Definition of forget in English:



  • 1 Fail to remember:

    ‘he had forgotten his lines’
    [with clause] ‘she had completely forgotten how hungry she was’
    • ‘I am crossing fingers that I won't completely forget everything when it goes live!’
    • ‘No one who lived through that period can have forgotten it or failed to carry its images in their mind.’
    • ‘Neither are unreliable to the point of forgetting an appointment completely.’
    • ‘Often blood was drawn but without malice, just an accident, like an actor forgetting his lines because he's trying too hard to remember.’
    • ‘I'm sure, in retrospect, that it was a case of remembering the hits and forgetting the misses.’
    • ‘As we listen to his wonderful gab, we should remember what he sometimes forgot or failed to say.’
    • ‘Soon he forgets the article and remembers only Dominique; he gathers sketches so he can go into the office where she is, but thinks better of it.’
    • ‘Most of the time this meant that she forgot my name and remembered to give her manicurist a lovely tip.’
    • ‘A person either remembers these voices or forgets them.’
    • ‘It smelled delicious and made us forget the preceding conversation completely.’
    • ‘The story is an allegory of the Cultural Revolution, and deals with remembering and forgetting the traumatic events of the Maoist era.’
    • ‘By the time you go back in the afternoon some of these people have completely forgotten the cameras are there.’
    • ‘Ask me again in two weeks - I'll either have forgotten it completely, or it will behaunting me.’
    • ‘Mary has 18 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren and she says she has an awful lot of birthdays to remember but she never forgets any of them.’
    • ‘I've now remembered that I've forgotten something else, but I can live without it.’
    • ‘I recently picked the thing up again and surprised myself by remembering most of the chords, but completely forgetting their names.’
    • ‘Not being pressed to come up with arguments or evidence to support them, one forgets the arguments and fails to obtain the evidence.’
    • ‘I found myself mixing up my lines, or forgetting them completely.’
    • ‘I was in one of my dancing moods and completely forgot his distaste for mustard.’
    • ‘He blocks shots with abandon - completely forgetting the scary incident a few years back when a puck hit him in the chest, musing him to collapse.’
    fail to remember, fail to recall, fail to think of, let slip
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    1. 1.1 Inadvertently neglect to do, bring, or mention something:
      ‘I forgot my raincoat’
      [with infinitive] ‘she forgot to lock her door’
      [no object] ‘I'm sorry, I just forgot’
      • ‘I forgot to mention earlier that my amazement at the proliferation of wireless networks continues.’
      • ‘I forgot to bring my bathing suit, so I had to wear a pair of Dylan's shorts, and I wore my top.’
      • ‘Kane apparently forgot to mention that he too had been drinking.’
      • ‘They ran to the trunk and popped it open, to find 2 other bags that they forgot to bring in.’
      • ‘Amidst my ranting I forgot to mention why I posted the previous blog.’
      • ‘He's not tried to be dishonest, he has just forgotten to mention one thing.’
      • ‘Pulling the shower curtains away I realized I had forgot to bring in my clothes.’
      • ‘I think I forgot to mention that Saturday my family was supposed to have a little gathering around a barbecue pit.’
      • ‘This is something that they forgot to mention right at the start, in the opening meeting.’
      • ‘Somehow they forgot to mention that we share nearly as high a percentage of genes with chimpanzees.’
      • ‘John, you also forgot to mention their dastardly plans to bomb women and children in yet more state sponsored terror.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention that Joy is one of the best blog writers I've come across.’
      • ‘This works particularly well if your humans have forgotten to bring a plastic bag.’
      • ‘I had just started preparing the hot tube for a bath when I saw I had forgot to bring my toothpaste.’
      • ‘But he forgot to mention the shadow which is naturally cast by any object standing in the light, whether or not it is visible to our eyes.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention that LAX is the craziest airport that I have ever visited.’
      • ‘Oh yeah I forgot to mention that I got my University acceptance, final and complete, in the mail today.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention something which happened a couple of days ago.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention when talking about Oscar that he had his 15 minutes of fame.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention the corporatization and control of the music industry and radio.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention on Wednesday that I'd harvested my first sprouting broccoli.’
      • ‘Ross may simply have forgotten to mention this, but it is the fact that there is no legal penalty that beggars belief.’
      • ‘I forgot to mention a conversation I had with Adam while we were watching the Opening Ceremony.’
      • ‘It looks to me like someone on his staff forgot to bring the right suitcase.’
      • ‘It's also very possible that sometimes Max forgot to bring the records home and they got tossed out.’
      • ‘She almost forgot to bring her cell phone at the top of the kitchen counter but luckily she remembered it.’
      • ‘Actually, the drummer was intending to record it and forgot to bring his tape machine.’
      • ‘One nice thing I forgot to mention was the bottle of champagne I won in the raffle.’
      • ‘In the tumult of today, I forgot to mention my lovely night out yesterday.’
      leave behind, omit to take, overlook, lose track of, mislay, misplace, lose
      neglect, fail, omit, not remember
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    2. 1.2 Deliberately cease to think of:
      ‘forget all this romantic stuff’
      [no object] ‘for years she had struggled to forget about him’
      • ‘He advised people with dogs to forget about exercise in the excessive heat and to make sure there was plenty of shade and cool water.’
      • ‘A couple of great events are coming up in the next two months to help us forget about all the snow earlier this week.’
      • ‘The players and management can go home and forget about it, we have to live with the trauma of possible relegation every day.’
      • ‘Now I can forget about it until early April, when the actual paper itself is due.’
      • ‘If you get to 30 and you're single, forget about it, you're one of life's singles.’
      • ‘Add the rice and two cups of water, cover the pot, and turn the heat down low enough for you to forget about it for a while.’
      • ‘Then you might as well forget about walking to the traffic lights and just jaywalk in the middle of the street.’
      • ‘That crisis of civilizational morale, in turn, helps explain why European man is deliberately forgetting his history.’
      • ‘That's where dishes you can pop in the oven and forget about come in.’
      • ‘Some might hide and forget about it, there are some who might even run from it and try to make a new life, forgetting the past like it never existed.’
      • ‘Now in its eighth year, World Book Day encourages children to forget about technology and to get back to basics.’
      • ‘The view out the front through the large windscreen is good, but forget about seeing the bonnet.’
      • ‘They're not kidding themselves about their age, but ice hockey lets them forget about it for a couple of hours each week.’
      • ‘I know there are the people who will say just forget about it, it's not worth it.’
      • ‘And on the other hand I don't want him to call me, because it would be so much easier to forget about him that way.’
      • ‘Either buy the girl her superstructure out of the goodness of your heart or forget about it.’
      • ‘We should forget about the Government, forget about the doctor and think about the patient.’
      • ‘If the Democrats preselect this dud, they can forget about trying to regain credibility.’
      • ‘When push comes to shove, you just forget about it - it's just not worth the heartache.’
      • ‘Anyone in his position would have wanted to completely forget about his escape from the long arm of the law.’
      stop thinking about, think no more of, cease to think of, cease to remember, put out of one's mind, shut out, blank out, pay no heed to, not worry about, ignore, overlook, never mind, take no notice of, banish from one's thoughts, put away, get over, set aside, lay aside, pass over, abandon, have done with, drop, disregard, brush off, shrug off
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3forget oneself Neglect to behave in an appropriate way:
      ‘‘I'm sorry, Cassie. I forget myself’’
      • ‘Yet she will soon forget herself and mess up if she has not done so already.’
      • ‘Indeed, they maintain an impressive dignity when the audience forgets itself and shakes with laughter.’
      • ‘Not that we have many guests, mind you, but it doesn't do to forget yourself, does it?’
      • ‘He is so used to lying that he forgot himself and revealed the truth that the plane was shot down but didn't think about the logical mess he had gotten himself into by mentioning it as if it was part of a terrorist act in itself’
      • ‘For a second you forgot yourself and kissed me back.’
      • ‘When Joe appears, she forgets herself and jumps to her feet, dropping the blanket and exposing her condition.’
      • ‘‘One silly girl can't make all that difference, Francis,’ Eleanor dismissed, ‘You forget yourself!’’
      • ‘So if you momentarily forget yourself and somehow fail to legitimately acquire rights, don't worry, because they can vape that inauthentic content instantly, and you'll be clean again.’
      • ‘They either remember my game playing as a child and avoid the issue or I'm too embarrassed to ask them just in case I forget myself and slam a door when I lose…’
      • ‘If I forget myself even for a second and let myself down I know there'll be people who'll jump on that.’
      • ‘He's getting all the plaudits for walking, but what actually happened was that he forgot himself and started to move.’
      • ‘Temporarily forgetting himself, Cannington was now leaning across the desk staring at Robert King.’
      act improperly, misbehave, do wrong, go wrong, behave badly, be misbehaved, misconduct oneself, be bad, be naughty, get up to mischief, get up to no good, act up, cause someone trouble, give someone trouble
      sin, go astray, transgress, trespass, fall from grace, lapse, degenerate
      muck about, play up
      View synonyms


  • forget it

    • 1Said when telling someone that their idea or aspiration is impracticable.

    • 2Said when insisting to someone that there is no need for apology or thanks:

      ‘‘I'm sorry …’ she began. ‘Forget it’’
  • not forgetting ——

    • (at the end of a list) and also ——:

      ‘there are wild goats and deer, not forgetting the famous Lundy ponies’
      • ‘The Trust has a range of other projects in the pipeline, large and small, that will benefit all sectors of the community, not forgetting the older members who are so often overlooked.’
      • ‘The heat and not forgetting the stress was mounting upon Sarah and it was beginning to show…’
      • ‘Guests travelled from Ireland, Wales, Kent, London and San Lucia, not forgetting some long standing friends in Monserret.’
      • ‘The designers seek inspiration from the 1940s and the 1960s, not forgetting the 1980s revival.’
      • ‘You're taught about everything from nutrition, rice cooking, and knife skills, to the many varieties of sushi - not forgetting presentation.’
      • ‘We now have two home games in the next two weeks, which means points must be gained properly from good quality cricket, batting, bowling and not forgetting fielding.’
      • ‘Since then his life has been hectic, after adjusting to the climate, the culture and not forgetting the old enemy, the mosquito, a fellow that shows no mercy.’
      • ‘Scottish Friends of Palestine, one of the organisers of the protest against the event, is proud to have Jewish founding members, not forgetting existing members.’
      • ‘It would help considerably if parents ensure that the owners name appears somewhere on all items of clothing, not forgetting footballs.’
      • ‘An example of this is the school celebrating religious festivals such as the Hindu Diwali and the Muslim Eid, not forgetting Christmas.’


Old English forgietan, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch vergeten and German vergessen, and ultimately to for- and get.