[ fawr-bair-uhns ]
/ fɔrˈbɛər əns /


the act of forbearing; a refraining from something.
forbearing conduct or quality; patient endurance; self-control.
an abstaining from the enforcement of a right.
a creditor's giving of indulgence after the day originally fixed for payment.

Nearby words

  1. foray,
  2. forb,
  3. forbad,
  4. forbade,
  5. forbear,
  6. forbearing,
  7. forbes,
  8. forbes disease,
  9. forbes-robertson,
  10. forbes-robertson, sir johnston

Origin of forbearance

First recorded in 1570–80; forbear1 + -ance

Related formsnon·for·bear·ance, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for forbearance

British Dictionary definitions for forbearance


/ (fɔːˈbɛərəns) /


the act of forbearing
self-control; patience
law abstention from or postponement of the enforcement of a legal right, esp by a creditor allowing his debtor time to pay
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

Word Origin and History for forbearance



1570s, originally legal, in reference to enforcement of debt obligations, from forbear (v.) + -ance. General sense of "refraining from" is from 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper