See also: béget



From Middle English begeten, biȝeten, from Old English beġietan (to get, find, acquire, attain, receive, take, seize, happen, beget), [influenced by Old Norse geta ("to get, to guess")] from Proto-Germanic *bigetaną (to find, seize), equivalent to be- +‎ get. Cognate with Old Saxon bigetan (to find, seize), Old High German bigezan (to gain, achieve, win, procure).


  • (UK, US) IPA(key): /biˈɡɛt/, /bɪˈɡɛt/, /bəˈɡɛt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛt


beget (third-person singular simple present begets, present participle begetting, simple past begot or (archaic) begat, past participle begotten or (rare) begot) (transitive)

  1. To father; to sire; to produce (a child).
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, [] (King James Version), London: [] Robert Barker, [], OCLC 964384981, Genesis 5:3:
      ¶ And Adam liued an hundred and thirtie yeeres, and begate a ſonne in his owne likeneſſe, after his image; and called his name Seth.
    • 2003, William H. Frist, Shirley Wilson, Good People Beget Good People: A Genealogy of the Frist Family, Rowman & Littlefield (→ISBN), page 110:
      I believe good people beget good people. If you marry the right person, then you will have good children. But everywhere else in life, too, good people beget good people. In your work, when you hire good people, they, in turn, will hire good ...
  2. To cause; to produce.
    • 2019 May 12, Alex McLevy, “Westeros faces a disastrous final battle on the penultimate Game of Thrones (newbies)”, in The A.V. Club[1]:
      Violence begets violence, and the only people still remaining will do the very thing that the living were fighting to preserve during the battle against the Night King: They’ll remember, and keep the memory of this bloodbath alive.
  3. To bring forth.
    • 1614, Ben Jonson, Bartholmew Fayre, Induction:
      If there bee neuer a Seruant-monſter i' the Fayre, who can helpe it, he ſayes ; nor a neſt of Antiques ?   Hee is loth to make Nature afraid in his Playes, like thoſe that beget Tales, Tempeſts, and ſuch like Drolleries, []
    • 2012 February 1, Kathy Gilbert, “Pitching In”, in Chatter Chattanooga[2], retrieved 2012-09-29:
      Rugby football was created in the early 1800s at England’s all-boys Rugby School. The sport begat American football, Gaelic football, Australian rules football and Association football (aka soccer).
  4. (UK dialectal) To happen to; befall.

Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See alsoEdit