below, beneath, under
These three words appear to be synonymous, but many contexts call for one in preference to another. Beneath is somewhat more literary in use. Under in its physical sense is rather more literal than the other two: under the bridge means directly underneath it, whereas beneath the bridge suggests a wider area, and below the bridge can also mean downstream from it. It is customary to say below par, below the belt, to go below (in a ship), the information below, the temperature is below 20 degrees; conversely a man under 40, under one's breath, incomes under £10,000, under the sun, under the circumstances, under one's thumb, under sentence of death, and beneath contempt, be beneath one.

Modern English usage. 2014.

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  • Beneath — Be*neath , prep. [OE. benethe, bineo[eth]en, AS. beneo[eth]an, beny[eth]an; pref. be + neo[eth]an, ny[eth]an, downward, beneath, akin to E. nether. See {Nether}.] 1. Lower in place, with something directly over or on; under; underneath; hence, at …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Beneath — Beneath, Between, Beyond Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Beneath, Between, Beyond... Álbum Recopilación de Static X Publicación 20 de Julio de 2004 Género(s) Industrial Metal …   Wikipedia Español

  • Beneath — Be*neath , adv. 1. In a lower place; underneath. [1913 Webster] The earth you take from beneath will be barren. Mortimer. [1913 Webster] 2. Below, as opposed to heaven, or to any superior region or position; as, in earth beneath. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Beneath — may refer to: *Beneath (film), directed by Dagen Merrill. *Beneath (video game), developed by Presto Studios …   Wikipedia

  • beneath — [bē nēth′, binēth′] adv., adj. [ME binethe < OE beneothan < be , BY + neothan, down: see NETHER] 1. in a lower place; below 2. just below something; underneath prep. 1. below; lower than 2. directly under; underneath …   English World dictionary

  • beneath — O.E. beneoðan beneath, under, below, from BE (Cf. be ) by + neoðan below, originally from below, from P.Gmc. *niþar lower, farther down, down (see NETHER (Cf. nether)). Meaning unworthy of is attested from 1849 (purists prefer below i …   Etymology dictionary

  • beneath — [adv] in a lower place below, underneath; concept 586 Ant. above, higher, over beneath [prep] inferior below, lesser, less than, lower than, subject, subordinate, unbefitting, under, underneath, unworthy of; concept 567 Ant. above, higher, over,… …   New thesaurus

  • beneath — underneath, under, *below Antonyms: above, over …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • beneath — ► PREPOSITION & ADVERB ▪ extending or directly underneath. ► PREPOSITION ▪ of lower status or worth than. ORIGIN Old English …   English terms dictionary

  • beneath — be|neath [ bı niθ ] function word *** Beneath can be used in the following ways: as a preposition (followed by a noun): the ground beneath your feet as an adverb (without a following noun): People waved from the bridge as the boat passed beneath …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • beneath — [[t]bɪni͟ːθ[/t]] ♦♦♦ 1) PREP Something that is beneath another thing is under the other thing. She could see the muscles of his shoulders beneath his T shirt... She found pleasure in sitting beneath the trees... Four storeys of parking beneath… …   English dictionary

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