Word of the Day : November 20, 2018

perforce

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adverb per-FORSS

Definition

: by force of circumstances

Did You Know?

English speakers borrowed par force from Anglo-French in the 14th century. Par meant "by" (from Latin per) and the Anglo-French word force had the same meaning as its English equivalent, which was already in use by then. At first, perforce meant quite literally "by physical coercion." That meaning is no longer used today, but it was still prevalent in William Shakespeare's lifetime (1564-1616). "He rush'd into my house and took perforce my ring away," wrote the Bard in The Comedy of Errors. The "by force of circumstances" sense of perforce had also come into use by Shakespeare's day. In Henry IV, Part 2, we find "... your health; the which, if you give o'er to stormy passion, must perforce decay."


Examples

"All that frantic traveling was in lieu of any compelling reason to stay home, and those many, many friendships were perforce conducted at long distance." — Blake Bailey, The New York Times Book Review, 28 Dec. 2012

"But by making an opera about television—a source of entertainment for the Everyman—they are, perforce, creating a marriage of high and low." — Hilton Als, The New Yorker, 12 Mar. 2018



Name That Synonym

Unscramble the letters to create a synonym of perforce: LIBIYNVATE.

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