Meaning of penitentiary
Pronunciation: (pen"i-ten'shu-rē), [key]
— n., pl. adj. -ries,
- a place for imprisonment, reformatory discipline, or punishment, esp. a prison maintained in the U.S. by a state or the federal government for serious offenders.
- a tribunal in the Curia Romana, presided over by a cardinalhaving jurisdiction over certain matters, as penance, confession, dispensation, absolution, and impediments, and dealing with questions of conscience reserved for the Holy See.
- (of an offense) punishable by imprisonment in a penitentiary.
- of, pertaining to, or intended for imprisonment, reformatory discipline, or punishment.
- penitentiary (Thesaurus)