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I'm looking for a word to describe a person or action where out of a group of people, there is a single volunteer to undergo a task or similar.

This is due to the task being somewhat undesirable, and there is only a single person willing to undergo it. For example:

Scipio Africanus ______ to lead the Roman troops against the Carthaginian army in Spain.

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    "Stuckee" is the common term in many businesses. – Hot Licks Mar 31 '15 at 12:18
  • They are a volunteer. To my knowledge there is no single word that specifically describes a volunteer that is also the only volunteer. The nearest would be "[they were the] only volunteer" – Marv Mills Mar 31 '15 at 12:29
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    You should give more context. Is the person somehow forced to be volunteer or is it just a personal choice? – user66974 Mar 31 '15 at 12:58
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    Not a single word but what about "sole volunteer" or "lone volunteer"? – Dan Jul 29 '15 at 14:50
  • In British English, the term 'muggins' is often used for someone who has foolishly taken on much more than their fair share of the work; it's usually used (as self-deprecation) in the first person: "Muggins here has volunteered to put up the tent." It suggests being a willing stooge. – JHCL Sep 28 '15 at 14:04
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sacrificial lamb, if properly phrased, in the reflexive, can express that:

Neotestamentica: Journal of the New Testament Society of ... 2004

The violence and death which he suffered is transformed into a gift to God, and an act of love for his followers. The blood of the Lamb is that of the foundational martyr, of the shepherd who has made himself into a sacrificial lamb for his sheep.

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If Bob decides to assume responsibility for something, we can say that bob has taken it upon himself. This isn't exactly the same meaning requested, but it's the closest idiom I can think of.

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"He dedicated himself to lead the troops ..."

Definition of "dedication": self-sacrificing devotion

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