beat

v., n., & adj.
—v. (past beat; past part. beaten)
1 tr. a strike (a person or animal) persistently or repeatedly, esp. to harm or punish. b strike (a thing) repeatedly, e.g. to remove dust from (a carpet etc.), to sound (a drum etc.).
2 intr. (foll. by against, at, on, etc.) a pound or knock repeatedly (waves beat against the shore; beat at the door). b = beat down 3.
3 tr. a overcome; surpass; win a victory over. b complete an activity before (another person etc.). c be too hard for; perplex.
4 tr. (often foll. by up) stir (eggs etc.) vigorously into a frothy mixture.
5 tr. (often foll. by out) fashion or shape (metal etc.) by blows.
6 intr. (of the heart, a drum, etc.) pulsate rhythmically.
7 tr. (often foll. by out) a indicate (a tempo or rhythm) by gestures, tapping, etc. b sound (a signal etc.) by striking a drum or other means (beat a tattoo).
8 a intr. (of a bird's wings) move up and down. b tr. cause (wings) to move in this way.
9 tr. make (a path etc.) by trampling.
10 tr. strike (bushes etc.) to rouse game.
11 intr. Naut. sail in the direction from which the wind is blowing.
—n.
1 a a main accent or rhythmic unit in music or verse (three beats to the bar; missed a beat and came in early). b the indication of rhythm by a conductor's movements (watch the beat). c (in popular music) a strong rhythm. d (attrib.) characterized by a strong rhythm (beat music).
2 a a stroke or blow (e.g. on a drum). b a measured sequence of strokes (the beat of the waves on the rocks). c a throbbing movement or sound (the beat of his heart).
3 a a route or area allocated to a police officer etc. b a person's habitual round.
4 Physics a pulsation due to the combination of two sounds or electric currents of similar but not equivalent frequencies.
5 colloq. = BEATNIK.
—adj.
1 (predic.) sl. exhausted, tired out.
2 (attrib.) of the beat generation or its philosophy.
Phrases and idioms:
beat about (often foll. by for) search (for an excuse etc.). beat about the bush discuss a matter without coming to the point. beat the bounds Brit. mark parish boundaries by striking certain points with rods. beat one's breast strike one's chest in anguish or sorrow. beat the clock complete a task within a stated time. beat down
1 a bargain with (a seller) to lower the price. b cause a seller to lower (the price).
2 strike (a resisting object) until it falls (beat the door down).
3 (of the sun, rain, etc.) radiate heat or fall continuously and vigorously. beat the drum for publicize, promote. beaten at the post defeated at the last moment. beat generation the members of a movement of young people esp. in the 1950s who rejected conventional society in their dress, habits, and beliefs. beat in crush. beat it sl. go away. beat off drive back (an attack etc.). beat a retreat withdraw; abandon an undertaking. beat time indicate or follow a musical tempo with a baton or other means. beat a person to it arrive or achieve something before another person. beat up give a beating to, esp. with punches and kicks. beat-up adj. colloq. dilapidated; in a state of disrepair. it beats me I do not understand (it).
Derivatives:
beatable adj.
Etymology: OE beatan f. Gmc

Useful english dictionary. 2012.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

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