Share this entry

Share this page

retribution

Line breaks: ret¦ri|bu¦tion
Pronunciation: /rɛtrɪˈbjuːʃ(ə)n
 
/

Definition of retribution in English:

noun

[mass noun]
Punishment inflicted on someone as vengeance for a wrong or criminal act: settlers drove the Navajo out of Arizona in retribution for their raids
More example sentences
  • Every fiber of her cried out for revenge, for retribution, for something to let her strike back.
  • In that regard, not only did they open themselves up to ethical retribution, but to potential criminal prosecution under both federal and local law.
  • The lex talionus, or law of retribution, teaches that the punishment should fit the crime.
Synonyms
punishment, penalty, nemesis, fate, doom, one's just deserts, due reward, just reward, wages;
revenge, reprisal, requital, retaliation, payback, vengeance, an eye for an eye (and a tooth for a tooth), tit for tat, measure for measure;
redress, reparation, restitution, recompense, repayment, damages, satisfaction, remedy, comeback, atonement, amends
informal one's comeuppance
archaic measure

Origin

late Middle English (also in the sense 'recompense for merit or a service'): from late Latin retributio(n-), from retribut- 'assigned again', from the verb retribuere, from re- 'back' + tribuere 'assign'.

Derivatives

retributive

1
Pronunciation: /rɪˈtrɪbjʊtɪv/
adjective
Example sentences
  • Whether nature or nurture, a common point was the change in attitudes regarding the purpose of justice, shifting from retributive to reformative intent.
  • It is important to note, however, that Brown held that the definition of punishment should not be limited to retributive actions.
  • You have distinguished between a restorative form of justice and a retributive form of justice.

retributory

2
Pronunciation: /rɪˈtrɪbjʊt(ə)ri/
adjective
Example sentences
  • My own moral intuition wishes that people in general, and law professors in particular, understood retributory bloodlust as a natural human reaction, but one that we should learn to suppress, not to indulge in.
  • Blaming the self may allow the perceived deflection of interpersonal hostility and result in a shield against retributory threat from the external environment.
  • In the principles of justice, the concept of retributory justice is important to the victims and the society.

Definition of retribution in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?