9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[fawr-see, fohr-] /fɔrˈsi, foʊr-/
verb (used with object), foresaw, foreseen, foreseeing.
to have prescience of; to know in advance; foreknow.
to see beforehand.
verb (used without object), foresaw, foreseen, foreseeing.
to exercise foresight.
Origin of foresee
before 900; Middle English; Old English foresēon. See fore-, see1
Related forms
foreseeable, adjective
foreseeability, noun
foreseer, noun
unforeseeable, adjective
unforeseeableness, noun
unforeseeably, adverb
unforeseeing, adjective
unforeseen, adjective
well-foreseen, adjective
1. divine, discern. See predict. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for foreseen
  • It is not enough for harm to civilians to be unintended, even if foreseen.
  • He probably should have foreseen that the psychic path was not particularly fruitful.
  • The ecological problems created, that were not foreseen, have to be addressed.
  • In the trying, there will be new possibilities that are not now foreseen.
  • Well, then came a development that could have been foreseen and probably was, but not by my father.
  • And you could not have foreseen it, that little row.
  • No one had foreseen the illness that brought my father down.
  • Most of these things can be foreseen and avoided with iron discipline and great focus and persistence.
  • Increase in human well-being which had not been foreseen.
  • It could have been foreseen: the town was founded on a bunch of dead bodies.
British Dictionary definitions for foreseen


verb -sees, -seeing, -saw, -seen
(transitive; may take a clause as object) to see or know beforehand: he did not foresee that
Derived Forms
foreseeable, adjective
foreseer, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for foreseen



Old English foreseon "have a premonition," from fore- "before" + seon "to see, see ahead" (see see (v.)). Related: Foresaw; foreseeing; foreseen.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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