benign

[ bih-nahyn ]
/ bɪˈnaɪn /

adjective

having a kindly disposition; gracious: a benign king.
showing or expressive of gentleness or kindness: a benign smile.
favorable; propitious: a series of benign omens and configurations in the heavens.
(of weather) salubrious; healthful; pleasant or beneficial.
Pathology. not malignant; self-limiting.

Origin of benign

1275–1325; Middle English benigne < Anglo-French, Old French benigne (feminine), benin (masculine) < Latin benignus kind, generous, equivalent to beni-, combining form of bonus good (see bene-) + -gnus, derivative of the base of gignere to beget (see genitor, genus), hence, perhaps, “good by nature”; cf. malign

Related forms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for benign

British Dictionary definitions for benign

benign

/ (bɪˈnaɪn) /

adjective

showing kindliness; genial
(of soil, climate, etc) mild; gentle
favourable; propitious
pathol (of a tumour, etc) not threatening to life or health; not malignant

Derived Forms

benignly, adverb

Word Origin for benign

C14: from Old French benigne, from Latin benignus, from bene well + gignere to produce
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

Medicine definitions for benign

benign

[ bĭ-nīn ]

adj.

Of no danger to health, especially relating to a tumorous growth; not malignant.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for benign

benign

[ bĭ-nīn ]

Not life-threatening or severe, and likely to respond to treatment, as a tumor that is not malignant. Compare malignant.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Culture definitions for benign

benign

[ (bi-neyen) ]

A descriptive term for conditions that present no danger to life or well-being. Benign is the opposite of malignant.

Note

The term benign is used when describing tumors or growths that do not threaten the health of an individual.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.