What does atonement mean?

Definitions for atonement
əˈtoʊn məntatone·ment

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word atonement.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. atonement, expiation, satisfactionnoun

    compensation for a wrong

    "we were unable to get satisfaction from the local store"

  2. expiation, atonement, propitiationnoun

    the act of atoning for sin or wrongdoing (especially appeasing a deity)


  1. atonementnoun

    A repair done for the sake of a damaged relationship.

  2. atonementnoun

    The reconciliation of God and mankind through the death of Jesus.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Atonementnoun

    Etymology: from atone.

    He seeks to make atonement
    Between the duke of Glo’ster and your brothers. William Shakespeare, R. III.

    And the Levites were purified, and they washed their cloaths: and Aaron offered them as an offering before the Lord; and Aaron made an atonement for them to cleanse them. Num. viii. 21.

    Surely it is not a sufficient atonement for the writers, that they profess loyalty to the government, and sprinkle some arguments in favour of the dissenters, and, under the shelter of popular politicks and religion, undermine the foundations of all piety and virtue. Jonathan Swift, on the Sentiments of a Church of England man.


  1. Atonement

    Atonement (also atoning, to atone) is the concept of a person taking action to correct previous wrongdoing on their part, either through direct action to undo the consequences of that act, equivalent action to do good for others, or some other expression of feelings of remorse. From the Middle English attone or atoon ("agreed", literally "at one"), now meaning to be "at one", in harmony, with someone. Atonement "is closely associated to forgiveness, reconciliation, sorrow, remorse, repentance, reparation, and guilt". It can be seen as a necessary step on a path to redemption.


  1. atonement

    Atonement refers to the act of making amends or reparation for a wrong or injury, often in a religious or spiritual context. It typically involves actions or sacrifices that reconcile or improve a relationship between humans and a divine entity due to transgressions or sins committed.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Atonementnoun

    reconciliation; restoration of friendly relations; agreement; concord

  2. Atonementnoun

    satisfaction or reparation made by giving an equivalent for an injury, or by doing of suffering that which will be received in satisfaction for an offense or injury; expiation; amends; -- with for. Specifically, in theology: The expiation of sin made by the obedience, personal suffering, and death of Christ

  3. Etymology: (Literally, a setting at one.)


  1. Atonement

    Atonement is a family saga novel written by author Ian McEwan and published in 2001. It is about understanding and responding to the need for atonement. Set in four time periods of pre/present/post-World War II England/France, it covers a young upper-class girl's half-innocent mistake that ruins lives, and her adulthood in its shadow, which leads her into a reflection on the nature of writing. It is widely regarded as one of McEwan's best works. It was shortlisted for the 2001 Booker Prize for fiction. TIME magazine named Atonement in its list All-TIME 100 Greatest Novels. In 2007, the book was adapted into a BAFTA and Academy Award nominated film of the same title, starring James McAvoy and Keira Knightley, and directed by Joe Wright.

The Roycroft Dictionary

  1. atonement

    1. Embolism of the will. 2. To raise a sin from a vice to a virtue. 3. A borax that kills the vermin of remorse, but that can not be relied upon to kibosh their breeding-place. 4. An immunity-bath in preparation for transgressions to come. (Among certain religious sects, the Day of Atonement is the day on which all gonofs line up for a fresh start.)

How to pronounce atonement?

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of atonement in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of atonement in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of atonement in a Sentence

  1. W. H. Auden:

    Murder is unique in that it abolishes the party it injures, so that society has to take the place of the victim and on his behalf demand atonement or grant forgiveness; it is the one crime in which society has a direct interest.

  2. John Alejandro King, a.k.a. The Covert Comic, www.covertcomic.com:

    There are no nationally observed rites of atonement in the United States of America, unless you count Valentine's Day.

  3. W. H. Auden:

    Murder is unique in that it abolishes the party it injures, so that society has to take the place of the victim and on his behalf demand atonement or grant forgiveness it is the one crime in which society has a direct interest.

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Translations for atonement

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"atonement." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 19 Apr. 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/atonement>.

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