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See also: förstånd


Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English forstanden, from Old English forstandan (to defend, help, protect, withstand, prevent, hinder, resist, oppose, benefit, avail, understand, signify, be equal to), from Proto-Germanic *farstandaną, *frastandaną (to understand, oppose), equivalent to for- +‎ stand. Cognate with Dutch verstaan (to understand), German verstehen (to understand), Swedish förstå (to comprehend, understand).


forstand (third-person singular simple present forstands, present participle forstanding, simple past and past participle forstood)

  1. (transitive) To stand against; stand in front of so as to bar the way; block; oppose; withstand.
    • 1849, John Mitchell Kemble, The Saxons in England:
      "As he would more of them had not wise God, Wierd forstood him, and the man's courage."
    • 1895, The Medical News:
      Hemophilia is a contraindication for vaginal hysterectomy, unless you have the time to build your patient up in order to forestand the shock.
    • 1963, Fredericus Theodorus Visser, An historical syntax of the English language: Volume 1, Part 3:
      A mighty angel there forstood them.
  2. (transitive, Britain dialectal) To understand; comprehend.
    • 1878, Samuel Smiles, Robert Dick: baker, of Thurso, geologist and botanist:
      How can I forstand your Professors, when they dinna forstand themselves."


  • Wright, The English dialect dictionary, forstand.



Compare forstå (understand).


forstand c (singular definite forstanden, not used in plural form)

  1. sanity, sense, ability to reason, wiseness




From Middle English forstanden, from Old English forstandan (to defend, understand), equivalent to for-, stand.


tae forstand

  1. To withstand, resist