for·​ay | \ ˈfȯr-ˌā How to pronounce foray (audio) , ˈfär- also fȯ-ˈrā or fə-ˈrā \
plural forays

Definition of foray

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a sudden or irregular invasion or attack for war or spoils : raid a foray into enemy territory attempted sneak and surprise forays— D. D. Eisenhower
2 : an initial and often tentative attempt to do something in a new or different field or area of activity the novelist's foray into nonfiction Torres spearheaded his family's first foray into international wine production by purchasing land in Chile's Curicó Valley in 1979.— Michael Schachner


forayed; foraying; forays

Definition of foray (Entry 2 of 2)

1 intransitive : to make a raid or brief invasion forayed into enemy territory Nicaraguan troops were foraying along the frontier …— George Russell
2 intransitive : to do or attempt something outside one's accustomed sphere : to enter into a new or different field or area of activity Tesla, known for its high-end electric cars, has forayed into the trucking industry with a Nov. 16 reveal of its latest prototype, the Tesla Semi.— Meagan Nichols
3 transitive, archaic : to ravage in search of spoils : pillage

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Other Words from foray


forayer noun, plural forayers

Synonyms for foray

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Did You Know?


Foray comes from Middle English forrayen and probably traces back to an Anglo-French word that meant "raider" or "forager." It's related to the word forage, which usually means "to wander in search of food or forage." A foray, in its earliest sense, was a raid for plunder. Relatively recently, foray began to take on a broader meaning. In a sense, a foray is still a trip into a foreign territory. These days, though, looting and plundering needn't be involved in a foray. When you take a foray, you dabble in an area, occupation, or pastime that's new to you.

Examples of foray in a Sentence

Noun a foray into enemy territory We made a quick foray into town for some supplies.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Treinen’s first foray into free agency came a year late. Jack Harris, Los Angeles Times, "Does free-agent reliever Blake Treinen fit into the Dodgers’ plans for 2021?," 12 Nov. 2020 This year marks Vizio's first foray into the OLED TV market, and the company's new-for-2020 OLED TV is one of our favorite OLED TVs ever. Lee Neikirk, USA TODAY, "You can get a Vizio OLED TV for its lowest price ever for Black Friday 2020," 9 Nov. 2020 The Rose Bowl’s foray into lockdown live experiences began in July, when a deal with the Tribeca Film Festival saw the stadium’s parking lot turned into a drive-in movie theater for 30 screenings across four weeks. Katie Deighton, WSJ, "Emptied Sports Stadiums Tackle Losses With New Experiences," 3 Nov. 2020 Most of the Colts voted early; Tuesday’s foray to Lucas Oil Stadium was a show of support for voting in the city of Indianapolis. Lawrence Andrea, The Indianapolis Star, "'It makes you feel good': Indianapolis Colts players greet voters at Lucas Oil Stadium," 3 Nov. 2020 Quinlan’s foray into food started years ago for the 2001 Jackson High School graduate. Marc Bona, cleveland, "Der Braumeister’s new creative chef tandem clicks in its kitchen," 2 Nov. 2020 Despite his historic achievement, Glenn’s initial foray into politics was harshly criticized from both sides of the aisle. Daniel Oberhaus, Wired, "Mark Kelly’s Been To Space. Can He Make it to Capitol Hill?," 26 Oct. 2020 The game marks the series’ first foray into 3D, leaving behind its 2.5D (a 2D environment with depth and a restricted camera perspective) roots for a more open gameplay experience. Elise Favis, Washington Post, "‘Sackboy: A Big Adventure’ ditches create mode for a new direction," 26 Oct. 2020 Collins' first foray into electoral politics was as a political donor. Dallas News, "Democrat Colin Allred, Republican Genevieve Collins tout bipartisanship in critical District 32 race for Congress," 26 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Ridgeline is Honda’s first and only foray into trucks, and the vehicle has had a bumpy reception since its debut 15 years ago. Chester Dawson,, "Honda Beefs Up Pickup, SUVs to Bolster Light-Truck Market Share," 9 Oct. 2020 The recent outbreak has magnified the need for businesses to foray onto the online platforms. Wilfred Sigler, Quartz India, "The pandemic has made investments in cybersecurity even more essential," 24 Sep. 2020 Harris’ first solo foray out on the campaign trail for in-person events since she was announced as Biden’s running mate nearly a month ago. Arkansas Online, "Harris meets Blake family to kick off Wisconsin visit," 7 Sep. 2020 Harris’ first solo foray out on the campaign trail for in-person events since she was announced as Biden’s running mate nearly a month ago. Alexandra Jaffe And Kathleen Ronayne,, "Labor Day brings Kamala Harris and Mike Pence to Wisconsin and Joe Biden to Pennsylvania as 2020 presidential race enters final phase," 7 Sep. 2020 Harris' first solo foray out on the campaign trail since she was announced as Joe Biden's running mate nearly a month ago. Star Tribune, "Campaigns use LaborDay to woo battleground Wisconsin," 7 Sep. 2020 What’s on deck for the streetwear label’s debut foray into makeup? Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Supreme’s First-Ever Beauty Collaboration Is Here—And It’s With Makeup Visionary Pat McGrath," 17 Aug. 2020 The statues’ foray into public view may not be just a temporary treat. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian Magazine, "A Long-Hidden Collection of Ancient Sculpture Is Making Its Grand Debut," 21 Jan. 2020 Detroit Red Wings forward Brendan Perlini joined his teammates for Friday’s practice at TD Garden, foraying onto the ice in a full face shield. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Red Wings' Brendan Perlini jokes after close call with skate: 'I'm breathing like a fish now'," 14 Feb. 2020

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

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First Known Use of foray


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for foray

Verb and Noun

Middle English forrayen, from Anglo-French forreyer, foreer, probably back-formation from *forrier, *forreour forager, raider, from fuerre, foer provender — more at forage

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Time Traveler for foray

Time Traveler

The first known use of foray was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

24 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Foray.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for foray


How to pronounce foray (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of foray

: a sudden invasion or attack
: an attempt to do something especially for the first time
: a short journey

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