be·​ing | \ ˈbē(-i)ŋ How to pronounce being (audio) \

Definition of being

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : the quality or state of having existence a social movement that came into being in the 1960s artistic form comes into being only when two elements are successfully fused— Carlos Lynes
b(1) : something that is conceivable and hence capable of existing
(2) : something that actually exists
(3) : the totality of existing things
c : conscious existence : life
2 : the qualities that constitute an existent thing : essence I knew it was true in the core of my being. especially : personality
3 : a living thing sentient beings a mythical being especially : person a very sexual being



Definition of being (Entry 2 of 4)

: present used in the phrase for the time being plans to remain single for the time being



Definition of being (Entry 3 of 4)

chiefly dialectal
: since, because usually used with as, as how, or that


Definition of being (Entry 4 of 4)

present participle of be

Examples of being in a Sentence

Noun a social movement that was brought into being in the 1960s I knew it was true in the core of my being.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Other managers, though, resent being pitted against their employees. E. Tammy Kim, The New Yorker, 2 Aug. 2022 Aloha bakery came into being when owner and baker Nenita Linton, who is originally from Hilo, Hawaii, asked one too many favors from her mother and sister. Bahar Anooshahr, The Arizona Republic, 2 Aug. 2022 Researchers will measure the impact the new working pattern will have on productivity levels, gender equality, the environment as well as worker well-being. Anna Cooban, CNN, 1 Aug. 2022 As the name suggests, Samsung sees this new mode being of most use when your handset needs to be sent off for repair. Matthew Humphries, PCMAG, 1 Aug. 2022 That includes rivalries against aggressive upstart extremist groups that came into being after 9/11 and also have a presence in Afghanistan., 1 Aug. 2022 The company has also continued to pick up feature films for its subscription service, with the latest being the A24 drama Causeway, which stars Jennifer Lawrence and Brian Tyree Henry. J. Clara Chan, The Hollywood Reporter, 28 July 2022 After decades of meditation being hyped as a universal curative, mental and physical, there have lately been some reports about its potential psychological dangers, including episodes of dissociation and psychosis at intensive meditation retreats. Randy Rosenthal, Los Angeles Times, 26 July 2022 What’s at stake is the well-being of not just Grant’s 700 residents but democracy itself. Colin Jerolmack, The New Republic, 26 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of being


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined above


1528, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for being


Middle English, from gerund of been be


Middle English, from present participle of been be


from being entry 2

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Time Traveler for being

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The first known use of being was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

6 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Being.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for being


be·​ing | \ ˈbē-iŋ How to pronounce being (audio) \

Kids Definition of being

1 : the state of having life or existence He explained how the myth came into being.
2 : a living thing
3 : an entity believed to be divine

More from Merriam-Webster on being

Nglish: Translation of being for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of being for Arabic Speakers


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