\ fər, (ˈ)fȯr How to pronounce for (audio) , Southern also (ˈ)fär \

Definition of for

 (Entry 1 of 5)

1a used as a function word to indicate purpose a grant for studying medicine
b used as a function word to indicate an intended goal left for homeacted for the best
c used as a function word to indicate the object or recipient of a perception, desire, or activity now for a good restrun for your lifean eye for a bargain
2a : as being or constituting taken for a fool eggs for breakfast
b used as a function word to indicate an actual or implied enumeration or selection for one thing, the price is too high
3 : because of can't sleep for the heat
4 used as a function word to indicate suitability or fitness it is not for you to chooseready for action
5a : in place of go to the store for me
b(1) : on behalf of : representing speaks for the court
(2) : in favor of all for the plan
6 : in spite of usually used with all for all his large size, he moves gracefully
7 : with respect to : concerning a stickler for detail heavy for its size
8a used as a function word to indicate equivalence in exchange $10 for a hat , equality in number or quantity point for point , or correspondence or correlation for every one that works, you'll find five that don't
b used as a function word to indicate number of attempts 0 for 4
9 used as a function word to indicate duration of time or extent of space gone for two days
10 : in honor of : after named for her grandmother

Definition of for (Entry 2 of 5)

: for the reason that : on this ground : because

Definition of for (Entry 3 of 5)

1 foreign
2 forestry

Definition of FOR (Entry 4 of 5)

free on rail



Definition of for- (Entry 5 of 5)

1 : so as to involve prohibition, exclusion, omission, failure, neglect, or refusal forbid
2 : destructively or detrimentally fordo
3 : completely : excessively : to exhaustion : to pieces forspent

Examples of for in a Sentence

Conjunction the bill should be listed as paid, for I mailed it in on time
Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition The Sun were without starters Courtney Williams and DeWanna Bonner for the second consecutive game. Lila Bromberg, Hartford Courant, 15 May 2022 The battle was personal for some who came out Saturday. Ashraf Khalil, David Sharp, Anchorage Daily News, 15 May 2022 That same month, a source told US Weekly that the new couple had been together for six months already. Aimée Lutkin, ELLE, 15 May 2022 The soil is wet enough that hand pulling should be easy for now. oregonlive, 14 May 2022 Gbenda was quiet for most of the 2021 season until the finale against Kansas State. Nick Moyle, San Antonio Express-News, 14 May 2022 The 31-year-old American basketball player has been in custody for nearly three months. San Francisco Chronicle, 14 May 2022 The alligator eventually left after being at Ferraro's front door for about 10 minutes, then went to a nearby lake, according to the report. Adam Sabes, Fox News, 14 May 2022 Charlie Coyle was on the ice for all three Carolina goals. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 14 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'for.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of for


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for for

Preposition and Conjunction

Middle English, from Old English; akin to Latin per through, prae before, pro before, for, ahead, Greek pro, Sanskrit pra before, in front, Old English faran to go — more at fare


Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German far- for-, Old English for

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Time Traveler for for

Time Traveler

The first known use of for was before the 12th century

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Statistics for for

Last Updated

17 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“For.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/for. Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for for


\ fər How to pronounce for (audio) , ˈfȯr \

Kids Definition of for

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : by way of getting ready Did you wash up for supper?
2 : toward the goal or purpose of I'm studying for the test. I've saved for a new bike.
3 : in order to reach She left for home.
4 : as being eggs for breakfast Do you take me for a fool?
5 : because of They cried for joy.
6 used to show who or what is to receive something There's a letter for you.
7 : in order to help, serve, or defend Let me hold that for you. They fought for their country.
8 : directed at : against a cure for cancer
9 : in exchange as equal to How much for a ticket?
10 : with regard to : concerning a talent for music
11 : taking into account You're tall for your age.
12 : through the period of He slept for ten hours.
13 : to a distance of You can see for miles.
14 : suitable to It is not for you to choose.
15 : in favor of I voted for her.
16 : in place of or on behalf of I speak for the group.
17 : after entry 2 sense 5 He was named for his father.



Kids Definition of for (Entry 2 of 2)

: because I know you did it, for I saw you.



Legal Definition of for

1 : because of a statute void for vagueness
2 : on behalf of : as the representative of attorney general's office for petitioner

More from Merriam-Webster on for

Nglish: Translation of for for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of for for Arabic Speakers


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