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verb (used with object)
  1. to present as a gift; give; confer (usually followed by on or upon): The trophy was bestowed upon the winner.
  2. to put to some use; apply: Time spent in study is time well bestowed.
  3. Archaic.
    1. to provide quarters for; house; lodge.
    2. to put; stow; deposit; store.
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Origin of bestow

1275–1325; Middle English bestowen. See be-, stow
Related formsbe·stow·al, be·stow·ment, nounmis·be·stow, verb (used with object)pre·be·stow, verb (used with object)pre·be·stow·al, nounun·be·stowed, adjectivewell-be·stowed, adjective


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for bestowment

Historical Examples

  • Mercy is the bestowment of pardon upon the sinful and undeserving.

    The World's Great Sermons, Volume 04


  • To quiet the Indians of the Missouri by conference and the bestowment of gifts.

  • God hath wise reasons for the bestowment of gifts, and, in someway, gets glory to himself thereby.

  • This comprehends deliverance from merited sufferings, and the bestowment of happiness which is the contrast of it.

  • When we come to ask mercy of God, and to pray for grace to love and serve him, we may plead and expostulate for the bestowment.

British Dictionary definitions for bestowment


verb (tr)
  1. to present (a gift) or confer (an award or honour)
  2. archaic to apply (energy, resources, etc)
  3. archaic to house (a person) or store (goods)
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Derived Formsbestowal or bestowment, nounbestower, 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

Word Origin and History for bestowment



early 14c., bistowen "give" (as alms, etc.), from be- + stowen "to place" (see stow). Related: Bestowed; bestowing; bestower.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper