- a plural of beef.
- the flesh of a cow, steer, or bull raised and killed for its meat.
- an adult cow, steer, or bull raised for its meat.
- brawn; muscular strength.
- strength; power.
- weight, as of a person.
- human flesh.
- a complaint.
- an argument or dispute.
- Slang. to complain; grumble.
- beef up,
- to add strength, numbers, force, etc., to; strengthen: During the riots, the nighttime patrol force was beefed up with volunteers.
- to increase or add to: to beef up our fringe benefits.
Origin of beef
Examples from the Web for beeves
They had with them 200 pack-horses laden with flour, and the remainder of the beeves.Chronicles of Border Warfare
Alexander Scott Withers
They reminded him of the beeves in the shambles of the elder Varro.The Lion's Brood
The whole 3,500 head of beeves will be shipped East this fall.Across America
James F. Rusling
We thence all marched to the mines, where we killed three beeves to feed the Indians.
Far away to the right are two of our scouts driving two beeves.Pony Tracks
- archaic the plural of beef (def. 2)
- the flesh of various bovine animals, esp the cow, when killed for eating
- plural beeves (biːvz) an adult ox, bull, cow, etc, reared for its meat
- informal human flesh, esp when muscular
- plural beefs a complaint
- (intr) slang to complain, esp repeatedlyhe was beefing about his tax
- (tr often foll by up) informal to strengthen; reinforce
Word Origin and History for beeves
original plural of beef (cf. boevz, plural of Old French buef), now only in restricted use.
"to complain," slang, 1888, American English, from noun meaning "complaint" (1880s). The noun meaning "argument" is recorded from 1930s. The origin and signification are unclear; perhaps it traces to the common late 19c. complaint of U.S. soldiers about the quantity or quality of beef rations.
c.1300, from Old French buef "ox; beef; ox hide" (11c., Modern French boeuf), from Latin bovem (nominative bos, genitive bovis) "ox, cow," from PIE root *gwou- "cow, ox, bull" (see cow (n.)). Original plural was beeves.