fore·​shad·​ow | \ fȯr-ˈsha-(ˌ)dō How to pronounce foreshadow (audio) \
foreshadowed; foreshadowing; foreshadows

Definition of foreshadow

transitive verb

: to represent, indicate, or typify beforehand : prefigure The hero's predicament is foreshadowed in the first chapter.

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Other Words from foreshadow

foreshadower \ fȯr-​ˈsha-​də-​wər How to pronounce foreshadower (audio) \ noun

Examples of foreshadow in a Sentence

Her early interest in airplanes foreshadowed her later career as a pilot. The hero's predicament is foreshadowed in the first chapter.
Recent Examples on the Web That could foreshadow a recession, when the US economy shrinks in back-to-back quarters. Robert Weisman,, "As baby boomers watch stocks swing wildly, their future seems less secure," 3 Sep. 2019 This scene foreshadows what will happen to Zhang Dong Ling (Jack Ko), a former cop, at the end of his own downward spiral. Elena Nicolaou,, "Cities Of Last Things," 15 July 2019 In many detective novels, the ominous aroma of bitter almonds foreshadows a swift demise. Jennifer Leman, Scientific American, "The Bitter Truth: Scientists Sequence the Almond Genome," 13 June 2019 To millions of colored people, from Indonesia to Casablanca, Communist China foreshadows their own destiny. George Steiner, Harper's magazine, "Russia and Red China," 10 June 2019 There are layers of foreshadowing here, and much about Moll is to be revealed, but the most immediate mystery in Beast involves a series of murders. Gary Thompson,, "No beauty, just 'Beast' in this creepy British thriller," 16 May 2018 The Eagle — Culver Creek’s martinet, played by Timothy Simons — then exclaims, foreshadowing the shenanigans the group will get up to along the series. Sara Delgado, Teen Vogue, "Hulu's "Looking for Alaska" Releases First Full Trailer Starring Kristine Froseth and Charlie Plummer," 12 Sep. 2019 Roma’) and ‘La La Land’ (which handed Venice festival awards to director Damien Chazelle and Emma Stone, foreshadowing the Oscars). Michael Phillips,, "Venice Film Festival preview: Can ‘Joker,’ Brad Pitt, Scarlett Johansson and ‘Birth of a Nation’'s Nate Parker continue the festival’s hot streak?," 22 Aug. 2019 The announcement, which Mr. Delrahim foreshadowed during a speech in May, extends a policy for crediting companies that develop programs for preventing corruption offenses. Dylan Tokar, WSJ, "Justice Department Extends Compliance Breaks to Antitrust Offenders," 11 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'foreshadow.' 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 foreshadow

1577, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for foreshadow

Last Updated

6 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for foreshadow

The first known use of foreshadow was in 1577

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More Definitions for foreshadow


How to pronounce foreshadow (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of foreshadow

: to give a suggestion of (something that has not yet happened)


fore·​shad·​ow | \ fȯr-ˈsha-dō How to pronounce foreshadow (audio) \
foreshadowed; foreshadowing

Kids Definition of foreshadow

: to give a hint of beforehand

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More from Merriam-Webster on foreshadow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for foreshadow

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with foreshadow

Spanish Central: Translation of foreshadow

Nglish: Translation of foreshadow for Spanish Speakers

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