Definition of penance
- He did charitable work as a penance.
- who go on cheap camping trips instead of real vacations as a kind of penance
- —Judith Thurman
He did charitable work as a penance.
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Penance as a form of apology for a mistake can be either voluntary or ordered by someone else. Many religions include penance among the ways in which believers can show repentance or regret for a misdeed. The Christian season of Lent, 40 days long, is traditionally a time for doing penance.
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
: something that you do or are given to do in order to show that you are sad or sorry about doing something wrong
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