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noun ben·e·fit \ˈbe-nə-ˌfit\

Simple Definition of benefit

  • : a good or helpful result or effect

  • : money that is paid by a company (such as an insurance company) or by a government when someone dies, becomes sick, stops working, etc.

  • : something extra (such as vacation time or health insurance) that is given by an employer to workers in addition to their regular pay

Full Definition of benefit

  1. 1 archaic :  an act of kindness :  benefaction

  2. 2 a :  something that promotes well-being :  advantage b :  useful aid :  help

  3. 3 a :  financial help in time of sickness, old age, or unemployment b :  a payment or service provided for under an annuity, pension plan, or insurance policy c :  a service (as health insurance) or right (as to take vacation time) provided by an employer in addition to wages or salary

  4. 4 :  an entertainment or social event to raise funds for a person or cause

Examples of benefit

  1. the benefits of fresh air and sunshine

  2. A benefit of museum membership is that purchases are discounted.

  3. There are many financial benefits to owning your own home.

  4. She is just now starting to reap the benefits of all her hard work.

  5. The benefits of taking the drug outweigh its risks.

  6. I see no benefit in changing the system now.

  7. We're lucky to be able to get the full benefit of her knowledge.

  8. He began collecting his retirement benefits when he was 65.

  9. He began collecting his retirement benefit when he was 65.

  10. The job doesn't pay much, but the benefits are good.

Origin of benefit

Middle English, from Anglo-French benfet, from Latin bene factum, from neuter of bene factus, past participle of bene facere

First Known Use: 14th century



verb ben·e·fit

Simple Definition of benefit

  • : to be useful or helpful to (someone or something)

  • : to be helped

Full Definition of benefit

benefit·ed \-ˌfi-təd\ also benefit·tedbenefit·ing also benefit·ting

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to be useful or profitable to

  3. intransitive verb
  4. :  to receive benefit <has benefited from his experience>

ben·e·fit·er play \-ˌfi-tər\ noun

Examples of benefit

  1. The new plan may benefit many students.

  2. medicines that benefit thousands of people

  3. The politician held a fund-raiser to benefit his campaign.

  4. Some critics say that the tax cuts only benefit wealthy people.

  5. He'll benefit by having experiences I never did.

15th Century

First Known Use of benefit

15th century

BENEFIT Defined for Kids



noun ben·e·fit \ˈbe-nə-ˌfit\

Definition of benefit

  1. 1 :  a good or helpful result or effect <the benefits of fresh air>

  2. 2 :  useful assistance :  help <… he is an orphan whom I raised myself without benefit of governess … — Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth>

  3. 3 :  money paid in time of death, sickness, or unemployment or in old age (as by an insurance company)



verb ben·e·fit

Definition of benefit


  1. 1 :  to be useful or profitable to <The changes will benefit everyone.>

  2. 2 :  to be helped <He'll benefit from new experiences.>

Seen and Heard

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February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

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