1. The indefinite time yet to come: will try to do better in the future.
2. Something that will happen in time to come: "The future comes apace" (Shakespeare).
3. A prospective or expected condition, especially one considered with regard to growth, advancement, or development: a business with no future.
4. often futures A financial instrument that obligates the holder to buy or sell an asset at a set price on a specified date in the future: a market for copper futures.
a. The form of a verb used in speaking of action that has not yet occurred or of states not yet in existence.
b. A verb form in the future tense.
That is to be or to come; of or existing in later time.
[Middle English, from Old French futur, from Latin futūrus, about to be; see bheuə- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.