geographical name
Be·​nin | \ bə-ˈnēn How to pronounce Benin (audio) , -ˈnin; ˈbe-nin\

Definition of Benin

1 river about 100 miles (161 kilometers) long in southern Nigeria west of the Niger River flowing into the Bight of Benin
2 former kingdom of western Africa on the lower Niger River; incorporated into Nigeria after 1897
3 or formerly Dahomey \ də-​ˈhō-​mē How to pronounce Dahomey (audio) \ country of western Africa on the Gulf of Guinea; a republic, formerly a territory of French West Africa; official capital Porto-Novo, seat of government Cotonou area 43,483 square miles (112,621 square kilometers), population 9,983,884
4 or Benin City city in the western delta of the Niger River, southwestern Nigeria population 202,800

Other Words from Benin

Beninese \ bə-​ˌni-​ˈnēz How to pronounce Beninese (audio) , -​ˌnē-​ , -​ˈnēs ; ˌbe-​ni-​ˈnēz , -​ˈnēs \ adjective or noun

More from Merriam-Webster on Benin

Spanish Central: Translation of Benin

Comments on Benin

What made you want to look up Benin? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to form ideas or theories about something

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!