digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















Doctor Factobend's Recantation in the Bird Basket at St Kilda, Scotland a plate from Dr Prosody (by William Combe 1821, ASIN: B007T2QPX8) at p248

Recantation means a personal public act of denial of a previously published opinion or belief , and is derived from the Latin retractionem (the nominative form of the verb retractio or the past participle of the noun retractareto, meaning "to pull back")


Philosophically recantation it is linked to a genuine change of opinion, often caused by a serious event which reveals a better or more complete representation of a presumed truth. For example, Recantation was the title of a 16th-century book by Bishop Augustine of Hippo correcting his former writings as a ordinary teacher of rhetoric prior to his becoming a cleric which he described as "a recantation of opinion with admission of error"

In classical Roman poetry, after deliberately describing something extravagantly or hyperbolically for memorable dramatic effect, recantation was used to briefly redefine the material subject fairly and honestly.


Religiously recantation may be required to avoid punishment or imposed to obtain pardon from a sin such as

  • Heresy (wrong choice) which means questioning or doubting dogmatic established beliefs
  • Blasphemy (evil-speaking) which is the act of insulting or showing contempt for a religious deity.
  • Apostasy which implies either revolt against or renunciation or abandonment of a prescribed religious duty, especially disloyalty sedition and defection

In Protestantism, recantation may be requested by or ordered from an ecclesiastical authority such as a synod or ecumenical council

In the Roman Catholic Church, the Inquisition, Holy Office, or even on rare occasion the contemporary Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) required an act of renunciation to enforce an orthodoxy.

In a secular state if ordered to recant by religious authority, one who refused to recant may be anathematized or excommunicated or subject to social exclusion.

In a theocracy an order to recant may include threats of physical punishment such as prison or corporal punishment which may include death or lethal cruelty such as the burning at the stake suffered by Jeanne d'Arc.

Voltaire famously wrote in his novel Candide:

In this country of England it is thought well to kill an admiral from time to time to encourage the others!

See also[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recantation — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

1563 news items

National Catholic Register

National Catholic Register
Fri, 09 Oct 2015 14:11:15 -0700

... openly opposes same-sex “marriages” or dares to suggest that homosexual activity might be wrong is likely to be hounded out of office, or forced to make a public recantation — the Church's sacraments and life of prayer are virtually unknown to ...
Fri, 09 Oct 2015 09:07:30 -0700

Take note: The Court clarified that the use of US passport “does not divest one of the reacquired Filipino citizenship” but merely results to a “recantation of the Affidavit of Renunciation” which, as stated above, is one of the twin requirements to ...

Business Standard

Business Standard
Fri, 09 Oct 2015 06:33:10 -0700

I heard no recantation of those views, no understanding of the dangers of such provocation. I heard no justification of the right to eat what you want, no warning against rampant majoritarianism. Nor would I ever expect to; for Modi is not going to ...

Austin Chronicle

Austin Chronicle
Wed, 07 Oct 2015 22:03:16 -0700

The recantation eventually afforded Michael a second hearing, where, in Aug. 2012, his case was tossed and he was released on time served. (John, released in 2005, was left with his initial sentence.) Michael was picked up at the Dolph Briscoe Unit in ...

Auburn Villager

Auburn Villager
Thu, 08 Oct 2015 08:11:15 -0700

Unfortunately, I would have made the same recantation without any thought. At this point in time, I'm just hoping for a bowl – any bowl. Even the Weedeater Bowl in Shreveport that Alabama was relegated to one year would suffice, if that postseason ...
The New Orleans Advocate
Wed, 07 Oct 2015 17:33:45 -0700

The 1996 memo from then-Assistant District Attorney Fred Menner, now a federal prosecutor, said that with Lester Jones' recantation, there was no evidence against Robert Jones for a murder in which Lester Jones was convicted. Prosecutors nonetheless ...


Tue, 06 Oct 2015 09:41:15 -0700

Lord Lawson said he was “so glad” to hear Lord Mandelson's “recantation of his insistence that we should join the eurozone”. Lord Lawson said he was 'glad' that Lord Mandelson had given up on the euro Photo: ANDREW CROWLEY. Less than a year after ...

WHBL Sheboygan

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (blog)
Thu, 01 Oct 2015 08:46:42 -0700

As part of his appeal, Washington cited Fuentez's written recantation of his trial testimony. After the trial, Fuentez wrote that he only mentioned Washington to help himself escape worse punishment. He admits he fired weapons over the crowd, hoping to ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight