Webster 1828 Edition



[L. veneficium.] Acting by poison; bewitching. [Little used.]

Definition 2022





veneficial (comparative more veneficial, superlative most veneficial)

  1. (dated, now rare) Poisonous or poisoning; pertaining to poison; malignant, sorcerous.
    • 1658, Sir Thomas Browne, The Garden of Cyrus (Folio Society 2007), page 213:
      Why the Goddesses sit commonly crosse-legged in ancient draughts, Since Juno is described in the same as a veneficial posture to hinder the birth of Hercules?
    • 1963, Rossell Hope Robbins, The encyclopedia of witchcraft and demonology, page 545:
      3. The chanting, canting, or calculating witch, who works by signs and numbers.
      4. The veneficial or poisoning witch.
      5. The exorcist or conjuring witch.
    • 1964, in Nature and Life in Southeast Asia, volumes 3-4, page 393:
      [] utilization of parasitic and predacious insects for the control of crop insect pests. It is expected to find in the tropics many veneficial insects []