Afraid meaning

ə-frād
The definition of afraid is to be filled with fear or regret.

The experience of hearing an unfamiliar noise in the middle of the night is an example of afraid.

The feeling someone gets when realizing they can't pay their mortgage is an example of afraid.

adjective
10
5
Having feelings of aversion or unwillingness in regard to something.

Not afraid of hard work; afraid to show emotion.

adjective
6
3
Filled with fear; frightened.

Afraid of ghosts; afraid to die; afraid for his life.

adjective
5
3
Filled with regret or concern. Used especially to soften an unpleasant statement.

I'm afraid you're wrong.

adjective
4
2
(usually used predicatively, not attributively) Impressed with fear or apprehension; in fear.

He is afraid of death.

He is afraid to die.

He is afraid that he will die.

adjective
0
2
Advertisement
(colloquial) Regretful, sorry.

I am afraid I can not help you in this matter.

adjective
0
2
Feeling fear; frightened; apprehensive.

I'm afraid I can't go.

adjective
0
3

Origin of afraid

  • Middle English affraied past participle of affraien to frighten from Old French esfraier, esfreer to disturb of Germanic origin prī- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Middle English affrayed, affraied, past participle of afraien (“to affray”), from Anglo-Norman afrayer (“to terrify, disquiet, disturb”), from Old French effreer, esfreer (“to disturb, remove the peace from”), from es- (“ex-”) + freer (“to secure, secure the peace”), from Frankish *friþu (“security, peace”), from Proto-Germanic *friþuz (“peace”), from Proto-Germanic *frijōną (“to free; to love”), from Proto-Indo-European *prāy-, *prēy- (“to like, love”). Compare also afeard. More at free, friend.

    From Wiktionary