cor·​ol·​lary ˈkȯr-ə-ˌler-ē How to pronounce corollary (audio)
 British  kə-ˈrä-lə-rē
plural corollaries
: a proposition (see proposition entry 1 sense 1c) inferred immediately from a proved proposition with little or no additional proof
: something that naturally follows : result
… love was a stormy passion and jealousy its normal corollary.Ida Treat
: something that incidentally or naturally accompanies or parallels
A corollary to the problem of the number of vessels to be built was that of the types of vessels to be constructed.Daniel Marx
corollary adjective

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The Origin and Evolution of Corollary

Not ones to rest on our laurels here in the Word of the Day hothouse, today we are pleased to offer some flowery prose on the history of the word corollary—not because it is rhetorically elegant (though it may be) but because its history is related to flowers. Indeed, the seed of corollary was planted initially by the Latin noun corōlla meaning “small wreath of flowers,” which later bloomed into another Latin noun, corōllārium, referring to a garland given as a reward as well as to a gratuity or an unsolicited payment. Just as one tips their server at the conclusion of a meal, you might think of a modern-day corollary as something that naturally follows or accompanies something else in natural course. The formality of corollary is thanks to its formal roots: the word first figured in logical proofs as a term for a proposition that can be inferred immediately from something that's just been proved—the corollary follows logically as a result of the statement before it.

Examples of corollary in a Sentence

one corollary of the rise of television was a massive makeover of radio's programming increased taxes—or expanding deficits—are the inevitable corollary to any new government spending program
Recent Examples on the Web But the gravest trouble ahead is an inevitable corollary of Finland and Sweden’s accession to the alliance. Jussi M. Hanhimäki, Foreign Affairs, 22 May 2024 One of the absolutely essential corollaries to opening borders is also fighting for the right to remain. Erika Page, The Christian Science Monitor, 30 May 2024 As a corollary to this assertive approach is a readiness to insist on China’s extraterritorial reach. Steve Tsang, TIME, 11 May 2024 The corollary to that is when your idea gets rejected, consider the possibility that your listener did not understand your space. Neil Senturia, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 Apr. 2024 See all Example Sentences for corollary 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'corollary.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English correlary, corolarie, borrowed from Late Latin corōllārium, going back to Latin, "garland (given as a reward), unsolicited payment, gratuity," from corōlla "small wreath of flowers" + -ārium -ary entry 1 — more at corolla

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of corollary was in the 14th century


Dictionary Entries Near corollary

Cite this Entry

“Corollary.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


cor·​ol·​lary ˈkȯr-ə-ˌler-ē How to pronounce corollary (audio)
plural corollaries
: something that follows directly from something that has been proved
: something that naturally follows : result

More from Merriam-Webster on corollary

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