Definition of benefice in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈbenəfəs/


A permanent Church appointment, typically that of a rector or vicar, for which property and income are provided in respect of pastoral duties.
Example sentences
  • Perhaps the book helped him to relieve a conscience burdened by the knowledge that he was not carrying out the pastoral duties of his benefice.
  • He established greater control over the Church in the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges of 1438, which upheld the right of the French Church to administer its property and nominate clergy to benefices, independently of the papacy.
  • After a papal bull of 1558 all such former monks were ordered to return to their monasteries, under threat of losing church benefices.



Pronunciation: /ˈbenəfəst/
Example sentences
  • Every noble enjoying full transmissible nobility was entitled to participate in the noble assemblies, as was every beneficed clergyman in the clerical ones.
  • Although - as a beneficed clergyman - he has the Lowick living, he lets the rectory and lives in the nearby manor-house (inherited on the death of his elder brother).
  • Lastly, in 1571, the Settlement gained teeth sharper than the Act of Uniformity, when a Subscription Act required the beneficed clergy to assent to the Thirty-nine Articles.


Middle English: via Old French from Latin beneficium 'favor, support', from bene 'well' + facere 'do'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ben·e·fice

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