Article »

venal, venial - vocabulary

This Grammar.com article is about venal, venial - vocabulary — enjoy your reading!

adjective

Venal: willing to sell one’s influence in return for a bribe; associated with bribery.

From what we already know, . . . some churchmen had dealings with the SB [Polish Secret Police] for no other reason than that anyone in Poland who wanted a passport had to speak to the SB. Others, like Wieglus, signed agreements-to-cooperate; but there was a wide spectrum of cooperation, some of which did little or no harm. Still others constantly blabbed clerical gossip to the SB, which in the case of a former classmate of John Paul II, seems to have had more to do with ego than with any intent to harm the church. Others were venal, cooperating for money. And still others agreed to work with the SB because they were persuaded, somehow, that doing so would help liberalize the tight-ship church of Cardinal Wyszynski.

—George Weigel

“The Archbishop and the Secret Police” WashingtonPost.com, January 9, 2007

Venial: that may be pardoned or forgiven, a forgivable sin; trifling, not seriously wrong.

Mortal Sin/Venial Sin. A distinction of sins that is stressed in the theology of the Roman Catholic Church. A mortal sin is serious enough to subject the sinner to damnation; willful murder, for instance, is considered a mortal sin. Venial sins are less serious.

—The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy (3d ed. 2002)

Have a discussion about this article with the community:

Citation

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:

Style:MLAChicagoAPA

"venal, venial - vocabulary." Grammar.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 17 Nov. 2017. <http://www.grammar.com/venal-venial-vocabulary>.

Free Writing Tool:

Instant
Grammar Checker

Improve your grammar, vocabulary, and writing -- and it's FREE!


Improve your writing now:

Download Grammar eBooks

It’s now more important than ever to develop a powerful writing style. After all, most communication takes place in reports, emails, and instant messages.