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[chey-suh n] /ˈtʃeɪ sən/
verb (used with object)
to inflict suffering upon for purposes of moral improvement; chastise.
to restrain; subdue:
Age has chastened his violent temper.
to make chaste in style.
Origin of chasten
1520-30; chaste + -en1; replacing chaste (v.), Middle English chastien < Old French chastier < Latin castigāre; see castigate
Related forms
chastener, noun
chasteningly, adverb
chastenment, noun
unchastened, adjective
1. discipline, punish. 2. humble. 3. purify, simplify.
1. indulge. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for chastening
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Yet tears had ever a chastening effect upon the third of the Madigans.

    The Madigans Miriam Michelson
  • I should rejoice to see her passing through a discipline so chastening and exalting.

    Ernest Linwood Caroline Lee Hentz
  • By dint of chastening, they have forced the vanquished to become better men and to lead more tranquil lives in future.

    The Economist Xenophon
  • The rod had been used to chasten, and he had bit the chastening fingers.

    Tales and Fantasies Robert Louis Stevenson
  • No sight of evil, no preaching, no example, no chastening can produce the result.

    Multiplied Blessings Edward Hoare
  • Now, we do not like chastening; it is not joyous, but grievous.

  • The deliverance that had been so carefully prepared for her chastening no longer met the requirements of the case.

    The Master of Warlock George Cary Eggleston
  • "With prayer and chastening of the spirit, my daughter," he said.

British Dictionary definitions for chastening


verb (transitive)
to bring to a state of submission; subdue; tame
to discipline or correct by punishment
to moderate; restrain; temper
Derived Forms
chastener, noun
chasteningly, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Old French chastier, from Latin castigāre; see castigate
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
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Word Origin and History for chastening



1520s, with -en (1) + the word it replaced, obsolete verb chaste "to correct (someone's) behavior" (Middle English chastien, c.1200), from Old French chastiier "to punish" (see chastise). Related: Chastened; chastening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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