[ ben-uh-fis ]
/ ˈbɛn ə fɪs /


a position or post granted to an ecclesiastic that guarantees a fixed amount of property or income.
the revenue itself.
the equivalent of a fief in the early Middle Ages.

verb (used with object), ben·e·ficed, ben·e·fic·ing.

to invest with a benefice or ecclesiastical living.

Origin of benefice

1300–50; Middle English < Middle French < Latin beneficium service, kindness (benefic(us) benefic + -ium -ium)
Related formsnon·ben·e·ficed, adjectiveun·ben·e·ficed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for benefice

British Dictionary definitions for benefice


/ (ˈbɛnɪfɪs) /


Christianity an endowed Church office yielding an income to its holder; a Church living
the property or revenue attached to such an office
(in feudal society) a tenement (piece of land) held by a vassal from a landowner on easy terms or free, esp in return for military supportSee also vassalage


(tr) to provide with a benefice

Word Origin for benefice

C14: from Old French, from Latin beneficium benefit, from beneficus, from bene well + facere to do
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

Word Origin and History for benefice



c.1300, "a church living," from Old French benefice (13c.) and directly from Latin beneficium "a favor, service, generosity, kindness, benefit," from beneficus "generous, kind, benevolent, obliging," from bene- (see bene-) + -ficus, from stem of -ficere, unstressed form of facere "to do, to make" (see factitious).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper