\ ˈbench How to pronounce bench (audio) \

Definition of bench

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a long seat for two or more persons
b : a thwart in a boat
c(1) : a seat on which the members of an athletic team await a turn or opportunity to play
(2) : the reserve players on a team broadly : a reserve force
2a : the seat where a judge sits in court
b : the place where justice is administered : court
c : the office or dignity of a judge sat on the bench for 20 years
d : the persons who sit as judges
3a : the office or dignity of an official
b : a seat for an official
c : the officials occupying a bench
4a : a long worktable also : laboratory bench chemist bench test
b : a table forming part of a machine
5 : terrace, shelf: such as
a : a former wave-cut shore of a sea or lake or floodplain of a river
b : a shelf or ridge formed in working an open excavation on more than one level
6 : a compartmented platform on which dogs or cats are kept at a show when not being judged


benched; benching; benches

Definition of bench (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to furnish with benches
2a : to seat on a bench
b(1) : to remove from or keep out of a game broadly : to remove from use or from a position
(2) : to remove from the starting lineup
3 : to exhibit (dogs or cats) to the public on a bench
4 : to lift (a weight) in a bench press bench 200 pounds

intransitive verb

: to form a bench by natural processes

Synonyms for bench

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of bench in a Sentence

Noun The lawyer asked if he could approach the bench. her recent appointment to the bench Verb The manager benched one of his most popular players.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Paul's wife and kids attended at the game as well as his family sat close to the Suns' bench. Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, 8 May 2022 For the second time in five games, rookie first baseman Spencer Torkelson is riding the bench. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 7 May 2022 Throughout the postseason–and during the regular season–the players on Dallas’ bench have been boisterous in support of their teammates in the game. Doyle Rader, Forbes, 7 May 2022 Everyone on the criminal court bench has been through the weeklong training at least once, and a refresher is required at least once every three years, Tuter said. Rafael Olmeda, Sun Sentinel, 7 May 2022 Pat Connaughton scored 11 points off the Bucks' bench while Portis had nine. Jim Owczarski, USA TODAY, 7 May 2022 Use Next and Previous buttons to navigate During this series, the Memphis Grizzlies can look over at the opposing bench and daydream of being in the 2030 playoffs together. Ann Killion, San Francisco Chronicle, 7 May 2022 The second-row bench seats can also be changed to captain's chairs to make crawling into the third row easier. Austin Irwin, Car and Driver, 6 May 2022 Jennifer built a small bench just inside the door for putting on or taking off shoes. Sarah Wolf Halverson, Better Homes & Gardens, 6 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb That includes a number of Rockies players and managers have ties to the Tigers superstar as well, but few have known him as long as Colorado bench coach Mike Redmond. Tony Garcia, Detroit Free Press, 24 Apr. 2022 Alex Cora, the Astros bench coach in 2017 and Red Sox's manager in 2018, also was suspended for the 2020 season, but returned to Boston's dugout in 2021. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, 26 Apr. 2022 The Angels coaching staff for next season is nearly complete with Ray Montgomery’s shift from the front office to bench coach, the team confirmed Thursday. Mike Digiovanna, Los Angeles Times, 6 Jan. 2022 With Indiana trailing 100-98 with 8:41 left in the game, the two came face to face after Stephenson fouled Rivers in front of the Pacers bench. James Boyd, The Indianapolis Star, 31 Mar. 2022 Last month, Donovan demanded more from the Bulls bench as the starters were providing the bulk of the scoring. Julia Poe,, 17 Mar. 2022 Coaches and a ref had to calm the Mountain View bench down. Richard Obert, The Arizona Republic, 9 Feb. 2022 Senior guard David Singleton, who hit the back of his head on the chairs along the team bench while chasing a loose ball in the first half of the game against the Beavers, was expected to undergo a concussion protocol test Tuesday. Ben Bolch, Los Angeles Times, 18 Jan. 2022 Sykes has a chance to give the Pacers bench a boost at the lead ball handler spot. Tony East, Forbes, 28 Dec. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bench.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of bench


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1598, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2a

History and Etymology for bench


Middle English, from Old English benc; akin to Old High German bank bench

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Time Traveler for bench

Time Traveler

The first known use of bench was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near bench

Bence-Jones protein



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Statistics for bench

Last Updated

11 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Bench.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for bench


\ ˈbench How to pronounce bench (audio) \

Kids Definition of bench

1 : a long seat for two or more persons a park bench
2 : a long table for holding work and tools a carpenter's bench
3 : the position or rank of a judge



Legal Definition of bench

1 : the place where a judge sits in court asked counsel to approach the bench — compare bar sense 1a, dock, jury box, sidebar, stand
2 : the court or system of courts serving an area the federal bench
3a : the office of a judge appointed to the bench
b : the body of persons who hold positions as judges members of the bench and bar — compare bar sense 2a
c : a judge or panel of judges hearing a case unless the lawyer is responding to a question from the bench— R. H. Bork

Bench biographical name

\ ˈbench How to pronounce Bench (audio) \

Definition of Bench

Johnny (Lee) 1947–     American baseball player

More from Merriam-Webster on bench

Nglish: Translation of bench for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bench for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about bench


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