1. Given without an equivalent or recompense; conferred without valuable consideration; granted without pay, or without claim or merit; not required by justice. We mistake the gratuitous blessings of heaven for the fruits of our own industry. (L’Estrange)
2. Not called for by the circumstances; without reason, cause, or proof; adopted or asserted without any good ground; as, a gratuitous assumption. Acts of gratuitous self-humiliation. (De Quincye) Gratuitously, Gratuitousness.
Origin: L. Gratuitus, from gratus pleasing. See grate, Gratis.