Basically, I've been trying to find out whether saying "What he said beggared belief of the most astonishing nature" makes sense. I believe it doesn't as the phrase "beggars belief" already indicates that the object which beggars belief is very astonishing and surprising. However, I thought I would ask this just to make sure.

  • 'of the most astonishing nature' is an adjectival not an adverbial, so this is either ungrammatical or semantically very suspect. 'Belief of the most astonishing nature' is unusual enough, but 'beggar belief' is a fixed idiom not accepting adjectives. Jul 19, 2016 at 17:08

1 Answer 1


It makes sense but it would be entirely redundant.

Instead I would just say, "It begged for belief of the most astonishing nature."

  • But I'd interpret "It begged for belief of the most astonishing nature" as meaning, "It was so unbelievable that in order to believe in it, you'd have to have a truly astounding level of faith in it." Whereas I would guess OP's statement is intended to mean, "It was so astounding that I almost couldn't believe it." - in more of a hyperbolic way.
    – Jim
    Mar 3, 2016 at 3:31
  • Beggared belief (which is idiomatic) is not at all the same as beg for belief (which is not). Jul 19, 2016 at 16:55

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