penitentiary(redirected from penitentiarily)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.
place of confinement for the punishment and rehabilitation of criminals. By the end of the 18th cent. imprisonment was the chief mode of punishment for all but capital crimes.
..... Click the link for more information. .
Place for the imprisonment of inmates and for their reformation through discipline and work.
1. (in the US and Canada) a state or federal prison: in Canada, esp a federal prison for offenders convicted of serious crimes
2. RC Church
a. a cleric appointed to supervise the administration of the sacrament of penance in a particular area
b. a priest who has special faculties to absolve particularly grave sins
c. a cardinal who presides over a tribunal that decides all matters affecting the sacrament of penance
d. this tribunal itself
3. US and Canadian (of an offence) punishable by imprisonment in a penitentiary