• WordNet 3.6
    • n behest an authoritative command or request
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Behest A vow; a promise. "The time is come that I should send it her, if I keep the behest that I have made."
    • Behest That which is willed or ordered; a command; a mandate; an injunction. "To do his master's high behest ."
    • v. t Behest To vow.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n behest A vow; a promise.
    • n behest A command; precept; mandate.
    • behest To promise; vow.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Behest be-hest′ command: charge.
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. biheste, promise, command, AS. behǣs, promise; pref. be-, + hǣs, command. See Hest Hight
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. behǽs, a promise. See Hest.


In literature:

Which you're only tryin' to execoote Ed's dying behests.
"Faro Nell and Her Friends" by Alfred Henry Lewis
The English people are waiting for their turn while Papal behests are executed.
"Ireland as It Is" by Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)
That was easily done; but what should be done as to the other behest?
"Is He Popenjoy?" by Anthony Trollope
Sexually Man is Woman's contrivance for fulfilling Nature's behest in the most economical way.
"The Truth About Woman" by C. Gasquoine Hartley
After the manner in which Marion had obeyed his behest about the fire, he was sure that he was justified in regarding her as a friend.
"Marion Fay" by Anthony Trollope
Carry out the behest of thy lord to thee.
"The Instruction of Ptah-Hotep and the Instruction of Ke'Gemni" by Battiscombe G. Gunn
Man yields at first to the natural authority of the family; he obeys unconditionally its behests.
"Pedagogics as a System" by Karl Rosenkranz
I run my race at his behest.
"The Old Willow Tree and Other Stories" by Carl Ewald
He must needs bestir himself in obedience to the high behest.
"Charles Sumner Centenary" by Archibald H. Grimke
Well, my lady's behests are to be obeyed.
"Under False Pretences" by Adeline Sergeant

In poetry:

Help us to humbly bow
To Thy all-wise behest--
Whate'er the gift of joy or woe,
Knowing Thou knowest best.
"Invocation For 1868" by Mary Baker Eddy
Thine infant cries, O Lord,
Thy tears upon the breast,
Are not enough—the legal sword
Must do its stern behest.
"The Circumcision Of Christ" by John Keble
Whose beheste she constant kepte
And whollye was enclynde
To be free to get great prayse
And win eche worthye mynde.
"The Faire Amarillis" by Edward Dyer
"The stern behest of duty,
The doom-book open thrown,
The heaven ye seek, the hell ye fear,
Are with yourselves alone."
"The Vision Of Echard" by John Greenleaf Whittier
Fame welcomes him with glad behest,
While garlands on his brow are pressed,
And laurels cluster o'er his head;
He sleeps at last.
"He Sleeps At Last" by Freeman Edwin Miller
Changeless stand the Gods!--nor he
Knows he answers their behest;
Feels the might of their decree
In the blind rage of his breast.
"The Helot" by Isabella Valancy Crawford

In news:

RCOC opposes mandatory bids at townships' behest .
New Orleans water board delays vote on big rate increases at mayor's behest .
Xie Yifan (Jang Dong-gun) sets out to seduce a young widow, Du Fenyu (Zhang Ziyi), at the behest of his former flame.
You began playing piano at a pretty young age and only started singing later in life at the behest of a teacher in college.
Has anyone researched whether movie attendance dropped after Hollywood's Production Code began to be rigorously enforced, largely at the behest of the Catholic Church, in mid-1934.
It has been 17 years since Paul "Cool" Hardy executed Kim Groves in front of her 9th Ward home at the behest of the infamous, crooked New Orleans cop Len Davis.
At the behest of Head Bigot Mike Huckabee, parking lots were jammed, people waited an hour for chicken, and posted their videos on their facebook pages.
Then, at the behest of an al-Qaida operative she met online, she surrendered to a higher power: Allah.
At the owner's behest, just as much care was required of Twilight to leave no trace of its work, even when integrating the Pentair pool system to the automation system over existing Cat 5 burial line.
Al-Hassan's work led to the arrest of former Information Minister Michel Samaha, one of Syria's most loyal allies in Lebanon , who is accused of plotting a wave of attacks in Lebanon at Syria's behest.
Eagerly looking for a way to distance itself from newspapers, Murdoch 's money-losing first love, might in fact, at Murdoch 's behest, have to pour more of its money into the spinoff company to buy new papers.
Venice, CA—Federal agents and local law enforcement, at the behest of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), conducted an armed raid on raw organic food distributor Rawesome for the second time recently, according to numerous reports.
The Los Angeles Lakers, largely at the behest of general manager Mitch Kupchak, have rebuffed trade inquiries from at least two teams for Pau Gasol, according to sources with knowledge of the Lakers' thinking.
ROBERT MOSES built small with the same imperial vigor as he built big, and at his behest the art of making scale-model cities reached its peak.
Suspended sentence, probation for woman who starved son at cult leader's behest.