be·​speak | \ bi-ˈspēk , bē-\
bespoke\ bi-​ˈspōk , bē-​ \; bespoken\ bi-​ˈspō-​kən , bē-​ \; bespeaking

Definition of bespeak

transitive verb

1 : to hire, engage, or claim beforehand
2 : to speak to especially with formality : address
3 : request bespeak a favor
4a : indicate, signify her performance bespeaks considerable practice
b : to show beforehand : foretell

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Synonyms for bespeak


book, reserve

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Examples of bespeak in a Sentence

Her newest album bespeaks a great talent for writing songs. bespoke the rental car weeks in advance of their trip

Recent Examples on the Web

If such an act doesn’t bespeak a consciousness in an imperfect state of ascension, what does? Lili Anolik, Harper's BAZAAR, "How Eve Babitz Is Becoming an Unlikely Icon for Millennial Women," 24 Jan. 2019 Edie Parker Custom Coasters Protect your new table with something personalized, like Edie Parker’s bespoke acrylic coasters. David Thielebeule, WSJ, "Style Director David Thielebeule’s Gift Guide: The Great Indoors," 11 Dec. 2018 Nvidia’s bespoke Shield game controller doesn’t come with this bundle–that’s reserved for the more expensive $200 package. Ian Paul, PCWorld, "Nvidia's Shield TV, the best media streamer for enthusiasts, hits its lowest price yet," 7 Nov. 2018 Jen McGinley’s set consists largely of bookcases, filled with battered volumes that bespeak endless use, that are magically reconfigured to expedite the play’s journeys into the deep past. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Review: A Species on the Brink in ‘Secret Life of Humans’," 7 June 2018 The email also had a picture of Mrs. Bush: gray hair, eyes crinkly and welcoming, the soft smile that bespoke kindness and great joy—and pearls, three strands of them, elegant but understated. Karl Rove, WSJ, "Heaven, Get Ready for Barbara Bush," 18 Apr. 2018 Lulu Frost is known for her custom vintage pieces, statement necklaces and bespoke approach to jewels—many of which have sold out in days. Tara Lamont-djite, Harper's BAZAAR, "Lulu Frost Opens Store & DIY Bar in NYC," 11 Nov. 2014 Starcast Interesting times begin Monday with a Venus/Neptune square that bespeaks deceit or at least delusion regarding social or financial issues. Minerva, San Francisco Chronicle, "Minerva’s horoscope for week of May 6," 6 May 2018 Here’s a theory for you: Disgust is thought to be an evolutionary adaptation to keep us from harm, and a bare male foot bespeaks vulnerability. Bobby Doherty, The Cut, "The Great Mandals Debate," 12 June 2018

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

1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for bespeak

Last Updated

5 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for bespeak

The first known use of bespeak was in 1533

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English Language Learners Definition of bespeak

formal : to be evidence of (something) : to be a sign of (something)

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More from Merriam-Webster on bespeak

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bespeak

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bespeak

Nglish: Translation of bespeak for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bespeak for Arabic Speakers

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