Hypertext Webster Gateway: "optional"

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Optional \Op"tion*al\, a.
Involving an option; depending on the exercise of an option;
left to one's discretion or choice; not compulsory; as,
optional studies; it is optional with you to go or stay. --
n. See {Elective}, n.

If to the former the movement was not optional, it was
the same that the latter chose when it was optional.

Original writs are either optional or peremptory.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

adj : possible but not necessary; left to personal choice [ant: {obligatory}]

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