- An example of a foreign language is Spanish, if you live in the U.S.
- An example of a foreign country is Spain, if you live in the U.S.
- situated outside one's own country, province, locality, etc.: foreign lands
- of, from, or characteristic of another country or countries: foreign languages
- having to do with the relations of one country to another country or countries: foreign affairs, foreign trade
- not subject to the laws or jurisdiction of the specified country
- not natural to the person or thing specified; not belonging; not characteristic: a trait foreign to one's nature
- not pertinent; irrelevant
- not organically belonging; introduced from outside: said of substances found in parts of the body or in organisms where they do not naturally occur
Origin of foreignMiddle English forein ; from Old French forein, forain ; from Late Latin foranus, foreign, origin, originally , external ; from Classical Latin foras, out-of-doors, origin, originally accusative plural of Old Latin fora, door
- a. Located away from one's native country: on business in a foreign city.b. Of, characteristic of, or from a place or country other than the one being considered: a foreign custom.c. Conducted or involved with other nations or governments; not domestic: foreign trade.
- Situated in an abnormal or improper place in the body and typically introduced from outside: a foreign object in the eye.
- Not natural; alien: Jealousy is foreign to her nature.
- Not germane; irrelevant.
- Subject to the jurisdiction of another political unit.
Origin of foreignMiddle English forein, from Old French forain, from Late Latin forānus, on the outside, from Latin forās, outside; see dhwer- in Indo-European roots.
(comparative more foreign, superlative most foreign)
- From a different country.
- There are many more foreign students in Europe since the Erasmus scheme started.
- Belonging to a different culture.
- Eating with chopsticks was a foreign concept to him.
- Of an object, etc, in a place where it does not belong.
- foreign body
- (US, state law) From a different one of the states of the United States, as of a state of residence or incorporation.
- Belonging to a different organization, company etc.
- My bank charges me $2.50 every time I use a foreign ATM.
- (informal) foreigner
From Middle English forein, from Old French forain, from Vulgar Latin *forānus, from Latin forās (“outside, outdoors”), also spelled forīs (“outside, outdoors”). Displaced native Middle English elendish, ellendish (“foreign”) (from Old English elelendisc, compare Old English ellende (“foreign”), elland (“foreign land”)), Middle English eltheodi, eltheodish (“foreign”) (from Old English elþēodiġ, elþēodisc (“foreign”)), and non-native Middle English peregrin (“foreign”) (from Old French peregrin).
foreign - Legal Definition