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    Fomorian (adj.) — forebode (v.)

    Fomorian (adj.)

    pertaining to the monstrous race in Irish mythology, 1876, from Irish fomor "pirate, monster," from fo "under" + mor "sea." Cognate with Gaelic famhair.ETD Fomorian (adj.).2

    fondness (n.)

    late 14c., "foolishness," from fond + -ness.ETD fondness (n.).2

    fond (adj.)

    late 14c., "deranged, insane;" also "foolish, silly, unwise," from fonned, past-participle adjective from obsolete verb fon, fonne (Middle English fonnen) "be foolish, be simple," from Middle English fonne "a fool, stupid person" (early 14c.), which is of uncertain origin but perhaps from Scandinavian. Related: Fonder; fondest.ETD fond (adj.).2

    The meaning evolved via "foolishly tender" to "having strong affections for" (by 1570s; compare doting under dote). Another sense of the verb fon was "to lose savor" (late 14c. in Middle English past participle fonnyd), which may be the original meaning of the word:ETD fond (adj.).3

    fondant (n.)

    1877, from French fondant, noun use of present participle of fondre "to melt," from Latin fundere (past participle fusus) "to melt, cast, pour out," from nasalized form of PIE root *gheu- "to pour."ETD fondant (n.).2

    fondle (v.)

    1690s, "treat with indulgence and affection" (now obsolete), from fond (adj.) + frequentative ending. Or possibly from the obsolete verb fond "be fond, be in love, dote" (1520s), from the adjective or altered from earlier fon. Sense of "caress" first recorded 1796. As a noun from 1833. Related: Fondled; fondling (1670s as a past-participle adjective); fondlesome.ETD fondle (v.).2

    fondly (adj.)

    mid-14c., "foolishly," from fond + -ly (2). Formerly sometimes in a bad sense, "with indiscreet or excessive affection" (1762). Meaning "affectionately" is from 1590s.ETD fondly (adj.).2

    fondue (n.)

    1781 as a French word in English; naturalized from c. 1800, from French cooking term fondue "a cheese-pudding," literally "melted" (15c.), noun use of fem. of fondu, past-participle adjective from fondre "to melt," from Latin fundere (past participle fusus) "to melt, cast, pour out" (from nasalized form of PIE root *gheu- "to pour").ETD fondue (n.).2

    font (n.2)

    "complete set of characters of a particular face and size of printing type," 1680s (also fount); earlier "a casting" (1570s); from French fonte "a casting," noun use of fem. past participle of fondre "to melt," from Latin fundere (past participle fusus) "to melt, cast, pour out" (from nasalized form of PIE root *gheu- "to pour"). So called because all the letters in a given set were cast at the same time.ETD font (n.2).2

    font (n.1)

    "water basin," especially used in baptism, late Old English, from Latin fons (genitive fontis) "fountain" (see fountain), especially in Medieval Latin fons baptismalis "baptismal font." The word is sometimes used poetically for "a fountain; a source."ETD font (n.1).2

    fontanelle (n.)

    also fontanel, 1540s, "hollow between two muscles," from French fontanelle (16c.), from Old French fontenele "small source, fountain, spring; fontanelle," diminutive of fontaine "spring" (see fountain), on analogy of the dent in the earth where a spring arises. In reference to the "hollow" in a baby's skull, it is first recorded 1741.ETD fontanelle (n.).2

    food (n.)

    Middle English foode, fode, from Old English foda "food, nourishment; fuel," also figurative, from Proto-Germanic *fodon (source also of Swedish föda, Danish föde, Gothic fodeins), from Germanic *fod- "food," from PIE *pat-, extended form of root *pa- "to feed."ETD food (n.).2

    Food chain is by 1915. Food poisoning attested by 1864; food processor in the kitchen appliance sense from 1973; food stamp (n.) is from 1962.ETD food (n.).3

    foodie (n.)

    "gourmet," 1982, from food + -ie.ETD foodie (n.).2

    foodoholic (n.)

    1965, formed irregularly from food + -aholic.ETD foodoholic (n.).2

    foodstuff (n.)

    "substance or material suitable for food," 1870, from food + stuff (n.). Related: Foodstuffs.ETD foodstuff (n.).2

    fool (n.1)

    early 13c., "silly, stupid, or ignorant person," from Old French fol "madman, insane person; idiot; rogue; jester," also "blacksmith's bellows," also an adjective meaning "mad, insane" (12c., Modern French fou), from Medieval Latin follus (adj.) "foolish," from Latin follis "bellows, leather bag," from PIE root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell."ETD fool (n.1).2

    The sense evolution probably is from Vulgar Latin use of follis in a sense of "windbag, empty-headed person." Compare also Sanskrit vatula- "insane," literally "windy, inflated with wind." But some sources suggest evolution from Latin folles "puffed cheeks" (of a buffoon), a secondary sense from plural of follis. One makes the "idiot" sense original, the other the "jester" sense.ETD fool (n.1).3

    Also used in Middle English for "sinner, rascal, impious person" (late 13c.). Meaning "jester, court clown" in English is attested c. 1300, though it is not always possible to tell whether the reference is to a professional entertainer counterfeiting mental weakness or an amusing lunatic, and the notion of the fool sage whose sayings are ironically wise is also in English from c. 1300. The French word probably also got into English via its borrowing in the Scandinavian languages of the vikings (Old Norse fol, Old Danish fool, fol).ETD fool (n.1).4

    To make a fool of (someone) "cause to appear ridiculous" is from 1620s (make fool "to deceive, make (someone) appear a fool" is from early 15c.). Feast of Fools (early 14c., from Medieval Latin festum stultorum) was the burlesque festival celebrated in some churches on New Year's Day in medieval times. Fool's gold "iron pyrite" is from 1829. Fool's paradise "illusory state of happiness based on ignorance or erroneous judgment" is from mid-15c. (foles paradyce). Fool-trap is from 1690s. Foolosopher, a useful insult, is in a 1549 translation of Erasmus. Fool's ballocks is described in OED as "an old name" for the green-winged orchid. Fool-killer "imaginary personage invested with authority to put to death anybody notoriously guilty of great folly" is from 1851, American English.ETD fool (n.1).5

    Fools rush in where angels fear to tread is a (shortened) line of Pope's "Essay on Criticism" (1711) popularized in Burke's "Reflections on the Revolution in France" (1793).ETD fool (n.1).6

    fool (v.)

    mid-14c., "to be foolish, act the fool," from fool (n.1). The transitive meaning "make a fool of" is recorded from 1590s. Sense of "beguile, cheat" is from 1640s. Also as a verb 16c.-17c. was foolify. Related: Fooled; fooling. Fool around is 1875 in the sense of "pass time idly," 1970s in sense of "have sexual adventures."ETD fool (v.).2

    fool (adj.)

    c. 1200, "sinful, wicked; lecherous" (a fool woman (c. 1300) was "a prostitute"), from fool (n.1). Meaning "foolish, silly" is mid-13c. In modern use considered U.S. colloquial.ETD fool (adj.).2

    fool (n.2)

    type of custard dish, 1590s, of uncertain origin. The food also was called trifle, which may be the source of the name (via verb and noun senses of fool). OED utterly rejects derivation from Old French fole "a pressing."ETD fool (n.2).2

    fooling (n.)

    c. 1600, verbal noun from fool (v.).ETD fooling (n.).2

    foolery (n.)

    1550s, from fool (n.1) + -ery.ETD foolery (n.).2

    foolhardy (adj.)

    also fool-hardy, mid-13c., folhardi, from fol "fool" (see fool (n.1) + hardi "bold" (see hardy) hence "foolishly brave, bold without judgment or moderation." Compare Old French fol hardi. Related: foolhardiness (mid-13c.); Middle English had also as a noun foolhardiment (mid-15c.).ETD foolhardy (adj.).2

    foolish (adj.)

    early 14c., from fool (n.1) + -ish. Older adjectives in Middle English were fool (c. 1200); folly (c. 1300). Old English words for this were dysig, stunt, dol. Related: Foolishly; foolishness.ETD foolish (adj.).2

    foolishness (n.)

    late 15c., "quality of being foolish," from foolish + -ness. From 1530s as "a foolish practice."ETD foolishness (n.).2

    foolocracy (n.)

    1832, from fool (n.) + -ocracy.ETD foolocracy (n.).2

    fool-proof (adj.)

    also foolproof, 1902, American English, "safe against the incompetence of a fool," from fool (n.1) + adjectival sense from proof (n.).ETD fool-proof (adj.).2

    foolscap (n.)

    also fool's-cap, 1630s, "type of cap worn by a jester;" see fool (n.1) + cap (n.). From c. 1700 as a type of writing paper, so called because it originally was watermarked with a jester's cap.ETD foolscap (n.).2

    foosball (n.)

    debuted in U.S. 1963 and was a craze on some college campuses for a few years thereafter. Said to have been designed c. 1930s in Switzerland. The name is presumably from the pronunciation of Fußball, the German form of (Association) football.ETD foosball (n.).2

    foot (v.)

    c. 1400, "to dance," also "to move or travel on foot," from foot (n.). From mid-15c. as "make a footing or foundation." To foot a bill "pay the entirety of" is attested from 1848, from the process of tallying the expenses and writing the figure at the bottom ("foot") of the sheet; foot (v.) as "add up and set the sum at the foot of" is from late 15c. (compare footnote (n.)). The Old English verb gefotian meant "to hasten up." Related: Footed; footing.ETD foot (v.).2

    footing (n.)

    late 13c., "a base, foundation;" late 14c., "position of the feet on the ground, stance," a gerundive formation from foot (n.). Figurative meaning "firm or secure position" is from 1580s; that of "condition on which anything is established" is from 1650s.ETD footing (n.).2

    foot (n.)

    "terminal part of the leg of a vertebrate animal," Old English fot "foot," from Proto-Germanic *fōts (source also of Old Frisian fot, Old Saxon fot, Old Norse fotr, Danish fod, Swedish fot, Dutch voet, Old High German fuoz, German Fuß, Gothic fotus "foot"), from PIE root *ped- "foot." Plural form feet is an instance of i-mutation.ETD foot (n.).2

    The linear measure was in Old English (the exact length has varied over time), this being considered the length of a man's foot; a unit of measure used widely and anciently. In this sense the plural is often foot. The current inch and foot are implied from measurements in 12c. English churches (Flinders Petrie, "Inductive Metrology"), but the most usual length of a "foot" in medieval England was the foot of 13.2 inches common throughout the ancient Mediterranean. The Anglo-Saxon foot apparently was between the two.ETD foot (n.).3

    All three correspond to units used by the Romans, and possibly all three lengths were picked up by the Anglo-Saxons from the Romano-Britons. "That the Saxon units should descend to mediæval times is most probable, as the Normans were a ruling, and not a working, class." [Flinders Petrie, 1877].ETD foot (n.).4

    The medieval Paul's Foot (late 14c.) was a measuring standard cut into the base of a column at the old St. Paul's cathedral in London. The metrical foot (late Old English, translating Latin pes, Greek pous in the same sense) is commonly taken to represent one rise and one fall of a foot: keeping time according to some, dancing according to others.ETD foot (n.).5

    In Middle English also "a person" (c. 1200), hence non-foot "nobody." Meaning "bottom or lowest part of anything eminent or upright" is from c. 1200. Of a bed, grave, etc., from c. 1300.ETD foot (n.).6

    On foot "by walking" is from c. 1300. To get off on the wrong foot is from 1905 (the right foot is by 1907); to put one's best foot foremost first recorded 1849 (Shakespeare has the better foot before, 1596); Middle English had evil-foot (adv.) "through mischance, unluckily."ETD foot (n.).7

    To put one's foot in (one's) mouth "say something stupid" is attested by 1942; the expression put (one's) foot in something "make a mess of it" is from 1823. To have one foot in the grave "be near death" is from 1844. Colloquial exclamation my foot! expressing "contemptuous contradiction" [OED] is attested by 1923, probably euphemistic for my ass in the same sense, which dates to 1796 (also see eyewash).ETD foot (n.).8

    footage (n.)

    "the length of film used in a scene, etc.," 1916, from foot (n.) as a measure of length + -age. Earlier the word was used to describe a piece-work system to pay miners.ETD footage (n.).2

    football (n.)

    open-air game involving kicking a ball, c. 1400; in reference to the inflated ball used in the game, mid-14c. ("Þe heued fro þe body went, Als it were a foteballe," Octavian I manuscript, c. 1350), from foot (n.) + ball (n.1). Forbidden in a Scottish statute of 1424. One of Shakespeare's insults is "you base foot-ball player" [Lear I.iv]. Ball-kicking games date back to the Roman legions, at least, but the sport seems first to have risen to a national obsession in England, c. 1630. Figurative sense of "something idly kicked around, something subject to hard use and many vicissitudes" is by 1530s.ETD football (n.).2

    Rules of the game first regularized at Cambridge, 1848; soccer (q.v.) split off in 1863. The U.S. style (known to some in England as "stop-start rugby with padding") evolved gradually 19c.; the first true collegiate game is considered to have been played Nov. 6, 1869, between Princeton and Rutgers, at Rutgers, but the rules there were more like soccer. A rematch at Princeton Nov. 13, with the home team's rules, was true U.S. football. Both were described as foot-ball at Princeton.ETD football (n.).3

    foot-board (n.)

    "a support for the foot" in a carriage, vehicle, workplace, etc., 1766, from foot (n.) + board (n.1).ETD foot-board (n.).2

    foot-bridge (n.)

    "bridge for foot passengers," c. 1500, from foot (n.) + bridge (n.1).ETD foot-bridge (n.).2

    foot-dragging (n.)

    "deliberate slowness," 1966, from foot (n.) + present-participle adjective from drag (v.).ETD foot-dragging (n.).2

    footer (n.)

    c. 1600, "a pedestrian;" 1781, "a kick at football;" 1863, British student slang, "the game of football;" see foot (n.), football, -er.ETD footer (n.).2

    footfall (n.)

    c. 1600, "the tread of the foot;" see foot (n.) + fall (n.). Perhaps first in Shakespeare.ETD footfall (n.).2

    foot-hill (n.)

    also foot-hill, "a hill that leads up to a mountain, a distinct lower part of a mountain," 1850, American English, from foot (n.) + hill (n.).ETD foot-hill (n.).2

    foot-hills (n.)

    also foothills; see foot-hill.ETD foot-hills (n.).2

    foothold (n.)

    1620s, "that which sustains the feet and prevents them from slipping," from foot (n.) + hold (n.). Figurative use by 1650s: "stable ground from which to act" (compare sense evolution in footing).ETD foothold (n.).2

    footle (v.)

    "to trifle," 1892, from dialectal footer "to trifle," footy "mean, paltry" (1752), perhaps from French se foutre "to care nothing," from Old French futer "to copulate with," from Latin futuere "have sex with (a woman)," originally "to strike, thrust" (which is perhaps from PIE root *bhau- "to strike"). But OED derives the English dialect words from foughty (c. 1600), from Dutch vochtig or Danish fugtig "damp, musty;" related to fog (n.).ETD footle (v.).2

    footless (adj.)

    "having no feet; without a basis," late 14c., from foot (n.) + -less.ETD footless (adj.).2

    footlights (n.)

    "row of lights placed in front of a stage" (formerly called floats), 1836, from foot (n.) of the stage + light (n.).ETD footlights (n.).2

    foot-locker (n.)

    1905, U.S. military, from foot (n.) + locker.ETD foot-locker (n.).2

    footloose (adj.)

    1690s, "free to move the feet, unshackled," from foot (n.) + loose (adj.). Figurative sense of "free to act as one pleases" is from 1873.ETD footloose (adj.).2

    footman (n.)

    c. 1300, fotman, "soldier who marches and fights on foot," from foot (n.) + man (n.). It also was used in Middle English with a general sense of "an attendant on foot" (late 14c.), and Middle English also had fot-knave "servant of low rank attending a knight or squire" (mid-14c.), fot-folwer "foot-servant" late 14c. fot-mayd (late 15c.) "maidservant, serving woman."ETD footman (n.).2

    Later it was used specifically of personal attendants to a person of rank who ran before or alongside his master's carriage, ostensibly to keep it from spilling and otherwise assist it on the road, but also to indicate the importance of the occupant.ETD footman (n.).3

    The non-jogging "man-in-waiting" sense is attested from c. 1700, though the running footmen still were in service mid-18c. Related: Footmanship.ETD footman (n.).4

    footnote (n.)

    also foot-note, in printing, "a note at the bottom of a page as an appendage to some part of the text," 1841, from foot (n.) "lower end of a document" (1660s) + note (n.). So called from its original position at the foot of a page. Also sometimes formerly bottom note. As a verb, from 1864. Related: Footnoted; footnoting.ETD footnote (n.).2

    footpad (n.)

    "highwayman who robs on foot," 1680s, from foot (n.) + pad "pathway, footpath" (1670s), from Middle Dutch pad "way, path," from Proto-Germanic *patha- "way, path" (see pad (v.1), and compare path). Pad was a cant word among thieves and vagabonds, in expressions such as stand pad "stand by the wayside begging." Especially "one of a large class, existing in Europe when police authority was still in an ineffective condition, who made a business of robbing people passing on horseback or in carriages" [Century Dictionary].ETD footpad (n.).2

    foot-path (n.)

    also footpath, "narrow path or way for foot travelers only," 1520s, from foot (n.) + path.ETD foot-path (n.).2

    footprint (n.)

    "the mark of a foot," especially in walking, 1550s, from foot (n.) + print (n.). Related: Footprints. Old English had fotspor, fotswæð.ETD footprint (n.).2

    foot-race (n.)

    "race run between persons on foot," 1660s, from foot (n.) + race (n.1).ETD foot-race (n.).2

    foot-rail (n.)

    1861, from foot (n.) + rail (n.1).ETD foot-rail (n.).2

    foot-rest (n.)

    "stool or short bench used to support as person's foot," 1844, from foot (n.) + rest (n.).ETD foot-rest (n.).2

    footsie (n.)

    "amorous play with the feet" [OED], 1944, from foot (n.). Footie in the same sense is from 1935.ETD footsie (n.).2

    foot-soldier (n.)

    "infantryman, soldier who serves on foot," 1620s, from foot (n.) + soldier (n.).ETD foot-soldier (n.).2

    foot-sore (adj.)

    also footsore, "having sore or tender feet, as from much walking," 1719, from foot (n.) + sore (adj.).ETD foot-sore (adj.).2

    footstep (n.)

    early 13c., "footprint," from foot (n.) + step (n.). Meaning "a tread or fall of the foot" is first attested 1530s. Figurative expression to follow in (someone's) footsteps is from 1540s.ETD footstep (n.).2

    footstool (n.)

    also foot-stool, "stool, usually small and low, to rest the feet on while sitting," 1520s, from foot (n.) + stool. Earlier was fotsceomel, from Old English fotsceamel; for the second element of which see shambles. Figurative sense of "one who is the abject thrall of another" is from 1530s.ETD footstool (n.).2

    fop (n.)

    mid-15c., "foolish person," of unknown origin, perhaps related to obsolete verb fop "make a fool of," from a continental source akin to German foppen "jeer at, make a fool of." Sense of "dandy, coxcomb, man ostentatiously nice in manner and appearance" is from 1670s, perhaps given in derision by those who thought such things foolish. The 18c. was their period of greatest florescense. The junior variety was a fopling (1680s).ETD fop (n.).2

    foppery (n.)

    1540s, "a foolish action," from fop + -ery. Meaning "behavior and manner of a fop" in the "dandy" sense is from 1690s; meaning "foppish attire" is from 1711.ETD foppery (n.).2

    foppish (adj.)

    "pertaining to or characteristic of a fop," c. 1600, from fop + -ish. Related: Foppishly; foppishness.ETD foppish (adj.).2


    prefix usually meaning "away, opposite, completely," from Old English for-, indicating loss or destruction, but in other cases completion, and used as well with intensive or pejorative force, from Proto-Germanic *fur "before, in" (source also of Old Norse for-, Swedish för-, Dutch ver-, Old High German fir-, German ver-); from PIE *pr-, from root *per- (1) "forward," hence "in front of, before, toward, near, against." Ultimately from the same root as fore (adv.), and compare ver-.ETD for-.2

    Probably originally in Germanic with a sense of "forward, forth," but it spun out complex sense developments in the historical languages. It is disused as a word-forming element in Modern English.ETD for-.3

    From its use in participles it came to be an intensive prefix of adjectives in Middle English (for example Chaucer's forblak "exceedingly black"), but all these now seem to be obsolete.ETD for-.4

    for (prep.)

    Old English for "before, in the sight of, in the presence of; as far as; during, before; on account of, for the sake of; in place of, instead of," from Proto-Germanic *fur "before; in" (source also of Old Saxon furi "before," Old Frisian for, Middle Dutch vore, Dutch voor "for, before;" German für "for;" Danish for "for," før "before;" Gothic faur "for," faura "before"), from PIE root *per- (1) "forward," hence "in front of, before," etc.ETD for (prep.).2

    From late Old English as "in favor of." For and fore differentiated gradually in Middle English. For alone as a conjunction, "because, since, for the reason that; in order that" is from late Old English, probably a shortening of common Old English phrases such as for þon þy "therefore," literally "for the (reason) that."ETD for (prep.).3

    forage (v.)

    early 15c., "to plunder, pillage," from forage (n.) or from French fourrager. Meaning "hunt about for" is from 1768. Related: Foraged; foraging.ETD forage (v.).2

    forage (n.)

    early 14c. (late 13c. as Anglo-Latin foragium) "food for horses and cattle, fodder," from Old French forrage "fodder; foraging; pillaging, looting" (12c., Modern French fourrage), from fuerre "hay, straw, bed of straw; forage, fodder" (Modern French feurre), from Frankish *fodr "food" or a similar Germanic source, from Proto-Germanic *fodram (source of Old High German fuotar, Old English fodor; see fodder). Meaning "a roving in search of provisions" in English is from late 15c. Military forage cap attested by 1827.ETD forage (n.).2

    forager (n.)

    late 14c., "a plunderer," from Old French foragier, from forrage "fodder; pillaging" (see forage (n.)). From early 15c. in English as "one who gathers food for horses and cattle."ETD forager (n.).2

    foray (n.)

    late 14c., "predatory incursion," Scottish, from the verb (14c.), perhaps a back-formation of Middle English forreyer "raider, forager" (mid-14c.), from Old French forrier, from forrer "to forage," from forrage "fodder; foraging; pillaging, looting" (see forage (n.)). Disused by 18c.; revived by Scott. As a verb from 14c.ETD foray (n.).2

    foramen (n.)

    plural foramina, 1670s, from Latin foramen "hole, opening, aperture, orifice," from forare "to pierce" (from PIE root *bhorh- "hole").ETD foramen (n.).2

    foraminous (adj.)

    "full of holes," 1620s, from Late Latin foraminosus, from Latin foramen "hole, opening" (from PIE root *bhorh- "hole").ETD foraminous (adj.).2


    order of Protozoa furnished with a shell, 1835, Modern Latin, neuter plural of foraminifer "bearing holes," from Latin foramen "hole, opening, orifice" (from PIE root *bhorh- "hole") + -fer "bearing," from ferre "to bear" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry," also "to bear children"). So called because the shells usually are perforated by pores. Related: Foraminiferal.ETD Foraminifera.2

    forasmuch (conj.)

    late 13c., from phrase for as much.ETD forasmuch (conj.).2

    forb (n.)

    "broad-leaved herbaceous plant," 1924, from Greek phorbe "fodder, forage."ETD forb (n.).2


    U.S. financial publication, founded 1917 by Scottish-born Wall Street journalist B.C. Forbes (1880-1954) and publisher Walter Drey.ETD Forbes.2


    past tense of forbid.ETD forbade.2

    forbearance (n.)

    1570s, originally legal, in reference to enforcement of debt obligations, from forbear (v.) + -ance. General sense of "a refraining from" is from 1590s.ETD forbearance (n.).2

    forbear (v.)

    "to abstain," Old English forberan "bear up against, control one's feelings, abstain from, refrain; tolerate, endure" (past tense forbær, past participle forboren), from for- + beran "to bear" (see bear (v.)). Related: Forbearer; forbearing; forbore. Of similar formation are Old High German ferberen, Gothic frabairan "to endure."ETD forbear (v.).2

    forbid (v.)

    Old English forbeodan "forbid, prohibit" (past tense forbead, plural forbudon, past participle forboden), from for- "against" + beodan "to command" (from PIE root *bheudh- "be aware, make aware"). Common Germanic compound (compare Old Frisian forbiada, Dutch verbieden, Old High German farbiotan, German verbieten, Old Norse fyrirbjoða, Swedish förbjuda, Gothic faurbiudan "to forbid").ETD forbid (v.).2

    In Middle English the past tense was forbad, the plural forbade, the past participle forbode. Related: Forbade; forbidden. Expression God forbid is recorded by early 13c. Forbidden fruit is from Genesis ii.17.ETD forbid (v.).3

    forbidding (adj.)

    1570s, "that forbids;" 1712 as "uninviting," present-participle adjective from forbid. Related: Forbiddingly; forbiddingness.ETD forbidding (adj.).2


    past tense of forbear (v.).ETD forbore.2

    forceful (adj.)

    1570s, from force (n.) + -ful. Related: Forcefully; forcefulness.ETD forceful (adj.).2

    forced (adj.)

    "not spontaneous or voluntary, strained, unnatural," 1570s, past-participle adjective from force (v.). Meaning "effected by an unusual application of force" is from 1590s. Related: Forcedly. The flier's forced landing attested by 1917.ETD forced (adj.).2

    force (v.)

    c. 1300, forcen, also forsen, "exert force upon (an adversary)," from Old French forcer "conquer by violence," from force "strength, power, compulsion" (see force (n.)). From early 14c. as "to violate (a woman), to rape." From c. 1400 as "compel by force, constrain (someone to do something)." Meaning "bring about by unusual effort" is from 1550s. Card-playing sense is from 1746 (whist). Related: Forced; forcing.ETD force (v.).2

    force (n.)

    c. 1300, "physical strength," from Old French force "force, strength; courage, fortitude; violence, power, compulsion" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *fortia (source also of Old Spanish forzo, Spanish fuerza, Italian forza), noun use of neuter plural of Latin fortis "strong, mighty; firm, steadfast; brave, bold" (see fort).ETD force (n.).2

    Meanings "power to convince the mind" and "power exerted against will or consent" are from mid-14c. Meaning "body of armed men, a military organization" first recorded late 14c. (also in Old French). Physics sense is from 1660s; force field attested by 1920. Related: Forces.ETD force (n.).3

    force-feed (v.)

    by 1905 in animal husbandry, from force (n.) + feed (v.). Related: Force-fed; force-feeding. Force-feeding (n.) is from 1900.ETD force-feed (v.).2

    force majeure (n.)

    1883, French, "superior strength."ETD force majeure (n.).2

    forcemeat (n.)

    also force-meat, "mincemeat, meat chopped fine and seasoned," 1680s, from force "to stuff," a variant of farce (q.v.) + meat.ETD forcemeat (n.).2

    forceps (n.)

    1560s, from Latin forceps "pair of tongs, pincers," apparently literally "something with which to grasp hot things," a compound of formus "hot" (from PIE root *gwher- "to heat, warm") + root of capere "to hold, take," from PIE root *kap- "to grasp." Originally a smith's implement. The classical plural is forcipes. Related: Forcipal.ETD forceps (n.).2

    forcible (adj.)

    early 15c., "powerful, violent; done by force," from Old French forcible "strong, powerful, mighty," from forcier "conquer by violence" (see force (v.)). From 1550s as "possessing force." Related: Forcibly.ETD forcible (adj.).2

    ford (n.)

    Old English ford "shallow place where water can be crossed," from Proto-Germanic *furdu- (source also of Old Frisian forda, Old High German furt, German Furt "ford"), from PIE *prtu- "a going, a passage" (source also of Latin portus "harbor"), from root *per- (2) "to lead, pass over." The line of automobiles (company founded 1903) is named for U.S. manufacturer Henry Ford (1863-1947).ETD ford (n.).2

    ford (v.)

    "to cross a body of water by walking on the bottom," 1610s, from ford (n.). Related: Forded; fording.ETD ford (v.).2

    fordable (adj.)

    1610s, from ford (v.) + -able.ETD fordable (adj.).2

    fordo (v.)

    Old English fordon "destroy, ruin, kill," from for- + don (see do (v.)). Related: Fordone; fordoing. The adjective foredone "killed, destroyed" (Old English, Middle English) now is archaic, replaced by done for.ETD fordo (v.).2

    fore (adv., prep.)

    Old English fore (prep.) "before, in front of, in presence of; because of, for the sake of; earlier in time; instead of;" as an adverb, "before, previously, formerly, once," from Proto-Germanic *fura "before" (source also of Old Saxon fora, Old Frisian fara, Old High German fora, German vor, Danish for, Old Norse fyrr, Gothic faiura "for"), from PIE *prae-, extended form of root *per- (1) "forward," hence "in front of, before."ETD fore (adv., prep.).2

    Now displaced by before. In nautical use, "toward the bows of the ship." Merged from 13c. with the abbreviated forms of afore and before and thus formerly often written 'fore. As a noun, "the front," from 1630s. The warning cry in golf is first recorded 1878, probably a contraction of before.ETD fore (adv., prep.).3

    fore (adj.)

    mid-15c., "forward;" late 15c., "former, earlier;" early 16c., "situated at the front;" all senses apparently from fore- compounds, which frequently were written as two words in Middle English.ETD fore (adj.).2


    Middle English for-, fore-, from Old English fore-, often for- or foran-, from fore (adv. & prep.), which was used as a prefix in Old English as in other Germanic languages with a sense of "before in time, rank, position," etc., or designating the front part or earliest time.ETD fore-.2

    fore-and-aft (adj.)

    nautical, "stem-to-stern," 1610s; see fore + aft. Especially of sails set on the lengthwise line of the vessel (1820), or of vessels so rigged.ETD fore-and-aft (adj.).2

    forearm (v.)

    "prepare for an attack," 1590s, from fore- + arm (v.) "take up weapons." Related: Forearmed; forearming.ETD forearm (v.).2

    forearm (n.)

    between the elbow and the wrist, 1741, from fore- + arm (n.1).ETD forearm (n.).2

    forebear (n.)

    "ancestor," late 15c., from fore "before" + be-er "one who exists;" agent noun from be. Originally Scottish. Related: Forebears.ETD forebear (n.).2

    foreboding (n.)

    late 14c., "a predilection, portent, omen," from fore- + verbal noun from bode. Meaning "sense of something bad about to happen" is from c. 1600. Old English equivalent form forebodung meant "prophecy." Related: Forebodingly.ETD foreboding (n.).2

    forebode (v.)

    "feel a secret premonition," especially of something evil, c. 1600, from fore- + bode. Transitive meaning "announce beforehand, presage," especially something undesirable, is from 1660s. Intransitive sense "to presage" is from 1711. Related: Foreboded; foreboding. Old English forebodian meant "to announce, declare."ETD forebode (v.).2

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