From Middle English forth-with (“at once, immediately; at the same time, already; straight ahead”) [and other forms], partly from the phrase forth with (something), and partly from forth-with-al, furth-with-al (“at once, immediately; together with”) (whence forthwithal).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /fɔːθˈwɪð/, /-ˈwɪθ/
- (General American) IPA(key): /fɔɹθˈwɪθ/, /ˈfɔɹθˌwɪθ/
Audio (GA) (file)
- Rhymes: -ɪð, -ɪθ
- Hyphenation: forth‧with
forthwith (not comparable)
- (chiefly formal, literary) Without delay; immediately. [from early 14th c.]
- 1533, Erasmus of Roterdame, “The Thyrde Instruction”, in [anonymous], transl., A Playne and Godly Exposytion or Declaration of the Commune Crede (which in the Latin Tonge is Called Symbolum Apostolorum): And of the .x. Commaundementes of Goddes Law. […], imprinted at London […]: By me Robert Redman, […] [for William Marshall], OCLC 1114134812, folio 66, verso:
- Neyther euery thynge, whiche ony maner way is bredde or gendred of man: is forthwith a man (for els lyſe ſholde be called men) But that thynge, whiche is conceyued in the matrice or wombe of a woman, of the very ſubſtaunce of man: [...]
- 1667, John Milton, “Book VII”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: […] [Samuel Simmons], […], OCLC 228722708; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: […], London: Basil Montagu Pickering […], 1873, OCLC 230729554, lines 243–245:
- Let ther be Light, ſaid God, and forthwith Light, / Ethereal, firſt of things, quinteſſence pure, / Sprung from the Deep, [...]
- 1678, John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress from This World, to That which is to Come: […], London: […] Nath[aniel] Ponder […], OCLC 228725984; reprinted in The Pilgrim’s Progress (The Noel Douglas Replicas), London: Noel Douglas, […], 1928, OCLC 5190338, page 129:
- Then Proclamation was made, that they that had ought to ſay for their Lord the King againſt the Priſoner at the Bar, ſhould forthwith appear and give in their evidence.
- 1714, T[itus] Lucretius Carus, “Of the Annual Inundation of the River Nile”, in Thomas Creech, transl., Of the Nature of Things. Translated into English Verse […], volume II (Containing the Fifth and Sixth Books), London: Printed by John Matthews, for George Sawbridge, […], OCLC 913056196, page 703:
- And no doubt the dry'd Dirt, and Slime of which we were ſpeaking, would have imbib'd ſome Portion of the Humidity, the Day before the Nile overflow'd, had it not been kept ſo cloſe: but being once releas'd from that Cuſtody, it forthwith ruſhes into the Embraces of the deſir'd Moiſture, following the natural Propenſity of dry Bodies to wet.
- 1885, W[illiam] S[chwenck] Gilbert; Arthur Sullivan, composer, “Our Great Mikado, Virtuous Man”, in […] The Mikado; or, The Town of Titipu, London: Chappel & Co., […], OCLC 25083293, Act I, page 5:
- So he decreed, in words succinct, / That all who flirted, leered or winked, / (Unless connubially linked), / Should forthwith be beheaded.
- 1961 July, “Glasgow emergency – the restoration of Clydeside steam suburban services”, in Trains Illustrated, page 431:
- The task was the harder in that the restored service had not only to start forthwith but also to last for several months pending modifications to the multiple-unit electric stock, and this called for organisation on a semi-permanent basis.
- 1998, Richard M. Zaner, “Surprise! You’re Just Like Me!: Reflections on Cloning, Eugenics, and Other Utopias”, in James M. Humber and Robert F. Almeder, editors, Human Cloning (Biomedical Ethics Reviews), New York, N.Y.: Springer Science+Business Media, DOI:10.1007/978-1-59259-205-0, →ISBN, ISSN 0742-1796, page 114:
- [Hans] Jonas emphasized years ago that the prospect of genetic control, though cloning and other means, "raises ethical questions of a wholly new kind," for which we are profoundly unprepared. [...] Is it defensible in any sense, for instance, to set out forthwith to create "grade A individuals", "kids made to order," whether designed as privileged deciders of policy or merely dumb drones for the duller humdrum chores of life?
- 2010, Martin W. Bowman, “Dam Buster – Dudley Heal”, in Bombs Away!: Dramatic First-hand Accounts of British and Commonwealth Bomber Aircrew in WWII, Barnsley, South Yorkshire: Pen & Sword Aviation, Pen & Sword Books, →ISBN, page 133:
- [W]hen the Board announced in March 1940, that after a certain date in May no Customs staff aged 23 or over would be allowed to join the Armed Forces it made our minds up for us. We were both 23! We forthwith applied for permission to enlist in the RAF.
- ^ “fō̆rth-with, adv.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
- ^ “fō̆rth-with-al, adv.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
- ^ “forthwith, adv.”, in OED Online , Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1897; “forthwith, adv.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.