Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[uh-fawr, uh-fohr] /əˈfɔr, əˈfoʊr/
adverb, preposition, conjunction, Older Use.
Origin of afore
late Middle English
before 900; late Middle English; Middle English aforne, aforen, Old English on foran. See a-1, fore1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for afore
Historical Examples
  • An' I'm thinkin', Liz,' says I, 'he'll say things no man ever said afore—t' you.'

  • Never seed nothin' like that afore—no, lads, not in all my life.

  • I hadn't been in the Bible class five minutes afore I guessed how he was carryin' on.

    Tiverton Tales Alice Brown
  • You see if I don't, an' afore another night goes over my head!

    Meadow Grass Alice Brown
  • Now, yer r'yal 'ighness, wot can I do for you afore you goes ashore?

    The Black Bag Louis Joseph Vance
  • Not he—he's no conjuror: many's the dozen tricks I played him afore now.

  • For there's something waur noo, and has been for some time, than ever was there afore!

    Salted With Fire George MacDonald
  • The very day afore he died, he cut that with his pocket-knife from memory!

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • It got 'most dinner time and he had an appetite that he hadn't had afore for months.

    Thankful's Inheritance Joseph C. Lincoln
  • I got him to ask me—he'd as much as asked me afore—and then I made him sign that paper.

    Thankful's Inheritance Joseph C. Lincoln
British Dictionary definitions for afore


adverb, preposition, conjunction
an archaic or dialect word for before
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for afore

Old English onforan "before, at the beginning of, in front of," from phrase on foran, from on (prep.) + foran (adv.) "in front," dative of for.

In some cases probably it represents Old English ætforan "at-fore." Once the literary equivalent of before, now it has mostly been replaced by that word except in nautical use and in combinations such as aforesaid and aforethought.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for afore

Word Value for afore

Scrabble Words With Friends