February 26, 2012
amnesty (noun)
\AM-nuh-stee\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: the granting of pardon (as by a government) to a large number of persons
How do you use it?
The leader of the rebels gave himself up in return for a promise that his followers would be granted amnesty.
Are you a word wiz?

Pardon us, but what do you think the root word of "amnesty" means?

Whoops! We almost forgot to tell you the answer is A, "forgetfulness." "Amnesty" comes from the Greek word "amnestia," which means "forgetfulness" and which traces back to Greek "mnasthai," "to remember." Another form of "amnestia," the Greek word "amnesia," was borrowed directly into English as "amnesia," which means "a severe loss of memory." While "amnesia" is usually the result of an illness or injury, "amnesty" represents an intentional "forgetting" of an unlawful deed. In other words, the government or other people in power decide to "forget" that it ever happened.
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