benjamin

[ben-juh-muh n]

Origin of benjamin

1570–80; alteration (by association with the proper name) of benjoin, early form of benzoin1

Benjamin

[ben-juh-muh n]
noun
  1. the youngest son of Jacob and Rachel, and the brother of Joseph. Gen. 35:18.
  2. one of the 12 tribes of ancient Israel traditionally descended from him.
  3. Asher,1773–1845, U.S. architect and writer.
  4. Judah Philip,1811–84, Confederate statesman.
  5. a male given name: from a Hebrew word meaning “son of the right.”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for benjamins

Contemporary Examples of benjamins

Historical Examples of benjamins

  • The Benjamins joined them at this point, so conversation became general.

    The Cricket

    Marjorie Cooke

  • But I want to see the school, and meet your pals, and get acquainted with the Benjamins.

    The Cricket

    Marjorie Cooke

  • The light broke upon the Benjamins, but they tried not to smile at each other.

    The Cricket

    Marjorie Cooke

  • Two by two they marched dumbly behind the Benjamins and the Bryces.

    The Cricket

    Marjorie Cooke

  • It was the skirmishers of Hoods division that so nearly caught Benjamins guns.


British Dictionary definitions for benjamins

Benjamins

pl n US slang
  1. hundred-dollar bills
  2. money

Word Origin for Benjamins

C21: after Benjamin Franklin, whose image appears on this denomination of bill

benjamin

noun
  1. another name for benzoin (def. 1)
  2. benjamin bush another name for spicebush

Word Origin for benjamin

C16: variant of benzoin; influenced in form by the name Benjamin

Benjamin

1
noun
  1. Old Testament
    1. the youngest and best-loved son of Jacob and Rachel (Genesis 35:16–18; 42:4)
    2. the tribe descended from this patriarch
    3. the territory of this tribe, northwest of the Dead Sea
  2. archaic a youngest and favourite son

Benjamin

2
noun
  1. Arthur . 1893–1960, Australian composer. In addition to Jamaican Rumba (1938), he wrote five operas and a harmonica concerto (1953)
  2. (German ˈbɛnɪamin) Walter (ˈvaltər). 1892–1940, German critic and cultural theorist
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 benjamins

Benjamin

masc. proper name, in Old Testament, Jacob's youngest son (Gen. xxxv:18), from Hebrew Binyamin, literally "son of the south," though interpreted in Genesis as "son of the right hand," from ben "son of" + yamin "right hand," also "south" (in an East-oriented culture). Cf. Arabic cognate yaman "right hand, right side, south;" yamana "he was happy," literally "he turned to the right." The right was regarded as auspicious (see left and dexterity). Also see Yemen, southpaw, and cf. deasil "rightwise, turned toward the right," from Gaelic deiseil "toward the south; toward the right," from deas "right, right-hand; south." Also cf. Sanskrit dakshina "right; south." Slang meaning "money" (by 1999) is from portrait of Benjamin Franklin on U.S. $100 bill.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper