be·​come | \ bi-ˈkəm How to pronounce become (audio) , bē- \
became\ bi-​ˈkām How to pronounce became (audio) , bē-​ \; become; becoming

Definition of become

intransitive verb

1a : to come into existence
b : to come to be become sick They both became teachers.
2 : to undergo change or development The pain was becoming more intense.

transitive verb

: to be suitable to seriousness becoming the occasion especially : to be becoming to her clothes become her
become of
: to happen to wondering whatever became of old friends

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Synonyms for become


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Examples of become in a Sentence

Although I've known him for years, we didn't become close friends until recently. She won the election, becoming the first woman to be President of the nation. The book has become quite popular. We became interested in the property last year. The crackers had become stale. It eventually became clear that he had lied. This kind of behavior hardly becomes a person of your age and position.
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Recent Examples on the Web The four white actors, first heard over the theater’s speakers and briefly in shadow — the collectively splendid Cody Nickell, Kimberly Gilbert, Christopher Dinolfo and Laura C. Harris — will become more corporeally central to the action. Washington Post, "This play aims to make you uncomfortable. And that’s a good thing.," 18 Sep. 2019 The marijuana market in Chula Vista, the second-largest city in the county, could become the largest in the region. San Diego Union-Tribune, "These marijuana dispensaries and delivery businesses are still competing for licenses in Chula Vista," 17 Sep. 2019 In short, Vazquez’s already grim legal situation could become even graver as the days and weeks play out. Michael Mccann,, "The Murky Future for Pirates Pitcher Felipe Vazquez," 17 Sep. 2019 The previous New Hampshire director Joe Caiazzo will become the Massachusetts state director. NBC News, "Bernie Sanders' campaign shuffles New Hampshire staff," 16 Sep. 2019 Those negotiations could become more difficult after Malmstrom cedes her post on Nov. 1 to Phil Hogan, a hard-nosed Irish trade negotiator who’s pledged to take a more pugnacious approach to EU-U.S. trade relations. Bryce Baschuk, Fortune, "EU Luxury Brands Face WTO-Approved U.S. Tariffs," 16 Sep. 2019 Beginning in 2021, Netflix will become the exclusive online-streaming home for the series throughout the world. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "It’s real and it’s spectacular: Netflix buys exclusive rights to stream Seinfeld," 16 Sep. 2019 Among people who became familiar with kugel at a young age, maybe at Shabbat luncheons or break-fast after Yom Kippur, kugel opinions run deep. Sarah Jampel, Bon Appétit, "We Need To Talk About Noodle Kugel," 16 Sep. 2019 But major vaping device makers and retailers have come under fire for marketing such flavors, which have been shown to attract teenagers who then become addicted to the nicotine in the products. Laura Garcia,, "San Antonio vape shops worry about going out of business," 16 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'become.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of become

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for become

Middle English, to come to, become, from Old English becuman, from be- + cuman to come

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Time Traveler for become

Time Traveler

The first known use of become was before the 12th century

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Cite this Entry

“Become.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for become


How to pronounce become (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of become

: to begin to be or come to be something specified : to begin to have a specified quality
: to look attractive on (someone) : to be flattering to (someone)
: to be suitable for (someone) : to be proper for (someone)


be·​come | \ bi-ˈkəm How to pronounce become (audio) \
became\ -​ˈkām \; become; becoming

Kids Definition of become

1 : to come or grow to be He became president. It's becoming cold. A tadpole becomes a frog.
2 : to be suitable to especially in a pleasing way Look for clothes that become you.
become of
: to happen to What has become of my friend?

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More from Merriam-Webster on become

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for become

Spanish Central: Translation of become

Nglish: Translation of become for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of become for Arabic Speakers

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