foreshorten

verb fore·short·en \ fȯr-ˈshȯr-tᵊn \

Definition of foreshorten

foreshortened; foreshortening; foreshortens
1 : to shorten by proportionately contracting in the direction of depth so that an illusion of projection or extension in space is obtained
2 : to make more compact : abridge, shorten

foreshorten was our Word of the Day on 11/23/2015. Hear the podcast!

Examples of foreshorten in a Sentence

  1. The parts that extend towards the viewer are foreshortened.

Recent Examples of foreshorten from the Web

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

Did You Know?

Foreshorten first appeared in a 1606 treatise on art by the British writer and artist Henry Peacham: "If I should paint ... an horse with his brest and head looking full in my face, I must of necessity foreshorten him behinde." Peacham's "foreshorten" probably comes from "fore-" (meaning "earlier" or "beforehand") plus "shorten." The addition of "fore-" to verbs was a routine practice in Peacham's day, creating such words as "fore-conclude," "fore-consider," "fore-instruct," and "fore-repent." "Foreshorten," along with words like "foresee" and "foretell," is one of the few "fore-" combinations to still survive.

First Known Use of foreshorten

1606

in the meaning defined at sense 1

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FORESHORTEN Defined for English Language Learners

foreshorten

Definition of foreshorten for English Language Learners

  • : to cause (something) to appear shorter than it really is because it is in the foreground of a drawing, painting, etc.

  • : to make (something) shorter


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