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<100
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since 1880
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in 2010
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Meaning and Origin

What does the name Beam mean? Find out below.

Origin and Meaning of Beam

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Webster's Unabridged Dictionary
noun Beam
Senses
  1. Any large piece of timber or iron long in proportion to its thickness, and prepared for use.
  2. One of the principal horizontal timbers of a building or ship."The beams of a vessel are strong pieces of timber stretching across from side to side to support the decks." [Totten.]
  3. The width of a vessel; as, one vessel is said to have more beam than another.
  4. The bar of a balance, from the ends of which the scales are suspended."The doubtful beam long nods from side to side." [Pope.]
  5. The principal stem or horn of a stag or other deer, which bears the antlers, or branches.
  6. The pole of a carriage.(Poetic)
  7. A cylinder of wood, making part of a loom, on which weavers wind the warp before weaving; also, the cylinder on which the cloth is rolled, as it is woven; one being called the fore beam, the other the back beam.
  8. The straight part or shank of an anchor.
  9. The main part of a plow, to which the handles and colter are secured, and to the end of which are attached the oxen or horses that draw it.
  10. [Steam Engine] A heavy iron lever having an oscillating motion on a central axis, one end of which is connected with the piston rod from which it receives motion, and the other with the crank of the wheel shaft; -- called also working beam or walking beam.
  11. A ray or collection of parallel rays emitted from the sun or other luminous body; as, a beam of light, or of heat."How far that little candle throws his beams!" [Shak.]
  12. (Fig)A ray; a gleam; as, a beam of comfort."Mercy with her genial beam." [Keble.]
  13. One of the long feathers in the wing of a hawk; -- called also beam feather.

Etymology: AS. beám beam, post, tree, ray of light; akin to OFries. bām tree, OS. bōm, D. boom, OHG. boum poum, G. baum, Icel. baðmr, Goth. bagms and Gr. fy^ma a growth, fy^nai to become, to be. Cf. L. radius staff, rod, spoke of a wheel, beam or ray, and G. strahl arrow, spoke of a wheel, ray or beam, flash of lightning. √97. See Be; cf. Boom a spar

verb Beam
To send forth; to emit; -- followed ordinarily by forth; as, to beam forth light.
verb Beam
To emit beams of light.
Other Dictionary Sources
  1. A gymnastic apparatus used by women gymnasts
  2. Long thick piece of wood or metal or concrete, etc., used in construction
  3. The broad side of a ship ("they sighted land on the port beam")
  4. (nautical) breadth amidships
  5. A signal transmitted along a narrow path; guides airplane pilots in darkness or bad weather
  6. A column of light (as from a beacon)
  7. A group of nearly parallel lines of electromagnetic radiation
  8. Smile radiantly; express joy through one's facial expression
  9. Broadcast over the airwaves, as in radio or television
  10. Express with a beaming face or smile ("he beamed his approval")
  11. Experience a feeling of well-being or happiness, as from good health or an intense emotion ("She was beaming with joy")
  12. Have a complexion with a strong bright color, such as red or pink
  13. Emit light; be bright, as of the sun or a light ("The fire beamed on their faces")
Wiktionary

From Middle English beem, from Old English bēam (“tree, cross, gallows, column, pillar, wood, beam, splint, post, stock, rafter, piece of wood”), from Proto-Germanic *baumaz (“tree, beam, balk”), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰew- (“to grow, swell”). Cognate with West Frisian beam (“tree”), Saterland Frisian Boom (“tree”), Dutch boom (“tree”), German Low German Boom (“tree”), German Baum (“tree”), Albanian bimë (“a plant”).

The verb is from Middle English bemen, from Old English bēamian (“to shine, to cast forth rays or beams of light”), from the noun.

  1. Any large piece of timber or iron long in proportion to its thickness, and prepared for use.
  2. One of the principal horizontal timbers of a building; one of the transverse members of a ship's frame on which the decks are laid — supported at the sides by knees in wooden ships and by stringers in steel ones.
  3. (nautical) The maximum width of a vessel.
    This ship has more than that one.
  4. The crossbar of a mechanical balance, from the ends of which the scales are suspended.
  5. The principal stem of the antler of a deer.
  6. (literary) The pole of a carriage or chariot.
  7. (textiles) A cylinder of wood, making part of a loom, on which weavers wind the warp before weaving and the cylinder on which the cloth is rolled, as it is woven.
  8. The straight part or shank of an anchor.
  9. The central bar of a plow, to which the handles and colter are secured, and to the end of which are attached the oxen or horses that draw it.
  10. In steam engines, a heavy iron lever having an oscillating motion on a central axis, one end of which is connected with the piston rod from which it receives motion, and the other with the crank of the wheel shaft.
  11. A ray or collection of approximately parallel rays emitted from the sun or other luminous body.
    a of light
    a of energy
  12. (figuratively) A ray; a gleam.
    a of hope, or of comfort
  13. One of the long feathers in the wing of a hawk.
  14. (music) A horizontal bar which connects the stems of two or more notes to group them and to indicate metric value.
  15. (railway) An elevated rectangular dirt pile used to cheaply build an elevated portion of a railway.

beam was also found in the following language(s): German, Old English, Romanian, and West Frisian

Notable Persons Named Beam

Beam - Kawee Tanjararak is a thai pop music musician. His ongoing career started in 2001. Beam was given the name Rawee Tanjararak on May 18th, 1980. Beam is also known as Beam D2B.

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Notable Persons With the Last Name Beam

Iron & Wine is a folk music, folk rock, and indie folk musician. He plays Guitar, Banjo, Piano, Percussion instrument, Harmonica, Bass guitar, and Vocals. Iron was given the name Samuel Beam on July 26th, 1974 in Chapin, South Carolina.

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Carl was born on May 24th, 1943. He left this life on July 30th, 2005.

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Alex Beam is a journalist and columnist. Alex was born in 1954.

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Joseph was born on December 30th, 1954. He died on December 27th, 1988.

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His most notable accomplishments were from 1966 to 1969. Jacob was born on March 24th, 1908. He passed away on August 16th, 1993.

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Clarence Beam is a Senior Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nebraska, Judge of the United States Distric. Clarence was born on January 14th, 1930 in Stapleton, Nebraska.

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Where is the name Beam popular?

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Popularity of Beam as a last name

The map shows the relative popularity of the name Beam as a last name in each of the states. See other popular names in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, or Vermont.

Ethnicity Distribution

Ethnicity Beam U.S.
  White 92.66% 64.26%
  African American 3.06% 11.96%
  Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander 0.40% 4.85%
  American Indian and Alaska Native 0.46% 0.69%
  Two or More Ethnicities 1.47% 1.76%
  Hispanic or Latino 1.95% 16.26%

Of Last Name Beam

People with the last name Beam are most frequently White

Entire United States

Fun Facts about the name Beam

  • How Popular is the name Beam? As a last name Beam was the 2,584th most popular name in 2010.
  • When was the first name Beam first recorded in the United States? The oldest recorded birth by the Social Security Administration for the name Beam is Sunday, May 11th, 1890.
  • How unique is the name Beam? From 1880 to 2017 less than 5 people per year have been born with the first name Beam. Hoorah! You are a unique individual.
  • Weird things about the name Beam: Your name in reverse order is Maeb. A random rearrangement of the letters in your name (anagram) will give Bema. How do you pronounce that?
  • How many people have the last name Beam? In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed 13,972 people with the last name Beam.
  • How likely are you to meet someone with the last name of Beam? If you manage to meet 100,000 people in your life, chances are that 5 of them will have Beam as their last name.

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  • Sources:
  • U.S. Census Bureau: Frequently Occurring Surnames from the Census 2000 (public domain).
  • 1913 Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary via the Collaborative International Dictionary of English (License)
  • Other Dictionary Sources: WordNet 3.1 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University (License).
  • Wiktionary: Titles and License.
  • Notable persons via Wikipedia: Titles and License. Click each image for the attribution information.