Find accurate definitions of over 5,000 Catholic terms and phrases (including abbreviations). Based on Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.
A white resin obtained from balsam trees and used in perfumes and medicines. One of the events related following the birth of Jesus was a visit to the manger by wise men from the East who brought him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh (Matthew 2:10-11). (Etym. Old French franc encens, pure incense.)