See also: for ever

English

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Alternative forms

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Etymology

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From Middle English for ever, for evere, equivalent to for +‎ ever.

Pronunciation

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Adverb

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forever (not comparable)

  1. (duration) For all time, for all eternity; for a lifetime; for an infinite amount of time.
    I shall love you forever.
    • 1839, Denison Olmsted, A Compendium of Astronomy, page 95:
      Secondly, When a body is once in motion it will continue to move forever, unless something stops it. When a ball is struck on the surface of the earth, the friction of the earth and the resistance of the air soon stop its motion.
    • 1949, George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four:
      If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face &emdash; for ever.
  2. (duration, colloquial, hyperbolic) For a very long time, a seeming eternity.
    We had to wait forever to get inside.
    That was forever ago.
    • 1988, Anne Tyler, chapter 1, in Breathing Lessons:
      She and Serena had been friends forever. Or nearly forever: forty-two years, beginning with Miss Kimmel's first grade.
    • 2024 February 7, Lee Waters tells Conrad Landin, “A mission to improve transport for Wales”, in RAIL, number 1002, page 35:
      Anything in the world of transport takes forever to do, and costs far too much.
  3. (frequency) Constantly or frequently.
    You are forever nagging me.

Usage notes

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  • In the United Kingdom and most of the Commonwealth, the spelling for ever may be used instead of forever for the senses "for all time" and "for a long time". In Canada and the United States, generally only forever is used, regardless of sense.

Synonyms

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The terms below need to be checked and allocated to the definitions (senses) of the headword above. Each term should appear in the sense for which it is appropriate. For synonyms and antonyms you may use the templates {{syn|en|...}} or {{ant|en|...}}.

Derived terms

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Translations

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Noun

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forever (plural forevers)

  1. An extremely long time.
    I haven't seen him in forever!
    It took me forever to make up my mind.
    Don't spend forever on the phone!
    • 2001 September, Michael Knisley, “The Braves' last stand”, in Sporting News, volume 225, number 36, page 12:
      It's been a fortnight of forevers since the Braves could count on a late-game comeback.
    • 2007, Ruth O'Callaghan, Where acid has etched:
      In the airport, holiday lovers kiss, mouth forevers, the usual argot betrays you. Desire makes love dull.
  2. (colloquial) A mythical time in the infinite future that will never come.
    Sure, I'd be happy to meet with you on the 12th of forever.

Translations

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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Adjective

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forever (not comparable)

  1. Permanent, lasting; constant, perpetual.
    • 1971, Bruce Johnston, "Disney Girls (1957)":
      It'd be a peaceful life / With a forever wife / And a kid someday
    • 2009, Kathy Kadilak, Tommy Finds His Forever Home, page 3:
      We'll take care of you and help you find a Forever Home.
    • 2012, Brad Hicks, For Every Fear a Promise, page 96:
      He is a forever friend.
    • 2016, Mark Danner, Spiral: Trapped in the Forever War:
      Danner posits that the United States has been trapped in a "forever war" by 9/11, and describes a nation that has been altered in fundamental ways by President Bush's having declared a war of choice and without an exit plan, []