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[ri-pent] /rɪˈpɛnt/
verb (used without object)
to feel sorry, self-reproachful, or contrite for past conduct; regret or be conscience-stricken about a past action, attitude, etc. (often followed by of):
He repented after his thoughtless act.
to feel such sorrow for sin or fault as to be disposed to change one's life for the better; be penitent.
verb (used with object)
to remember or regard with self-reproach or contrition:
to repent one's injustice to another.
to feel sorry for; regret:
to repent an imprudent act.
Origin of repent1
1250-1300; Middle English repenten < Old French repentir, equivalent to re- re- + pentir to feel sorrow (< Latin paenitēre to regret, be sorry); see penitent
Related forms
repenter, noun
repentingly, adverb
unrepented, adjective
unrepenting, adjective
unrepentingly, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for repented


to feel remorse (for); be contrite (about); show penitence (for): he repents of his extravagance, he repented his words
Derived Forms
repenter, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French repentir from re- + pentir to be contrite, from Latin paenitēre to repent


(botany) lying or creeping along the ground; reptant: repent stems
Word Origin
C17: from Latin rēpere to creep
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for repented



c.1300, "to feel such regret for sins or crimes as produces amendment of life," from Old French repentir (11c.), from re-, here probably an intensive prefix (see re-), + Vulgar Latin *penitire "to regret," from Latin poenitire "make sorry," from poena (see penal). The distinction between regret (q.v.) and repent is made in many modern languages, but the differentiation is not present in older periods. Related: Repented; repenting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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