1

In my writing I encounter topics about regulations and I am forced to use the word "punish" very frequently. The tone of my writing should be formal / professional, and I am at my wit's end as to how to introduce much needed word variety -- seeing as all the synonyms that the thesaurus and my brain can think of do not have the right level of formality.

  • spank
  • chastise (formal, but now its overkill)
  • crack down

This is merely for the general case, but for illustrations sake, consider:

The regulator _______ the company citing insufficient due diligence.

Question

My last iota of hope hinges on some phrase that retains a formal style that has the appropriate meaning. Thesauruses are not always robust to such phrases, so perhaps the greater community here will have some ideas.

5
  • Maybe reprimand (although I infer a minor transgression from it)
    – user150753
    Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 3:53
  • 3
    Maybe “sanction” will work for you.
    – Xanne
    Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 4:39
  • 2
    I do like sanction. Also: penalize, admonish, call out, scold, reprimand, issue a formal reprimand, write (the company) up, rap (the company) on the knuckles, pound, castigate, discipline, issue a rebuke, lambaste. Of these, "call out" seems the most informal. Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 4:56
  • 2
    How about "The regulator cited the company for insufficient due diligence."
    – Jim
    Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 6:44
  • 3
    You can't just ask us to "fill in the blanks" without telling us exactly what you're trying to say. A "regulator", for example, could do many different things - ranging from issuing a warning, through handing out fines or punishment right up to closing down a business. Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 12:50

2 Answers 2

3

Castigate can be used. It is a formal synonym for punish.
Dictionary Defenition:
cas·ti·gate - verb (used with object)
1. To criticize or reprimand severely
2. To punish in order to correct.

1
  • This would be a better answer with a link to (and an excerpt from) the definition of castigate from a dictionary.
    – Davo
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 19:03
1

At the most formal level (used in parliamentary procedure): censure

1 : a judgment involving condemnation unorthodox practices awaiting the censure of the city council

2 : the act of blaming or condemning sternly The country faces international censure for its alleged involvement in the assassination.

3 : an official reprimand The lawyer's misconduct resulted in a letter of censure from the judge.

Source: merriam-webster.com

Other good options include: Rebuke, Reprimand, Reproach

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.