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English definition of “penance”

penance

noun [C or U]     /ˈpen.əns/
an act that shows that you feel sorry about something that you have done, sometimes for religious reasons: As a penance, she said she would buy them all a box of chocolates. They are doing penance for their sins.Making and accepting apologiesSin
(Definition of penance noun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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