For·give v. t. [imp. Forgave p. p. Forgiven p. pr. & vb. n. Forgiving]
1. To give wholly; to make over without reservation; to resign.
To them that list the world's gay shows I leave,
And to great ones such folly do forgive. --Spenser.
2. To give up resentment or claim to requital on account of (an offense or wrong); to remit the penalty of; to pardon; -- said in reference to the act forgiven.
And their sins should be forgiven them. --Mark iv. 12.
He forgive injures so readily that he might be said to invite them. --Macaulay.
3. To cease to feel resentment against, on account of wrong committed; to give up claim to requital from or retribution upon (an offender); to absolve; to pardon; -- said of the person offending.
Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. --Luke xxiii. 34.
I as free forgive you, as I would be fforgiven. --Shak.
Note: ☞ Sometimes both the person and the offense follow as objects of the verb, sometimes one and sometimes the other being the indirect object. “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” --Matt. vi. 12. “Be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.” --Matt. ix. 2.
Syn: -- See excuse.
For·giv·ing, a. Disposed to forgive; inclined to overlook offenses; mild; merciful; compassionate; placable; as, a forgiving temper.
-- For*giv*ing*ly, adv. -- For*giv*ing*ness, n.
adj 1: inclined or able to forgive and show mercy; "a kindly
forgiving nature"; "a forgiving embrace to the naughty
child" [ant: unforgiving]
2: providing absolution [syn: absolvitory, exonerative]