1. a combining form occurring in loanwords from Latin, where it meant “well”: benediction.


  1. note well; take notice.

adverb Law.

  1. of validity for the time being but subject to objection or nullification at a later date; provisionally: to take evidence de bene esse to ensure against its loss.

  1. note well; take noteAbbreviation: NB, N.B., nb, n.b.

Latin word-forming element meaning “well,” from Latin bene “well, in the right way, honorably, properly,” from PIE *dw-ene-, adverbial form of root *deu- “to do, perform, show favor, revere.” Cf. Latin bonus “good,” bellus “handsome, fine, pretty,” beatus “blessed.”

“mark well, observe particularly,” c.1721, from Latin nota, second person singular imperative of notare “to mark” (see note (v.)) + bene “well” (see bene-). Often abbreviated N.B.

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