In English ecclesiastical law, the term incumbent refers to the holder of a Church of England parochial charge or benefice. The term benefice originally denoted a grant of land for life in return for services. In church law, the duties were spiritual and some form of assets to generate revenue were permanently linked to the duties to ensure the support of the office holder. Historically, once in possession of the benefice, the holder had lifelong tenure unless he failed to provide the required minimum of spiritual services or committed a moral offence; but with the passing of the 1968 Pastoral Measure and subsequent legislation, this no longer applies and ...

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  1. The current holder of an office, such as ecclesiastical benefice or an elected office.
  2. A holder of a position as supplier to a market or market segment that allows the holder to earn above-normal profits.


  1. Imposed on someone as an obligation, especially due to one's office.
    Proper behavior is incumbent on all holders of positions of trust.
  2. Lying; resting; reclining; recumbent.
  3. Resting on something else; in botany, said of anthers when lying on the inner side of the filament, or of cotyledons when the radicle lies against the back of one of them.
  4. Bent downwards so that the ends touch, or rest on, something else.
    the incumbent toe of a bird
  5. Being the current holder of an office or a title.
    If the incumbent senator dies, he is replaced by a person appointed by the governor.

The above text is a snippet from Wiktionary: incumbent
and as such is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

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