fore·​or·​dain ˌfȯr-ȯr-ˈdān How to pronounce foreordain (audio)
foreordained; foreordaining; foreordains

transitive verb

: to dispose or appoint in advance : predestine
foreordination noun

Examples of foreordain in a Sentence

we are such good friends, it's almost like we were foreordained to meet
Recent Examples on the Web The Russian invasion of Ukraine, in February, 2022, was no more inevitable or foreordained than the U.S. invasion of Iraq, in 2003. Keith Gessen, The New Yorker, 12 June 2023 Before anything else is said about Lana Del Rey’s new album, let it be noted that however well the record came out, it was foreordained to come in second among her artistic works of the past year. Chris Willman, Variety, 24 Mar. 2023 Pelosi is more than happy for additional evidence to be disclosed and for the Senate to call witnesses, even after the House has impeached and when the resolution of the trial is foreordained. Matthew Continetti, National Review, 17 Jan. 2020 The outcome was not foreordained, for either Bork or Mr. Biden. Alexander Burns, New York Times, 7 Sep. 2019 The 41st president, who couldn’t always get his sentences straight, wasn’t foreordained for history’s hall of fame. Josef Joffe, WSJ, 3 Dec. 2018 Aster piles on the personal confrontations and emotional breakdowns, but compounds them with unnerving new hauntings, all the way up to an ending that feels foreordained, but still shattering. Tasha Robinson, The Verge, 8 June 2018 This is hardly foreordained, especially if the U.S. reasserts itself on the global stage and rallies like-minded nations against the revisionists. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 18 Dec. 2017 Egypt’s slide back into authoritarianism wasn’t foreordained. Joshua Hammer, New York Times, 14 Mar. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'foreordain.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of foreordain was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near foreordain

Cite this Entry

“Foreordain.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


fore·​or·​dain ˌfōr-ȯr-ˈdān How to pronounce foreordain (audio)
: to determine in advance : predestine

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