O.E. benc "long seat," from P.Gmc. *bankiz (cf. Da. bænk, M.Du. banc, O.H.G. banch). Used for "office of a judge" since late 13c. Sporting sense (in baseball, N.Amer. football, etc.) is from 1909; the verb meaning "to take out of the game" is from 1902.