- Penitence is the state of having regret for doing something wrong.
- An example of penitence is being upset and regretful of something you've done.
- An example of penitence is a girlfriend begging for her boyfriend to forgive her after she lied to him.
penitence definition by Webster's New World
Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
the state of being penitent; repentance
Origin: Old French ; from Classical Latin paenitentia
penitence definition by American Heritage Dictionary
The condition or quality of being penitent; regret for wrongdoing.