spontaneous Definition

  • 1happening or arising without apparent external cause; self-generated
  • 2performed or occurring as a result of a sudden inner impulse or inclination and without premeditation or external stimulus

Using spontaneous: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "spontaneous" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    The audience broke into spontaneous applause.

  • Example

    She made a spontaneous decision to quit her job.

  • Example

    Their trip was full of spontaneous adventures.

  • Example

    He gave a spontaneous speech at the wedding reception.

spontaneous Synonyms and Antonyms

Phrases with spontaneous

  • the ignition of a substance or object caused by heat generated by internal chemical reactions


    The pile of oily rags underwent spontaneous combustion and caught fire.

  • the supposed production of living organisms from nonliving matter, as inferred from the apparent appearance of life in some supposedly sterile environments


    The theory of spontaneous generation was disproved by Louis Pasteur's experiments.

  • the reappearance of a conditioned response that had been extinguished


    The dog showed spontaneous recovery of its fear response to the sound of thunder.

Origins of spontaneous

from Latin 'spontaneus', meaning 'of one's free will'


Summary: spontaneous in Brief

The term 'spontaneous' [spɒnˈteɪniəs] refers to events or actions that occur without external cause or planning. It can describe both physical phenomena like 'spontaneous combustion' and psychological ones like 'spontaneous recovery.' The adjective is often used to describe unplanned or impromptu actions, such as 'a spontaneous decision to quit her job.'

How do native speakers use this expression?