be·​get | \ bi-ˈget How to pronounce beget (audio) , bē- \
begot\ bi-​ˈgät How to pronounce begot (audio) , bē-​ \ also begat\ bi-​ˈgat How to pronounce begat (audio) , bē-​ \; begotten\ bi-​ˈgä-​tᵊn How to pronounce begotten (audio) , bē-​ \ or begot; begetting

Definition of beget

transitive verb

1 : to procreate as the father : sire He died without begetting an heir.
2 : to produce especially as an effect or outgrowth Violence only begets more violence.

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Other Words from beget

begetter noun

Examples of beget in a Sentence

He died without begetting an heir. one change in the natural environment will beget others
Recent Examples on the Web The authors describe 14 lewd conduct arrests at an Echo Park club called the Black Cat on New Year’s Eve 1967, which begot a 500-person protest that predated New York’s Stonewall uprising by two years. Los Angeles Times, "Review: How L.A.’s ’60s movements fought for justice — and sometimes even achieved it," 13 Apr. 2020 The medical community and laypersons alike often blamed victims of the disease for their own suffering, believing that vicious, debauched, and unhygienic lifestyles begat typhus. Timothy Kent Holliday, Smithsonian Magazine, "What an 1836 Typhus Outbreak Taught the Medical World About Epidemics," 21 Apr. 2020 Like The League, Brews Brothers very nicely captures the way a passionate fixation — in this case professional rather than hobby — begets both a vast knowledge base and also inherent snobbery. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Brews Brothers': TV Review," 9 Apr. 2020 Third: Get ready for non-coronavirus trouble: Crises beget crises. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "First Things First," 18 Mar. 2020 Although Biden is ascendant, success doesn't always beget success. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, "Biden rebuffs Sanders assertion Democratic establishment saved his White House bid," 5 Mar. 2020 In many ways, the reason for that growth is simply that success begets success. Dave Edwards, Quartz, "The decade that completely transformed venture capital," 7 Feb. 2020 Success begat more success, and Taylor ended up on tour with Judy Garland and Eleanor Powell in Las Vegas in 1966. Washington Post, "Correction: Obit-Rip Taylor story," 7 Oct. 2019 Science begets more science, according to Neil deGrasse Tyson. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "Neil deGrasse Tyson on why ‘Cosmos’ is even more important in the coronavirus era," 30 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'beget.' 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 beget

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for beget

Middle English begeten, beyeten, going back to Old English begietan "to get, beget," from be- be- + gietan "to get entry 1"

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Time Traveler for beget

Time Traveler

The first known use of beget was in the 13th century

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Last Updated

18 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Beget.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for beget


How to pronounce beget (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of beget

formal : to cause (something) to happen or exist
old-fashioned + literary : to become the father of (someone)

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More from Merriam-Webster on beget

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for beget

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with beget

Spanish Central: Translation of beget

Nglish: Translation of beget for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of beget for Arabic Speakers

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