Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A long seat, often without a back, for two or more persons.
  • noun Nautical A thwart in a boat.
  • noun The seat for judges in a courtroom.
  • noun The office or position of a judge.
  • noun The judge or judges composing a court.
  • noun A seat occupied by a person in an official capacity.
  • noun The office of such a person.
  • noun A strong worktable, such as one used in carpentry or in a laboratory.
  • noun A platform on which animals, especially dogs, are exhibited.
  • noun The area, often equipped with benches, where the coaches and the players who are not actively participating in the game remain.
  • noun The reserve players on a team.
  • noun A level, narrow stretch of land interrupting a declivity.
  • noun A level elevation of land along a shore or coast, especially one marking a former shoreline.
  • transitive verb To furnish with benches.
  • transitive verb To seat on a bench.
  • transitive verb To show (dogs) in a bench show.
  • transitive verb Sports To keep out of or remove from a game.
  • transitive verb Sports To bench-press.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To furnish with benches.
  • To bank up.
  • To seat on a bench; place on a seat of honor.
  • To place on a show-bench for exhibition, as a dog.
  • In mining: To undercut, kirve, or hole (the coal).
  • To wedge up the bottoms below the holing when this is done in the middle of the seam.
  • To sit on a seat of justice.
  • noun A horizontal subdivision of a bed of coal or other mineral.
  • noun A glass tray in which microscopical slides can be placed, in a vertical position, for staining or other purposes.
  • noun A long seat, usually of board or plank, or of stone, differing from a stool in its greater length.
  • noun The seat where judges sit in court; the seat of justice.
  • noun Hence The body of persons who sit as judges; the court: as, the case is to go before the full bench.
  • noun A strong table on which carpenters or other mechanics do their work; a work-bench.
  • noun The floor or ledge which supports muffles and retorts.
  • noun A platform or a series of elevated stalls or boxes on which animals are placed for exhibition, as at a dog-show.
  • noun In engineering, a ledge left on the edge of a cutting in earthwork to strengthen it.
  • noun In geology and mining:
  • noun A natural terrace, marking the outcrop of a harder seam or stratum, and thus indicating a change in the character of the rock.
  • noun In coal-mining, a division of a coal-seam separated from the remainder of the bed by a parting of shale or any other kind of rock or mineral.
  • noun A small area of nearly level or gently sloping land, rising above the adjacent low region, and forming a part of a terrace or wash, disunited from the remainder by erosion. Sometimes, though rarely, used as synonymous with terrace.
  • noun The driver's seat on a coach.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • intransitive verb rare To sit on a seat of justice.
  • noun A long seat, differing from a stool in its greater length.
  • noun A long table at which mechanics and other work.
  • noun The seat where judges sit in court.
  • noun The persons who sit as judges; the court. See King's Bench.
  • noun A collection or group of dogs exhibited to the public; -- so named because the animals are usually placed on benches or raised platforms.
  • noun A conformation like a bench; a long stretch of flat ground, or a kind of natural terrace, near a lake or river.

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, from Old English benc.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Old English benċ.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From bench press by shortening.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

See bentsh.

Examples

Comments

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  • "Benches (usually of two or three judges in modern times) have various ways of harassing the player, including 'closing the book,' i.e. ostentatiously shutting their notebooks..."

    —William Donaldson, Pipers: A Guide to the Players and Music of the Highland Bagpipe (Edinburgh: Birlinn, 2005), 21

    July 27, 2008