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From Middle English froward, fraward, equivalent to fro +‎ -ward.



froward (comparative more froward, superlative most froward)

  1. (archaic) Disobedient, contrary, unmanageable; difficult to deal with; with an evil disposition.
    • 1592, William Shakespeare, The Taming of the Shrew:
      Her onely fault, and that is faults enough, / Is, that she is intollerable curst, / And shrow'd, and froward, so beyond all measure, / That were my state farre worser then it is, / I would not wed her for a mine of Gold.
    • The way of man is froward and strange: but as for the pure, his work is right.
    • 1826, George Crabb
      A froward child becomes an untoward youth, who turns a deaf ear to all the admonitions of an afflicted parent.
    • 2007, Peter Marshall, Mother Leakey and the Bishop: A Ghost Story[1], Oxford Univ. Press, ISBN 9780199273713:
      … which so incensed this old hag that she grew as froward and sullen as the doctor, …
    • 1954, J. R. R. Tolkien, "The Two Towers":
      'I owe much to Eomer,' said Theoden. 'Faithful heart may have froward tongue.'
    • c2009, Mary Sidney, “Froward Women”, in Mary Sidney[2], retrieved 2012-08-31:
      However, it does make one wonder — if William Shakespeare were the creator of all these froward, literate, and often powerful women, why did he let his own daughters grow up illiterate?
    • 2012 June 9, Christine, “Forward or Froward”, in Talk Wisdom[3], retrieved 2012-08-31:
      … the Communist/Marxist/Progressive/Globalist meaning of the term "Forward" can more accurately be labeled as Froward. … campaign slogan choice would better resemble the term "Froward" rather than the term "Forward."


Derived termsEdit




  1. (obsolete) Away from.
    • 1485, Sir Thomas Malory, Le Morte d’Arthur, Bk.XIII, Ch.xvij:
      Whan Sir Galahad herde hir sey so, he was adrad to be knowyn; and therewith he smote hys horse with his sporys and rode a grete pace froward them.