Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search
See also: Benefice and bénéfice


English Wikipedia has an article on:


From Old French benefice, from Latin beneficium.



benefice (plural benefices)

  1. Land granted to a priest in a church that has a source of income attached to it.
    • 1621, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], The Anatomy of Melancholy, Oxford: Printed by Iohn Lichfield and Iames Short, for Henry Cripps, OCLC 216894069; The Anatomy of Melancholy: [], 2nd corrected and augmented edition, Oxford: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, 1624, OCLC 54573970, (please specify |partition=1, 2, or 3):
      , NYRB, 2001, vol.1, p.323:
      If after long expectation, much expense, travel, earnest suit of ourselves and friends, we obtain a small benefice at last, our misery begins afresh […].
    • 2007, Edwin Mullins, The Popes of Avignon, Blue Bridge 2008, p.94:
      There were as many as one hundred thousand benefices offered during the period of his papacy, according to one chronicler and eyewitness.
  2. (obsolete) A favour or benefit.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Baxter to this entry?)
  3. (feudal law) An estate in lands; a fief.


benefice (third-person singular simple present benefices, present participle beneficing, simple past and past participle beneficed)

  1. To bestow a benefice upon
    • 1917, George A. Stephen, Three Centuries of a City Library[1]:
      There are two volumes, "The Open Door for Man's approach to God" (London, 1650) and "A Consideration of Infant Baptism" (London, 1653), by John Horne, who was beneficed at All Hallows, King's Lynn.
    • 1851, Horace Greeley, Glances at Europe[2]:
      You clergymen of the Established Church have been richly endowed and beneficed expressly for this work--why don't you DO it?




  1. vocative masculine singular of beneficus


Old French[edit]


Borrowed from Latin beneficium.


benefice m (oblique plural benefices, nominative singular benefices, nominative plural benefice)

  1. (ecclesiastical) benefice
  2. favour, advantage
  3. benefit