"the character of being ill-disposed toward another or others; ill-will, malice, personal hatred," mid-15c., from Old French malevolence and directly from Latin malevolentia "ill-will, dislike, hatred," from malevolentem (nominative malevolens) "ill-disposed, wishing ill, spiteful, envious," from male "badly" (see mal-) + volentem (nominative volens), present participle of velle "to wish" (see will (v.))
"having an evil disposition toward another or others, wishing evil to others," c. 1500, from Old French malivolent and directly from Latin malevolentem (nominative malevolens) "ill-disposed, spiteful, envious," from male "badly" (see mal-) + volentem (nominative volens), present participle of velle "to wish" (see will (v.)). Related: Malevolently.
mid-15c., "wishing to do good, well-disposed, kindly," from Old French benivolent and directly from Latin benevolentem (nominative benevolens) "wishing (someone) well, benevolent," related to benevolentia "good feeling," from bene "well" (see bene-) + volentem (nominative volens) present participle of velle "to wish" (see will (v.)). Related: Benevolently.
c. 1400, "disposition to do good," from Old French benivolence (Modern French bienveillance) and directly from Latin benevolentia "good feeling, good will, kindness," from bene "well" (see bene-) + volentem (nominative volens) present participle of velle "to wish" (see will (v.)). In English history, this was the name given to forced extra-legal loans or contributions to the crown, first so called 1473 by Edward IV, who cynically "asked" it as a token of good will toward his rule.
Meaning "entertainment or public reception as a greeting" is recorded from 1530. The adjective is from Old English wilcuma. You're welcome as a formulaic response to thank you is attested from 1907. Welcome mat is from 1908; welcome wagon is attested from 1940.
"in a satisfactory manner," Old English wel "abundantly, very, very much; indeed, to be sure; with good reason; nearly, for the most part," from Proto-Germanic *wel- (source also of Old Saxon wela, Old Norse vel, Old Frisian wel, Dutch wel, Old High German wela, German wohl, Gothic waila "well"), from PIE root *wel- (2) "to wish, will" (source also of Sanskrit prati varam "at will," Old Church Slavonic vole "well," Welsh gwell "better," Latin velle "to wish, will," Old English willan "to wish;" see will (v.)).
Also used in Old English as an interjection and an expression of surprise. The adjective was in Old English in the sense "in good fortune, happy," from the adverb; sense of "satisfactory" is from late 14c.; "agreeable to wish or desire" is from mid-15c.; "in good health, not ailing" is from 1550s. Well-to-do "prosperous" is recorded by 1794.