Meaning of BE- in English

BE-

prefix

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English be-, bi-; akin to Old English bī by, near, Old High German bi- be-, bī by, near, Gothic bi- be-, bi by, about, at — more at by

1. : on : around : over

be daub

be smear

2. : to a great or greater degree : thoroughly — especially in intensive verbs formed from simple verbs

be cudgel

be fuddle

be smite

be spatter

be rate

3. : excessively : ostentatiously — in intensive verbs formed from simple verbs

be deck

be laud

and in adjectives based on adjectives ending in -ed

be ribboned

be furbelowed

4. : about : to : at : upon : against : across — in transitive verbs formed from intransitive simple verbs

be stride

be speak

be croak

5. : make : cause to be : treat as — in verbs formed from adjectives or nouns

be little

be numb

be fool

be friend

6. : call or dub especially excessively — in verbs formed from nouns

be lady

be rascal

be doctor

7. : affect, afflict, treat, provide, or cover with especially excessively — in verbs formed from nouns

be famine

be devil

be glue

be blood

and sometimes only in the form of a past participle or adjective ending in -ed

be capped

be cobwebbed

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.