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penitence

[pen-i-tuh ns] /ˈpɛn ɪ təns/
noun
1.
the state of being penitent; regret for one's wrongdoing or sinning; contrition; repentance.
Origin of penitence
1150-1200
1150-1200; Middle English (< Old French) < Medieval Latin pēnitentia, Latin paenitentia a regretting. See penitent, -ence
Synonyms
See regret.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Word Origin and History for penitence
n.

c.1200, from Old French penitence (11c.) and directly from Latin paenitentia "repentance," noun of condition from paenitentum (nominative paenitens) "penitent," present participle of paenitere "cause or feel regret," probably originally "is not enough, is unsatisfactory," from paene "nearby, almost."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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