Definition of gratuitous
1a : given unearned or without recompenseb : not involving a return benefit, compensation, or consideration has gratuitous permission to pass over private landc : costing nothing : free The restaurant provided a gratuitous appetizer.
2 : not called for by the circumstances : unwarranted gratuitous insolence a gratuitous assumption
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Examples of gratuitous in a Sentence
The film was criticized for its gratuitous violence.
they will throw in a gratuitous box of chocolates when you spend $30 or more in their shop
Recent Examples of gratuitous from the Web
Spread the gravy as one would mustard on a pastrami sandwich and the thing might get a tad gratuitous.
His boss, Donald Trump, has called out Paul LePage, Maine’s governor who recently got bariatric surgery, in a gratuitous weight-based aside.
For ISIS, attacks like the one in Manchester aren’t just about gratuitous violence dressed up as Islam.
Still, the idea is similar to what the Ridley Scott aliens do — with their cucumber heads, chest-of-drawers teeth, and gratuitous mucus.
Their justification came in the form of a smattering of YouTube videos showcasing Canelas’s apparently gratuitous acts of violence — karate kicks, two-footed lunges — from previous games.
But even so, the show has long since been normalized by its own success, reduced by a parade of gratuitous celebrity guest appearances (Lady Gaga, Mark Zuckerberg) and squeaky clean tropes derivative of the latest pop cultural trend.
Apart from the video-game adaptations, a recurring theme of Boll’s filmography is scathing sociopolitical commentary with plenty of gratuitous, arterial-spurting ultra-violence.
Any gratuitous internet-connected device increases the size of the target painted on a company.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gratuitous'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
These gratuitous Facts Are Free
Like gratitude, grace, and congratulate, gratuitous is a descendant of the Latin word gratus, which means "pleasing" or "grateful." When gratuitous was first used in the middle of the 17th century, it meant "free" or "given without return benefit or compensation." The extended meaning "done without good reason" or "unwarranted" came about just a few decades later, perhaps from the belief held by some people that one should not give something without getting something in return. Today, that extended meaning is the more common sense, often used in such phrases as "a gratuitous insult" or to describe elements of a story that are not relevant to the plot.
Origin and Etymology of gratuitous
Latin gratuitus, from gratus grateful
First Known Use: 1656See Words from the same year
GRATUITOUS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of gratuitous for English Language Learners
: not necessary or appropriate
Seen and Heard
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