conferring benefit; advantageous; helpful: the beneficial effect of sunshine.
  1. helpful in the meeting of needs: a beneficial association.
  2. involving the personal enjoyment of proceeds: a beneficial owner.

Origin of beneficial

1425–75; late Middle English < Late Latin beneficiālis, equivalent to Latin benefici(um) kindness (see benefice) + -ālis -al1
Related formsben·e·fi·cial·ly, adverbben·e·fi·cial·ness, nounnon·ben·e·fi·cial, adjectivenon·ben·e·fi·cial·ly, adverbnon·ben·e·fi·cial·ness, nounqua·si-ben·e·fi·cial, adjectivequa·si-ben·e·fi·cial·ly, adverbun·ben·e·fi·cial, adjectiveun·ben·e·fi·cial·ly, adverbun·ben·e·fi·cial·ness, noun
Can be confusedbeneficent beneficial benevolent

Synonyms for beneficial

Antonyms for beneficial Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for beneficial

Contemporary Examples of beneficial

Historical Examples of beneficial

  • But one of them, the distraction of seeing the world, is innocent and beneficial.

  • It was very certain that the exercise he was giving his brain must be beneficial.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • Its effects were, however, beneficial to the villagers who survived.

    English Villages

    P. H. Ditchfield

  • He did not see the beauty, the nobleness of it, nor yet its beneficial power.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • Medicine may have a bad taste, and yet have beneficial results.

British Dictionary definitions for beneficial



(sometimes foll by to) causing a good result; advantageous
law entitling a person to receive the profits or proceeds of propertya beneficial interest in land
Derived Formsbeneficially, adverb

Word Origin for beneficial

C15: from Late Latin beneficiālis, from Latin beneficium kindness
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 beneficial

mid-15c., "helpful, advantageous," from Middle French bénéficial and directly from Latin beneficialis "pertaining to a favor," from beneficium (see benefice). Related: Beneficially.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper