[fawr-thawt, fohr-]


thoughtful provision beforehand; provident care; prudence.
a thinking of something beforehand; previous consideration; anticipation.

Origin of forethought

First recorded in 1250–1300, forethought is from the Middle English word forthoght. See fore-, thought1

Synonyms for forethought

1. See prudence. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for forethought

Contemporary Examples of forethought

Historical Examples of forethought

  • In the woods, as nowhere else, you will earn your leisure only by forethought.

    The Forest

    Stewart Edward White

  • The servants had had the forethought to bring up two lamps with them.

    The Flood

    Emile Zola

  • Only, they had had the forethought to photograph the unidentified.

    The Flood

    Emile Zola

  • The mind of Xenophon: guiding principles, rule of Health, rule of Forethought.



  • For most of them she had had the time and the forethought to prepare.

    England and Germany

    Emile Joseph Dillon

British Dictionary definitions for forethought



advance consideration or deliberation
thoughtful anticipation of future events
Derived Formsforethoughtful, adjectiveforethoughtfully, adverbforethoughtfulness, noun
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 forethought

c.1300, from fore- + thought. Old English had foreðencan "to premeditate, consider."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper