be·​ware | \ bi-ˈwer How to pronounce beware (audio) , bē- \

Definition of beware

intransitive verb

: to be on one's guard beware of the dog

transitive verb

1 : to take care of beware your wallet
2 : to be wary of we must … beware the exceedingly tenuous generalization— Matthew Lipman

Examples of beware in a Sentence

A ghostly voice cried “Beware!”. He told them to beware. The restaurant's food is excellent, but beware the chili if you don't like spicy food.
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Recent Examples on the Web Parents should also beware of flat cradles that are soft and plush or have pillows. Rebekah L. Sanders, azcentral, "Parents warned to stop using Fisher-Price Rock ’n Plays now," 30 Jan. 2020 One key stat Wentz should beware: The Seattle defense forced 18 fumbles in the regular season, second most in the league. Usa Today Sports, USA TODAY, "Which wild-card team has best chance to make deep run in NFL playoffs?," 6 Jan. 2020 Audience members headed to the Lyceum Theater in New York City for A Christmas Carol should beware: Your holiday spirit is about to be tested. Ruth Kinane,, "A Christmas Carol on Broadway is dreary and delightful, as Dickens intended it to be: Review," 21 Nov. 2019 Drivers should beware of delays on southbound I-71/75, according to the Traffic Response and Incident Management Assisting the River Cities. Madeline Mitchell,, "Traffic: Delays on I-71/75 just past Brent Spence Bridge in Kenton County, Kentucky," 25 Oct. 2019 Audiologists said customers should beware of some programs that limit access to audiologists for tuning. Stacey Burling,, "Poor hearing is bad for your health, but Medicare still doesn’t cover hearing aids," 21 Oct. 2019 Customers should beware of contractors who solicit services door-to-door, especially those who pressure you into signing a contract on the spot or who are not from the area, according to the AG office. Erin Douglas, Houston Chronicle, "After Dallas tornado, beware of contractor fraud, Attorney General warns," 21 Oct. 2019 Also beware if your boots are already a bit tight, as the Hiker’s padding could constrict your feet even more. James Lynch, Popular Mechanics, "Plenty Comfortable and Good Looking to Boot, These are the Best Hiking Socks," 23 Sep. 2019 Late-season ocean swimmers and big-wave spectators should beware, forecasters said. Jordan Frias,, "Rain and high winds headed for Cape and Islands as Dorian travels north," 6 Sep. 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for beware

Middle English been war, from been "to be" + war "cognizant, ware entry 1"

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Time Traveler for beware

Time Traveler

The first known use of beware was in the 13th century

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Statistics for beware

Last Updated

16 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Beware.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for beware


How to pronounce beware (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of beware

: to be careful : to act in a way that shows you know that there may be danger or trouble


be·​ware | \ bi-ˈwer How to pronounce beware (audio) \

Kids Definition of beware

: to be cautious or careful beware of the dog He told them to beware.
Hint: Beware is used only in the forms beware or to beware.

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More from Merriam-Webster on beware

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with beware

Spanish Central: Translation of beware

Nglish: Translation of beware for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of beware for Arabic Speakers

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