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 That impulse begot the thought that perhaps the one worthy of worship was other than Kanye West. John Hirschauer, National Review, "Kanye West’s Reactionary Turn Isn’t Just an Act," 4 Nov. 2019 Maximal outcomes like Trump’s move to defang federal regulation of methane emissions ultimately beget maximal responses. Liam Denning | Bloomberg, Washington Post, "Democrat Town Halls Show the Climate’s Changed Already," 5 Sep. 2019 For some, this fascination begets triaphilia, the belief that certain events — often unfortunate or macabre — occur in threes. Nick Moyle,, "Texas’ Jordan Whittington last RB standing as injuries mount," 23 Aug. 2019 Ephemerality begets seriality begets disposability. Adam Wilson, Harper's magazine, "Good Bad Bad Good," 16 Sep. 2019 Extended losing begets high draft picks, which beget talent. Robert O'connell, The Atlantic, "Will This Be Cleveland’s Year?," 4 Sep. 2019 That, in turn, begat Mesa Petrolum, an oil and gas company in Amarillo that Pickens took public in 1964. Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY, "Legendary oil tycoon and corporate raider T. Boone Pickens dies at age 91," 11 Sep. 2019 As cultural figures, Chang and Eng were yet more prolific, begetting no end of scientific studies, metaphysical conundrums, Broadway burlesques, political cartoons, and scandalous exposés. Julian Lucas, The New York Review of Books, "The Great Assimilationists," 21 Feb. 2019 New York is a far greater challenge made worse by nearly two decades of organizational dysfunction begetting public disdain. Harvey Araton, New York Times, "Knicks Coaching Job Criteria: The Best Qualified for Losing," 12 Apr. 2018

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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Statistics for beget

Last Updated

1 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Beget.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 6 December 2019.

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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

Comments on beget

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very cautious or careful

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