forlorn

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English forlorn, forloren, from Old English forloren (past participle of forlēosan(to lose)), from Proto-Germanic *fraluzanaz(lost), past participle of Proto-Germanic *fraleusaną(to lose), equivalent to for- +‎ lorn. Cognate with West Frisian ferlern(lost), Dutch verloren(lost), German verloren(lost), Swedish förlorad(lost). More at lese/leese, lorn.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

forlorn

  1. (obsolete) past participle of forlese

Adjective[edit]

forlorn (comparative forlorner or more forlorn, superlative forlornest or most forlorn)

  1. Abandoned, left behind, deserted.
  2. Miserable, as when lonely being abandoned.
    • Oliver Goldsmith (1730-1774)
      For here forlorn and lost I tread.
    • William H. Prescott (1796-1859)
      The condition of the besieged in the mean time was forlorn in the extreme.
    • Mowbray Thomson (1832-1917)
      She cherished the forlorn hope that he was still living in captivity
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 6, in A Cuckoo in the Nest:
      Sophia broke down here. Even at this moment she was subconsciously comparing her rendering of the part of the forlorn bride with Miss Marie Lohr's.
  3. Unlikely to succeed.

Derived terms[edit]

Synonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

forlorn (plural forlorns)

  1. (military) A forlorn hope.
  2. (military) A member of a forlorn hope.