of an insane person. He had some justification. He would never have committed this terrible deed of his own free will." ...
— The Hand in the Dark • Arthur J. Rees

... I went o' my own free will. No man should persuade I—trust Joe for thic: couldn't persuade I to goo, nor yet ...
— The Humourous Story of Farmer Bumpkin's Lawsuit • Richard Harris

... thirteenth, who works the evil spell. Once, in German folk-lore, we meet with but two Sisters of Fate—one of them called Kann, the other Muss. Perhaps these are representatives of man's measure of free will (that which he "can"), and of that which is his inevitable fate—or, that which ...
— The Younger Edda - Also called Snorre's Edda, or The Prose Edda • Snorre

... children, and in a condition of tutelage; voluntary, if possible: if not, of tutelage still. Of self-government, and education of human beings into free manhood by the exercise of self- government, free will, free thought—of this Fenelon had surely not a glimpse. A generation or two passed by, and then the peoples of Europe began to suspect that they were no longer children, but come to manhood; and determined (after the example of Britain and America) to assume the rights and duties of manhood, ...
— The Ancien Regime • Charles Kingsley

... of the New Republic will hold and understand quite clearly the doctrine that in the real world of man's experience, there is Free Will. They will understand that constantly, as a very condition of his existence, man is exercising choice between alternatives, and that a conflict between motives that have different moral values constantly arises. That conflict between Predestination ...
— Anticipations - Of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress upon - Human life and Thought • Herbert George Wells

... lecture-rooms with bowed heads, the morning papers shaking in their hands. The accuracy of the Hebrew verb did not matter so much as it did last term. The homiletic uses or abuses of an applied text, the soundness of the new school doctrine of free will, seemed less important to the universe than they were before the Flag went down on Sumter. Young eyes looked up at their instructors mistily, for the dawn of utter sacrifice was in them. He was only an Academy boy yesterday, or a theologue; unknown, ...
— McClure's Magazine, March, 1896, Vol. VI., No. 4. • Various

... temptation, and since then has been the subject of an everlasting contest between the powers of light and the powers of darkness for the possession of his soul; that man not only knew good from evil, but was endowed with "free will," and had the power to choose between good and evil; and that when he did wrong he deliberately chose to do so out of an abandoned and malignant heart; and that all men alike were endowed with this power and all alike were responsible for ...
— Crime: Its Cause and Treatment • Clarence Darrow

... I tell them. And they smile and repeat that such and such a free will offering, under exigent circumstances, would be very acceptable to the revolutionary chiefs—meaning themselves. The big chiefs never finger one peso in ten of it. Good Lord! I show them what we've done. Steady work for five thousand peons. Wages raised from ...
— The Little Lady of the Big House • Jack London

... 'cross barrels and whupped 'em wid bull whups till the blood come. They'd half feed 'em and niggers'd steal food and cook all night. The things we was forced to do then the whites is doing of their own free will now. You gotta reap jest what you sow 'cause the Good ...
— Slave Narratives, Oklahoma - A Folk History of Slavery in the United States From - Interviews with Former Slaves • Various

... is the beginning of an illusion to the effect that there is such a thing as free will and that there is such another thing as necessity—the recognition of the fact that there is an "I can" and an "I cannot," an "I may" and ...
— The Note-Books of Samuel Butler • Samuel Butler

... to some hotel in San Jose, and let me know where you are. You've got to live, and you don't want to work. Well, you don't seem to be a fool; so I needn't tell you that if you expect anything from me, you must leave this matter in my hands. I have chosen to acknowledge you to-day of my own free will: I can as easily denounce you as an impostor to-morrow, if I choose. Have you told your story to any ...
— Maruja • Bret Harte

... this war which are very different from any hitherto used. With the exception of some troops raised for a few months during the dark days of the War of the Rebellion, all of our armies have been recruited from men who enlisted of their own free will. In this great conflict in which we are now engaged, the government has drawn its soldiers by lot from a list of all the young men in the country between the ages of twenty-one and thirty-one. Thus, rich and poor alike are fighting in ...
— The World War and What was Behind It - The Story of the Map of Europe • Louis P. Benezet

... times; and, moreover, being assured that in love and affection toward the country he is the equal of any other good and loyal burgher; bearing in mind, too, the labour he has undergone and the diligence he has displayed, gratis and of his free will, in the said work (of fortification) up to this day; and wishing to employ his industry and energies to the like effect in future; we, of our motion and initiative, do appoint him to be governor and procurator-general over the ...
— The Life of Michelangelo Buonarroti • John Addington Symonds

... After the prize had been converted to the pirates' use, Ingram was appointed gunner. Later, when Ingram came to be tried for piracy, evidence was produced to prove that he had joined the pirates of his own free will, and, in fact, had on all occasions been one of the forwardest in any action, and altogether "a very resolute hardened Fellow." He ...
— The Pirates' Who's Who - Giving Particulars Of The Lives and Deaths Of The Pirates And Buccaneers • Philip Gosse

... forced to toil against their will in the mines, but since the emancipation of the colonies and the abolition of that nefarious law, they have returned to their agricultural pursuits, and are only occasionally found of their own free will labouring in ...
— The Mines and its Wonders • W.H.G. Kingston

... authority of a father and a sovereign. She who a few days before had been the Empress of the French, the Queen of Italy, the Regent of a vast empire, was in her father's presence merely a humble and docile daughter, who told him everything, obeyed him in everything, who abdicated her own free will, and promised, even swore, to entertain no other ideas or wishes than ...
— The Happy Days of the Empress Marie Louise • Imbert De Saint-Amand

... first of these demands William peremptorily refused to comply. He should always be ready, of his own free will, to pardon the offences of men who showed a disposition to live quietly for the future under his government; but he could not consent to make the exercise of his prerogative of mercy a matter of stipulation with ...
— The History of England from the Accession of James II. - Volume 4 (of 5) • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... and your refusal to do so would be mutiny. But from the time we came aboard this craft we have been more like pals than commander and engineer. I give you my word of honor I will never order you below. If you go, you go of your own free will." ...
— Lost In The Air • Roy J. Snell

... leaped to his mouth, but with an effort he restrained them. He must not tell his mother of her until Babbie of her free will had told him all ...
— The Little Minister • J.M. Barrie

... inferior rather in talents than wickedness, or cowards and ideots, who have supported and applauded crimes they only wanted opportunity to commit—it is not possible to conceive, that any people in the world could make a similar choice. Yet if the French were absolutely unbiassed, and of their own free will made this collection, who would, after such an example, be the advocates of general suffrage and popular representation?—But, I repeat, the people were not free. They were not, indeed, influenced by bribes—they ...
— A Residence in France During the Years 1792, 1793, 1794 and 1795, • An English Lady

... reason?" He also desires the following questions may be proposed to the Begum:—"Was any application made to you for the account which you have delivered of three lacs and a half of rupees said to have been paid to the Governor and Mr. Middleton? or did you deliver the account of your own free will, and unsolicited?" My Lords, you see that with regard to the whole three lacs and a half of rupees the Begum had given an account which tended to confirm the payment of them; but Mr. Hastings wanted to invalidate ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. X. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... of these ideas means government by Prison. The second, means government by Usurpation, that is, the moment a man amounts to enough to choose to do right or do wrong of his own free will, the moment he is a man, in other words, being so afraid of him and of his being a man, that we all, in a kind of panic, shove into his life and live it for him—this is Socialism, a scared machine that scared people have invented for not letting people ...
— Crowds - A Moving-Picture of Democracy • Gerald Stanley Lee

... Mohi, "this whole discourse seems to have grown out of the subject of Necessity and Free Will. Now, when a boy, I recollect hearing a sage say, that these things ...
— Mardi: and A Voyage Thither, Vol. II (of 2) • Herman Melville

... replied: "If I had not the honor of being in your own apartment, monsieur, and of representing M. de Bragelonne's interests, I would throw you out of the window. It will be merely a pleasure postponed, and you will lose nothing by waiting. Will you come with me to the Minimes, monsieur, of your own free will?" ...
— Louise de la Valliere • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... spouse of the chief baker of Fairport; "ye ken yoursell, madam, it just cam open o' free will in my handwhat could I help it?folk suld seal wi' ...
— The Antiquary, Complete • Sir Walter Scott

... There soon came news that she had put on man's dress again. The judges went to her. She told them (they say), that she put on this dress of her own free will. In confession, later, she told her priest that she had been refused any other dress, and had been brutally treated both by the soldiers and by an English lord. In self-defence, she dressed in the only attire within her reach. In any case, the promises ...
— The Red True Story Book • Various

... haven't the courage. If I take that mask from your face, it will be the end. And I do not want this ever to end. If you will not let me see your face of your own free will, so be it. I shall see it some day, mark me. Fate does not cross two paths in this manner without a purpose." He stepped back slowly. "You do not understand the lure of ...
— The Lure of the Mask • Harold MacGrath

... it, by keeping my name in reserve till he had returned from his mission, and if that mission failed, or succeeded too well, and he did not return, I might regard myself as freed from the Cause, unless my enlarging nature led me to attach myself to it of my own free will. That said, he went, and for a year I lived under the dread of his return and all the obligations that return would entail. Then came tidings of his death, tidings for which he may not have been responsible, ...
— The Chief Legatee • Anna Katharine Green

... has acted of his own free will—or whether he has been influenced by some person about him—I am not able to tell you. He has issued an order to arrest an old Frenchman, known to be a republican, and suspected of associating with one of the secret societies in this part ...
— Little Novels • Wilkie Collins

... the highest, the greatest! In that the plant can instruct thee; What it unwittingly is, be thou of thine own free will! ...
— The Works of Frederich Schiller in English • Frederich Schiller

... for the sustentacion thar of vjd, that is to say, at every halff yer iij^d, providyng allway that every man of the said occupacion within the said cite shalnot be compellid ne boundeyn to be of the said fraternite ne brodirhood, ne noyn to be thar of bot soch as will of thar free will." ...
— Life in a Medival City - Illustrated by York in the XVth Century • Edwin Benson

... state of mind when the pleasantness of a contemplated object excludes any inquiry whether it is true or false, good or evil; and, in spite of Paul's fatalism, she was satisfied that it was with Walter's own free will that he had done what he had done, and said what he had said. The changed inscription on the locket, and the delivery of that pledge to her, would complete the vowing of the troth whereby she was to become his wife. Entirely ignorant of what had taken place between ...
— Wilson's Tales of the Borders and of Scotland, XXII • various

... that cry; for at the same moment that it reached their ears, they perceived the danger that had caused Ossaroo to utter it. He was descending along the facade of the cliff—not gliding down the rope of his own free will, but as if the kite had got loose at the top, and, yielding to the weight of his body, was being dragged over the surface ...
— The Cliff Climbers - A Sequel to "The Plant Hunters" • Captain Mayne Reid

... was allowed to come close to them for fear they would try to send word to their friends. Some of the fellows did not believe it, and wanted to know how he knew it; and he said he read it in a paper; after that nobody could deny it. But he said that if you went with the circus men of your own free will they would treat you first-rate; only they would give you burnt brandy to keep you little; nothing else but burnt brandy would do it, but that would ...
— Boy Life - Stories and Readings Selected From The Works of William Dean Howells • William Dean Howells

... thrust your head into the lion's mouth? When you were free, why did you not stay free? We did not know we had left a single person in Pingaree! But since you managed to escape us then, it is really kind of you to come here of your own free will, to be our slave. Who is the funny fat ...
— Rinkitink in Oz • L. Frank Baum

... expedition to Tuy, the Indians surrendered of their own free will, and no blood was shed, solely through the efforts of two religious who accompanied Don Luys. Then they gave only their tribute of recognition in beads and a trifle of adulterated gold. And so that it might not appear that the tribute was to be collected immediately, they ...
— The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898, Volume VIII (of 55), 1591-1593 • Emma Helen Blair

... watched, he saw that the huge circle whirled ever faster and faster, and that up and down on the flame of it coloured horses rose and fell, vanishing from light to darkness, from darkness to light, and seeming of their own free will and motion to ...
— Jeremy • Hugh Walpole

... written indenture, specifying the age of the minor and the terms of agreement. If the minor is more than twelve years of age and not a pauper, the indenture must be signed by him of his own free will. [Sec.3472.] ...
— Legal Status Of Women In Iowa • Jennie Lansley Wilson

... deny her. Talk to her in a different way; talk as if you trusted her. Depend upon it, it's the only hold you have upon her. Don't be so much afraid. Clara has her faults—see them as well as any one—but I'll never believe she'd darken your life of her own free will.' ...
— The Nether World • George Gissing

... house in New York, or in Newport, or on Long Island must be made over to me. And I positively refuse to part with the ruby necklace to one of my daughters unless I should choose to do so of my own free will. For the other jewels I have no use whatever. You can express that as you see fit. Ask him to let me hear as ...
— The Smart Set - Correspondence & Conversations • Clyde Fitch

... this one," Uncle John replied, "because it will make it easier for all of us. Of my own free will and accord I will make a present to Tato of fifty thousand dollars, and she shall have it for her dowry when ...
— Aunt Jane's Nieces Abroad • Edith Van Dyne

... to the Indians themselves: but on this score the cacique soon comforted him, telling him that the girls, as far as he could find, had gone off of their own free will; intimating that he thought it somewhat an honor to the tribe that they had found favor in the eyes of the bearded men; and moreover, that late wars had so thinned the ranks of their men, that they were ...
— Westward Ho! • Charles Kingsley

... the prayers of holy Church, and other great supports against the power of the evil spirit, whose power is much less than that of a fly against a great bear. If a man will manfully and boldly withstand the evil spirit, the evil one can gain no advantage against his free will. ...
— Light, Life, and Love • W. R. Inge

... be tolerant of the demoralisation of womanhood!"—he said, passionately—"I cannot look on with an easy smile when I see the sex that SHOULD be the saving purity of the world, deliberately sinking itself by its own free will and choice into the mire of the vulgarest social vice, and parting with every redeeming grace, modesty and virtue that once made it sacred and beautiful! I am quite aware that there are many men who not only look on, but even encourage this world-wide debasement ...
— God's Good Man • Marie Corelli

... ourselves and we feel sure that we have a separate and real existence, that we are rationally conscious and are endowed with choice and free will. We can say almost as much for an intelligent bird or dog. But we hesitate to say how many of these powers or characteristics of free and independent personality can be assigned to the unicellular organisms, such as the amoeba or the corpuscles ...
— Q. E. D., or New Light on the Doctrine of Creation • George McCready Price

... proper motion we made an armed attack upon your city and ravaged your territory, we are guilty; but if the first men among you in estate and family, wishing to put an end to the foreign connection and to restore you to the common Boeotian country, of their own free will invited us, wherein is our crime? Where wrong is done, those who lead, as you say, are more to blame than those who follow. Not that, in our judgment, wrong was done either by them or by us. Citizens like yourselves, and with more ...
— The History of the Peloponnesian War • Thucydides

... time before the old alcaide realized that his daughter had gone with the captive of her own free will, and when he learned it, he flung himself into the sea, but was rescued by one of the rowers. When he found himself then on board the ship, he began to curse his daughter, calling her a Christian dog and other vile names. Finally it was deemed best to set him and the other Moors ashore; ...
— The Story of Don Quixote • Arvid Paulson, Clayton Edwards, and Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... whining for?" they said. "No one is going to kill your child; give him to us of your own free will, or we shall have to take him ...
— Marie Antoinette And Her Son • Louise Muhlbach

... itself essential to a young tradesman, is to know how to buy; if his master is kind and generous, he will consider the justice of this part, and let him into the secret of it of his own free will, and that before his time is fully expired; but if that should not happen, as often it does not, let the apprentice know, that it is one of the most needful things to him that can belong to his apprenticeship, and that he ought not to let his time run over his head, without ...
— The Complete English Tradesman (1839 ed.) • Daniel Defoe

... cut on a slope of ice without which there would be no descending it. When we have begun to travel the downward path of thought, we ask ourselves questions about life and death, ego and non ego, object and subject, necessity and free will, and other kindred subjects. We want to know where we are, and in the hope of simplifying matters, strip, as it were, each subject to the skin, and finding that even this has not freed it from all extraneous matter, ...
— Luck or Cunning? • Samuel Butler

... Leipzig Interim indirectly admits the Semi-Pelagian teaching regarding original sin and free will, while other doctrines which should have been confessed are passed by in silence. It recognizes the supremacy of the Pope, restores the power and jurisdiction of the bishops, acknowledges the authority of the council, approves ...
— Historical Introductions to the Symbolical Books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church • Friedrich Bente

... exceeded all I had ever endured in the utmost severity of professional hardship, an explanation had taken place between myself, my father, and Mr Somerville. I had done that by the impulse of dire necessity which I ought to have done at first of my own free will. I was caught at last in my own snare. "The trains of the devil are long," said I to myself, "but they are sure to blow up ...
— Frank Mildmay • Captain Frederick Marryat

... not give the list of all the other people whose heirs Justinian and Theodora became by the free will of the testators. However, up to the time of the insurrection called Nika, they only plundered rich men of their property one by one; but when this broke out, as I have described in my former works, they then sequestrated nearly all the property of the Senate. ...
— The Secret History of the Court of Justinian • Procopius

... 'it is this sin alone that now afflicteth you. I know for certain that Tedaldo did you no manner of violence; whenas you fell in love with him, you did it of your own free will, for that he pleased you; and as you yourself would have it, he came to you and enjoyed your privacy, wherein both with words and deeds you showed him such complaisance that, if he loved you before, you caused his love redouble a thousandfold. And this ...
— The Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio • Giovanni Boccaccio

... am an odd person; I presume I am, and so is every one else taken singly. I can prove that by Cocker. One and one make two—two is even, one is odd, I am but one. There's logic for you. I am also a rambler by temperament. I ramble my person at my own free will, and my mind rambles quite indifferent as to its intimate connexion with the former. I look at the stars, and my thoughts are of women—I look at the earth, and my thoughts run upon heaven—I frequent ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 19, - Issue 552, June 16, 1832 • Various

... children, my brothers, will live as I have lived; my body enriches the earth of which they will consume the fruits; and so I do, by the order of nature and for all men, what Codrus, Curtius, the Decii, and a thousand others, did of their own free will for a small part ...
— Rousseau - Volumes I. and II. • John Morley

... gently: Nay, thou dost not understand. I am not anybody's mistress. I am my own mistress, and do exactly as I please, whether he or any other like it or not. There lives not the man who shall say to me: Here is a line, and over it, thou shalt not step. And whatever I do, I do, of my own free will, not of obedience, but of my own consent. I have given my body and soul away, but ...
— The Substance of a Dream • F. W. Bain

... Was not the Empire trying to extend over the Church itself that upas shadow with which it had withered up every other form of human existence; to make her, too, its stipendiary slave-official, to be pampered when obedient, and scourged whenever she dare assert a free will of her own, a law beyond that of her tyrants; to throw on her, by a refined hypocrisy, the care and support of the masses on whose lifeblood it was feeding? So thought many then, and, as I ...
— Hypatia - or, New Foes with an Old Face • Charles Kingsley

... in Galicia, the story sounds like a fairy tale. There is, in the history of this unequal struggle, the true ring of legendary heroism; it seems an echo of the tale of David and Goliath, or of Jack the Giant Killer; it is full of the triumph of the spirit over the flesh, of independence and free will over fatalism and brute force, of ...
— Through the Iron Bars • Emile Cammaerts

... is in an oversight of this last essential condition that we find an explanation of the failure of so many such institutions. Too commonly do we believe that the affairs of men are determined by a spontaneous action or free will; we keep that overpowering influence which really controls them in the background. In individual life we also accept a like deception, living in the belief that everything we do is determined by the volition of ourselves or of those around us; ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 4, No. 5, November, 1863 • Various

... accept deliverance. You thwarted every effort, tied the hands that might have set you free; and by your own premeditated course throughout the trial, deliberately dragged this doom down upon your head. You counted the cost, and you elected, chose of your own free will to offer yourself as a sacrifice, to the law, for the crime of another. You are your own merciless fate, decreeing self-immolation. You were willing to die, in order to save that man's life; and you can certainly ...
— At the Mercy of Tiberius • August Evans Wilson

... assume it here, for Homer always attributes to Juno every thing that may be predicated of this principle. She is persistent, obstinate, acts from no idea, but often uses a superficial reasoning, and refers to Fate, with which she upbraids Jupiter. Jupiter is the intellectual power or Free Will, and by their union, or rather from their antagonism, the course of things proceeds with perpetual vicissitude, but with a great deal ...
— The Iliad of Homer - Translated into English Blank Verse • Homer

... many years become weary of existence and its illusions, I have of my own free will put an end to my ...
— Venus in Furs • Leopold von Sacher-Masoch

... but really that her face might be visible to the king, and inform him that hers was a kindred spirit. A few there may have been, here and there, whose prayers rose from their hearts, and who were there of their own free will; but the policy of Louis had changed his noblemen into courtiers and his men of the world into hypocrites, until the whole court was like one gigantic mirror which reflected his ...
— The Refugees • Arthur Conan Doyle

... because he found it difficult to perform what he had threatened. In spite of himself he shrank from writing to the paper contradicting the engagement. He had no right to do so. For all he knew, the engagement might be an actual fact. He did not believe that Mary Bolitho had consented of her own free will to marry Wilson, and yet he did not know. Rumour had it that her father was not a wealthy man; and, after all, Wilson was one of the richest men in Lancashire, the home of huge fortunes. It might be, therefore, that ...
— The Day of Judgment • Joseph Hocking

... part of the press will step between me and this pollution. I say pollution, because every violation of a right is such, and I claim my right as an author to prevent what I have written from being turned into a stage-play. I have too much respect for the public to permit this of my own free will. Had I sought their favour, it would have ...
— Life of Lord Byron, With His Letters And Journals, Vol. 5 (of 6) • (Lord Byron) George Gordon Byron

... mean. The worthy Peter is safe from them so far as I am concerned, though if he should come face to face with mine, then let the best man win. Have no fear, friend, I do not practise murder, who value my own soul too much to soak it in blood, nor would I marry a woman except of her own free will. Still, Peter may die, and the fair Margaret may still place her hand in mine and say, 'I choose you ...
— Fair Margaret • H. Rider Haggard

... life clamoring for gratitude? Don't you see that by using that word "gratitude" you tear down all that you have built up before? And what makes you presume that you have rights over me? Is marriage to mean a mortgaging of my free will to anybody whom nature has made the mother or father of my husband—who unfortunately could not exist without either? You are not my mother. My troth was not pledged to you when I took Olof as my husband. And I have sufficient respect ...
— Master Olof - A Drama in Five Acts • August Strindberg

... did: what we know of man today is limited precisely by the extent to which we have regarded him, too, as a machine. Formerly we accorded to man, as his inheritance from some higher order of beings, what was called "free will"; now we have taken even this will from him, for the term no longer describes anything that we can understand. The old word "will" now connotes only a sort of result, an individual reaction, that follows inevitably upon a series of partly discordant and partly harmonious ...
— The Antichrist • F. W. Nietzsche

... on my shoulders, and yet I did not feel easy in my mind. "It is of your own free will," I said, as the chaise drove through the lodge-gates, "that your ...
— The Woman in White • Wilkie Collins

... covet so, Were rifest, richest there my soul that bound, Waken to life her tongue, and on the breeze Let her light silken hair, Loosen'd by Love's own fingers, float at ease; Do this, and I thy willing yoke will bear, Else thy hope faileth my free will to snare. ...
— The Sonnets, Triumphs, and Other Poems of Petrarch • Petrarch

... Carvaka materialists we are reminded of the Ajivakas of which Makkhali Gosala, probably a renegade disciple of the Jain saint Mahavira and a contemporary of Buddha and Mahavira, was the leader. This was a thorough-going determinism denying the free will of man and his moral responsibility for any so-called good or evil. The essence of Makkhali's system is this, that "there is no cause, either proximate or remote, for the depravity of beings or for ...
— A History of Indian Philosophy, Vol. 1 • Surendranath Dasgupta

... and Predestination—the two dogmas which have, more than any others, agitated the public mind—are discussed at length. Of course he accepts the latter theory, but under a different name. Free Will, he contends, inevitably leads to aristocracy, and Predestination to democracy; and the British and Scottish churches are cited as examples of the effect of the two doctrines on ecclesiastical organizations. The former is an ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 2, No 3, September, 1862 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy. • Various

... what points most strike different readers, so I will mention that of your shorter essays, that on the future prevalence of languages, and on vaccination interested me the most, as, indeed, did that on statistics, and free will. Great liability to certain diseases, being probably liable to atavism, is quite a new idea to me. At page 322 you suggest that a young swallow ought to be separated, and then let loose in order to test the power of ...
— The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, Volume II • Francis Darwin

... the "spots" to be "humored." Wives there are, and not a few of them, sagacious and tender, who have learned the knack of insinuating a scheme upon husbandly attention until the logical spouses find themselves proposing—they believe of their own free will—the very designs born of their partner's brains. This is genius, and the practical application thereof is an art in itself. It may also be classified for John's admonition, as the natural reaction of ingenious wits against wet-blanketism. The funniest part ...
— The Secret of a Happy Home (1896) • Marion Harland

... last time, friend Bozard. Listen to his request, then grant it or refuse it as you will; but if you refuse it, it will not bind us closer. The lad rides to-night to take ship for Spain to seek that man who murdered his mother. He goes of his own free will because after the doing of the deed it was he who unwittingly suffered the murderer to escape, and it is well that ...
— Montezuma's Daughter • H. Rider Haggard

... say that you have, Don John; more than that, I don't believe you have; but if you answer any question of mine, you must do it of your own free will and accord." ...
— The Yacht Club - or The Young Boat-Builder • Oliver Optic

... that none may cast you from them. Such presumption and obstinate pride will twist your necks, as ye will see." And again: "God hath made it thus that they cannot, and will not, longer bear with your raging. If ye do it not of your free will, so shall ye be made to do it by way of violence and undoing." Once more: "It is not peasants, my dear lords, who have set themselves up against you. God Himself it is who setteth Himself against you to ...
— German Culture Past and Present • Ernest Belfort Bax

... ever possessed over the mind of our good King, in persuading him to the sacrifice of a small proportion of his power, for the sake of preserving the monarchy to his heirs; and posterity will record the virtues of a Prince who has been magnanimous enough, of his own free will, to resign the unlawful part of his prerogatives, usurped by his predecessors, for the blessing and pleasure of giving liberty to a beloved people, among whom both the King and Queen will find many Hampdens and Sidneys, but very few Cromwells. Besides, madame, we must make a merit ...
— Marguerite de Navarre - Memoirs of Marguerite de Valois Queen of Navarre • Marguerite de Navarre

... repeat, that knowledge of reading and writing is a secondary matter. It is easy to attain it in play. For such an untouched mind to learn reading, writing, counting, and especially without school, of one's free will, is like biting a nut in two. And as far as a manual trade is concerned, through which it would be possible to live and earn one's keep, then there are hundreds of trades, which can be easily mastered in ...
— Yama (The Pit) • Alexandra Kuprin

... immediately to concrete examples, cast a glance at the belief in 'free will,' demolished with such specious persuasiveness recently by the skilful hand of Professor Fullerton. [Footnote: Popular Science Monthly, N. Y., vols. lviii and lix.] When a common man says that his will ...
— The Meaning of Truth • William James

... being in the said Spanish territory (but not out of it), may eat meat, by the advice both of their spiritual and corporal physicians, in all times of fasting throughout the year, even those in Lent, and in the same way, at their own free will, eat eggs and lacticinios (any thing made up with milk), so that it is understood the obligation to fast will be satisfied by those who eat meat, as much as it will be by those who strictly observe the form of fasting. In which pardon are comprehended the religious ...
— Roman Catholicism in Spain • Anonymous

... flamed anew as he thought of those cutting sentences he had overheard, taunting her own sister about the clothes she wore. Boasting that he still belonged to her! She, a married woman! A woman who had of her own free will left him at the last moment and gone away with another! His whole nature recoiled against her. She had sinned against her womanhood, and might no longer demand from man the homage that a true woman had a right ...
— Marcia Schuyler • Grace Livingston Hill Lutz

... example of patience. A person of some influence and consideration once applied to Blessed Francis asking him to obtain an ecclesiastical preferment for a certain Priest. The Bishop replied that in the matter of conferring benefices he had, of his free will, tied his own hands, having left the choosing of fitting subjects to the decision of a board of examiners, who were to recommend the person to be appointed after due examination of the merits and talents of the candidates. As for himself, he said, he simply presided over the ...
— The Spirit of St. Francis de Sales • Jean Pierre Camus

... who says that he is the Deliverer. He was yesterday arrested and tried as a trespasser, and condemned to imprisonment. He escaped and you all assumed that he was the Destroyer in disguise. But now he has returned and of his own free will he chooses to attempt the accomplishment of the seven great deeds. And the first of these is the killing of ...
— The Magic City • Edith Nesbit

... then, has a smile of happiness played upon my lips. But in my soul has it become tranquil and serene, God dwells there, and within me is a peace known only to those who have struggled and overcome, who have expiated their sins with a free will and flayed breast." ...
— The Daughter of an Empress • Louise Muhlbach

... useful only in helping people to get on in their daily pursuits. But the eighteenth century was not a spiritual age, in comparison with the age which preceded it, either in Europe or America. The acute and exhaustive treatises of the seventeenth century on God, on "fixed fate, free will, foreknowledge absolute," on the foundation of morals, on consciousness as a guide in metaphysical speculation, had lost much of their prestige, if Jonathan Edwards' immortal deductions may be considered an exception. Prosperity ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume XI • John Lord

... says to herself, "The time is propitious, and now, of my own free will, and under the operation of my individual judgment, I will lay a nestful of eggs and batch a brood of children." But it is unconscious that it is moved by a physical necessity, which has constrained all its ancestors from ...
— Ragnarok: The Age of Fire and Gravel • Ignatius Donnelly

... ask for your soul simply because you have already lost it. Meanwhile, your husband is dying. What is to be done? I am sorry for you: I have you in my power; but I want something more. You must grant it frankly and of free will, or else he is ...
— La Sorciere: The Witch of the Middle Ages • Jules Michelet

... thoughtfully. "He showed up himself? Then he must have left of his own free will. At least he wasn't kidnapped. But ...
— Smugglers' Reef • John Blaine

... because it was made free originally, and may, through God's grace, become so again."(3) And Calvin, in his Institutes, has written a chapter to show that "man, in his present state, is despoiled of freedom of will, and subjected to a miserable slavery." He "was endowed with free will," says Calvin, "by which, if he had chosen, he might have obtained eternal life."(4) Thus, according to both Luther and Calvin, man was by the fall despoiled of the freedom ...
— A Theodicy, or, Vindication of the Divine Glory • Albert Taylor Bledsoe

... however, said that would be useless, for he had seen Marmion in hot pursuit of a rabbit. No doubt he had driven the game into its burrow, and was engaged in digging it out. When he caught the rabbit, he would come home of his own free will. ...
— Frank Among The Rancheros • Harry Castlemon

... upon the pivot of Free Will. In their social system the mediaevals were too much PARTI-PER-PALE, as their heralds would say, too rigidly cut up by fences and quarterings of guild or degree. But in their moral philosophy they always thought of man as standing ...
— A Miscellany of Men • G. K. Chesterton

... of 1896 are the inhabitants of the town of Macabebe and its dependent wards, situated in Lower Pampanga, near the Hagonoy River. They are the only Filipinos who have persistently and systematically opposed the revolutionary faction of their own free will, without bribe or extraneous influence. No one seems to be able to explain exactly why they should have adopted this course. They aided the Spaniards against the rebels, and also the Americans against the insurgents. All I have been able to learn of them ...
— The Philippine Islands • John Foreman

... came, detailed on special duty, and this time with the eagle on his shoulder,—he was Colonel Lindsay. The lovers could not part again of their own free will. Some adventurous women had followed their husbands to the camp, and Myrtle looked as if she could play the part of the Maid of Saragossa on occasion. So Clement asked her if she would return with him as his wife; and Myrtle answered, with as much willingness ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 20, No. 122, December, 1867 • Various

... had been very uneasy and nervous. It was plain to him that he ruled the boys by their free will, rather than by his own power; and this was not a pleasant thing for a man like him to know. Doubtless he felt that he had dropped the reins of his team, which, though going very well just then, might take it into its head to run away with him whenever it was convenient. ...
— Breaking Away - or The Fortunes of a Student • Oliver Optic

... Theodora, 'you do not know what you say. It is of my own free will—uninfluenced. I would choose him, and hold fast to him through ...
— Heartsease - or Brother's Wife • Charlotte M. Yonge

... to be ordered about like a dog. You've got no right to talk to me like that. I came out here of my own free will, and I won't let you treat me like ...
— The Explorer • W. Somerset Maugham

... approach to the Temple of Literary Fame is almost always through double gates—couplets. And yet I have known youthful poets, apparently bound for Paternoster Row, bolt off the course in a year or two, to the delight of their friends, and become, of their own free will, drysalters. ...
— Some Private Views • James Payn

... force her into marriage; nay I did not even purchase her, according to the custom of our fathers, with the bridal dowry—she became my wife of her own free will." ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... by all means; none shall ask The help that your free will declined; We'll bear as best we may the task That duty's call to us assigned; And you shall reap, ungrudged, in happier years The harvest of ...
— Punch or the London Charivari, Vol. 147, December 2, 1914 • Various

... ship, religion; pole-star, faith in God; rudder, free will; compass, conscience; sextant, rationalism and experience; anchor, hope; guiding chart, creeds and opinions of men vs. the Word of God; pilot, ...
— To Infidelity and Back • Henry F. Lutz

... adopt such usages as do not interfere too much with his sloth, his passions, or his prejudices. But as the willful child or the idle schoolboy, who was never taught obedience, and never made to do anything which of his own free will he was not inclined to do, would in most cases obtain neither education nor manners; so it is much more unlikely that the savage, with all the confirmed habits of manhood and the traditional prejudices of race, should ever do more than copy a few ...
— The Malay Archipelago - Volume I. (of II.) • Alfred Russel Wallace

... the matrimonial suits of women trying to be free of men they loathed. Parsons would have it that freedom of soul and body were quite different things! Pernicious doctrine! Body and soul could not thus be separated. Free will was the strength of any tie, and not its weakness. 'I ought to have told Soames,' he thought, 'that I think him comic. Ah! but he's tragic, too!' Was there anything, indeed, more tragic in the world than a man enslaved by his own possessive instinct, who couldn't see the ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... ambergris I want!" went on Carew. "It is you, Ruth. I want you of your own free will. Look at me, Ruth! Am I hideous, or a weakling? By Heaven! Women in plenty have come to me ere now, and without my pleading! I am the mate for you. This pup, this runaway clerk, has no right to you. I could kill him ...
— Fire Mountain - A Thrilling Sea Story • Norman Springer

... her. A reciprocating machine! Yes, yes! Each an own part; each with own and separate interests; and their parts, and the production arising out of their interests—their individual selves—approached together, by free will, to join towards a mutual benefit, a shared endeavour, a ...
— This Freedom • A. S. M. Hutchinson

... had done a certain amount of arithmetic herself in the schoolroom, and had never found it difficult, but then she had not gone far enough, perhaps. And she went at once to get a Colenso or a Barnard Smith to see. She found them more fascinating when she attacked them of her own free will and with all her intelligence than she had done when necessity, in the shape of her governess, forced her to pay them some attention, and she went through them both in a few weeks at odd times, and then asked her father's advice about a book on ...
— The Heavenly Twins • Madame Sarah Grand

... everywhere, but even he can scarcely succeed in locating Mr. Hamilton where we, with all the resources at our command, have failed. Mark my words, my dear Anita; if Ramon Hamilton returns, it will be voluntarily, of his own free will. Until—unless he so decides, you will never see him. It is too bad to have summoned Mr. Blaine here on a useless errand, but I am sure he ...
— The Crevice • William John Burns and Isabel Ostrander

... hand, and teaching him by direct and open revelation. That as time went on, God left men more and more to themselves outwardly: but only that he might raise their minds to higher notions of religion—that he might make them live by faith, and not merely by sight; and obey him of their own hearty free will, and not merely from fear or wonder. And therefore, in these days, when miraculous appearances have, as far as we know, entirely ceased, yet God is not changed. He is still as near as ever to men; still caring for them, still teaching them; and his very stopping of all miracles, so far from ...
— The Gospel of the Pentateuch • Charles Kingsley

... and sociology are most widely removed from Marx. It is a view which Chesterton would always have dismissed with the contempt it deserves. Both he and Belloc saw as the determining factor in history, because it is the determining factor in human life, the free will of man. This does not mean that they would deny that the economic factor has often been powerful in conquering man's liberty, or a motive in its exercise. But Chesterton regarded the present age as a diseased one precisely ...
— Gilbert Keith Chesterton • Maisie Ward

... gods will have it so." Our captains gave him every assurance of their perfect esteem and respect, begging of him not to be offended at their conduct, which was indispensably necessary to their own safety, and requested that he would say to his officers that he went of his own free will, and by the advice of his gods and priests. His magnificent state litter was now brought for his accommodation, and he proceeded to our quarters in his accustomed pomp, attended by his guards, where he was received and entertained with every mark of respect; yet our posts ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. IV. • Robert Kerr

... the little bride heard this sweet singing, she became strong, and followed the bird even to the gates of heaven; and there she paused, trembling, afraid to knock, for she had gone forth of her own free will, and she had returned with a burden that she had no leave ...
— The Story and Song of Black Roderick • Dora Sigerson

... search for subjects take any good lecture syllabus and select those about which you have a fair general idea. You will soon learn to frame some of your own. Good examples of standard questions are "Free Will," "Natural Selection," "Natural Rights," "Economic Determinism," "Mutation," "Individualism," and a host of others, all of which have a distinct position in thought, and about which there ...
— The Art of Lecturing - Revised Edition • Arthur M. (Arthur Morrow) Lewis

... and sincerely swear, of my own free will and accord, that I will, to the utmost of my power, support and defend the present king, George III., his heirs and successors, so long as he or they support the Protestant ascendancy, the constitution, and ...
— Valentine M'Clutchy, The Irish Agent - The Works of William Carleton, Volume Two • William Carleton

... Hague in Holland for the toss about the Saar. The Saar had remained a European sore point despite a series of Franco-German "settlements" which never seemed to settle anything. Germany won the toss, and immediately, of her own free will, granted the French ...
— The Golden Judge • Nathaniel Gordon

... you, you see, dear," Christopher said very gently, "and you had the right to do what you liked with your own. I had given you the right of my own free will." ...
— The Farringdons • Ellen Thorneycroft Fowler

... reaches of faith. We have lost the sense of communion with Absolute Being and of the obligation to standards higher than those of the world, which that communion brings. Out of this identification of man with nature has come the preaching which ignores the fact of sin; which reduces free will and the moral responsibility of the individual to the vanishing point; which stresses the control of the forces of inheritance and environment to the edge of fatalistic determinism; which leads man to regard himself as unfortunate rather than reprehensible when moral disaster overtakes him; ...
— Preaching and Paganism • Albert Parker Fitch

... obedient, and will not offer resistance to anything fully comprehended. The horse, though possessed of some faculties superior to man's being deficient in reasoning powers, has no knowledge of right or wrong, of free will and independent government, and knows not of any imposition practiced upon him, however unreasonable these impositions may be. Consequently, he cannot come to any decision what he should or should not do, because he has not the ...
— The Arabian Art of Taming and Training Wild and Vicious Horses • P. R. Kincaid

... some untoward circumstance shall prevent it, I shall live at Rome in such a wise as to desire always that right be done. Our friend Trebatius I thank heartily in that he has disclosed your sincere and friendly feeling toward me, and has shown me that him whom I have always loved of my own free will I ought with the more reason to esteem and honor. Bene vale ...
— The Common People of Ancient Rome - Studies of Roman Life and Literature • Frank Frost Abbott

... going to be able to prove that it was fraudulent?" questioned Edith with increasing anxiety. "Apparently I went to the altar with that man of my own free will; with all the semblance of sincerity I took those marriage vows upon me and then received the congratulations of all those guests as if I were a real wife. Oh, it was terrible! terrible! terrible!" and her voice arose almost to a shriek ...
— The Masked Bridal • Mrs. Georgie Sheldon

... the door of the peach-garden at nine o'clock, or thereabouts at night. He would wait half an hour that she might not have to hurry and perhaps arouse the suspicion that she had gone of her own free will. He made several suggestions about the ...
— The Terrible Twins • Edgar Jepson

... motions are co-linked, And from the old ever arise the new In fixed order, and primordial seeds Produce not by their swerving some new start Of motion to sunder the covenants of fate, That cause succeed not cause from everlasting, Whence this free will for creatures o'er the lands, Whence is it wrested from the fates,—this will Whereby we step right forward where desire Leads each man on, whereby the same we swerve In motions, not as at some fixed time, Nor at some fixed line of space, but where The mind itself has urged? For ...
— Of The Nature of Things • [Titus Lucretius Carus] Lucretius

... replied the engaging cliff-dweller. "I stole it from the old head-priest while he slept. But you must give it me of your own free will, or it will ...
— The Boy Aviators in Africa • Captain Wilbur Lawton

... rights of the Sultan, but occupied Suttorina and Klek, the argument that they assume the frontier left them by the French is hardly entitled to much consideration. That Austria is very unlikely to open Klek of her own free will, I have already said; nor can she be blamed for the determination, since she must be well aware that, in the event of her doing so, English goods at a moderate price would find a far readier market than her own high-priced and indifferent manufactures. In a word, ...
— Herzegovina - Or, Omer Pacha and the Christian Rebels • George Arbuthnot

... said old Goche, who could speak English. "The Fatherland knows no enmity with Australia. We have sympathy for the Indians, Canadians and other races of your Empire, who have been whipped into this war against their own free will." ...
— The Sequel - What the Great War will mean to Australia • George A. Taylor

... you as a man of honor, or I must insult her. Well, then, I expect you to show me you are what she thinks you, and are not what a court of justice has proclaimed you. Sir, this young lady is engaged with her own free will to a gentleman who is universally esteemed, and has never been accused to his face of any unworthy act. Relying on her plighted word, the Wardlaws have fitted out a steamer and searched the Pacific, ...
— Foul Play • Charles Reade



Words linked to "Free will" :   self-determination, discretion, power, powerfulness



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