a man who begets offspring; a male parent.
Often Father . one’s own male parent: When we were kids, Father read to us regularly.My father is visiting us next week.
a father-in-law, stepfather, foster father, male adoptive parent, or male guardian.
Usually Father . a term of address for a male parent or a man having or regarded as having the status, function, or authority of a male parent: How are you, Father?
any male ancestor, especially the founder of a family or line; progenitor.
a man providing care or exercising influence or authority like that of a male parent: The late professor was a father to all his students.
the qualities characteristic of a father, such as paternal affection, protectiveness, responsibility, etc.: He had been quite a rake, but his newborn daughter quickly brought out the father in him.
a man who has originated or established something: Freud is often called the father of modern psychology.The founding fathers of America took care to separate church and state.
an early form; forerunner or prototype: The horseless carriage was the father of the modern automobile.
one of the most well-known or prominent men in a city, town, etc.: There was a scandal involving several of the city fathers.
Chiefly British. the oldest living or serving member of a society, profession, etc.: Compare dean (def. 3).
a title for something personified as an older or elderly man: Father Time.
a term of familiar address for an old or elderly man.
Often the Father .Theology.
Christianity. the first person of the Trinity.
Also called church father .Church History. any of the chief early Christian writers, whose works are the main sources for the history, doctrines, and observances of the church in the early ages.
Usually Father . a title of reverence, as for church dignitaries, officers of monasteries, monks, confessors, and especially priests.
Often Father . a person bearing this title: He is a father in the Catholic church.
fathers, Roman History. conscript fathers.
being a male parent: The father penguin rests the egg on his feet and covers it with a fold of warm skin.
to beget; be the father of: He fathered seven children over three marriages.
to be the male creator, founder, or author of; originate.
to care for or protect like a father; act paternally toward: He’s always fathering me and checking the oil in my car.After Dad died, my uncle fathered my brother and me.
Archaic. to acknowledge oneself the father or originator of: He would only father the novel if it became popular.
Archaic. to assume as one's own; take the responsibility of.
Archaic. to charge someone with the begetting of: Do not try to father the boy on me.
to perform the tasks or duties of a male parent; act paternally: He fathers like he’s been doing it for years, though his kid is only three months old.
- fa·ther·like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use father in a sentence
“I think that Joe Biden will be the person to protect Anthony and those with preexisting conditions,” the father says.Trump contradicts CDC director on vaccine; Biden says Americans shouldn’t trust Trump | Colby Itkowitz, Felicia Sonmez, John Wagner | September 16, 2020 | Washington Post
Six unknowing months before the start of the Great Depression, my father arrived.
While DeFazio and other lawmakers haven’t called for a permanent grounding of the jet, the father of a woman who died in the Ethiopia crash said the report raised questions about the plane’s return to service.Boeing crashes were the “horrific culmination” of multiple mistakes, House report says | kdunn6 | September 16, 2020 | Fortune
I have been yelled at basically my entire life, from my father, my family, to high school.Momofuku’s David Chang on the big changes the restaurant industry needs to make to survive | Beth Kowitt | September 14, 2020 | Fortune
Anthony Mallott said that no one asked his father to resign, and that he did so voluntarily.The Woman Propositioned by Alaska’s Former Lieutenant Governor Tells Her Story for the First Time | by Kyle Hopkins and Michelle Theriault Boots, Anchorage Daily News | September 10, 2020 | ProPublica
What matters is being honest, humble, and a faithful and loyal friend, father and member of your community.Abramoff’s Advice for Virginia’s New Jailhouse Guv | Tim Mak, Jackie Kucinich | January 7, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
father Joel Román Salazar died in a car crash in 2013; his death was ruled an accident, but the suspicion of foul play persists.
Charles “father” Coughlin, a raving anti-Semite, was one of the most popular radio hosts in the country.Why Was Bess Myerson the First and Last Jewish Miss America? | Emily Shire | January 7, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
You will have your beloved father back sooner than you think, and you can visit and communicate with him all the while.Abramoff’s Advice for Virginia’s New Jailhouse Guv | Tim Mak, Jackie Kucinich | January 7, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
“There is a heavy security presence but nothing has changed,” agrees father Javier.
There was a rumor that Alessandro and his father had both died; but no one knew anything certainly.
And he was gone, and out of sight on the swift galloping Benito, before father Gaspara bethought himself.
At this same time they seized in Nangasaqui a servant of the father provincial, Matheo Couros, who was washing his clothes.
He wanted to tell her that if she called her father, it would mean the end of everything for them, but he withheld this.The Homesteader | Oscar Micheaux
The father had been in sore straits of mind, as month after month had passed without tidings of his "blessed child."
British Dictionary definitions for father (1 of 2)
a male parent
a person who founds a line or family; forefather
any male acting in a paternal capacity: Related adjective: paternal
(often capital) a respectful term of address for an old man
a male who originates something: the father of modern psychology
a leader of an association, council, etc; elder: a city father
British the eldest or most senior member in a society, profession, etc: father of the bar
(often plural) a senator or patrician in ancient Rome
the father of informal a very large, severe, etc, example of a specified kind: the father of a whipping
to procreate or generate (offspring); beget
to create, found, originate, etc
to act as a father to
to acknowledge oneself as father or originator of
(foll by on or upon) to impose or place without a just reason
- fathering, noun
British Dictionary definitions for Father (2 of 2)
God, esp when considered as the first person of the Christian Trinity
Also called: Church Father any of the writers on Christian doctrine of the pre-Scholastic period
a title used for Christian priests
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with father
see like father, like son.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.