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1. A woman ancestor.
2. A woman who is from an earlier time and has originated or contributed to a common tradition shared by a particular group.


(Sociology) a female ancestor


(ˈfɔrˌmʌð ər, ˈfoʊr-)

a female ancestor.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.foremother - a woman ancestor
ancestor, antecedent, ascendant, ascendent, root - someone from whom you are descended (but usually more remote than a grandparent)


A person from whom one is descended:
Archaic: predecessor.
References in classic literature ?
My strain has remained clearer than the rest because for countless ages my foremothers were high priestesses--the sacred office descends from mother to daughter.
Instead of being the youngest of the family, it rather seemed to have aggregated into itself the ages, not only of these living specimens of the breed, but of all its forefathers and foremothers, whose united excellences and oddities were squeezed into its little body.
This trek is one that seeks to reclaim the stories of our foremothers in faith.
The Canadian lesbian foremothers documented in this volume lived and loved, forming cross-country alliances with their bodies and minds.
And yet, dressed in these intricate outfits, our foremothers travelled around the islands, in a time before convenient public transport, campaigning among their sisters to raise the necessary numbers in a plebiscite for women's right to vote.
This took me by surprise, because, historically, WILPF is an organization with an exceedingly glorious past, and if we are unable to tap into the vast potential of our youth, we will not be able to live up to the expectations of our foremothers.
You and your generation will carry on the work of your foremothers the same way--step by step toward equality for all
Mercifully, our forefathers and foremothers gave us a system of Government where power is won by winning the trust of ordinary civilians.
Following their lead, other Bildungsroman continue to engage in intergenerational dialog with their foremothers.
All of a sudden, everywhere I look, mothers are taking to social media to show pictures of themselves doing what their foremothers have done, unassumingly, for centuries.
These crisp cookies rolled with dried fruits, nuts, or chocolate, conjure up images of bubbes in babushkas, carrying on the culinary traditions of their distant foremothers.
Now, the descendants of the old Ottoman peoples seek justice and compensation for injustices brought to bear on their forefathers and foremothers.