Definition of venal in English:

venal

See synonyms for venal

Translate venal into Spanish

adjective

  • Showing or motivated by susceptibility to bribery.

    ‘their generosity had been at least partly venal’
    • ‘why should these venal politicians care how they are rated?’
    • ‘Leaders have offered the people little but venal, corrupt governance for decades.’
    • ‘That said, of course there are many self serving, venal politicians.’
    • ‘But politicians are expected to be venal and self-serving if given the chance.’
    • ‘As boring meeting after boring meeting takes place, we are supposed to care about these venal, self-absorbed egomaniacs.’
    • ‘Ambition for power and other venal motivations are built into the structure of democracy.’
    • ‘Those visionaries passed and were replaced by venal men who don't care for independence or sovereignty and who want to sell the country to the US.’
    • ‘She is many things - venal, arrogant, authoritarian, ruthless - but she is no dummy.’
    • ‘He regarded publishers, agents and reviewers as stupid and venal.’
    • ‘From this perspective, could any commercial interest be otherwise than venal?’
    • ‘On my scale of morality, the selling of charlie to City high-flyers and celebrities is at worst venal, and possibly not immoral at all.’
    • ‘The National candidate is portrayed as a venal, cynical and arrogant.’
    • ‘In hindsight, we know that much of the prosperity was a bubble fueled by venal corporate criminals.’
    • ‘It is bad enough that so many players have acquired a cynical and venal attitude but should spectators do likewise the game at top level is finished.’
    • ‘They may well be venal, amoral egomaniacs, but the one thing you can pretty much guarantee is that they will be sharp-tongued.’
    • ‘Virtually all of the clergy are portrayed as venal and conspiratorial.’
    • ‘How can the parties expect voter loyalty if they consistently assume voters are just venal and self interested?’
    • ‘Starring Eric Idle as a director, it portrays everyone in Hollywood as either effete New Agers or venal bullies.’
    • ‘The emotional depth of the cast, whether it's Graham or one of his venal bosses, lends a dramatic weight to the story.’
    • ‘What damages teenagers is an adult world which caricatures them as vain, promiscuous, stupid and venal.’
    • ‘The political institution and party to which he has devoted a political career spanning half a century are utterly venal.’
    corrupt, corruptible, bribable, open to bribery, purchasable, buyable, grafting
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Pronunciation

venal

/ˈvēnl/ /ˈvinl/

Usage

Venal and venial are sometimes confused. Venal means 'corrupt, able to be bribed, or involving bribery': local customs officials are notoriously venal, and smuggling thrives. Venial is used to describe a sin or offense that is 'pardonable, excusable, not mortal': in our high school, smoking cigarettes was a venial sin

Origin

Mid 17th century (in the sense ‘available for purchase’, referring to merchandise or a favor): from Latin venalis, from venum ‘thing for sale’.