Foreword - forward

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A spelling mistake (or lack of concentration) can lead to confusion here. A moment's thought - and perhaps a look at AWE's page For- - fore- - should prevent such errors.

  • A foreword is a short piece of writing, or words, placed before another, longer, piece, usually as an introduction preface to a book, particularly when written by a person other than the author of the main body of the book. The word foreword is a noun.
  • The basic meaning of the adjective forward means 'in the direction toward the place for which one is heading'. It has no '-e-'. Many related meanings have developed from this. In addition to adjectival meanings, there are also an adverb, as in 'let's move forward on this'; a noun, which is rare outside the sport of rugby football; and a verb, which means 'to pass [a message] on from a first recipient to a second', (or "To send forward, send to an ulterior destination (a thing, rarely a person)", OED.) In e-mails of course, it can be many recipients.
You may also want to see Afterward - afterword.
    • People learning English as a foreign language sometimes wonder about the distinction between forward and forwards. Some rules may be observed. The adjective is forward, with no '-s', except for a very few technical uses. In British English, the adverb may be either forward or forwards. The difference is usually a mere matter of stylistic choice. OED has this note: "The present distinction in usage between forward and forwards is that the latter expresses a definite direction viewed in contrast with other directions. In some contexts either form may be used without perceptible difference of meaning; the following are examples in which only one of them can now be used: "The ratchet-wheel can move only forwards"; "the right side of the paper has the maker's name reading forwards"; "if you move at all it must be forwards"; "my companion has gone forward"; "to bring a matter forward"; "from this time forward". The usage of earlier periods, and of modern dialects, varies greatly from that of mod. standard English. In U.S. forward is now generally used, to the exclusion of forwards, which was stigmatized by Webster (1832) as "a corruption." Swan (1995) says "The form[s] with -s [is] probably more common in British English, and the forms without -s in American English." See also a general note at -ward - -wards.