venal, venial
These two unrelated words are sometimes confused, chiefly because they are close in form but perhaps also because their meanings both have to do with forms of transgression. Venal means ‘able to be bribed, corrupt’ (from Latin venum ‘thing for sale’) and is used of people and their actions; venial means ‘pardonable’ (from Latin venia ‘pardon’) and refers in Roman Catholic teaching to minor or pardonable sins as distinct from mortal sins which bring eternal damnation.

Modern English usage. 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Venial — Ve ni*al, a. [OF. venial, F. v[ e]niel, L. venialis, from venia forgiveness, pardon, grace, favor, kindness; akin to venerari to venerate. See {Venerate}.] 1. Capable of being forgiven; not heinous; excusable; pardonable; as, a venial fault or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • venial — venial, pardonable are applied to faults, sins, or errors and mean of such a character as not to warrant punishment or the imposition of a penalty. Venial in most use implies an opposition to grave, serious, or grievous {he had learned to see… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • venial — veniál adj. m., pl. veniáli; f. sg. veniálă, pl. veniále Trimis de siveco, 10.08.2004. Sursa: Dicţionar ortografic  VENIÁL, Ă adj. (Liv.; despre păcate, greşeli) Uşor, care se poate ierta; scuzabil; fără gravitate. [ …   Dicționar Român

  • venial — c.1300, from O.Fr. venial, from L. venialis pardonable, from venia forgiveness, indulgence, pardon, related to venus sexual love, desire (see VENUS (Cf. Venus)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • venial — (Del lat. veniālis). adj. Que se opone levemente a la ley o precepto, y por eso es de fácil remisión. ☛ V. pecado venial …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • venial — index allowable Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • venial — adj. 2 g. Digno de vênia; perdoável (pecado ou falta) …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • venial — [adj] pardonable allowable, all right, defensible, excusable, explainable, forgivable, justifiable, minor, not serious*, not too bad*, okay, permissible, slight, tolerable, trivial, understandable; concept 558 …   New thesaurus

  • venial — ► ADJECTIVE 1) Christian Theology (of a sin) not regarded as depriving the soul of divine grace. Often contrasted with MORTAL(Cf. ↑mortally). 2) (of a fault or offence) slight and pardonable. ORIGIN Latin venialis, from venia forgiveness …   English terms dictionary

  • venial — [vēn′yəl, vē′nē əl] adj. [OFr < LL(Ec) venialis, pardonable, orig., gracious < L venia, a grace, favor, akin to venus, love: see VENUS] 1. that may be forgiven; pardonable 2. that may be excused or overlooked; excusable: said as of an error …   English World dictionary

  • venial — ► adjetivo Que infringe de manera leve un precepto: ■ es un delito venial. SINÓNIMO insignificante leve * * * venial (del lat. «veniālis») adj. *Leve. Se aplica a «falta, delito» o palabra equivalente, pero, corrientemente, sólo aplicado a… …   Enciclopedia Universal

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