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

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Other Words from consensual

consensually adverb

Examples of consensual in a Sentence

She claims their relationship was consensual.

Recent Examples on the Web

Detectives recovered both items during a consensual search of Ordonez’s Metairie home. Michelle Hunter,, "JPSO guard arrested, accused in scheme to smuggle phone into jail," 27 June 2019 Greitens has acknowledged having a consensual affair but has denied criminal wrongdoing. CBS News, "Greitens impeachment to be considered by lawmakers in special session," 3 May 2018 Schecter's decision to allow Zervos' case to move forward was a significant development for a President already facing a lawsuit by adult film star Stormy Daniels, who was paid to keep quiet about her allegations of a consensual affair with Trump. Athena Jones, CNN, "'Apprentice' contestant Summer Zervos presses her defamation case against President Trump," 10 Apr. 2018 Lawyers for the hospital had argued the contact was consensual. Washington Post, "Jury awards $13M to former patients of psychiatric facility," 13 Aug. 2019 Cosby says his encounters with Constand and with other accusers were consensual. Maria Puente, USA TODAY, "Bill Cosby's appeal of his sex-crime conviction goes before judges in crucial hearing," 12 Aug. 2019 While the first and second seasons showed in minute detail all the people who wronged Hannah before her death, Bryce is the person who raped her and then gaslit her as if the assault was consensual (and continued to do so even after her death). Sydney Bucksbaum,, "13 Reasons Why killing off Bryce Walker is actually the best move for the controversial show," 1 Aug. 2019 But their clients said the encounter had been consensual. Isabel Kershner, New York Times, "Rape Case That Roiled Israel Falls Apart, With 12 Suspects Freed," 28 July 2019 But their clients said the encounter had been consensual. Isabel Kershner,, "Rape case that roiled Israel falls apart, with 12 suspects freed," 28 July 2019

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.

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First Known Use of consensual

1754, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for consensual

Latin consensus + English -al

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Statistics for consensual

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for consensual

The first known use of consensual was in 1754

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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 consensually (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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with 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).


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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