inherit

verb in·her·it \ in-ˈher-ət , -ˈhe-rət \
Updated on: 12 Nov 2017

Definition of inherit

transitive verb
1 : to come into possession of or receive especially as a right or divine portion
  • and every one who has left houses or brothers or sisters … for my name's sake, will receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life
  • —Matthew 19:29 (Revised Standard Version)
2 a : to receive from an ancestor as a right or title descendible by law at the ancestor's death
b : to receive as a devise or legacy
3 : to receive from a parent or ancestor by genetic transmission
  • inherit a defective enzyme
4 : to have in turn or receive as if from an ancestor
  • inherited the problem from his predecessor
intransitive verb
: to take or hold a possession or rights by inheritance

inheritor

play \in-ˈher-ə-tər, -ˈhe-rə-\ noun

inheritress

play \in-ˈher-ə-trəs, -ˈhe-rə-\ or inheritrix play \in-ˈher-ə-(ˌ)triks, -ˈhe-rə-\ noun

Examples of inherit in a Sentence

  1. She inherited the family business from her father.

  2. Baldness is inherited from the mother's side of the family.

  3. She inherited her father's deep blue eyes.

  4. She inherited a love of baseball from her dad.

  5. When my brother left for college, I inherited his old computer.

  6. The company's new president will inherit some complicated legal problems.

  7. When the coach quit, her assistant inherited a last-place team.

Recent Examples of inherit from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of inherit

Middle English enheriten to give right of inheritance to, from Anglo-French enheriter, from Late Latin inhereditare, from Latin in- + hereditas inheritance — more at heredity


INHERIT Defined for English Language Learners

inherit

verb

Definition of inherit for English Language Learners

  • : to receive (money, property, etc.) from someone when that person dies

  • biology : to have (a characteristic, disease, etc.) because of the genes that you get from your parents when you are born

  • : to get (a personal quality, interest, etc.) because of the influence or example of your parents or other relatives


INHERIT Defined for Kids

inherit

verb in·her·it \ in-ˈher-ət \

Definition of inherit for Students

inherited; inheriting
1 : to get by legal right from a person at his or her death
2 : to get by heredity
  • I inherited red hair.

Medical Dictionary

inherit

transitive verb in·her·it \ in-ˈher-ət \

medical Definition of inherit

: to receive from a parent or ancestor by genetic transmission

Law Dictionary

inherit

verb in·her·it \ in-ˈher-it \

legal Definition of inherit

transitive verb
1 : to receive (property) from an estate by operation of the laws of intestacy; broadly : to receive (property) either by will or through intestate succession
2 : succeed
intransitive verb
: to take or hold a possession or rights by inheritance

inheritor

play \in-ˈher-i-tər\ noun

Origin and Etymology of inherit

Middle French enheriter to make one an heir, from Late Latin inhereditare, from Latin in- in + hereditas inheritance



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