Definition of bespeak in English:


Syllabification: be·speak
Pronunciation: /bəˈspēk

verb (past bespoke; past participle bespoken)

[with object]
1(Of an appearance or action) suggest; be evidence of: the attractive tree-lined road bespoke money
More example sentences
  • This evidence, along with the centralized organization of labor, bespeaks a dramatic, rapid shift in sociopolitical organization.
  • His accent, body language and style of dress, his no-nonsense, cut-to-the-chase conversation all bespoke a powerful national culture.
  • That the papers do not form a cohesive whole bespeaks the great cultural variation of Africa and the ways that visual cultures arise from and affect many different aspects of everyday life.
indicate, be evidence of, be a sign of, denote, point to, testify to, evidence, reflect, demonstrate, show, manifest, display, signify;
reveal, betray
informal spell
literary betoken
2Order or reserve (something) in advance: obtaining the affidavits that it has been necessary to bespeak
More example sentences
  • If the judgment of the trial on 22nd June was recorded, as it should have been, a transcript of it was never bespoken.
  • This day, poor Tom Pepys, the turner, was with me, and Kate Joyce, to bespeak places—one for himself, the other for her husband.
  • You will therefore wish me a good supper at Bill Hill, and I will remember to bespeak some roasted potatoes.
3 archaic Speak to: and in disgrace bespoke him thus
More example sentences
  • And when he had found her, he bespoke her in this wise: "Lady, my garden boy hath assuredly gone entirely mad".
  • He bespoke her several times, but she was silent and answered him not a word; so he went out from her and going in to the Queen, told her what had passed between himself and the Lady.
  • He bespoke them now and then, I signaled that I understood, and we let it go at that.


Old English bisprecan 'speak up, speak out' (see be-, speak), later 'discuss, decide on', hence 'arrange, order' (sense 2, late 16th century).

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