inherit

verb
in·​her·​it | \in-ˈher-ət, -ˈhe-rət\
inherited; inheriting; inherits

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)

2a : 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

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Other Words from inherit

inheritor \in-​ˈher-​ə-​tər, -​ˈhe-​rə-​ \ noun
inheritress \in-​ˈher-​ə-​trəs, -​ˈhe-​rə-​ \ or inheritrix \in-​ˈher-​ə-​(ˌ)triks, -​ˈhe-​rə-​ \ noun

Examples of inherit in a Sentence

She inherited the family business from her father. Baldness is inherited from the mother's side of the family. She inherited her father's deep blue eyes. She inherited a love of baseball from her dad. When my brother left for college, I inherited his old computer. The company's new president will inherit some complicated legal problems. When the coach quit, her assistant inherited a last-place team.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Since 2002, no other cases of paternally inherited mtDNA have been reported in humans, despite several research groups actively looking. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Plot twist: Mitochondrial DNA can come from both parents," 28 Nov. 2018 With Kylie Jenner turning her cosmetics line into a billion dollar business and Kim Kardashian launching KKW Beauty, the love of face art is practically inherited via DNA, right? Gianluca Russo, Teen Vogue, "North West Does Kim Kardashian's Makeup on Social Media," 24 Nov. 2018 The Soviet Union’s first full-deck aircraft carrier, the Kuznetsov was commissioned in 1990 and inherited by Russia upon the breakup of the USSR. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Russia’s Hard-Luck Carrier Damaged in Shipyard Accident," 30 Oct. 2018 There have been countless stories about how Prince Harry inherited his mother's empathy, humor, and compassion. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Prince Harry Just Paid Tribute to Prince Charles and His Work in the Fight Against Climate Change," 26 Oct. 2018 While chatting with one of BBC's Teen Heroes, break dancer Junior Frood, the Duke of Cambridge revealed that George is currently interested in dancing and may have inherited the passion from his grandmother. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Prince George and Princess Charlotte Share the Same Hobby as Princess Diana," 22 Oct. 2018 Time will tell if Isaiah inherits his parents' vocal abilities. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "Carrie Underwood's Husband Mike Fisher Hints At 'New Music' in Instagram Post," 14 Oct. 2018 And Whedon was more directly involved in the 2001-2003 comics series Fray, a far-future take on Buffy featuring a Slayer descendant who’d inherited Buffy’s primary weapon and her primary problem — vampires. Tasha Robinson, The Verge, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer reboot showrunner clarifies: it’s not a reboot," 27 July 2018 The latter, though, are notoriously in play in the horror movie Hereditary, the story of a woman (Toni Collette) whose family has inherited an evil curse. Gary Thompson, Philly.com, "Think these movies are too gory? The Greek myths they're based on are worse," 12 July 2018

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.

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First Known Use of inherit

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for inherit

Middle English enheriten "to give (a person) right of inheritance, make (a person) heir, come into possession of as an heir," borrowed from Anglo-French enheriter, going back to Late Latin inhērēditāre "to appoint as heir," from Latin in- in- entry 2 + Late Latin hērēditāre "to leave as an inheritance, inherit, make an heir" — more at heritage

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Statistics for inherit

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for inherit

The first known use of inherit was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for inherit

inherit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of inherit

: 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

verb
in·​her·​it | \in-ˈher-ət \
inherited; inheriting

Kids Definition of inherit

1 : to get by legal right from a person at his or her death

2 : to get by heredity I inherited red hair.

inherit

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

Medical Definition of inherit 

: to receive from a parent or ancestor by genetic transmission

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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

Other Words from inherit

inheritor \in-​ˈher-​i-​tər \ noun

History and Etymology for inherit

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on inherit

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with inherit

Spanish Central: Translation of inherit

Nglish: Translation of inherit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inherit for Arabic Speakers

Comments on inherit

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