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[fawr-shok, fohr-] /ˈfɔrˌʃɒk, ˈfoʊr-/
noun, Geology
a relatively small earthquake that precedes a greater one by a few days or weeks and originates at or near the focus of the larger earthquake.
Origin of foreshock
1900-05; fore- + shock1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for foreshock
  • These maps graphically illustrate the change in earthquake probability during aftershock and possible foreshock sequences.
  • The increase in foreshock activity triggered the evacuation warning.
  • Scientists can't tell that an earthquake is a foreshock until the larger earthquake happens.
  • The tremor was preceded by a light foreshock the previous day.
  • First, a foreshock or aftershock may be of as much public interest as an independent earthquake of the same size.
  • At other times, it is a foreshock with a larger earthquake to follow.
British Dictionary definitions for foreshock


a relatively small earthquake heralding the arrival of a much larger one. Some large earthquakes are preceded by a series of foreshocks Compare aftershock
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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