• Betoken


    From Middle English bitoknen, bitacnen, from Old English betācnian ("to betoken, signify, designate"), equivalent to - + token. Cognate with Dutch betekenen ("to mean, signify"), German bezeichnen ("to call, designate"), Swedish beteckna ("to represent, designate, indicate").

    Full definition of betoken


    1. Signify by some visible object; show by signs or tokens.
      • 1557: Robert Recorde, ʀ, page unknown (Ihon Kyngstone)There be other 2 signes in often use of which the first is made thus + and betokeneth more : the other is thus made – and betokeneth lesse.
    2. Foreshow by present signs; indicate something future by that which is seen or known.
      • 1853: Virgil, Charles Anthon, LL.D. tr., , page 474 (Harper & Brothers, 329 & 331 Pearl Street, Franklin Square, New York)“ Ah ! hospitable land, thou (nevertheless) betokenest war,” i. e., although hospitable, thou nevertheless betokenest war. — Bello.


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