Definition of forefather in English:



usually one's forefathers
  • 1A member of the past generations of one's family or people; an ancestor.

    ‘the duchy which her forefathers had ruled since the tenth century’
    • ‘With scraps and fabric recycling, you can be creative and frugal and all those things our foremothers and forefathers were when they were sewing at home.’
    • ‘My children know that, in addition to their Indonesian and Chinese ancestors, they also have Scottish and Irish forefathers.’
    • ‘That is, neither we, our forefathers, nor our progeny would have been or would be able to survive if one followed this rule.’
    • ‘It's been passed on and passed on by our forefathers and foremothers throughout time.’
    • ‘They enact the roles they have imbibed from their forefathers acting successively over seven generations.’
    • ‘Like their forefathers, the present generation also has to put up with the stench.’
    • ‘Otho's father, three times mayor of Exeter, was John, and his forefathers in four preceding generations were all either John or William.’
    • ‘It depicts what our forefathers had to endure in the past.’
    • ‘These crimes were not perpetrated by this generation; rather by their forefathers.’
    • ‘Peasants left the land their forefathers had farmed for generations.’
    • ‘Think back on all of his forefathers, and tell me his family is worthy of salvation.’
    • ‘One hundred years ago today, your forefathers declared independence from the tyranny of the rule of my forefathers.’
    • ‘It must be an absolute tragedy for people to know that the language of their forefathers and foremothers would possibly be lost.’
    • ‘For many generations, my forefathers have been lumbermen, loggers and mill workers.’
    • ‘Our forefathers and foremothers were human, made of flesh and blood.’
    • ‘The thrust of the campaign is to ensure that coming generations too experience Sabarimala just like their forefathers did.’
    • ‘Generations of his forefathers had worked as miners, loyal to the union and at major risk of terrible injuries as they worked the kingdom's coal seams.’
    • ‘You are destroying a nation that our forefathers, fathers and the present generation fought and died for.’
    • ‘His forefathers had owned a massive vineyard for the past 5 decades and it had passed on to Giovanni once his father had died.’
    • ‘He says that the blood which ran through the veins of his family's forefathers runs through his own and his son's veins too.’
    forebear, ancestor, predecessor, progenitor, father, grandfather, parent, grandparent
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    1. 1.1 A precursor of a particular movement.
      ‘the forefathers of modern British socialism’
      • ‘These bands are the forefathers of this movement.’
      • ‘The poems of Atal Bihari Vajpayee that I picked to sing in Samvedna were written decades ago when he was still inspired by the legacy of our political forefathers.’
      • ‘Certainly books about books do take us back to our literary forefathers and foremothers and back into the often distant historical past.’
      • ‘They managed to restore the past glory of this forefather of the comic book industry - largely developed by American Jews after the Depression and reaching its heights in the '60s.’
      • ‘It was a seminal collection of work, and he was a forefather to the surrealist movement, as I later found out, and was deeply influential to Marcel Duchamp.’
      • ‘In 1986, he was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame as one of the forefathers of rock music.’
      • ‘Take, for example, the fact that while Lovecraft is usually described as a forefather of modern horror fiction, his stories are, to put it bluntly, not very scary.’
      • ‘These are the forefathers of the American ‘redneck’.’
      • ‘Furthermore, his post as the forefather of opera was seriously questioned and negated.’
      • ‘He was one of the forefathers that pioneered the kind of government we have today.’
      • ‘Please, in every decision made on behalf of the people as is your duty, make choices that this nation's forefathers would appreciate and future generations will benefit from.’
      • ‘If the forefathers of modern Witchcraft experimented why can't we?’
      • ‘It's also entirely likely that we have not come of age and I might be the forefather of a hundred generations of priests designated the holy task of worshipping the artefacts.’
      • ‘It is through these copies that God chose to provide his Word to our forefathers in the faith, as also to our generation and beyond.’
      • ‘Those Puritan forefathers generate their fair share of criticism from we their modern-day descendants.’
      • ‘I am eager, though, to see all the fathers and forefathers of French art, so I can form a very different opinion of France.’
      • ‘Clearly, Smith developed an analysis of lobbying that was the forefather of modern neoclassical political economy.’
      • ‘John Lounsbury, a forefather of the middle school movement, stated there is ‘a charge to keep’.’
      forerunner, predecessor, father, parent, antecedent, ancestor, forebear, progenitor
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