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From: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

 Beat v. t. [imp. Beat; p. p. Beat, Beaten p. pr. & vb. n. Beating.]
 1. To strike repeatedly; to lay repeated blows upon; as, to beat one's breast; to beat iron so as to shape it; to beat grain, in order to force out the seeds; to beat eggs and sugar; to beat a drum.
    Thou shalt beat some of it [spices] very small.   --Ex. xxx. 36.
    They did beat the gold into thin plates.   --Ex. xxxix. 3.
 2. To punish by blows; to thrash.
 3. To scour or range over in hunting, accompanied with the noise made by striking bushes, etc., for the purpose of rousing game.
    To beat the woods, and rouse the bounding prey.   --Prior.
 4. To dash against, or strike, as with water or wind.
    A frozen continent . . . beat with perpetual storms.   --Milton.
 5. To tread, as a path.
    Pass awful gulfs, and beat my painful way.   --Blackmore.
 6. To overcome in a battle, contest, strife, race, game, etc.; to vanquish, defeat, or conquer; to surpass or be superior to.
    He beat them in a bloody battle.   --Prescott.
    For loveliness, it would be hard to beat that.   --M. Arnold.
 7. To cheat; to chouse; to swindle; to defraud; -- often with out. [Colloq.]
 8. To exercise severely; to perplex; to trouble.
    Why should any one . . . beat his head about the Latin grammar who does not intend to be a critic?   --Locke.
 9. Mil. To give the signal for, by beat of drum; to sound by beat of drum; as, to beat an alarm, a charge, a parley, a retreat; to beat the general, the reveille, the tattoo. See Alarm, Charge, Parley, etc.
 10. to baffle or stump; to defy the comprehension of (a person); as, it beats me why he would do that.
 11. to evade, avoid, or escape (blame, taxes, punishment); as, to beat the rap (be acquitted); to beat the sales tax by buying out of state.
 To beat down, to haggle with (any one) to secure a lower price; to force down. [Colloq.]
 To beat into, to teach or instill, by repetition.
 To beat off, to repel or drive back.
 To beat out, to extend by hammering.
 To beat out of a thing, to cause to relinquish it, or give it up.  “Nor can anything beat their posterity out of it to this day.” --South.
 To beat the dust. Man. (a) To take in too little ground with the fore legs, as a horse. (b) To perform curvets too precipitately or too low.
 To beat the hoof, to walk; to go on foot.
 To beat the wing, to flutter; to move with fluttering agitation.
 To beat time, to measure or regulate time in music by the motion of the hand or foot.
 To beat up, to attack suddenly; to alarm or disturb; as, to beat up an enemy's quarters.
 Syn: -- To strike; pound; bang; buffet; maul; drub; thump; baste; thwack; thrash; pommel; cudgel; belabor; conquer; defeat; vanquish; overcome.