Why was clemency trending last week?


[venj-fuh l] /ˈvɛndʒ fəl/
desiring or seeking vengeance; vindictive:
a vengeful attitude.
characterized by or showing a vindictive spirit:
vengeful intentions.
serving to inflict vengeance:
a vengeful killing.
Origin of vengeful
1580-90; shortened form of revengeful
Related forms
vengefully, adverb
vengefulness, noun
unvengeful, adjective
1. revengeful, spiteful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for vengeful
  • As mayor, he made the vengeful roundhouse an instrument of government, clipping anyone who crossed him.
  • Life cannot be sanctioned by vengeful actions or riotous demonstrations.
  • These may have been worthwhile, but the government's approach has been highly partisan, even vengeful.
  • But he was often dictatorial in manner and could be vengeful.
  • Desecrated as the body is, a vengeful ghost survives and hovers over it to scare.
  • Meanwhile, the new government should avoid seeming vengeful.
  • Without cross-border progress on all these fronts, the deranged or vengeful will continue to enjoy virtual impunity.
  • Their vengeful resentment eventually came to the surface.
  • The administration capitalised on the more vengeful mood to produce a wide-ranging response.
  • Denying rehabilitation to prisoners is shortsighted and vengeful.
British Dictionary definitions for vengeful


desiring revenge; vindictive
characterized by or indicating a desire for revenge: a vengeful glance
inflicting or taking revenge: with vengeful blows
Derived Forms
vengefully, adverb
vengefulness, noun
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 vengeful

1580s, from obsolete venge "take revenge" + -ful. Related: Vengefully; vengefulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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