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Word of the Day
Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Definitions for venial

  1. able to be forgiven or pardoned; not seriously wrong, as a sin (opposed to mortal).
  2. excusable; trifling; minor: a venial error; a venial offense.

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Citations for venial
Now a venial sin being the slightest and least of all sins--being halved--or, by taking either only the half of it, and leaving the rest--or, by taking it all, and amicably halving it betwixt yourself and another person--in course becomes diluted into no sin at all. Laurence Sterne, The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, Volume 4, 1761
My motives had indeed been mixed enough to justify some uneasiness, but this was allayed by the instinctive feeling that it is more venial to defraud an institution than a man. Edith Wharton, "The Rembrandt," Cosmopolitan, May–October, 1900
Origin of venial
Venial can be traced to the Latin term venia meaning "grace, favor, indulgence." It entered English in the mid-1200s.
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