[fawr-sey-kuh n]


past participle of forsake.


deserted; abandoned; forlorn: an old, forsaken farmhouse.

Related formsfor·sak·en·ly, adverbfor·sak·en·ness, nounself-for·sak·en, adjectiveun·for·sak·en, adjective



verb (used with object), for·sook, for·sak·en, for·sak·ing.

to quit or leave entirely; abandon; desert: She has forsaken her country for an island in the South Pacific.
to give up or renounce (a habit, way of life, etc.).

Origin of forsake

before 900; Middle English forsaken to deny, reject, Old English forsacan, equivalent to for- for- + sacan to dispute
Related formsfor·sak·er, nounun·for·sak·ing, adjective

Synonyms for forsake

Synonym study

1. See desert2. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for forsaken

Contemporary Examples of forsaken

Historical Examples of forsaken

  • He at least did not think that the idol had been forsaken because the use of his name was given up.

  • Far below him lay the pallidly-lit depths of the forsaken thoroughfare.

  • Since Salvat's arrest, the woman and the child had been forsaken and suspected by one and all.

  • Grey Beaver had betrayed and forsaken him, but that had no effect upon him.

    White Fang

    Jack London

  • Tell him also that if he had paid me a little better for my labours, I would not have forsaken him.

    A Hero of Our Time

    M. Y. Lermontov

British Dictionary definitions for forsaken



the past participle of forsake


completely deserted or helpless; abandoned
Derived Formsforsakenly, adverbforsakenness, noun


verb -sakes, -saking, -sook (-ˈsʊk) or -saken (-ˈseɪkən) (tr)

to abandon
to give up (something valued or enjoyed)
Derived Formsforsaker, noun

Word Origin for forsake

Old English forsacan
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 forsaken

mid-13c., past participle adjective from forsake. Related: Forsakenly.



Old English forsacan "object to, decline, oppose, refuse, deny," from for- "completely" + sacan "to deny, refuse" (see sake). Related: Forsaking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper