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[bih-stoh] /bɪˈstoʊ/
verb (used with object)
to present as a gift; give; confer (usually followed by on or upon):
The trophy was bestowed upon the winner.
to put to some use; apply:
Time spent in study is time well bestowed.
  1. to provide quarters for; house; lodge.
  2. to put; stow; deposit; store.
Origin of bestow
1275-1325; Middle English bestowen. See be-, stow1
Related forms
bestowal, bestowment, noun
misbestow, verb (used with object)
prebestow, verb (used with object)
prebestowal, noun
unbestowed, adjective
well-bestowed, adjective
1. grant, vouchsafe, award, accord. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for bestow
  • As a gesture of respect, I bestow upon you a laurel leaf out of my crown.
  • It wasn't my place to bestow that kind of morality lesson on someone.
  • They were busy mapping the coast and didn't bestow the spot with a name.
  • The greatest honor history can bestow is the title of peacemaker.
  • There is an easy elegance that only a knowing hand and gifted eye can bestow.
  • The timber trade is among myriad businesses asking Congress to bestow special concessions as part of energy legislation.
  • When we love something, we bestow meaning and beauty on it.
  • We heartily thank those who bestow their patronage on our humble company.
  • Perhaps you could bestow your punctuation wisdom on the audience.
  • The particles and shapes can also be incorporated into other materials to bestow useful properties on them.
British Dictionary definitions for bestow


verb (transitive)
to present (a gift) or confer (an award or honour)
(archaic) to apply (energy, resources, etc)
(archaic) to house (a person) or store (goods)
Derived Forms
bestowal, bestowment, noun
bestower, noun
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
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Word Origin and History for bestow

early 14c., bistowen "give" (as alms, etc.), from be- + stowen "to place" (see stow). Related: Bestowed; bestowing; bestower.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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