ben·​i·​son | \ ˈbe-nə-sən How to pronounce benison (audio) , -zən \

Definition of benison

Keep scrolling for more

Did You Know?

Benison and its synonym "benediction" share more than a common meaning; the two words come from the same root, the Latin benedicere, meaning "to bless." ("Benedicere" comes from the Latin bene dicere - "to speak well of" - a combination of the Latin bene, meaning "well," and "dicere," to say.) Of the two words, "benediction" is more common today, but "benison" has a longer history in English. Records show that "benison" has been used in our language since the 14th century. "Benediction" didn't appear in print until nearly a century later.

Examples of benison in a Sentence

during the harbor festival the parish priest offered a benison for the local fishermen

First Known Use of benison

13th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for benison

Middle English beneson, from Anglo-French beneiçon, from Late Latin benediction-, benedictio

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about benison

Time Traveler for benison

Time Traveler

The first known use of benison was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Listen to Our Podcast about benison

Statistics for benison

Cite this Entry

“Benison.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Jul. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on benison

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for benison

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with benison

Comments on benison

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

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!