a command or directive.
an earnest or strongly worded request.

Origin of behest

before 1000; Middle English bihest(e), Old English behǣs promise. See be-, hest

Synonyms for behest Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for behest

Contemporary Examples of behest

Historical Examples of behest

British Dictionary definitions for behest



an authoritative order or earnest request

Word Origin for behest

Old English behǣs, from behātan; see be-, hest
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

Word Origin and History for behest

Old English behæs "a vow," perhaps from behatan "to promise" (from be- + hatan "command, call;" see cite) and confused with obsolete hest "command," which may account for the parasitic -t as well as the Middle English shift in meaning to "command, injunction" (late 12c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper