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fore·​thought ˈfȯr-ˌthȯt How to pronounce forethought (audio)
: a thinking or planning out in advance : premeditation
: consideration for the future


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Examples of forethought in a Sentence

Noun Her decision showed a lack of forethought. With a little forethought, you can save yourself a lot of work later on.
Recent Examples on the Web
Somehow, trying to relax is often the hardest part of relaxing—meaning achieving a restful holiday takes some forethought. Kiana Murden, Vogue, 23 Dec. 2023 Such forethought is especially key when feeding a crowd. Charlotte Druckman / Photographs By F. Martin Ramin/the Wall Street Journal, Food Styling By Kim Ramin, Prop Styling By Valeria Suasnavas , WSJ, 7 Dec. 2023 Not everything that can be imagined should be unleashed onto the world without lots of forethought. WIRED, 3 Nov. 2023 Passing at highway speeds is easier but still requires some forethought. Andrew Krok, Car and Driver, 6 Sep. 2023 Frosty, rosy, and filled with tropical flavors, this drink requires little to no forethought or time—just 10 minutes to be exact. Karen Schroeder-Rankin, Southern Living, 30 July 2023 This kind of forethought and wellness-centered (?) thinking is a far cry from the binge drinking of years past when Four Loko was the drink of choice and drinking games like Edward Fortyhands allowed imbibers to get drunk as quickly as humanly possible regardless of the consequences. Sam Stone, Bon Appétit, 23 Feb. 2023 Ease of Use Iced tea makers are generally an easy gadget to use but may require some forethought. Rachael Hogg, Better Homes & Gardens, 2 Aug. 2023 Getting exercise—or even the mail—requires careful forethought. Benjamin Tepler, Outside Online, 20 Mar. 2023
With practical measures and forethought, though, children can be kept safe from THC poisoning. Julia Michie Bruckner, Discover Magazine, 5 Apr. 2024 Creator of Twitter bird reminisces Twitter's bird icon debuted over a decade ago after considerably more forethought. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, 24 July 2023 And with more policymakers looking to regulate AI, companies that ignore issues or algorithmic bias and AI discrimination may end up facing costly penalties that could have been avoided with more forethought. IEEE Spectrum, 27 Nov. 2023 Without anticipation, traditions and rituals, wrapping paper and cards, faith and forethought, Christmas morning is just a bunch of stuff and overflowing bags of trash. Tim Maurer, Forbes, 13 Aug. 2023 Building your brand The difference between a positive reputation and a personal brand is the underlying strategy and forethought. Rachel Shin, Fortune, 30 July 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'forethought.' 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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of forethought was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near forethought

Cite this Entry

“Forethought.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


: thought or care taken in advance

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