to exist or live: Shakespeare's “To be or not to be” is the ultimate question.
to take place; happen; occur: The wedding was last week.
to occupy a place or position: The book is on the table.
to continue or remain as before: Let things be.
to belong; attend; befall: May good fortune be with you.
(used as a copula to connect the subject with its predicate adjective, or predicate nominative, in order to describe, identify, or amplify the subject): Martha is tall. John is president. This is she.
(used as a copula to introduce or form interrogative or imperative sentences): Is that right? Be quiet! Don't be facetious.
(used with the present participle of another verb to form the progressive tense): I am waiting.
(used with the present participle or infinitive of the principal verb to indicate future action): She is visiting there next week. He is to see me today.
(used with the past participle of another verb to form the passive voice): The date was fixed. It must be done.
(used in archaic or literary constructions with some intransitive verbs to form the perfect tense): He is come. Agamemnon to the wars is gone.
Informal. to say, declare, think, or feel (usually used to introduce reported speech or thought): So I'm walking down my street yesterday, and I'm “Why is there a crowd in front of my house?”
- be , bee
Other definitions for Be (2 of 6)
Other definitions for be- (3 of 6)
a native English prefix formerly used in the formation of verbs: become, besiege, bedaub, befriend.
Other definitions for Bé. (4 of 6)
Other definitions for B/E (5 of 6)
bill of exchange.
Other definitions for B.E. (6 of 6)
Bachelor of Education.
Bachelor of Engineering.
Bank of England.
bill of exchange.
Board of Education.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use be in a sentence
The difference is that they are conjunct, whereas in the primitive standard octave (e—e) the tetrachords are disjunct (e-a b-e).
This must refer to an octave scale of the form b c d e f g a b, consisting of the two tetrachords b-e and e-a, and the tone a-b.
In practice it appears that musicians tuned the tetrachord b-e of this scale with the Pythagorean two Major tones and leimma.
Certainly not; we never call them the States, and with us c-l-e-r-k spells clerk, and B-e-r-k Berk.Penelope's Experiences in Scotland | Kate Douglas Wiggin
There will soon be one b-e-eg mince pie we-eth Captain Wright eenside.Famous Privateersmen and Adventurers of the Sea | Charles H. L. Johnston
British Dictionary definitions for be (1 of 7)
to have presence in the realm of perceived reality; exist; live: I think, therefore I am; not all that is can be understood
(used in the perfect or past perfect tenses only) to pay a visit; go: have you been to Spain?
to take place; occur: my birthday was last Thursday
(copula) used as a linking verb between the subject of a sentence and its noun or adjective complement or complementing phrase. In this case be expresses the relationship of either essential or incidental equivalence or identity (John is a man; John is a musician) or specifies an essential or incidental attribute (honey is sweet; Susan is angry). It is also used with an adverbial complement to indicate a relationship of location in space or time (Bill is at the office; the dance is on Saturday)
(takes a present participle) forms the progressive present tense: the man is running
(takes a past participle) forms the passive voice of all transitive verbs and (archaically) certain intransitive ones: a good film is being shown on television tonight; I am done
(takes an infinitive) expresses intention, expectation, supposition, or obligation: the president is to arrive at 9.30; you are not to leave before I say so
(takes a past participle) forms the perfect or past perfect tense of certain intransitive verbs of motion, such as go or come: the last train is gone
be that as it may the facts concerning (something) are of no importance
British Dictionary definitions for be (2 of 7)
British Dictionary definitions for Be (3 of 7)
British Dictionary definitions for BE (4 of 7)
bill of exchange
(in the US) Board of Education
Bachelor of Education
Bachelor of Engineering
British Dictionary definitions for be- (5 of 7)
(from nouns) to surround completely; cover on all sides: befog
(from nouns) to affect completely or excessively: bedazzle
(from nouns) to consider as or cause to be: befool; befriend
(from nouns) to provide or cover with: bejewel
(from verbs) at, for, against, on, or over: bewail; berate
British Dictionary definitions for Bé (6 of 7)
British Dictionary definitions for B/E (7 of 7)
bill of exchange
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
Scientific definitions for Be
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Other Idioms and Phrases with be
In addition to the idioms beginning with be
- be a credit to
- be along
- be big on
- be bound to
- be busted
- bed and board
- bed and breakfast
- bed of roses
- be down
- bee in one's bonnet
- been around
- been had
- been there, done that
- been to the wars
- beginning of the end, the
- begin to see daylight
- begin to see the light
- begin with
- beg off
- beg the question
- beg to differ
- be had
- be in on
- be into
- bell the cat, who will
- be my guest
- bend one's elbow
- bend over backwards
- bend someone's ear
- be off
- be on
- be oneself
- be on to
- beside oneself
- beside the point
- be that as it may
- be the death of
- be the end of one
- be the making of
- let be
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.