Forest vs. Forrest - What's the difference?


A forest is a large area dominated by trees. Hundreds of more precise definitions of forest are used throughout the world, incorporating factors such as tree density, tree height, land use, legal standing and ecological function. According to the widely used Food and Agriculture Organization definition, forests covered 4 billion hectares (9.9×109 acres) (15 million square miles) or approximately 30 percent of the world's land area in 2006. Forests are the dominant terrestrial ecosystem of Earth, and are distributed across the globe. Forests account for 75% of the gross primary productivity of the Earth's biosphere, and contain 80% of the Earth's plant biomass. Forests at different latitudes and elevations form distinctly different ecozones: boreal forests near the poles, tropical forests near the equator and temperate forests at mid-latitudes. Higher elevation areas tend to support forests similar to those at higher latitudes, and amount of precipitation also affects forest composition. Human society and forests influence each other in both positive and negative ways. Forests provide ecosystem services to humans and serve as tourist attractions. Forests can also affect people's health. Human activities, including harvesting forest resources, can negatively affect forest ecosystems.

Forest vs. Forrest


Table of contents

1. Etymology
          3.1. Hyponyms
          3.2. Meronyms
          3.3. See also
          4.1. Related terms


1. Etymology

From Middle English forest, from Old French forest, from Medieval Latin foresta (open wood), borrowing from Frankish *forhist (collective noun of *forha), from Proto-Germanic *furhō, *furahō (fir, pine), from Proto-Indo-European *pérkus (oak), first used in the Capitularies of Charlemagne in reference to the royal forest (as opposed to the inner woods, or parcus). See also Latin quercus.

Displaced native Middle English weald, wald (forest, weald), from Old English weald, Middle English scogh, scough (forest, shaw), from Old Norse skógr, and Middle English frith, firth (forest, game preserve), from Old English fyrhþ, from the same root.

2. Pronunciation

  • (Received Pronunciation) enPR: fŏr′ĭst, IPA(key): /ˈfɒɹɪst/
  • (US) enPR: fôr′ĭst, fŏr′ĭst, fôr′ĕst, fŏr′ĕst, fôrst, IPA(key): /ˈfɔɹɪst/, /ˈfɑɹɪst/, /ˈfɔɹɛst/, /ˈfɑɹɛst/, /fɔɹst/
  • Homophone: forced (some American accents)

3. Noun

forest (plural forests)

  1. A dense collection of trees covering a relatively large area. Larger than woods.
  2. Any dense collection or amount.
    a forest of criticism
    • 1998, Katharine Payne, Silent Thunder: In the Presence of Elephants (page 59)
      Squealing and still propelled by the kick, the calf scrabbled through the forest of legs and into the open.
  3. (historical) A defined area of land set aside in England as royal hunting ground or for other privileged use; all such areas.
    • 2013, Alexander Tulloch, The Little Book of Lancashire, The History Press ISBN 9780752497464
      [...] in places such as the Forest of Bowland there is hardly a tree in sight and much of the area is a vast tract of almost barren gritstone hills and peat moorland.
  4. (graph theory) A graph with no cycles; i.e., a graph made up of trees.
  5. (computing, Microsoft Windows) A group of domains that are managed as a unit.

3.1. Hyponyms

  • See also Thesaurus:forest

3.2. Meronyms

  • tree
  • See also Thesaurus:forest

3.3. See also

  • forest on Wikimedia Commons.Wikimedia Commons

4. Verb

forest (third-person singular simple present forests, present participle foresting, simple past and past participle forested)

  1. (transitive) To cover an area with trees.
  • afforest

5. See also

  • bush
  • deforest
  • holt
  • jungle
  • weald
  • wood
  • woodland
  • woods

6. Anagrams

  • Forets, Fortes, Foster, fetors, forset, fortes, fortés, foster, froste, softer


1. Etymology

From Middle Low German vorderst.

2. Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /fɔrəst/, [ˈfɒːˀɒsd̥]

3. Adjective


  1. (attributive) foremost, front
  2. (adverbial) in front, first

3.1. Antonyms

  • bagerst, bagest

Norwegian Bokmål

4. Etymology

From Middle Low German vorderst, compare with German vorderste.

5. Adjective

forrest (neuter singular forrest, definite singular and plural forreste)

  1. foremost (furthest forward), frontmost

6. References

  • “forrest” in The Bokmål Dictionary.
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