len·​i·​ty | \ ˈle-nə-tē How to pronounce lenity (audio) \

Definition of lenity

: the quality or state of being lenient : clemency

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Examples of lenity in a Sentence

a social critic who argues that judicial lenity is chiefly to blame for the increased criminality that plagues us
Recent Examples on the Web If the rule of lenity applies here, then Butler should not be charged with a hate crime. Mark Joseph Stern, Slate Magazine, "Sex and Hate in the Mountain State," 25 Apr. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lenity.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of lenity

1548, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of lenity was in 1548

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Cite this Entry

“Lenity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lenity. Accessed 20 Oct. 2020.

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