Definition of forestall verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

forestall

 verb
verb
BrE BrE//fɔːˈstɔːl//
 
; NAmE NAmE//fɔːrˈstɔːl//
 
Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they forestall
BrE BrE//fɔːˈstɔːl//
 
; NAmE NAmE//fɔːrˈstɔːl//
 
he / she / it forestalls
BrE BrE//fɔːˈstɔːlz//
 
; NAmE NAmE//fɔːrˈstɔːlz//
 
past simple forestalled
BrE BrE//fɔːˈstɔːld//
 
; NAmE NAmE//fɔːrˈstɔːld//
 
past participle forestalled
BrE BrE//fɔːˈstɔːld//
 
; NAmE NAmE//fɔːrˈstɔːld//
 
-ing form forestalling
BrE BrE//fɔːˈstɔːlɪŋ//
 
; NAmE NAmE//fɔːrˈstɔːlɪŋ//
 
 
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forestall something/somebody (formal) to prevent something from happening or somebody from doing something by doing something first Try to anticipate what your child will do and forestall problems. Any plans for a peaceful settlement were forestalled by the intervention of the army. Word Origin Old English foresteall ‘an ambush’ (see fore- and stall). As a verb the earliest sense (Middle English) was ‘intercept and buy up goods before they reach the market, so as to raise the price’ (formerly an offence).Extra examples They have tried to forestall criticism by keeping people fully informed of what they are doing. He opened his mouth to speak but Richard pre-empted/​forestalled him. Let me start with a couple of explanations to forestall any possible misunderstandings. This statement was seen as an attempt to forestall criticism. Try to anticipate what your child will do in order to forestall problems. to pre-empt/​forestall problems/​questions/​criticism/​discussion/​plans
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: forestall