• IPA: /ˈpʌnɪʃɪŋ/


  1. That punishes physically and/or mentally; arduous, gruelling, demanding.
    • 2010, Kathleen C. Winters, Amelia Earhart: The Turbulent Life of an American Icon, St. Martin's Press (ISBN 9780230112292), page 90
      Upon Amelia's return from the West Coast in October, George presented her with a punishing schedule of lectures and appointments to promote the new book and solidify her position as America's foremost woman aviator.
    • 2013, Grace Young, Alan Richardson, The Breath of a Wok, Simon and Schuster (ISBN 9781476740249), page 100
      Regardless of the punishing heat and physicality, restaurant cooking is a calling many Chinese chefs cannot deny.
    • 2016, Tamara Gill, Only an Earl Will Do, Entangled: Select Historical (ISBN 9781633757301)
      They took off at a punishing speed, making London in less than half a day.
  2. (figuratively) Debilitating, harsh.
    • 1999, Edward Gonzalez, Richard Nuccio, Rand Corporation. National Security Research Division, The Rand Forum on Cuba, Rand Corp
      Others argued that the worst of all outcomes after 40 years of a punishing embargo would be for the United States to adopt policies that might extend the life of a dictatorial regime.
    • 2010, Gary Clyde Hufbauer, Globalization at Risk, Yale University Press (ISBN 9780300157314)
      Public debt of this magnitude can provoke punishing tax rates and crowd out private investment.
    • 2016, David J. Sanger, Derek E. Blackman, Aspects of Psychopharmacology, Routledge (ISBN 9781315536033)
      The apparent punishing effect of naloxone may be mediated through the withdrawal reaction that it produces[.]
    a punishing blow

punishing (plural punishings)

  1. Punishment.
    • 2011, Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore, The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Practical Theology (page 303)
      We may not be convinced that God is as involved in historical punishings as the prophet claims, and we may have a strong negative reaction to the claims made for how God acts […]
  1. present participle of punish#English|punish

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