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Line breaks: for¦est
Pronunciation: /ˈfɒrɪst

Definition of forest in English:


1A large area covered chiefly with trees and undergrowth: a pine forest [mass noun]: a large tract of forest
More example sentences
  • Decades ago, these slopes were covered with forests, and the trees' root systems tied the soil to the hillsides.
  • Both ranges are soft from age but covered in brushy pine forests, knobby granite crags, and hiking and biking trails.
  • By contrast, the floor of pine forests was covered thinly by needles, and had much less absorptive capacity.
wood(s), woodland, trees, tree plantation, plantation;
archaic greenwood, holt
1.1 historical An area, typically owned by the sovereign and partly wooded, kept for hunting and having its own laws.
Example sentences
  • In medieval times the area was a hunting forest, roamed by deer, wild bear and wolves.
  • For people in the countryside, new laws such as those governing access to game or forests could criminalize what had been everyday activity.
  • The New Forest is the most intact surviving example in England of a medieval hunting forest.
1.2 [in place names] Denoting an area that was formerly a royal forest: Waltham Forest
More example sentences
  • Those near Brendan Byrne State Forest and the Chatsworth area in Burlington County are particularly rich.
  • Areas affected included Flamborough, Scarborough, Malton, Withernsea, Middlesbrough and Sutton on the Forest.
  • Those facing ruin include Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest, Crystal Palace and Queens Park Rangers.
2A large number or dense mass of vertical or tangled objects: a forest of high-rise apartments
More example sentences
  • A Satguru does not embroil the seeker in the dense forest of words and hymns.
  • As I rise into a gentle current, the intact railings provide a skeleton for a dense forest of marine life.
  • Ahead we encountered a dense forest of steel beams half a metre wide and just over a metre apart.


[with object] (usually as adjective forested) Back to top  
Cover (land) with forest; plant with trees: a forested hillside
More example sentences
  • Working close to home at a school outdoor education lab or a nearby forested land can cut down on travel time.
  • Over 80 percent of the land area is still forested, and only 2.5 percent is cultivated.
  • By the time, you get to Dunkeld, the roads and rivers are fast and wide and surrounded by deep green forested hillsides.


Middle English (in the sense 'wooded area kept for hunting', also denoting any uncultivated land): via Old French from late Latin forestis (silva), literally '(wood) outside', from Latin foris 'outside' (see foreign).



Example sentences
  • Users can ‘fly’ over the Yorkshire landscape from the Humber to the Yorkshire Wolds in both Roman and Iron Age times, viewing dense forestation long since destroyed, and see the locations of Roman roads, townships and fortresses.
  • Within a generation, if current trends continue, America could return to levels of forestation last seen by the Pilgrims.
  • Occasionally these communities have created disasters of their own making, through inappropriate irrigation practices and over-zealous forestation.

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