from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adverb By necessity; by force of circumstance.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • By force or violence; of necessity.
  • To force; constrain; compel.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adverb By force; of necessary; at any rate.
  • transitive verb obsolete To force; to compel.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adverb archaic By force.
  • adverb Necessarily.
  • verb obsolete To force; to compel.

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

  • adverb by necessity; by force of circumstance


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

[Middle English par force, from Old French : par, by (from Latin per; see per) + force, force; see force.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English par force, from Anglo-Norman, from Old French par force ("by force")


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  • Hence, the mere presence of Nato troops – extending the writ of the central government - perforce, is an achievement in itself.

    More equals less? Richard 2006

  • They are more like children to him, even the hunters, and as children he treats them, descending perforce to their level and playing with them as a man plays with puppies.

    Chapter 8 2010

  • He who loves one must perforce love all the world and all the unborn worlds.

    The Kempton-Wace Letters 2010

  • His quick-changing facial expressions might tell every thought and mood, but the tongue, perforce, ran hard after, repeating, like a second Boswell.

    All Gold Cañon 2010

  • By sunset this exchange of boats was made, and we said good-by to our Greek, who perforce had to go into Benicia and be locked up for his own violation of the law.


  • ** Obscure in the sense that no one read it the first time, perforce the second.

    White House Spellcheck FAIL. - Moe_Lane’s blog - RedState 2009

  • In the days when you had to stoke the coal stove and scrub the washing, class differences were perforce more pronounced.

    Electric Liberation, Arnold Kling | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty 2009

  • The water still poured in, and perforce we doubled up in the cockpit and tossed it out again.

    White and Yellow 2010

  • For food I gathered a few vegetables from farms on the fringe of the forest, which, perforce, I had to eat raw and after ten days on this diet found that I was able to eat only enough to keep me going.

    Walter (Bill) Gossner 2010

  • Had the Factor gone but one step farther, perforce Snettishane would himself have mentioned the name of Lit-lit, but -- the Factor had not gone that one step farther.



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  • This is also the name of my preferred source control tool, Perforce.

    November 5, 2008

  • How does one use this word? It seems so odd and doesn't easily roll off the tongue.

    Is the following correct: "Regrettably and with much hesitance, the source control tool was perforce replaced with Team Foundation Server."

    November 5, 2008

  • "To sleep, perforce to dream."

    November 5, 2008

  • "To sleep, perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub"

    November 5, 2008

  • Ah... so close! I should have done my reasearch! Ha!

    November 5, 2008

  • Richard of Gloucester: You must have patience, gentle Clarence.

    George of Clarence: (holding up his handcuffed hands) I must, perforce.

    November 5, 2008