adj., n., adv., & v.
adj. 1 lying in one's line of motion. 2 a onward or towards the front. b Naut. belonging to the fore part of a ship. 3 precocious; bold in manner; presumptuous. 4 Commerce relating to future produce, delivery, etc. (forward contract). 5 a advanced; progressing towards or approaching maturity or completion. b (of a plant etc.) well advanced or early.
n. an attacking player positioned near the front of a team in football, hockey, etc.
adv. 1 to the front; into prominence (come forward; move forward). 2 in advance; ahead (sent them forward). 3 onward so as to make progress (not getting any further forward). 4 towards the future; continuously onwards (from this time forward). 5 (also forwards) a towards the front in the direction one is facing. b in the normal direction of motion or of traversal. c with continuous forward motion (backwards and forwards; rushing forward). 6 Naut. & Aeron. in, near, or towards the bow or nose.
v.tr. 1 a send (a letter etc.) on to a further destination. b dispatch (goods etc.) (forwarding agent). 2 help to advance; promote. forward-looking progressive; favouring change. forwarder n. forwardly adv. forwardness n. (esp. in sense 3 of adj.).
[ OE forweard, var. of forthweard (as FORTH, -WARD) ]