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[ben-i-dik-shuh n] /ˌbɛn ɪˈdɪk ʃən/
an utterance of good wishes.
the form of blessing pronounced by an officiating minister, as at the close of divine service.
a ceremony by which things are set aside for sacred uses, as a church, vestments, or bells.
(usually initial capital letter). Also called Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. a service consisting of prayers, at least one prescribed hymn, censing of the congregation and the Host, and a blessing of the congregation by moving in the form of a cross the ciborium or monstrance containing the Host.
the advantage conferred by blessing; a mercy or benefit.
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English (< Middle French) < Latin benedictiōn- (stem of benedictiō). See Benedictus, -ion
Related forms
prebenediction, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for benediction
  • We joined a long line of Tibetans filing through the throne room to receive the benediction.
  • Then he gave me the benediction by touching my head with two fingers.
  • The snow fell, swirling and blanketing the stage, like a benediction.
  • Love becomes a pilgrimage, a prayer, a ritual and a benediction.
  • Lifting his right hand, he was in the act of giving the benediction.
  • Before the benediction of these heavenly words it is of another nature, after the consecration it is the body.
  • Mankind needs a world-wide benediction of understanding.
  • No gloomy spirit could refuse to listen to its lullaby, and the spray baptized it with the subtile benediction of a cheerier mood.
  • The wilderness, which had admitted us with benediction, with benediction let us go.
  • Others, however, don't see the papal benediction quite so benignly.
British Dictionary definitions for benediction


an invocation of divine blessing, esp at the end of a Christian religious ceremony
a Roman Catholic service in which the congregation is blessed with the sacrament
the state of being blessed
Derived Forms
benedictory, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Latin benedictio, from benedīcere to bless; see benedicite
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for benediction

c.1400, from Latin benedictionem (nominative benedictio), noun of action from bene dicere "to speak well of, bless," from bene "well" (see bene-) + dicere "to speak" (see diction). The oldest sense in English is of grace before meat. The older French form, beneiçon passed into Middle English as benison.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for benediction

a verbal blessing of persons or things, commonly applied to invocations pronounced in God's name by a priest or minister, usually at the conclusion of a religious service. The Aaronic benediction (Num. 6:24-26) was incorporated by Luther into his German Mass and is preserved by modern Lutherans because of its impressive dignity; it is also used in the Mozarabic liturgy of Spain before the reception of the Host. The Swedish liturgy appends a trinitarian formula to this same benediction. Some Christian churches, however, prefer the Pauline benediction (II Cor. 13:14).

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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