Willy-nilly Definition

Whether one wishes it or not; willingly or unwillingly.
Webster's New World
Whether desired or not.
Without order or plan; haphazardly.
American Heritage
In a disordered way; helter-skelter.
Webster's New World
Without regard for consequences or the will of those affected.
So people chasing money churn out novels willy-nilly.
That is or happens whether one wishes it or not.
Webster's New World
Disordered; haphazard.
Willy-nilly zoning laws.
American Heritage

Origin of Willy-nilly

  • As used originally,"˜will he, nill he' or "˜will ye, nill ye', which means "˜be he willing, be he unwilling'; see will, nill.

    From Wiktionary

  • Alteration of will ye (or he or I), nill ye (or he or I) be you (or he or I) willing, be you (or he or I) unwilling

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

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