Be-have



to act in a particular way; conduct or comport oneself or itself:
The ship behaves well.
to act properly:
Did the child behave?
to act or react under given circumstances:
This plastic behaves strangely under extreme heat or cold.
to conduct or comport (oneself) in a proper manner:
Sit quietly and behave yourself.
Historical Examples

Again, it may be the first part of a verb like “be-come” or “be-have.”
The Story of Mankind Hendrik van Loon

Again, it may be the first part of a verb like be-come or be-have.
The Story of Mankind Hendrik Van Loon

Again it may be the first part of a verb like “be-come” or “be-have.”
Ancient Man Hendrik Willem van Loon

What dey done den was ‘most beat de life out of de Niggers to make ’em be-have.
Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States From Interviews with Former Slaves Work Projects Administration

Atter de war was over Niggers got so rowdy dem Ku Kluxers come ‘long to make ’em be-have deirselfs.’
Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States From Interviews with Former Slaves Work Projects Administration

verb
(intransitive) to act or function in a specified or usual way
to conduct (oneself) in a specified way: he behaved badly towards her
to conduct (oneself) properly or as desired: the child behaved himself all day
v.

early 15c., from be- intensive prefix + have in sense of “to have or bear (oneself) in a particular way, comport” (cf. German sich behaben, French se porter). Cognate Old English compound behabban meant “to contain,” and alternatively the modern sense of behave might have evolved from behabban via a notion of “self-restraint.” Related: Behaved; behaving.

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