Meaning of WILL in English
I. will 1 S1 W1 /wɪl/ BrE AmE modal verb ( negative short form won’t )
[ Language: Old English ; Origin: wille , from wyllan 'to wish for, want, intend to' ]
1 . FUTURE used to make future tenses:
A meeting will be held next Tuesday at 3 p.m.
What time will she arrive?
I hope they won’t be late.
Maybe by then you will have changed your mind.
2 . WILLING TO DO SOMETHING used to show that someone is willing or ready to do something:
Dr Weir will see you now.
The baby won’t eat anything.
3 . REQUESTING spoken used to ask someone to do something:
Will you phone me later?
Shut the door, will you?
4 . WHAT GENERALLY HAPPENS used to say what always happens in a particular situation or what is generally true:
Oil will float on water.
Accidents will happen.
5 . POSSIBILITY used like ‘can’ to show what is possible:
This car will hold five people comfortably.
6 . BELIEF used to say that you think something is true:
That will be Tim coming home now.
As you will have noticed, there are some gaps in the data.
7 . GIVING ORDERS spoken used to give an order or to state a rule:
Will you be quiet!
You will do as I say.
Every employee will carry an identity card at all times.
8 . OFFERING/INVITING spoken used to offer something to someone or to invite them to do something:
Will you have some more tea?
Won’t you have a seat?
9 . ANNOYING HABIT spoken used to describe someone’s habits, especially when you think they are annoying:
Trish will keep asking damn silly questions.
• • •
When you are reporting what someone said, thought etc, will usually changes to would :
My brother said he would help me.
If the event is still in the future, will is sometimes used, especially after a present perfect tense:
The Minister has said that he will publish the report soon.
II. will 2 S2 W2 BrE AmE noun
[ Language: Old English ; Origin: willa 'will, desire' ]
1 . DETERMINATION [uncountable and countable] determination to do something that you have decided to do, even if this is difficult:
Children sometimes have strong wills.
the will to do something
Even though she was in terrible pain, Mary never lost the will to live.
⇨ ↑ strong-willed , ↑ weak-willed
2 . LEGAL DOCUMENT [countable] a legal document that says who you want your money and property to be given to after you die:
Have you made a will yet?
in sb’s will
My grandfather left me some money in his will.
the senator’s last will and testament
3 . WHAT SOMEBODY WANTS [singular] what someone wants to happen in a particular situation:
He accused her of trying to impose her will on others.
against your will
Collier claims the police forced him to sign a confession against his will.
the will of the people
obedience to God’s will
⇨ ↑ free will
4 . with the best will in the world British English spoken used to say that something is not possible, even if you very much want to do it:
With the best will in the world, I don’t see what more I can do.
5 . where there’s a will there’s a way spoken used to say that if you really want to do something, you will find a way to succeed
6 . at will whenever you want and in whatever way you want:
He can’t just fire people at will, can he?
7 . with a will written in an eager and determined way
⇨ ↑ goodwill , ↑ ill will
• • •
COLLOCATIONS (for Meaning 1)
▪ a strong will
She had a very strong will and a clear sense of purpose.
▪ an indomitable will (=a strong will which means you do not give in)
The indomitable will of the people remains the core strength of democracy.
▪ a weak will
It's a myth that people are fat because of a weak will.
▪ an iron will ( also a will of iron ) (=an extremely strong will)
Her unassuming manner concealed an iron will.
▪ political will (=determination on the part of governments and politicians)
There was a lack of political will to do anything about global warming.
▪ strength of will
She had achieved success by sheer strength of will.
▪ an effort of will (=a determined effort to do something you do not want to do)
With a great effort of will, she resisted the temptation to look at the letter.
▪ a battle/clash/test of wills (=when two determined people oppose each other)
Even the smallest decision could become an exhausting battle of wills.
▪ have the will to do something (=be determined enough to do it)
Do you have the will to win?
▪ lack the will to do something
He lacked the will to resist.
▪ lose the will to do something
The country's troops had lost the will to fight.
• • •
COLLOCATIONS (for Meaning 2)
▪ make a will (=write one)
It is always advisable to make a will.
▪ leave a will (=have made a will when you die)
Who will inherit my property if I don't leave a will?
▪ change your will (=change some of the instructions in your will)
Marius had decided to change his will in her favour.
▪ cut somebody out of your will (=change your will so that someone is no longer given anything when you die)
His father cut her out of his will.
▪ prove a will law (=to show that a will has been made in the correct way)
If the estate is small, you may not need to prove the will.
▪ somebody's last will and testament formal (=somebody's will)
▪ the executor of a will (=the person who makes sure that the instructions in someone's will are followed)
Her eldest son is the executor of her will.
III. will 3 BrE AmE verb
[ Sense 1: Language: Old English ; Origin: willian , from willa ; ⇨ ↑ will 2 ]
[ Sense 2: Language: Old English ; Origin: wyllan ; ⇨ ↑ will 1 ]
1 . [transitive] to try to make something happen by thinking about it very hard
will somebody to do something
She was willing herself not to cry.
2 . [transitive + to] to officially give something that you own to someone else after you die
3 . [intransitive and transitive] old use to want something to happen:
The King wills it.
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. Longman - Словарь современного английского языка. 2012