Definition for FOR-GIVE

FOR-GIVE, v.t. [forgiv'; pret. forgave; pp. forgiven. for and give; Sax. forgifan; Goth. fragiban; G. vergeben; D. vergeeven; Dan. forgiver; Sw. tilgifva. The sense is to give from, that is, away, as we see by the Gothic fra, from. The English for, and G. and D. ver, are the same word, or from the same root; ver, is the Eng. far. The Swedish til signifies to, and in this compound, it signifies toward or back; so in L. remitto. See Give.]

  1. To pardon; to remit, as an offense or debt; to overlook an offense, and treat the offender as not guilty. The original and proper phrase is to forgive the offense, to send it away, to reject it, that is, not to impute it, [put it to] the offender. But by an easy transition, we also use the phrase, to forgive the person offending. Forgive us our debts. Lord's Prayer. If ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. Matth. vi. As savages never forget a favor, so they never forgive an injury. N. Chipman. It is to be noted that pardon, like forgive, may be followed by the name or person, and by the offense; but remit can be followed by the offense only. We forgive or pardon the man, but we do not remit him.
  2. To remit as a debt, fine or penalty.

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