English dictionary

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English noun: mercy

1. mercy (act) leniency and compassion shown toward offenders by a person or agency charged with administering justice

SamplesHe threw himself on the mercy of the court.

Synonymsclemency, mercifulness

Broader (hypernym)lenience, leniency

Narrower (hyponym)amnesty, commutation, free pardon, pardon, quarter, re-sentencing, reprieve, respite

2. mercy (attribute) a disposition to be kind and forgiving

SamplesIn those days a wife had to depend on the mercifulness of her husband.


Broader (hypernym)humaneness

Narrower (hyponym)compassion, forgivingness, kindness, lenience, leniency, lenity, mildness, pity

Antonymsunmercifulness, mercilessness

3. mercy (feeling) the feeling that motivates compassion


Broader (hypernym)compassion, compassionateness

Narrower (hyponym)forgiveness

4. mercy (state) something for which to be thankful

SamplesIt was a mercy we got out alive.

Broader (hypernym)blessing, boon

5. mercy (act) alleviation of distress; showing great kindness toward the distressed

SamplesDistributing food and clothing to the flood victims was an act of mercy.

Broader (hypernym)ministration, relief, succor, succour

Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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