Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day for January 13, 2019 is:
clement • \KLEM-unt\ • adjective
1 : inclined to be merciful : lenient
2 : not severe : mild
The judge decided to be clement and said she would forgive the young defendants so long as they paid back the money they stole from the fundraiser.
“Eagle Scout Michael Eliason completed his project by literally blazing a trail: he created a half-mile-long trail along a Heights park still being developed along the Yellowstone River, Dover Park. ‘We rototilled and used pickaxes on it, and we had to wait until the weather was clement,’ he said.” — Mike Ferguson, The Billings Gazette, 24 Nov. 2014
Did you know?
Defendants in court cases probably don’t spend much time worrying about inclement weather. They’re too busy hoping to meet a clement judge so they will be granted clemency. They should hope they don’t meet an inclement judge! Clement, inclement, and clemency all derive from the Latin clemens, which means “mild” or “calm.” All three terms can refer to an individual’s degree of mercy or to the relative pleasantness of the weather.