- To forfeit is to give something up or have something taken away, often as a penalty for doing something wrong or in order to make something else possible.
- An example of forefeit is when you lose your driver's license because you got too many tickets.
- An example of forfeit is when you give up your day off to make more money.
- something that one loses or has to give up because of some crime, fault, or neglect of duty; specif., a fine or penalty
- a thing taken away as a penalty for making some mistake in a game, and redeemable by a specified action
- any game in which such forfeits are taken
- the act of forfeiting; forfeiture
Origin of forfeitMiddle English forfet ; from Old French forfait, past participle of forfaire, to transgress ; from Medieval Latin forisfacere, to do wrong, literally , to do beyond ; from Classical Latin foris, foras, out-of-doors, beyond (see foreign) + facere (see fact)
transitive verbfor·feit·ed, for·feit·ing, for·feits
- To lose or give up (something) on account of an offense, error, or failure to fulfill an agreement: The other team did not show up in time and so forfeited the game.
- To subject to seizure as a forfeit.
- Something that is lost or given up on account of an offense, error, or failure to fulfill an agreement.
- The act of forfeiting: The team lost the game by forfeit.
- a. In parlor games, an item placed in escrow and redeemed by paying a fine or performing an appointed task.b. forfeits A game in which forfeits are demanded.
Origin of forfeitMiddle English forfet, crime, penalty, from Old French forfait, past participle of forfaire, to commit a crime, act outside the law : fors-, beyond; see foreclose + faire, to do; see feasible.
- A penalty for or consequence of a misdemeanor.
- That he our deadly forfeit should release (John Milton, On the Morning of Christ's Nativity, 1629)
- A thing forfeited; that which is taken from somebody in requital of a misdeed committed; that which is lost, or the right to which is alienated, by a crime, breach of contract, etc.
- He who murders pays the forfeit of his own life.
- Something deposited and redeemable by a sportive fine as part of a game.
(third-person singular simple present forfeits, present participle forfeiting, simple past and past participle forfeited)
- To suffer the loss of something by wrongdoing or non-compliance
- He forfeited his last chance of an early release from jail by repeatedly attacking another inmate.
- To lose a contest, game, match, or other form of competition by voluntary withdrawal, by failing to attend or participate, or by violation of the rules
- Because only nine players were present, the football team was forced to forfeit the game.
- To be guilty of a misdeed; to be criminal; to transgress.
- To fail to keep an obligation.
- Very rarely, forfeit is used as the past tense form and past participle (i.e., the past tense forms and the present tense form are homographs).
- Lost or alienated for an offense or crime; liable to penal seizure.
Middle English from ca. 1300, from Old French forfait (“crime”), originally the past participle of forfaire (“to transgress”), and Medieval Latin foris factum. During the 15th century, the sense shifted from the crime to the penalty for the crime.