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[bih-get] /bɪˈgɛt/
verb (used with object), begot or (Archaic) begat; begotten or begot; begetting.
(especially of a male parent) to procreate or generate (offspring).
to cause; produce as an effect:
a belief that power begets power.
Origin of beget
before 1000; Middle English begeten (see be-, get); replacing Middle English biyeten, Old English begetan; cognate with Gothic bigitan, Old High German bigezzan
Related forms
begetter, noun
1. spawn, sire, breed, father. 2. occasion, engender, effect, generate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for begetting
  • Besides offering a quick and cheap way to eat, food trucks are begetting real restaurants.
  • Many events in biology are considered straightforward, with one reaction begetting another in a linear, predictable way.
  • We have yet to observe a gradual transition of one species begetting another, to support the theory of evolution.
  • One area has been begetting a lot of anxiety lately: default by a tour operator or airline.
  • Blue cheese is an example of the malignant begetting something close to the divine.
  • What he heard is that she has never gotten her life on track--one bad choice begetting another.
  • As he fantasizes about cracking the skulls of white schoolgirls, the audience sees the begetting of violence by violence.
  • Then it disappeared altogether as dire predictions about a falling stock market begetting rising crime failed to materialize.
  • By changing plans, you could begetting substantially different coverage.
  • Ward's business success is also a story of kindness begetting kindness.
British Dictionary definitions for begetting


verb (transitive) -gets, -getting, -got, -gat, -gotten, -got
to father
to cause or create
Derived Forms
begetter, noun
Word Origin
Old English begietan; related to Old Saxon bigetan, Old High German pigezzan, Gothic bigitan to find; see be-, get
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for begetting



Old English begietan "to get by effort, find, acquire, attain, seize" (class V strong verb, past tense begeat, past participle begeaton), from be- + get (v.). Sense of "to procreate" is from c.1200. Related to Old High German pigezzan, Gothic bigitan "to get, obtain." Related: Begot; begotten.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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