bequeath

play
verb be·queath \bi-ˈkwēth, -ˈkwēth, bē-\

Definition of bequeath

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to give or leave by will (see 2will 6) —used especially of personal property a ring bequeathed to her by her grandmother

  3. 2 :  to hand down :  transmit lessons bequeathed to future generations

bequeathal

play \-ˈkwē-thəl, -thəl\ noun

Examples of bequeath in a Sentence

  1. He bequeathed his paintings to the museum.

  2. Lessons of the past are bequeathed to future generations.

Recent Examples of bequeath from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of bequeath

Middle English bequethen, from Old English becwethan, from be- + cwethan to say — more at quoth


BEQUEATH Defined for English Language Learners

bequeath

play
verb

Definition of bequeath for English Language Learners

  • : to say in a will that (your property) will be given to (a person or organization) after you die

  • : to give (ideas, knowledge, etc.) to (younger people) as part of their history


BEQUEATH Defined for Kids

bequeath

play
verb be·queath \bi-ˈkwēth, -ˈkwēth\

Definition of bequeath for Students

bequeathed

;

bequeathing

  1. 1 :  to give or leave by means of a will I bequeath this ring to my sister.

  2. 2 :  to hand down These stories were bequeathed to us by our ancestors.


Law Dictionary

bequeath

play
transitive verb be·queath \bi-ˈkwēth, -ˈkwēth\

Legal Definition of bequeath

  1. :  to give by will —used especially of personal property but sometimes of real property — see also legacy, legatee — compare devise

Origin and Etymology of bequeath

Old English becwethan to speak to, address, leave by will, from be- to, about + cwethan to say



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up bequeath? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

an extremely thin woman

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time-traveler-quiz-which-word-came-first
  • Which came first?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!