Benevolent Be*nev"o*lent, a. [L. benevolens, -entis; bene well (adv. of bonus good) + volens, p. pr. of volo I will, I wish. See {Bounty}, and {Voluntary}.] Having a disposition to do good; possessing or manifesting love to mankind, and a desire to promote their prosperity and happiness; disposed to give to good objects; kind; charitable. -- {Be*nev"o*lent*ly}, adv. [1913 Webster]

Syn: {Benevolent}, {Beneficent}.

Usage: Etymologically considered, benevolent implies wishing well to others, and beneficent, doing well. But by degrees the word benevolent has been widened to include not only feelings, but actions; thus, we speak of benevolent operations, benevolent labors for the public good, benevolent societies. In like manner, beneficent is now often applied to feelings; thus, we speak of the beneficent intentions of a donor. This extension of the terms enables us to mark nicer shades of meaning. Thus, the phrase ``benevolent labors'' turns attention to the source of these labors, viz., benevolent feeling; while beneficent would simply mark them as productive of good. So, ``beneficent intentions'' point to the feelings of the donor as bent upon some specific good act; while ``benevolent intentions'' would only denote a general wish and design to do good. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • benevolently — index fairly (impartially) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • benevolently — benevolent ► ADJECTIVE 1) well meaning and kindly. 2) (of an organization) charitable rather than profit making. DERIVATIVES benevolence noun benevolently adverb. ORIGIN Old French benivolent, from Latin bene well + velle to wish …   English terms dictionary

  • benevolently — adverb in a benevolent manner she looked on benevolently • Ant: ↑malevolently • Derived from adjective: ↑benevolent …   Useful english dictionary

  • benevolently — adverb see benevolent …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • benevolently — See benevolent. * * * …   Universalium

  • benevolently — adverb In a benevolent manner …   Wiktionary

  • benevolently — adv. in a generous manner, kindly …   English contemporary dictionary

  • benevolently — be·nev·o·lent·ly …   English syllables

  • benevolently — See: benevolent …   English dictionary

  • benevolent — benevolently, adv. benevolentness, n. /beuh nev euh leuhnt/, adj. 1. characterized by or expressing goodwill or kindly feelings: a benevolent attitude; her benevolent smile. 2. desiring to help others; charitable: gifts from several benevolent… …   Universalium

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