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

Definition of foreordain

transitive verb

: to dispose or appoint in advance : predestine

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from foreordain

foreordination \ ˌfȯr-​ˌȯr-​də-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce foreordination (audio) \ 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 outcome was not foreordained, for either Bork or Mr. Biden. Alexander Burns, New York Times, "Biden Wants to Work With ‘the Other Side.’ This Supreme Court Battle Explains Why.," 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, "George Bush Led the Biggest Diplomatic Triumph Since Jefferson," 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, "Ari Aster’s breakout horror hit Hereditary is pants-wettingly scary," 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, "The Trump Doctrine, in Theory," 18 Dec. 2017 Egypt’s slide back into authoritarianism wasn’t foreordained. Joshua Hammer, New York Times, "How Egypt’s Activists Became ‘Generation Jail’," 14 Mar. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of foreordain

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about foreordain

Time Traveler for foreordain

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for foreordain

Cite this Entry

“Foreordain.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 18 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on foreordain

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for foreordain

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with foreordain

Spanish Central: Translation of foreordain

Nglish: Translation of foreordain for Spanish Speakers

Comments on foreordain

What made you want to look up foreordain? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


experienced by way of someone else

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Eponym Quiz

  • rubens painting
  • Which is the best synonym of bowdlerize?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!