verb (used with object)

to be wary, cautious, or careful of (usually used imperatively): Beware such inconsistency. Beware his waspish wit.

verb (used without object)

to be cautious or careful: Beware of the dog.

Nearby words

  1. bevin, ernest,
  2. bevvy,
  3. bevy,
  4. bew,
  5. bewail,
  6. beware of greeks bearing gifts,
  7. beweep,
  8. bewhiskered,
  9. bewick,
  10. bewick's swan

Origin of beware

1150–1200; Middle English, from phrase of warning be ware. See be, ware2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for bewaring



(usually used in the imperative or infinitive, often foll by of) to be cautious or wary (of); be on one's guard (against)

Word Origin for beware

C13 be war, from be (imperative) + war wary

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 bewaring



c.1200, probably from a conflation of be ware (though the compound bewarian "defend" existed in Old English). See wary.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper