From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search



From Middle English bireft, v. Middle English bireven. Synchronically a form of bereaved; compare leave and left.


  • IPA(key): /bəˈɹɛft/
  • (file)
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛft



  1. simple past and past participle of bereave
    bereft of strengthpowerless
    bereft of gorm (Yorkshire dialect)mindless one, idiot


bereft (not comparable)

  1. (of a person) Pained by the loss of someone.
    • 2014 October 21, Oliver Brown, “Oscar Pistorius jailed for five years”, in The Daily Telegraph (Sport)[1]:
      [Oscar] Pistorius's punishment for killing her [Reeva Steenkamp] that night is but a frippery when set against the burden that her bereft parents, June and Barry, must carry.
  2. Deprived of, stripped of, robbed of.
    • 1909, Robert W[illiam] Service, “The Ballad of One-eyed Mike”, in Ballads of a Cheechako, Toronto, Ont.: William Briggs, →OCLC, stanzas 3–4, page 52:
      And there I strove, and there I clove through the drift of icy streams; / And there I fought, and there I sought for the pay-streak of my dreams. // So twenty years, with their hopes and fears and smiles and tears and such, / Went by and left me long bereft of hope of the Midas touch; []
    • 1969 December 7, Monty Python, “Full Frontal Nudity, Dead Parrot sketch”, in Monty Python's Flying Circus, spoken by Mr Praline (John Cleese):
      This parrot is no more! It has ceased to be! It's expired and gone to meet its maker! This is a late parrot! It's a stiff! Bereft of life, it rests in peace! If you hadn't nailed it to the perch it would be pushing up the daisies!
    • 2011 November 3, David Ornstein, “Macc Tel-Aviv 1–2 Stoke”, in BBC Sport[2]:
      The hosts had not lost in 12 home European games but looked shaky at the back and bereft of attacking ideas, inviting Stoke forward for further opportunities.
  3. Lacking, devoid of.