see also: FOR
    • (British) IPA: /fɔː(ɹ)/
    • (America, CA) IPA: /fɔɹ/
    • (AuE, New Zealand) IPA: /foː(ɹ)/
    • (British, AuE) IPA: /fə(ɹ)/
    • (New Zealand) IPA: /fɘ(ɹ)/
    • (America, CA) IPA: /fɚ/, IPA: /fə/
  1. (literary) Because, as, since.
    I had to stay with my wicked stepmother, for I had nowhere else to go.
Synonyms Translations Preposition
  1. Towards; in the direction of.
    The astronauts headed for the moon.
    Run for the hills!
    He was headed for the door when he remembered.
    • 1626, Francis Bacon, The New Atlantis
      We sailed from Peru.. for China and Japan.
  2. Directed at; intended to belong to.
    I have something for you.
  3. In order to help, benefit, gratify, honor etc. (someone or something).
    Everything I do, I do for you.
    We're having a birthday party for Janet.
    The mayor gave a speech for the charity gala.
  4. To be used or treated in a stated way, or with a stated purpose.
    This is a new bell for my bicycle.
    The cake is for Tom and Helen's anniversary.
    These apples here are for eating. The rest are for throwing away.
  5. Supporting; in favour of.
    Antonyms: against
    All those for the motion raise your hands.
  6. Because of.
    He wouldn't apologize; and just for that, she refused to help him.
    (UK usage) He looks better for having lost weight.
    She was the worse for drink.
    I like her for lots of reasons.
    • c. 1591–1592, William Shakespeare, “The Third Part of Henry the Sixt, […]”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act II, scene v]:
      with fiery eyes sparkling for very wrath
  7. Over (a period of time).
    I've lived here for three years.
    They fought for days over a silly pencil.
    • To guide the sun's bright chariot for a day.
  8. Throughout or across (a distance in space).
    I can see for miles.
    • c. 1603–1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of King Lear”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act II, scene iv]:
      For many miles about / There's scarce a bush.
  9. On behalf of.
    I will stand in for him.
    I speak for the Prime Minister.
  10. In the role or capacity of; instead of; in place of.
    I used a hay bale for a bed.
    He's got a turnip for a brain.
  11. In exchange for; in correspondence or equivalence with.
    I got five hundred pounds for that old car!
    He matched me blow for blow.
    • Bible, Exodus xxi. 23, 24
      And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.
  12. In order to obtain or acquire.
    I am aiming for completion by the end of business Thursday.
    He's going for his doctorate.
    Do you want to go for coffee?
    People all over Greece looked to Delphi for answers.
    Can you go to the store for some eggs?
    I'm saving up for a car.
    Don't wait for an answer.
    What did he ask you for?
    • He writes not for money, nor for praise.
  13. By the standards of, usually with the implication of those standards being lower than one might otherwise expect.
    Fair for its day.
    She's spry for an old lady.
  14. (usually in the phrase 'for all') Despite, in spite of.
    For all his expensive education, he didn't seem very bright.
    • 1892 August 6, "The Unbidden Guest", in Charles Dickens, Jr. (editor), All the Year Round,[ ] [ page 133],
      Mr. Joseph Blenkinshaw was perhaps not worth quite so much as was reported; but for all that he was a very wealthy man […]
  15. Used to indicate the subject of a to-infinitive.
    For that to happen now is incredibly unlikely. (=It is incredibly unlikely that that will happen now.)
    All I want is for you to be happy. (=All I want is that you be happy.)
  16. Indicating something desired or anticipated.
    O for the wings of a dove.
    Ah! for wings to soar...
    And now for a slap-up meal!
    • 1858 March 27, "The Lay of the Brief", in Punch, Or, The London Charivari, page 129:
      Oh! but to breathe the air / By their side under summer skies! To watch the blush on their cheeks, / The light in their liquid eyes. / Oh! but for one short hour, / To whisper a word of love; […]
  17. (in expressions such as 'for a start') Introducing the first item(s) in a potential sequence.
    Go scuba diving? For one thing, I can't even swim.
  18. (with names, chiefly, US) In honor of; after.
    He is named for his grandfather.
  19. Due or facing (a certain outcome or fate).
    He totally screwed up that project. Now he's surely for the sack.
  20. (chiefly, US) Out of; used to indicate a fraction, a ratio
    In term of base hits, Jones was three for four on the day
  21. (cricket) Used as part of a score to indicate the number of wickets that have fallen.
    At close of play, England were 305 for 3.
  22. To be, or as being.
    Don't take me for a fool.
    • 17th century Abraham Cowley, Of Wit
      We take a falling meteor for a star.
    • a. 1705, John Locke, “Of the Conduct of the Understanding”, in Posthumous Works of Mr. John Locke: […], London: […] A[wnsham] and J[ohn] Churchill, […], published 1706, OCLC 6963663 ↗:
      if a man can be persuaded and fully assured of anything for a truth without having examined, what is there that he may not embrace for truth ?
    • c. 1690, John Dryden, Translations (Preface)
      Most of our ingenious young men take up some cry'd-up English poet for their model.
    • But let her go for an ungrateful woman.
    • 1976, Louis L’Amour, The Rider of Lost Creek, Bantam Dell (ISBN 978-0-553-89964-1), Chapter 2:
      They knew him for a stranger.
  23. (obsolete) Indicating that in prevention of which, or through fear of which, anything is done.
    • 1609–1612, Francis Beaumont; John Fletcher, “The Captaine”, in Comedies and Tragedies […], London: Printed for Humphrey Robinson, […], and for Humphrey Moseley […], published 1647, OCLC 3083972 ↗, Act 3, scene 5:
      We'll have a bib, for spoiling of thy doublet.
  24. Used in various more-or-less idiomatic ways to construe individual verbs, indicating various semantic relationships such as target, purpose, result, etc.; see also the entries for individual phrasal verbs, e.g. ask for, look for, pay for, stand for, etc.
    to account for one's whereabouts; to care for a relative; to settle for second best; to allow for mistakes; and so forth
Antonyms Translations Translations Translations
  • French: pour
  • German: für
  • Italian: pro
  • Portuguese: a favor de
  • Russian: за
  • Spanish: por
Translations Translations Translations Translations
  • German: für
  • Portuguese: para
  • Spanish: para ser

  1. Initialism of field#English|field Of research#English|research.
  2. Initialism of frame of reference#English|frame of reference.
Proper noun
  1. Initialism of Fellowship of Reconciliation, any of a number of religious nonviolent organizations, particularly in English-speaking countries.
  2. IATA airport code for Pinto Martins International Airport in Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil.

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