from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To ask (someone) for something in an urgent or humble manner.
  • intransitive verb To ask for (something) in an urgent or humble manner.
  • intransitive verb To ask for (food or money, for instance) as a beggar.
  • intransitive verb To ask (permission) to do something.
  • intransitive verb To evade; dodge.
  • intransitive verb To take for granted without proof.
  • intransitive verb To ask for something, especially money or food from strangers, in an urgent or humble manner.
  • intransitive verb To live as a beggar.
  • intransitive verb To make an urgent or humble plea.
  • idiom (beg (someone's) pardon) Used to introduce a polite request.
  • idiom (beg the question) To assume to be true what one is purporting to prove in an argument.
  • idiom (beg the question) To call to mind a question in a discussion; invite or provoke a question.
  • idiom (beg to differ) To disagree in a polite manner.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Same as bey.
  • To ask for or supplicate in charity; ask as alms.
  • To ask for earnestly; crave.
  • To ask as a favor; hence, to beseech; entreat or supplicate with humility or earnestness: as, I begged him to use his influence in favor of my friend.
  • Synonyms Ask, Request. Beg, etc. (see ask); to pray (for), conjure, petition (for).
  • To ask alms or charity; practise begging; live by asking alms.
  • In the game of all-fours, to ask of the dealer a concession of one point to be added to one's count.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A title of honor in Turkey and in some other parts of the East; a bey.
  • intransitive verb To ask alms or charity, especially to ask habitually by the wayside or from house to house; to live by asking alms.
  • transitive verb To ask earnestly for; to entreat or supplicate for; to beseech.
  • transitive verb To ask for as a charity, esp. to ask for habitually or from house to house.
  • transitive verb To make petition to; to entreat.
  • transitive verb To take for granted; to assume without proof.
  • transitive verb (Old Law) To ask to be appointed guardiln for, or to aso to havo a guardian appointed for.
  • transitive verb to take him for a fool.
  • transitive verb is an elliptical expression for I beg leave to.
  • transitive verb to assume that which was to be proved in a discussion, instead of adducing the proof or sustaining the point by argument.
  • transitive verb a figurative phrase to express the absence of demand for something which elsewhere brings a price.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun a provincial governor under the Ottoman Empire, a bey
  • abbreviation knitting beginning
  • verb intransitive to request the help of someone, often in the form of money
  • verb transitive to plead with someone for help or for a favor
  • verb transitive to assume, in the phrase beg the question
  • verb proscribed to raise a question, in the phrase beg the question

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb make a solicitation or entreaty for something; request urgently or persistently
  • verb dodge, avoid answering, or take for granted
  • verb call upon in supplication; entreat
  • verb ask to obtain free


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English beggen, possibly from Anglo-Norman begger, from Old French begart, lay brother, one who prays; see beggar.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Turkish beg.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English beggen, assimilation from Old English *bedican, syncopated variant of bedecian ("to beg"). Related to Gothic 𐌱𐌹𐌳𐌰𐌲𐍅𐌰 (bidagwa, "beggar"), Old English biddan ("to ask"). More at bid, bead.


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  • "I beg, Mr. Fraser, I _beg_ you to center your attention on driving your machine."

    Ainslee's, Vol. 15, No. 5, June 1905 Various

  • Then, "I beg -- I _beg_ your pardon, Mrs. Munger," he resumed.

    Annie Kilburn : a Novel William Dean Howells 1878

  • V. ii.490 (453,5) [You cannot beg us] That is, we are not fools, our next relations cannot _beg_ the wardship of our persons and fortunes.

    Notes to Shakespeare — Volume 01: Comedies Samuel Johnson 1746

  • "I beg you," he said fervently, "I _beg_ you never to allow yourself to think of it.

    Robin Frances Hodgson Burnett 1886

  • "I beg you -- I _beg_ you, Miss West, not to say anything more that can distress or disturb her.

    Verner's Pride Henry Wood 1850

  • We independents won't forget the six years of corruption and do nothing Republican congress or the eight years of incompetance by Bush/Cheney that has put the country in a possition to beg from the Chinese.

    Obama: Bailout for Main Street 2009

  • You don't have to be a rocket scientist or even Toyota to know that flying the CEOs in Lear jets to beg is a serious PR blunder -- kinda says "We are totally tone deaf to others" -- which, now that you think about it, is why they needed the bailouts so badly.

    What's bad for GM is good for Congress (Jack Bog's Blog) 2009

  • But this story about sending them out to beg is new to me.

    And he married 86 wives..... 2008

  • From the time he was a puppy, Sam was trained not to beg from the table, and in his life he was never given table scraps.

    February 2006 2006

  • YOUNGER CLERIMONT: Then all I beg is that ye would enquire for me no more.

    The Beau Defeated: or, The Lucky Younger Brother 1999

  • “Beg bounty” queries run the gamut from honest, ethical disclosures that share all the needed information and hint that it might be nice if you were to send them a reward, to borderline extortion demanding payment without even providing enough information to determine the validity of the demand.

    Have a domain name? “Beg bounty” hunters may be on their way Ariya Rathi 2021


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  • Beg as in to seek vs. avoid, as in beg the question.

    October 24, 2008