[peen-l-ahyz, pen-]

verb (used with object), pe·nal·ized, pe·nal·iz·ing.

to subject to a penalty, as a person.
to declare (an action, deed, etc.) punishable by law or rule.
to put under a disadvantage or handicap.

Also especially British, pe·nal·ise.

Origin of penalize

First recorded in 1865–70; penal + -ize
Related formspe·nal·iz·a·ble, adjectivepe·nal·i·za·tion, nounnon·pe·nal·ized, adjectiveo·ver·pe·nal·i·za·tion, nouno·ver·pe·nal·ize, verb (used with object), o·ver·pe·nal·ized, o·ver·pe·nal·iz··pe·nal·ize, verb (used with object), re·pe·nal·ized, re·pe·nal·iz·ing.un·pe·nal·ized, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for penalization

Historical Examples of penalization

  • Hence the crudely ineffective idea of penalization as a preventive.

    Habits that Handicap

    Charles B. Towns

  • At present the only public recognition of the alcoholic is manifested through some form of penalization.

    Habits that Handicap

    Charles B. Towns

  • It will mean the penalization of real worth and the endowment of inferiority and incompetence.

    Applied Eugenics

    Paul Popenoe and Roswell Hill Johnson

British Dictionary definitions for penalization



verb (tr)

to impose a penalty on (someone), as for breaking a law or rule
to inflict a handicap or disadvantage on
sport to award a free stroke, point, or penalty against (a player or team)
to declare (an act) legally punishable; make subject to a penalty
Derived Formspenalization or penalisation, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for penalization



1868, from penal + -ize. Related: Penalized; penalizing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper