forlorn hope


Definition of forlorn hope

1 : a body of men selected to perform a perilous service
2 : a desperate or extremely difficult enterprise

Examples of forlorn hope in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The study strongly suggests that relying on military rapid response units to save diplomats is a forlorn hope. Michael Peck, Forbes, 24 Feb. 2021 This seems to be Blue and White’s favored option, though it is based on a forlorn hope. Bernard Avishai, The New Yorker, 27 Sep. 2019 However, expecting the Croatian soccer authorities to act the right way in such a situation was always going to be a forlorn hope. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, 9 July 2018 Seeing as Croatia are already through to the last 16, this may turn out to be a forlorn hope., 22 June 2018 The Uruguayans needed to win to overhaul their rivals in the group, though victory seemed a forlorn hope., 24 Feb. 2018 More and more, this is looking like a forlorn hope. Michael Hiltzik,, 7 Sep. 2017

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for forlorn hope

by folk etymology from Dutch verloren hoop, literally, lost band

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The first known use of forlorn hope was in 1579

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Cite this Entry

“Forlorn hope.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2021.

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