\ ˈfō How to pronounce foe (audio) \

Definition of foe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one who has personal enmity for another Embrace, embrace, my Sons! be foes no more!— Alexander Pope
2a : an enemy in war
b : adversary, opponent a political foe
3 : one who opposes on principle a foe of needless expenditures a foe of censorship
4 : something prejudicial or injurious

Definition of FOE (Entry 2 of 2)

Fraternal Order of Eagles

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for foe

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of foe in a Sentence

Noun Many considered him a foe of democracy. Her ability was acknowledged by friend and foe alike.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun February is full of familiarity, as the Bearcats have entered the final leg of the schedule, facing off against American Athletic Conference foes for a second time this season. Fletcher Page,, "Memphis Tigers rematch offers Cincinnati Bearcats basketball opportunity to prove growth," 12 Feb. 2020 Heading into a difficult stretch of games against Eastern Conference foes starting with back to back contests against the No. Akeem Glaspie, Indianapolis Star, "Pacers guard Victor Oladipo will have minutes increased, may move into starting lineup," 4 Feb. 2020 Crises play to Trump’s strengths, allowing him to portray himself as a warrior in an epic struggle against liberal foes determined to bring him (and America) down. Bobby Jindal, National Review, "Embracing Chaos in the Trump Era," 11 Dec. 2019 Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor rushed for 200 yards against three straight conference foes (Iowa, Nebraska and Purdue). Teddy Greenstein,, "The best, worst and weirdest from the 2019 Big Ten football season: Wildest upset, dumbest quote and some ridiculous stats," 4 Dec. 2019 The Pioneers went 23-1 against Florida foes two years ago and then were 17-2 against in-state competition last season. Jeff Gardenour,, "Oak Ridge beats Mainland in Metro vs. Florida basketball," 27 Nov. 2019 And if that’s not enough, the 49ers close the schedule against playoff-seeking division foes L.A. and Seattle. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Cowboys QB Dak Prescott can state his case for new contract vs. Patriots," 23 Nov. 2019 That’s a five-touchdown blowout in nearly one-third of their conference contests, against foes on a supposedly level field. Doug Lesmerises, cleveland, "Inside Ohio State football’s win over Rutgers from the stands, from ‘So terrible’ to ‘I’m so happy’," 18 Nov. 2019 The Ravens’ November and December slate features must-see matchups against the NFL’s lone remaining undefeated teams — the 8-0 Patriots and the 7-0 San Francisco 49ers — as well as potential land-mine games against division foes. Jonas Shaffer,, "Ravens midseason superlatives: Most unlikely MVP, most likely to see big payday, most divisive player and more," 29 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'foe.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of foe


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for foe


Middle English fo, from Old English fāh, from fāh, adjective, hostile; akin to Old High German gifēh hostile

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about foe

Time Traveler for foe

Time Traveler

The first known use of foe was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for foe

Last Updated

17 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Foe.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for foe


How to pronounce FOE (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of foe

: an enemy


\ ˈfō How to pronounce foe (audio) \

Kids Definition of foe

: an enemy of a person or a country

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on foe

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for foe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with foe

Spanish Central: Translation of foe

Nglish: Translation of foe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of foe for Arabic Speakers

Comments on foe

What made you want to look up foe? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!