Part of speech: noun

Suffering voluntarily undertaken as an act of atonement.

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Usage examples "penance":

  1. Even now we have humiliation and penance. - "Phemie Frost's Experiences", Ann S. Stephens.
  2. He reconciled the lady with Holy Church, and confirmed the lady and Messire Thibault her lord, in their marriage bond, reknitting them together, giving penance to each, and absolution for their sins. - "French Mediaeval Romances from the Lays of Marie de France", Marie de France.
  3. He had failed in his penance. - "Kenny", Leona Dalrymple.