THIS page provides hundreds of example sentences taken from English literature, illustrating the use of various words.

‘Begin’ as a verb

Below are some examples of sentences from classic literature using the word ‘Begin’ as a verb.


The Royal Fleet began in the reign of Henry VII.

From ‘Men of Invention and Industry’, by Samuel Smiles.


She began then to be afraid of appearing rude and impatient.

From ‘Mansfield Park’, by Jane Austen.


It was high time, for I now began to be tortured with thirst.

From ‘Treasure Island’, by Robert Louis Stevenson.


I began to scramble up the hill, crying out, “The murderer! the murderer!”

From ‘Kidnapped!’, by Robert Louis Stevenson.


Certainly, since the mutiny began, not a man of them could ever have been sober.

From ‘Treasure Island’, by Robert Louis Stevenson.


A little before dawn, the boatswain sounded his pipe and the crew began to man the capstan-bars.

From ‘Treasure Island’, by Robert Louis Stevenson.


Great drops of rain began to patter on the leaves. Thunder began to mutter, then growl in the distance.

From ‘Phantastes’, by George MacDonald.


She began now to comprehend that he was exactly the man who, in disposition and talents, would most suit her.

From ‘Pride and Prejudice’, by Jane Austen.


The attorney-general was really extremely patient, but he was beginning to think that the interview had been long enough.

From ‘The Warden’, by Anthony Trollope.

Picture: These six steam locomotives were special guests of the Threkeld Quarry and Mining Museum, near Keswick in Cumbria, for its steam gala in 2015. © Chris Allen, Geograph. Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0. By Peter Trimming, Geograph. Licence: CC-BY-SA 2.0.
Featured Word

He deliberately scrutinised each sketch and painting. Three he laid aside.

From ‘Jane Eyre’, by Charlotte Brontë.

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