forgiveness

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Middle English forgiveness, forgifnes, from Old English forġifnes, forġiefnes, forġiefennes (forgiveness, remission, indulgence, permission, literally forgivenness), equivalent to forgiven +‎ -ness. Cognate with Dutch vergiffenis.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

forgiveness (usually uncountable, plural forgivenesses)

  1. The action of forgiving.
    • 1931, Mahatma Gandhi, Young India
      The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
    He begged for forgiveness after being caught stealing from the shop.
  2. Readiness to forgive.

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