What does the idiom "come to the fore" mean?

The phrase come to the fore is often used in English, but what does this idiom mean? When idioms are used in the right situations, they strengthen communication and enrich the language. You can communicate more effectively by learning the meaning of come to the fore.

Meaning of "come to the fore"


The phrase "come to the fore" is used to describe a person or idea that is becoming prominent or is gaining attention for some reason. In other words, it is used to indicate that something or someone is becoming increasingly important and noticeable.


The phrase "come to the fore" is rooted in the Old English term "fore," which means "in the front" or "in the presence of." As the Oxford English Dictionary notes, the phrase "come to the fore" has been used since the 1700s and its first known usage was in 1704 in a book called “The History of the Rebellion and Civil Wars in England.”


The phrase "come to the fore" is typically used in a figurative sense, meaning that something or someone is becoming more pronounced or visible. It can be used to describe a change in circumstances, such as when a new leader or policy arises and becomes the focus of attention. It can also be used to describe a person or group who emerges from obscurity and suddenly gains public attention.

Example Sentences

  • After years of political stagnation, a new generation of leaders has come to the fore and is calling for radical change.
  • The singer's popular new single has finally brought her to the fore.
  • The country's military might has come to the fore in recent years, transforming it into a superpower.

The meanings of the words in the "come to the fore" idiom

From One Language to Another: Idioms in Translation

Translating idioms from one language to another can be a tricky task, as the cultural context behind an idiom can be difficult to capture. For example, the French phrase "avoir le cafard" translates to "to have the cockroach," which means to feel down or depressed. Similarly, the Chinese idiom "????" (j?ng d? zh? w?) translates to "frog at the bottom of a well," which refers to someone with a narrow view of the world.


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