Beg to differ

Posted by Lotg on September 26, 2003

Why would anyone need to 'beg' to differ or disagree? 'Begs' the question, falls into the same category. Was the use of the word 'beg' once softer? ie. Did beg, simply mean 'ask' once, and since then the word has grown to be more 'pleading' than 'asking'?