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(2) beast

verb; zero derivation
to consume an excessive amount quickly and savagely (usually in the form ‘to beast on’)
 
The verb ‘to beast’ is a zero derivation of the noun ‘beast.’ The verb ‘to beast’ most likely originated from the idea that beasts eat large amounts quickly and savagely. Through metaphor, the verb ‘beast’ has come to represent the idea of eating as a beast would. This may perhaps constitute metonymy, as well, since only the way that beasts eat and no other qualities associated with beasts are transferred into the meaning of the verb 'beast.'
Etymology : beast is a single morpheme, which originates from the Old French ‘beste,' that comes from the Latin ‘bestia’ meaning ‘wild creature.’
Source : ‘I just beasted on those chips’ (conversation with a friend, September 2008)
Last modified: 4 December 2008


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