for·sake | \fər-ˈsāk, fȯr-\
forsook\fər-ˈsu̇k, fȯr- \; forsaken\fər-ˈsā-kən, fȯr- \; forsaking

Definition of forsake 

transitive verb

: to renounce or turn away from entirely friends have forsaken her forsook the theater for politics

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Synonyms & Antonyms for forsake


abandon, desert, leave, maroon, quit, strand



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Choose the Right Synonym for forsake

abandon, desert, forsake mean to leave without intending to return. abandon suggests that the thing or person left may be helpless without protection. abandoned children desert implies that the object left may be weakened but not destroyed by one's absence. a deserted town forsake suggests an action more likely to bring impoverishment or bereavement to that which is forsaken than its exposure to physical dangers. a forsaken lover

Examples of forsake in a Sentence

forsaking most of our possessions, we evacuated just before the hurricane struck

Recent Examples on the Web

The Scorecard Westport Country Playhouse has been doing a lot of confrontational or politically active dramas in recent seasons, but the theater has never forsaken farce. Christopher Arnott,, "Little Theatre Of Manchester, Curtain Call Announce New Seasons," 26 June 2018 Investors have forsaken active money managers in favor of low-cost passive investments, so when major market benchmarks rearrange their lineups, those changes reverberate throughout the stock market. Asjylyn Loder, WSJ, "Why $39 Billion of Stocks Traded in One Second on Friday," 24 June 2018 Paul and Juicy forsake their vintage-horror-soundtrack synths for ones that belong in ‘80s action flicks, then toss those into a busy mix with nu-metal guitar presets and Eurodance samples. Patrick Lyons, Billboard, "10 Years Ago, Three 6 Mafia's 'Last 2 Walk' Almost Ruined Their Legacy," 24 June 2018 Huntington was appalled both by zealous civilians trying to politicize the military, like Senator Joseph R. McCarthy attacking the Army, and by soldiers forsaking their professionalism by turning political, like Gen. Douglas MacArthur. Gary J. Bass, New York Times, "Should We Worry About Trump’s Fawning Admiration of the Military?," 29 June 2018 Waters is a 79-year-old black woman, an old-school playa whose decades of congressional pedigree haven’t forsaken her radical black womanhood. Terrell Jermaine Starr, The Root, "Trump and Friends Come for Maxine Waters, a Black Woman Who Doesn’t Give a Damn About Your Calls for Civility," 25 June 2018 His teams at Alabama and Vanderbilt were a tribute to the competitive advantages of integration and a catalyst for the league’s coaches to finally forsake the color line. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "C.M. Newton led with enlightenment while blazing his own trail," 5 June 2018 To support Crews, however, a man forsaking the comfortable façade of patriarchal force for a revealing vulnerability, would be to admit complicity in valuing the masculine veneer. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "Terry Crews and the Discomfort of Masculine Anxiety," 29 June 2018 And while Pyongyang has forsaken new nuclear and missile tests, the United States can continue improving its erratically reliable missile defense system. Andrew Malcolm,, "An inside look at the Trump-Kim summit," 21 June 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for forsake

Middle English, from Old English forsacan, from for- + sacan to dispute; akin to Old English sacu action at law — more at sake

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Time Traveler for forsake

The first known use of forsake was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for forsake



English Language Learners Definition of forsake

: to give up or leave (someone or something) entirely


for·sake | \fər-ˈsāk \
forsook\-ˈsu̇k \; forsaken\-ˈsā-kən \; forsaking

Kids Definition of forsake

: to give up or leave entirely Don't forsake your friends.

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Comments on forsake

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