fore·​hand | \ ˈfȯr-ˌhand How to pronounce forehand (audio) \

Definition of forehand

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 archaic : superior position : advantage
2 : the part of a horse that is before the rider
3 : a forehand stroke (as in tennis or racquets) also : the side on which such strokes are made



Definition of forehand (Entry 2 of 3)

1 obsolete : done or given in advance : prior
2 : made with the palm of the hand turned in the direction in which the hand is moving a forehand tennis stroke



Definition of forehand (Entry 3 of 3)

: with a forehand stroke

Illustration of forehand

Illustration of forehand


forehand 3

In the meaning defined above

Examples of forehand in a Sentence


She hit a forehand across the court.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

On this day, though, Kanepi took charge of baseline exchanges, compiling a 26-9 edge in winners, 14 on her favored forehand side alone. Fox News, "No. 1 seed Simona Halep loses in first-round at US Open," 27 Aug. 2018 Nick Kyrgios has one of the best forehands in tennis. Tom Perrotta, WSJ, "Nick Kyrgios’s Toughest Opponent at Wimbledon Is Himself," 5 July 2018 And in a fifth set that last 90 minutes, Federer looked, if not like a nearly 37-year-old man, like a uncertain, defensive player who didn't trust his forehand. Jon Wertheim,, "Four Thoughts From Four Quarterfinals: Rafa-Djokovic to Meet, Federer Upset," 11 July 2018 Consider 6-foot-6 Alexander Zverev, who has a killer serve and a dangerous forehand and backhand, but weak volleys. Tom Perrotta, WSJ, "On Wimbledon’s Grass, Volleys Still Make a Difference," 9 July 2018 Thiem does indeed have punching power, both with his serve and his groundstrokes, the forehand doing most of the damage. Christopher Clarey, New York Times, "In Dominic Thiem, Rafael Nadal Faces a New French Open Challenge," 8 June 2018 In the shootout, Frans Nielsen was stopped on a forehand, while Joe Pavelski scored on Petr Mrazek. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "Justin Abdelkader, Red Wings win shootout vs. San Jose Sharks, 2-1," 31 Jan. 2018 After years of struggles and time away because of four wrist operations, his rebuilt backhand and strong-as-ever forehand make him, once again, someone to consider a contender. Howard Fendrich, The Seattle Times, "From Osaka to umpires, what we learned during wild US Open," 10 Sep. 2018 Federer’s forehand, which had been so sharp in the early going, started producing errors. Christopher Clarey,, "Roger Federer eliminated at Wimbledon," 11 July 2018

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

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First Known Use of forehand


1557, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1925, in the meaning defined above

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20 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for forehand

The first known use of forehand was in 1557

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English Language Learners Definition of forehand

sports : a way of hitting a ball in tennis and similar games in which the palm of the hand holding the racket is turned in the direction of the ball


fore·​hand | \ ˈfȯr-ˌhand How to pronounce forehand (audio) \

Kids Definition of forehand

: a stroke in sports played with a racket made with the palm of the hand turned in the direction in which the hand is moving

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with forehand

Spanish Central: Translation of forehand

Nglish: Translation of forehand for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about forehand

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