Is there one word that by itself means the inability to recall when something happened (or anything, for that matter)?

For example, if I am asked to respond to the question, "What date did your child lose her first tooth?" and I can't remember and want to respond to the question with only one word, is there a word that fills the bill? The questioner will understand that I cannot answer because I can't remember?

The only word I can think of is 'forgot.' I'd like to know if there are others.

I am not looking for a psychology term like repressed-memory, or anything else pop-science like that, but merely one word that means I can't recall.

  • 1
    In your example you mean "inability to remember a date", and the question is sui generis in that 99,99% of parents wouldn't be able to answer it.
    – Centaurus
    Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 0:34
  • It's true that I used the example of a date, but regarding my question I did not mean only a specific date. Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 21:37
  • Another (two-word) possibility is "mental block" or "memory block" but that implies you're incapable of remembering that sort of thing (whether for psychological trauma or just that you're useless at remembering some kinds of things), rather than simply forgot it. abcnews.go.com/GMA/OnCall/story?id=4183274
    – Stuart F
    Commented Jun 11, 2021 at 15:34

2 Answers 2


A search in an online thesaurus for synonyms of "Forgot" only really has the colloquial, "Disremember" as a single word option.


One word might be lapse

a brief or temporary failure of concentration, memory, or judgement. (OxfordL)

However the more common expresion is to say

memory lapse (Cambridge)

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