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See more synonyms for bequest on Thesaurus.com
  1. a disposition in a will.
  2. a legacy: A small bequest allowed her to live independently.
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Origin of bequest

1250–1300; Middle English biqueste, biquyste, equivalent to bi- be- + quiste will, bequest, Old English -cwis(se) (with excrescent t, as in behest), noun derivative of cwethan to say; on the model of bequethen bequeath
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for bequest

endowment, inheritance, settlement, legacy, estate, gift, devise, dower, bestowal, heritage, trust, devisal, bequeathal, bequeathment

Examples from the Web for bequest

Contemporary Examples of bequest

Historical Examples of bequest

British Dictionary definitions for bequest


    1. the act of bequeathing
    2. something that is bequeathed
  1. law a gift of property by will, esp personal propertyCompare devise (def. 4), devise (def. 5)
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Word Origin for bequest

C14: be- + Old English -cwiss degree; see bequeath
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 bequest


c.1300, "act of bequeathing," from be- + *cwis, *cwiss "saying" (related to quoth; from Proto-Germanic *kwessiz; cf. bequeath), with excrescent -t. Meaning "that which is bequeathed" is recorded from late 15c.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper