le·ni·ent (lēnē-ənt, lēnyənt)
1. Inclined not to be harsh or strict; merciful or indulgent: lenient parents.
2. Not harsh or strict; merciful or generous: lenient rules.
[Obsolete French, from Latin lēniēns, lēnient-, present participle of lēnīre, to pacify, from lēnis, soft; see lē- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
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Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.