bench

1 of 2

noun

1
a
: 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
2
a
: 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
3
a
: the office or dignity of an official
b
: a seat for an official
c
: the officials occupying a bench
4
a
: 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

bench

2 of 2

verb

benched; benching; benches

transitive verb

1
: to furnish with benches
2
a
: 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

Example Sentences

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
Thursday was his first time coming off the bench since Dec. 7, with starts in his 15 previous games. Detroit Free Press, 20 Jan. 2023 And Tristen Rhodes, who plays significant minutes off the bench, has hit clutch 3s this year. Richard Obert, The Arizona Republic, 20 Jan. 2023 Novak had his One Shining Moment, coming off the bench to hit all four of his three-point attempts (three of them coming in the first 2 minutes, 57 seconds of overtime). Jr Radcliffe, Journal Sentinel, 20 Jan. 2023 Rickea Jackson led the Vols (15-6-, 7-0) with 16 points off the bench and Jordan Horston logged a double-double with 14 points, 10 rebounds and 4 assists. Orlando Sentinel, 19 Jan. 2023 Arkansas freshman forward Jordan Walsh had 12 points in 13 minutes off the bench before fouling out with 6:48 left. Bob Holt, Arkansas Online, 19 Jan. 2023 Micah Parrish had 15 off the bench on 5 of 5 shooting, including a clutch four-point play down the stretch in regulation. San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Jan. 2023 And that’s the Sooners second-best offensive scorer off the bench. Dallas News, 18 Jan. 2023 In addition, undrafted rookie Orlando Robinson played as the Heat reserve center ahead of veteran Dewayne Dedmon, who has not played since last week’s one-game team suspension for storming off the bench. Ira Winderman, Sun Sentinel, 18 Jan. 2023
Verb
The Kansas City Royals hired Tampa Bay Rays bench coach Matt Quatraro as manager Sunday night, turning over the young core of a rebuilding franchise to a forward-thinking manager with experience winning in a small market. Dave Skretta, ajc, 31 Oct. 2022 The Kansas City Royals hired Tampa Bay Rays bench coach Matt Quatraro as manager Sunday night, turning over the young core of a rebuilding franchise to a forward-thinking manager with experience winning in a small market. Dave Skretta, BostonGlobe.com, 30 Oct. 2022 Damion Collins’ dunk with 36 seconds left in the first half gave Kentucky’s bench its first points of the game. J.l. Kirven, The Courier-Journal, 31 Dec. 2022 Then, in a surprise, the team chose to bench him against a right-handed starter facing elimination in Game 4 of the NLDS against the San Diego Padres. Los Angeles Times, 18 Nov. 2022 But the immune-evasive strains recently forced the FDA to bench the last available antibody treatment for COVID-19 patients. Alexander Tin, CBS News, 9 Dec. 2022 But once Monday’s broadcast rolled around — sans Robach and Holmes, as ABC News decided to bench the pair — numbers fell back to their usual range. Selome Hailu, Variety, 9 Dec. 2022 Likewise, 2018 No. 1 draft pick Baker Mayfield has been a flop with the Panthers (3-8) since coming over from the Cleveland Browns, prompting interim head coach Steve Wilks to bench him this week for Sam Darnold. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 27 Nov. 2022 Maybe, one day there will be a five-part Netflix documentary that explains Belichick’s decision to bench Butler. Christopher L. Gasper, BostonGlobe.com, 25 Nov. 2022 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.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

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

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb

1598, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2a

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

Dictionary Entries Near bench

Cite this Entry

“Bench.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bench. Accessed 31 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

bench

1 of 2 noun
1
a
: a long seat for two or more persons
b
: a seat where the members of a team wait for a chance to play
2
a
: the seat where a judge sits in a court of law
b
: the position or rank of a judge
appointed to the bench
c
: a person or persons engaged in judging
3
a
: a long table for holding tools and work

bench

2 of 2 verb
1
: to furnish with benches
2
: to seat on a bench
3
: to remove from or keep out of a game

Legal Definition

bench

noun
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
3
a
: 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 benchR. H. Bork

Biographical Definition

Bench

biographical name

Johnny (Lee) 1947–     American baseball player

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