con·​sen·​su·​al | \ kən-ˈsen(t)-sh(ə-)wəl How to pronounce consensual (audio) , -shəl, -shü-əl \

Definition of consensual

1 : existing or made by mutual consent without an act of writing a consensual contract
2 : involving or based on mutual consent consensual acts

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from consensual

consensually adverb

Examples of consensual in a Sentence

She claims their relationship was consensual.
Recent Examples on the Web Police can cite a variety of reasons for initiating a stop, including witnessing a crime, consensual encounters, witnessing a traffic violation or having a reasonable suspicion that a crime occurred. Lauryn Schroeder, San Diego Union-Tribune, "A Palpable Fear: Minorities describe encounters with San Diego police, sheriff’s deputies," 4 Apr. 2021 The lesson McPherson first approached about her consensual affair with Merrill in October 2020. Connor Sheets |, al, "Sex, lies and the Alabama secretary of state: The fall of John Merrill," 16 Apr. 2021 Both Mastercard and rival Visa had begun looking into Pornhub after a New York Times column accused the website of distributing videos depicting child abuse and non-consensual violence., "Constant Contact has a new CEO," 14 Apr. 2021 About 6 percent of the 88,800 searches conducted by San Diego police were solely consensual searches. Lauryn Schroeder, San Diego Union-Tribune, "A Palpable Fear: Minorities describe encounters with San Diego police, sheriff’s deputies," 4 Apr. 2021 In order to go there, he is required to submit to a kind of consensual kidnapping (blindfolded, escorted in and out by Byron’s security), which … red flag!!! Jessica Goldstein, Vulture, "Made For Love Recap: Walk the Walk," 1 Apr. 2021 But if fallings-out with ardently consensual women were mainly Roth’s doings, earning him the misogynist label, how to explain his ruptures with longstanding friends who were men? New York Times, "Cynthia Ozick Calls the New Philip Roth Biography a ‘Narrative Masterwork’," 1 Apr. 2021 The book’s third section looks at consensual delusions on a grand scale. Washington Post, "We’re constantly fooling ourselves — and that’s (mostly) okay," 26 Mar. 2021 Attorneys for Winslow claimed that the incidents were either consensual or never occurred at all, the outlet said. Peter Martinez, CBS News, "Ex-NFL player Kellen Winslow II sentenced to 14 years for rape and other sexual offenses," 4 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'consensual.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of consensual

1754, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for consensual

Latin consensus + English -al

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about consensual

Time Traveler for consensual

Time Traveler

The first known use of consensual was in 1754

See more words from the same year

Statistics for consensual

Last Updated

7 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Consensual.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for consensual



English Language Learners Definition of consensual

: agreed to by the people involved : done with the consent of the people involved


con·​sen·​su·​al | \ kən-ˈsench-(ə-)wəl, -ˈsen-chəl How to pronounce consensual (audio) \

Medical Definition of consensual

1 : existing or made by mutual consent consensual sexual behavior
2 : relating to or being the constrictive pupillary response of an eye that is covered when the other eye is exposed to light

Other Words from consensual

consensually \ -​ē How to pronounce consensual (audio) \ adverb


con·​sen·​su·​al | \ kən-ˈsen-chə-wəl How to pronounce consensual (audio) \

Legal Definition of consensual

1 : existing or made by mutual consent without any further act (as a writing)
2 : involving or based on mutual consent consensual sexual intercourse

More from Merriam-Webster on consensual

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for consensual

Britannica English: Translation of consensual for Arabic Speakers

Comments on consensual

What made you want to look up consensual? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Star Wars Words Quiz

  • cu jedi training
  • The bounty portion of bounty hunters (such as Boba Fett) comes from a Latin word meaning
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!