A foregone conclusion


      • Inevitable outcome or result
        To describe a situation or event that is certain or predetermined, regardless of any efforts or actions taken to prevent it

      • Inevitability of an outcome or decision
        To express the idea that a particular outcome or decision is already known or expected, often implying that it is obvious or undeniable

      • Assumption of a predetermined outcome
        To refer to a situation where a conclusion or result is already assumed or taken for granted, without any consideration or analysis

      • Preconceived notion or belief
        To indicate a belief or idea that is already held before any evidence or proof is presented, often implying a biased or closed-minded perspective

    Examples of A foregone conclusion

    • The election results were a foregone conclusion after the exit polls were released.

      This idiom is used to describe a situation that is already decided or inevitable. In this example, the exit polls gave a clear indication of who would win the election, making the actual results a foregone conclusion.

    • The company's financial troubles were a foregone conclusion after the CEO resigned unexpectedly.

      This example shows how a series of events can lead to a foregone conclusion. The CEO's resignation was unexpected and likely caused financial troubles for the company, making the eventual outcome (the financial troubles) a foregone conclusion.

    • The outcome of the game was a foregone conclusion after the star player was injured.

      This example demonstrates how a single event can lead to a foregone conclusion. The injury of the star player made it unlikely that the team would win, making the outcome of the game a foregone conclusion.

    • The decision to lay off employees was a foregone conclusion after the company announced a major restructuring.

      This example shows how a decision can be a foregone conclusion due to external factors. The company's decision to restructure likely led to the decision to lay off employees, making that decision a foregone conclusion.

    • The teacher's low expectations for the student's performance were a foregone conclusion after she skipped class for a week.

      This example demonstrates how a person's actions can lead to a foregone conclusion. The student's decision to skip class for a week likely led the teacher to have low expectations for her performance, making that expectation a foregone conclusion.


    Overall, the idiom "a foregone conclusion" refers to a situation or outcome that is already predetermined, inevitable, or assumed without any doubt or consideration. It can be used to describe a variety of scenarios, from a certain outcome despite efforts to prevent it, to an already known or expected decision, to a preconceived belief or bias.

    Origin of "A foregone conclusion"

    The origin of this idiom can be traced back to the 16th century, where it was first used in legal contexts to refer to a conclusion that had already been determined before any formal proceedings had taken place. It was often used in reference to a verdict or decision that was expected or known before a trial had even begun. Over time, the phrase became more commonly used in everyday language to describe any predetermined or inevitable outcome.

    The word "foregone" in this idiom comes from the Old English word "foregan," meaning "to go before." This reflects the idea that the conclusion or outcome has already "gone before" any discussion or action, making it certain or predetermined. The idiom also gained popularity in literature and was used by famous writers such as William Shakespeare and Henry James.

    Today, "a foregone conclusion" is a commonly used idiom that can be found in various contexts, from everyday conversations to formal speeches and writing. Its origins in the legal system have evolved to encompass a broader range of meanings and uses, making it a versatile phrase to convey the idea of a predetermined or obvious outcome.