Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A person from whom one is descended; an ancestor. See Synonyms at ancestor.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An ancestor.
  • v. Obsolete spelling of forbear.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An ancestor. See forbear.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One who has existed before another; an ancestor; a forefather.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a person from whom you are descended

Etymologies

Middle English forbear : fore-, fore- + beer, one who is (from ben, to be; see be).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From fore- +‎ beer (“one who is or exists”). More at beer. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The Woking-based outfit, who have been dubbed the 'British super-team' since reigning world champion Jenson Button joined their ranks alongside his title forebear Lewis Hamilton, became only the second of the 2010 F1 entries to officially launch their new car.

    The Latest From www.inthenews.co.uk

  • Joseph Proudhon, a man ahead of his time, and who would soon become known as a forebear to anarchism.

    nefac.net

  • i 'the "killing times," ye ken, preachin' till the puir hill folk, an 'baptizin' their bairns -- he baptized a forebear o 'my ain -- and it would likely be the annivairsary o' the day when he escaped frae the hans o 'the hunters through the "haar," when I chanced to come by here an' saw a bit tent pit up, an 'heard folk carousin' within.

    Border Ghost Stories

  • It should already be clear that it was Mariana, rather than Suarez, who might be called the forebear of John Locke's theory of popular consent and the continuing superiority of the people to the government.

    LewRockwell.com

  • The FCC promises it would 'forebear' any attempt to control content under Title II.

    Rick Carnes: Net Neutrality -- Can We Trust the FCC Not to Censor the Internet?

  • But can we really trust the FCC to 'forebear' authority to reach any further than the transport level?

    Rick Carnes: Net Neutrality -- Can We Trust the FCC Not to Censor the Internet?

  • West Germanic, in turn, shares a linguistic forebear with two other groups of languages, North and East Germanic.

    The English Is Coming!

  • Miliband's forebear, Neil Kinnock, today demanded regulation to enforce "balance" on the press.

    The Murdoch story is not a Berlin Wall moment – just daft hysteria | Simon Jenkins

  • I am here because my forebear "got tight with the Prince Regent", he said.

    Hugh Muir's Diary

  • The announcement of the Nintendo eShop for 3DS was soon followed by its launch and it's a great deal more solid and reliable than its creaky DSi forebear was.

    Games news from E3

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