behave

[ bih-heyv ]
/ bɪˈheɪv /

verb (used without object), be·haved, be·hav·ing.

to act in a particular way; conduct or comport oneself or itself: The ship behaves well.
to act properly: Did the child behave?
to act or react under given circumstances: This plastic behaves strangely under extreme heat or cold.

verb (used with object), be·haved, be·hav·ing.

to conduct or comport (oneself) in a proper manner: Sit quietly and behave yourself.

Nearby words

  1. begun,
  2. behalf,
  3. behan,
  4. behan, brendan,
  5. behar,
  6. behavior,
  7. behavior disorder,
  8. behavior medicine,
  9. behavior modification,
  10. behavior pattern

Origin of behave

1400–50; late Middle English behaven (reflexive). See be-, have

SYNONYMS FOR behave
1. perform, acquit oneself, deport oneself.

Related formsun·be·hav·ing, adjectivewell-be·haved, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for well-behaved


British Dictionary definitions for well-behaved

well-behaved

adjective (well behaved when postpositive)

conducting oneself in a satisfactory manner

behave

/ (bɪˈheɪv) /

verb

(intr) to act or function in a specified or usual way
to conduct (oneself) in a specified wayhe behaved badly towards her
to conduct (oneself) properly or as desiredthe child behaved himself all day

Word Origin for behave

C15: see be-, have

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 well-behaved
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper