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From Middle English benamnen, benemnen, from Old English benemnan (to name, stipulate, settle, declare, asseverate), equivalent to be- +‎ name. Compare Saterland Frisian benaame, German benennen (to name, designate), Swedish benämna (to name, call), Dutch benoemen (to appoint, nominate).


bename (third-person singular simple present benames, present participle benaming, simple past benamed, past participle benamed or benempt)

  1. (obsolete, transitive) To swear on oath; to solemnly declare; promise; give.
  2. (transitive) To name; give a name (to); mention by name; nominate; denominate; call.
    • "... the only British commander who, in the general estimation, could benamed as his rival in military fame; … — "The Annual Register" (edited by Edmund Burke), 1815
    • Unfortunately, the planet has been quite too much benamed, — benamed, indeed, out of all recognition. — Percival Lowell, "Mars", 1896
    • As though the benamed things carried the longings of humans; — Mervyn Sprung, "After Truth: Explorations in Life Sense", SUNY Press, p71 1994
    • In other words, … that 'names' do not 'form' benamed objects but are mere signifiers … — Roy Ascott, "Engineering Nature: Art & Consciousness in the Post-Biological Era", Intellect Books, 2006
  3. (transitive) To name; call; style; describe as.






  1. (archaic) singular past subjunctive of benemen