[ bih-kweeth, -kweeth ]
See synonyms for: bequeathbequeathedbequeathingbequeathal on

verb (used with object)
  1. to dispose of (personal property, especially money) by last will: She bequeathed her half of the company to her niece.

  2. to hand down; pass on.

  1. Obsolete. to commit; entrust.

Origin of bequeath

First recorded before 1000; Middle English bequethen, Old English becwethan (be- be- + cwethan “to say” (see quoth), cognate with Old High German quedan, Gothic qithan )

Other words for bequeath

Other words from bequeath

  • be·queath·a·ble, adjective
  • be·queath·al, be·queath·ment, noun
  • be·queath·er, noun
  • un·be·queath·a·ble, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use bequeath in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for bequeath


/ (bɪˈkwiːð, -ˈkwiːθ) /

  1. law to dispose of (property, esp personal property) by will: Compare devise (def. 2)

  2. to hand down; pass on, as to following generations

Origin of bequeath

Old English becwethan; related to Old Norse kvetha to speak, Gothic qithan, Old High German quethan

Derived forms of bequeath

  • bequeather, noun
  • bequeathal, 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