[buh-nef-uh-suh ns]


the doing of good; active goodness or kindness; charity.
a beneficent act or gift; benefaction.

Origin of beneficence

1425–75; late Middle English < Latin beneficentia; see benefic, -ence
Related formsnon·be·nef·i·cence, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for beneficence

Contemporary Examples of beneficence

Historical Examples of beneficence

  • Frugality is not only the basis of quiet, but of beneficence.


    Samuel Smiles

  • The time has come when beneficence, to be real, must operate scientifically, not emotionally.

    Dr. Sevier

    George W. Cable

  • We must transform it into beneficence, and its opposite into the idea of maleficence.

  • So he took them, and kissed the hands of the king, thanking him for his beneficence, and departed.

  • Lucienne is yours, Madame, for was it not your beneficence which gave it to me?

    Memoirs of the Comtesse du Barry

    Etienne Leon Lamothe-Langon

British Dictionary definitions for beneficence



the act of doing good; kindness
a charitable act or gift
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 beneficence

"quality of being beneficent, kind, charitable," mid-15c., from Latin beneficentia "kindness, generosity," a back-formation from beneficentior (see beneficent).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper