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BEMUD, be-mud', _v.t._ to bespatter with mud: to confuse.

BEMUDDLE, be-mud'l, _v.t._ to confuse or muddle completely.

BEMUFFLE, be-muf'l, _v.t._ to wrap or muffle up completely.

BEMUSE, be-m[=u]z', _v.t._ to put in confusion: stupefy.

BEN, ben, _n._ a mountain peak. [Gael. _beann_.]

BEN, ben, _prep._ and _adv._ in toward the inner apartment of a house.--_n._ the inner apartment of a house, as opposed to the _But_ or kitchen through which one must generally pass first.--TO BE FAR BEN WITH ONE, to be on terms of great intimacy or friendship with; TO LIVE BUT AND BEN, to live respectively in these rooms, in close neighbourhood with any one. [M. E. _binne_--A.S. _binnan_, within.]

BENCH, bensh, _n._ a long seat or form with or without a back: a seat in a boat: a mechanic's work-table: a judge's seat: the body or assembly of judges: a tribunal: the dignity of holding an official seat, as the 'bench of bishops,' the 'civic bench.'--_v.t._ to place on or furnish with benches.--_ns._ BENCH'ER, a senior member of an inn of court; BENCH'ERSHIP; BENCH'-MARK, a surveyor's mark cut on a rock, gatepost, wall, or the like, into which a crooked iron is set so as to form a bench or temporary support for the levelling instrument; BENCH'-WAR'RANT, one issued by a judge rather than a justice or magistrate. [A.S. _benc_; cog. with Ger. and Dut.



BEND, bend, _v.t._ to curve or bow: to make crooked: to turn or incline--mostly in passive, to be inclined _to_, _towards_, to be given _to_: to subdue: to direct to a certain point: to apply closely, to strain, to nerve one's self to: (_naut._) to tie, fasten, make fast.--_v.i._ to be crooked or curved: to incline in any direction: to stoop: to lean: to bow in submission (with _to_, _before_, _towards_):--_pa.p._ bend'ed or bent.--_n._ a curve or crook: the bent part of anything; (_her._) one of the nine ordinaries, consisting of the space contained between two parallel lines crossing the shield diagonally from dexter chief to sinister base. It is said to occupy a fifth part of the shield unless charged, when it occupies a third part--its diminutives are the _Bendlet_, _Cotise_, and _Ribbon_.--BEND SINISTER, an occasionally occurring variety of the bend, drawn from sinister chief to dexter base. [Old Eng. _bendan_.]

BEND, bend, _n._ in leather, half a butt cut lengthwise.

BENEATH, be-n[=e]th', _prep._ under, or lower in place: inside of, behind: unworthy the dignity of, unbecoming. [A.S. _bi-nathan_.]

BENEDICITE, ben-[=e]-dis'i-te, _n._ the canticle beginning _'Benedicite_ omnia opera Domini' ('O all ye works of the Lord'), from the Apocryphal _Song of the Three Holy Children_--in the Anglican morning service an alternate to the _Te Deum_: the blessing before a repast.

BENEDICT, ben'e-dikt, _n._ a common name for a newly married man, esp. a bachelor who has long held out against marriage, but at last succumbed--from _Benedick_ in Shakespeare's _Much Ado about Nothing_.--_adj._ blessed: benign.

BENEDICTINE, ben-e-dik'tin, _adj._ pertaining to St Benedict or his monastic rule.--_n._ a Black Friar or monk of the order founded at Monte Cassino by St _Benedict_ of Nursia (480-543), which became famous for its learning: a cordial or liqueur resembling Chartreuse, distilled at Fecamp in Normandy--once distilled by Benedictine monks.

BENEDICTION, ben-e-dik'shun, _n._ a solemn invocation of the divine blessing on men or things--a priestly benediction is defined by Romanists as a formula of imperative prayer which transmits a certain grace or virtue to the object over which it is pronounced: a brief and popular service in the Romish Church, consisting of certain canticles and antiphons sung in presence of the host, and concluding with the priest making the sign of the cross over the people with the monstrance, and giving in silence the benediction of the most holy sacrament.--_adj._ BENEDICT'ORY.--_n._ BENEDICT'US, the canticle of Zacharias (Luke, i. 68-79), used in the Roman service of matin-lauds, and occurring after the second lesson in Anglican matins.--_p.adj._ BENEDIGHT' (_Longfellow_), blessed.--APOSTOLIC BENEDICTION, that given in 2 Cor. xiii. 14.

BENEFACTION, ben-e-fak'shun, _n._ the act of doing good: a good deed done or benefit conferred: a grant or endowment.--_n._ BENEFAC'TOR, one who gives a benefit to another, esp. one who leaves a legacy to some charitable or religious institution, a patron:--_fem._ BENEFAC'TRESS.--_adj._ BENEFAC'TORY. [L. _benefaction-em_.]

BENEFICE, ben'e-fis, _n._ any kind of church promotion or dignity, esp.

with cure of souls, such as rectories, vicarages, and other parochial cures, as distinguished from bishoprics, deaneries, cathedral preferments, &c.: an ecclesiastical living.--_adj._ BEN'EFICED, possessed of a benefice.

[Through Fr. from L. _beneficium_.]

BENEFICENCE, be-nef'i-sens, _n._ active goodness: kindness: charity: a beneficent gift.--_n._ BENEFIC'ENCY (_obs._).--_adjs._ BENEF'ICENT; BENEFICEN'TIAL.--_adv._ BENEF'ICENTLY. [L. _beneficentia_.]

BENEFICIAL, ben-e-fish'al, _adj._ useful; advantageous: (_law_) enjoying the usufruct of property.--_adj._ BENEF'IC, of good influence astrologically: beneficent, kindly.--_adv._ BENEFIC'IALLY.--_ns._ BENEFIC'IALNESS; BENEFIC'IARY, a legal term to denote a person who enjoys, or has the prospect of enjoying, any interest or estate held in trust by others. [L. _beneficium_.]

BENEFIT, ben'e-fit, _n._ a kindness: a favour: any advantage, natural or other: a performance at a theatre, the proceeds of which go to one of the company.--_v.t._ to do good to.--_v.i._ to gain advantage (with _from_),--_ns._ BEN'EFIT-OF-CLER'GY, in old English law, the exemption of the persons of ecclesiastics from criminal process before a secular judge, they being responsible only to their ordinary. This privilege, at first limited to those in actual orders, was in 1350 extended to all manner of clerks, and in later practice to all who could read, whether of clergy or laity; BEN'EFIT-OF-IN'VENTORY (_Scots law_), a legal privilege whereby an heir secured himself against unlimited liability for his ancestor, by giving up within the _annus deliberandi_ an inventory of his heritage or real estate, to the extent of which alone was the heir liable.--BENEFIT SOCIETIES, associations for mutual benefit chiefly among the labouring classes, better known as _Friendly societies_. [M. E. _benfet_, through Fr.

from L. _benefactum_.]

BENET, be-net', _v.t._ to catch in a net, to ensnare.

BENET, ben'et, _n._ an exorcist, the third of the four lesser orders in the Roman Church. [Through Fr. from L. _benedict-us_, blessed.]

BENEVOLENCE, ben-ev'ol-ens, _n._ disposition to do good: an act of kindness: generosity: a gift of money, esp. for support of the poor: (_Eng.

hist._) a kind of forced loan or contribution, levied by kings without legal authority, first so called under Edward IV. in 1473.--_adj._ BENEV'OLENT, charitable, generous, well disposed to.--_adv._ BENEV'OLENTLY.

[Through Fr. from L. _benevolentia_.]

BENGALI, ben-gaw'l[=e], _adj._ of or belonging to _Bengal_.--_n._ a native of Bengal: the language of Bengal.--_n._ BENGAL'-LIGHT, a brilliant signal-light used at sea in a case of shipwreck, and in ordinary pyrotechny for illuminating a district of country--prepared from nitre, sulphur, and the black sulphide of antimony.

BENIGHTED, be-n[=i]t'ed, _adj._ overtaken by night: involved in darkness, intellectual or moral: ignorant.--_v.t._ BENIGHT', to involve in such darkness: to cloud with disappointment.--_ns._ BENIGHT'ENING; BENIGHT'ER; BENIGHT'ING; BENIGHT'MENT. [Pfx. _be-_ and NIGHT.]

BENIGN, ben-[=i]n', _adj._ favourable, esp. in astrology, as opposed to _malign_: gracious: kindly: (_med._) of a mild type, as opposed to malignant: salubrious.--_n._ BENIG'NANCY, benignant quality.--_adj._ BENIG'NANT, kind: gracious: beneficial.--_adv._ BENIG'NANTLY.--_n._ BENIG'NITY, goodness of disposition: kindness: graciousness: favourable circumstances--of climate, weather, disease, planets.--_adv._ BENIGN'LY.

[O. Fr. _benigne_--L. _benignus_, for _benigenus_; _bene_, well, _genus_, born.]

BENISON, ben'izn, _n._ benediction, blessing, esp. blessing of God. [O. Fr.

_beneicun_--L. _benediction-em_.]

BENITIER, b[=a]-n[=e]'ti[=a], _n._ the vase or vessel for holy water in R.C. churches, known in England as the holy-water font, vat, pot, stone, stock, or stoup. [Fr.--Low L. _benedictarium_--L. _benedictus_.]

BENJAMIN, ben'ja-min, _n._ a kind of overcoat formerly worn by men.

[Suggested possibly by 'Joseph's coat.' The Gipsy _bengari_, 'waistcoat,'

has been proposed as an etymon.]

BENJAMIN, ben'ja-min, _n._ gum benjamin, an essence made from benzoin.--_n._ BEN'JAMIN-TREE, a North American aromatic shrub, with stimulant tonic bark and berries: the tree which yields benzoin--_Styrax Benzoin_. [A corr. of BENZOIN.]

BENNET, ben'et, _n._ the herb Bennet or common avens (_Geum urbanum_), a yellow-flowered wayside plant throughout Europe. [Through Fr. from L.

'herba _benedicta_,' the flower being a protective against the devil.]

BENNET, ben'et, _n._ the same as BENT, indeed an earlier form.

BENT, bent, _pa.t._ and _pa.p._ of BEND.

BENT, bent, _n._ leaning or bias: tendency: intention: natural inclination of the mind towards anything: the condition of being bent, curved form: (_rare_) slope or declivity: (_Shak._) a cast, as of the eye: the extent to which a bow may be bent--degree of tension, capacity of endurance, as in the phrase 'to the top of one's bent' = to the full measure of one's inclination. [See BEND.]

BENT, bent, _n._ any stiff or wiry grass: the old dried stalks of grasses: a special genus (_Agrostis_) containing about sixty species of grasses, all slender and delicate in appearance, and some useful as pasture-grasses and for hay: a place covered with such, a heath: a hillside.--Often BENT'-GRASS.--BEN'NET is a variant, a name applied to the wild barley-grass.--_adj._ BENT'Y.--TO TAKE TO THE BENT (_Scot._), to fly to the moors, to escape from some danger by flight. [A.S. _beonet_, found in place-names, as _Beonetleah_, Bentley; the history is obscure, but the word is doubtless Teut.; cf. Ger. _binse_.]

BENTHAMISM, ben'tham-izm, _n._ a name applied to the social and political doctrines of Jeremy _Bentham_ (1748-1832), whose leading principle is the doctrine of utility, that happiness is identical with pleasure, summed up in Priestley's famous phrase, 'the greatest happiness of the greatest number.'

BENUMB, be-num', _v.t._ to make insensible or powerless: to stupefy (now chiefly of _cold_): to deaden the feelings: to paralyse generally.--_p.adj._ BENUMBED'.--_ns._ BENUMBED'NESS, BENUMB'MENT. [Pfx.

_be-_ and NUMB.]

BENZENE, ben'z[=e]n, _n._ a compound of carbon and hydrogen, discovered by Faraday in 1825, in a tarry liquid resulting from the distillation of oil.

It is found amongst the products of the destructive distillation of a great many organic bodies, but the most abundant source is coal-tar. It must not be confounded with _benzine_ or _benzoyl_, which names have at different times been used for benzene.--BEN'ZINE is the name given to a distillate from American petroleum, which is much used as a substitute for turpentine, and for dissolving oils and fats; BEN'ZOYL is the commercial name applied to a mixture of substances, including benzene and its homologues.--BEN'ZOL is synonymous with benzene, while BEN'ZOLINE is a name applied to benzine and impure benzene indiscriminately.

BENZOIN, ben'z[=o]-in, or -zoin, _n._ gum benjamin, the aromatic and resinous juice of the _Styrax Benzoin_ of Java and Sumatra. It is used in perfumery, in pastilles, and for incense, and its compound tincture yields Friar's Balsam or Jesuit's Drops, and is used in making court-plaster. [In the 16th century, BENJOIN. Most prob. through It. from Ar. _lub[=a]n j[=a]w[=i]_, frankincense of Java, Sumatra, &c.]

BEPAINT, be-p[=a]nt', _v.t._ to paint over: to colour.

BEPAT, be-pat', _v.t._ to pat frequently, to beat.

BEPATCHED, be-patcht', _p.adj._ mended with patches: wearing patches on the face by way of adornment.

BEPEARL, be-p[.e]rl', _v.t._ to cover over with pearls.

BEPELT, be-p[.e]lt', _v.t._ to pelt vigorously.

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