Venal Ve"nal, a. [L. venalis, from venus sale; akin to Gr. 'w^nos price, Skr. vasna: cf. F. v['e]nal.] Capable of being bought or obtained for money or other valuable consideration; made matter of trade or barter; held for sale; salable; mercenary; purchasable; hireling; as, venal services. `` Paid court to venal beauties.'' --Macaulay. [1913 Webster]

The venal cry and prepared vote of a passive senate. --Burke. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Mercenary; hireling; vendible.

Usage: {Venal}, {Mercenary}. One is mercenary who is either actually a hireling (as, mercenary soldiers, a mercenary judge, etc.), or is governed by a sordid love of gain; hence, we speak of mercenary motives, a mercenary marriage, etc. Venal goes further, and supposes either an actual purchase, or a readiness to be purchased, which places a person or thing wholly in the power of the purchaser; as, a venal press. Brissot played ingeniously on the latter word in his celebrated saying, `` My pen is venal that it may not be mercenary,'' meaning that he wrote books, and sold them to the publishers, in order to avoid the necessity of being the hireling of any political party. [1913 Webster]

Thus needy wits a vile revenue made, And verse became a mercenary trade. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

This verse be thine, my friend, nor thou refuse This, from no venal or ungrateful muse. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • vénal — vénal …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • vénal — vénal, ale, aux [ venal, o ] adj. • XIIe; lat. venalis, de venum « vente » 1 ♦ Qui se laisse acheter au mépris de la morale. ⇒ cupide. Un homme vénal, qui n agit que par intérêt. « je ne suis pas une femme mauvaise, ni vénale, ni intéressée »… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • venal — VENÁL, Ă, venali, e, adj. (livr.) Care este lipsit de scrupule, care face orice lucru (reprobabil) pentru bani. – Din fr. vénal, lat. venalis. Trimis de cornel, 04.03.2004. Sursa: DEX 98  VENÁL adj. v. coruptibil. Trimis de siveco, 13.09.2007.… …   Dicționar Român

  • vénal — vénal, ale (vé nal, na l ) adj. 1°   Qui se vend, qui peut se vendre, en parlant de charges, d offices. Les charges de notaire, d avoué, de commissaire priseur, etc. sont vénales. Les offices vénaux étaient ceux de justice et de finance, les… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • venal — [vē′nəl] adj. [L venalis, salable, for sale < * venus, sale < IE * wesno , price > Sans vasná , price, payment, Gr ōnos, price] 1. Now Rare capable of being obtained for a price [venal services] 2. that can readily be bribed or corrupted …   English World dictionary

  • venal — Venal, [vena]le. adj. Qui se vend, qui se peut vendre. Il ne se dit guere dans le propre que des charges & des emplois qui s acheptent a prix d argent. Office venal, charge venale. c est un pays où les plus grandes dignitez de l Estat sont… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • Venal — Ve nal (v[=e] nal), a. [L. vena a vein.] Of or pertaining to veins; venous; as, venal blood. [R.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • venal — 1650s, offered for sale, capable of being obtained for a price, from Fr. vénal, from L. venalis that is for sale, from venum (nom. *venus) for sale, from PIE root *wes to buy, sell (Cf. Skt. vasnah purchase money, vasnam reward, vasnayati …   Etymology dictionary

  • venal — adj. 2 g. 1. Que se vende; que se pode vender. 2.  [Figurado] Que se deixa corromper ou peitar por dinheiro. 3.  [Anatomia] Venoso. 4. valor venal: valor normal de um gênero no mercado …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • venal — venal, venial These two unrelated words are sometimes confused, chiefly because they are close in form but perhaps also because their meanings both have to do with forms of transgression. Venal means ‘able to be bribed, corrupt’ (from Latin venum …   Modern English usage

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