Humane



[hyoo-meyn or, often, yoo-] /hyuˈmeɪn or, often, yu-/

adjective
1.
characterized by tenderness, compassion, and sympathy for people and animals, especially for the suffering or distressed:
humane treatment of prisoners.
2.
acting in a manner that causes the least harm to people or animals:
humane trapping of stray pets.
3.
of or relating to studies.
/hjuːˈmeɪn/
adjective
1.
characterized by kindness, mercy, sympathy, etc
2.
inflicting as little pain as possible: a humane killing
3.
civilizing or liberal (esp in the phrases humane studies, humane education)
adj.

mid-15c., variant of human (cf. german/germane, urban/urbane), used interchangeably with it until early 18c., by which time it had become a distinct word with sense of “having qualities befitting human beings.” But inhuman still can be the opposite of humane. The Royal Humane Society (founded 1774) was originally to rescue drowning persons. Such societies had turned to animal care by late 19c.

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