From King Dictionary of Contemporary English
Related topics: Animals
beastbeast /biːst/ ●○○ noun [countable] 1 writtenHBAAL an animal, especially a large or dangerous onesee thesaurus at animal2 CRUEL old-fashioned someone who is cruel or unpleasant You beast! Let go!3 something of a particular type or that has a particular quality – usually used humorously SYN animal A city at night is a very different beast.4 the beast in somebody
Examples from the Corpus
beastThey were thirsty and starving, vacant-eyed beasts with bellies bloated from hunger and protruding ribs.There are several images, which are clearly icons, showing isolated pillars with a pair of attendant heraldic beasts.For this whole business of killing, whether killing beasts or killing men, is supposed to be fraught with danger.The tribesmen assumed the names of beasts and in their rites wore animal masks.Philip has a real beast of a father.I'm lucky that beast didn't bite my arm off.He had a good scientific understanding and quickly dismissed the beast.The striped markings enable the beast to become invisible against a wide range of backgrounds by day or night.The beast also chased Etty Moorhen within an inch of her life.The El Niño weather pattern is an unpredictable beast.different beastA health standard based on cost is a different beast.But Hawksmoor is a different beast.But it seems a different beast altogether now that I can ride on top.
Origin beast (1100-1200) Old French beste, from Latin bestia