Hi folks, back again .. asking for help / discussion Bemoaning ... this cropped up a poem I was reading the other day and made me think: is there a story behind this "be" prefix? We can just moan, or we can bemoan. Is there a difference? I can see from the free etymology dictioanary that this is an Old English word.. is it just that we LOST the "be" bit over time? It still hangs around a bit in old texts and poems (in this case the scansion and alliteration were helped by the extra "be"). Thinking of other verbs starting with "be": besmirch - you can't smirch, can you? bemuse - muse on its own means something different. becalm - hmm thinking now ... is it something to do with transirive and intransitive?