Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[bak-ben-cher, -ben-] /ˈbækˈbɛn tʃər, -ˌbɛn-/
any of the members of a legislature, especially of the House of Commons of Great Britain, but not including the leaders of the parties.
Origin of backbencher
First recorded in 1905-10; back bench + -er1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for backbencher
Contemporary Examples
  • In truth, Gingrich was a backbencher during the Reagan years, lobbing bombshells at the White House in addition to Democrats.

British Dictionary definitions for backbencher


(Brit & Austral, NZ) a Member of Parliament who does not hold office in the government or opposition
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for backbencher

1874 in the House of Commons sense, from back (adj.) + bench (n.); occupants of the rear seats being the least-prominent politicians.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for backbencher



An occupant of a rear seat in a legislature; an obscure legislator •Still chiefly British: No one I know of in modern times has gone from being a backbencher to being this much in the center of things in that short a time (1874+ British)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for backbencher

Word Value for backbencher

Scrabble Words With Friends