"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[bih-kweeth , -kweeth] /bɪˈkwið, -ˈkwiθ/
verb (used with object)
to dispose of (personal property, especially money) by last will:
She bequeathed her half of the company to her niece.
to hand down; pass on.
Obsolete. to commit; entrust.
Origin of bequeath
before 1000; Middle English bequethen, Old English becwethan (be- be- + cwethan to say (see quoth), cognate with Old High German quedan, Gothic qithan)
Related forms
bequeathable, adjective
bequeathal, bequeathment, noun
bequeather, noun
unbequeathable, adjective
unbequeathed, adjective
1. will, impart, leave, bestow, grant, consign. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for bequeath
  • We never bequeath more than half of ourselves, and our children do not carry us on by more than half.
  • Embrace and learn and bequeath something of value to future generations.
  • In England it is common for the elderly to bequeath something to their doctor.
  • It would be a mistake to bequeath to them a nation crippled by debt.
  • Like Lear, he must bequeath his kingdom to one of three children.
  • If he cannot command the attention of a peahen, he will not bequeath any little peafowl to the next generation.
  • One generation will bequeath the idea to the next, and some day fanaticism or reason will accomplish it.
  • Lovers use each other, mothers bequeath hatred to their daughters.
  • There were too many people to acknowledge, to thank, to bequeath final bouquets.
  • The best legacy the king could bequeath his subjects is a state where everyone is subject to the law-including the king.
British Dictionary definitions for bequeath


/bɪˈkwiːð; -ˈkwiːθ/
verb (transitive)
(law) to dispose of (property, esp personal property) by will Compare devise (sense 2)
to hand down; pass on, as to following generations
Derived Forms
bequeather, noun
bequeathal, noun
Word Origin
Old English becwethan; related to Old Norse kvetha to speak, Gothic qithan, Old High German quethan
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for bequeath

Old English becweðan "to say, speak to, exhort, blame," also "leave by will;" from be- + cweðan "to say," from Proto-Germanic *kwithan, from PIE *gwet- "to say, speak."

Original sense of "say, utter" died out 13c., leaving legal sense of "transfer by will." Closely related to bequest. "An old word kept alive in wills" [OED 1st ed.]. Old English bequeðere meant "interpreter, translator." Related: Bequeathed; bequeathing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for bequeath

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for bequeath

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with bequeath

Nearby words for bequeath