bereft

adjective
be·​reft | \ bi-ˈreft How to pronounce bereft (audio) \

Definition of bereft

1a : deprived or robbed of the possession or use of something usually used with of both players are instantly bereft of their poise— A. E. Wier
b : lacking something needed, wanted, or expected used with of the book is … completely bereft of an indexThe Times Literary Supplement (London)
2 : suffering the death of a loved one : bereaved a bereft mother

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Synonyms for bereft

Synonyms

bereaved

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Examples of bereft in a Sentence

She finds the child's mother, alone, who has apparently gone into the woods just to cry. The bereft mother is played by Julianne Moore. — Stanley Kauffmann, New Republic, 31 Jan. 2000 … made the tabloids when his wife ran off to France with her dentist and the bereft realtor placed a newspaper ad for a girl to adopt to keep him company. — Neal Gabler, Life: The Movie, 1998 It's not that the country was completely bereft of humor. — Joseph Contrevas, Newsweek, 6 June 1994 to one investigator, the bereft woman seemed to be taking the sudden death of her rich husband amazingly well a cheap motel completely bereft of all amenities
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Recent Examples on the Web

My book manuscript was due to my editor in less than a year, but marshaling my despondent, wildly bereft thoughts for the purposes of creative work seemed a hurdle too elephantine to overcome. Rachel Vorona Cote, SELF, "Why I Embraced Skin Care After My Mother's Death," 18 Apr. 2019 When two eighteen-year-old girls go missing on their gap year in Thailand, their families are thrust into the international spotlight: desperate, bereft and frantic with worry. . Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, "#ReadWithMC Reviews Fiona Barton's 'The Suspect'," 4 Mar. 2019 But the race to replace high-profile Kobach as the state’s top elections official is relatively quiet and bereft of television ads. John Hanna, The Seattle Times, "Kobach legacy on voter ID laws at issue in other Kansas race," 8 Oct. 2018 Meanwhile, outside the shelter network, along the country's southern border, lawyers working on behalf of bereft parents struggle to locate their clients' children. Maria Sacchetti, chicagotribune.com, "'It really wears on the kids': Separated migrant children are all over the country," 24 June 2018 Meanwhile, outside the shelter network, along the country's southern border, lawyers working on behalf of bereft parents struggle to locate their clients' children. Maria Sacchetti, chicagotribune.com, "'It really wears on the kids': Separated migrant children are all over the country," 24 June 2018 The chorus of condemnation includes Democrats, as well as Republicans, who are increasingly worried that reports about bereft children taken from their parents could damage the GOP's chances in November. chicagotribune.com, "With eyes on midterms, Trump embraces the immigration fight," 19 June 2018 Meanwhile, outside the shelter network, along the country's southern border, lawyers working on behalf of bereft parents struggle to locate their clients' children. Maria Sacchetti, chicagotribune.com, "'It really wears on the kids': Separated migrant children are all over the country," 24 June 2018 When a bird’s good friend died or disappeared, the bereft tit began making overtures to other birds to replace the lost comrade. Natalie Angier, New York Times, "You Share Everything With Your Bestie. Even Brain Waves.," 16 Apr. 2018

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

1554, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for bereft

see bereave

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Statistics for bereft

Last Updated

1 May 2019

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Time Traveler for bereft

The first known use of bereft was in 1554

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More Definitions for bereft

bereft

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of bereft

: sad because a family member or friend has died

bereft

adjective
be·​reft | \ bi-ˈreft How to pronounce bereft (audio) \

Kids Definition of bereft

1 : not having something needed, wanted, or expected They passed miles of naked grapevines … bereft of their leaves.— Pam Muñoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising
2 : bereaved a bereft mother

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More from Merriam-Webster on bereft

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bereft

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bereft

Spanish Central: Translation of bereft

Nglish: Translation of bereft for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bereft for Arabic Speakers

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