Definition of foreign
1 : situated outside a place or country; especially : situated outside one's own country foreign cities
2 : born in, belonging to, or characteristic of some place or country other than the one under consideration has a large foreign population foreign languages
3 : of, relating to, or proceeding from some other person or material thing than the one under consideration foreign aid
4 : alien in character : not connected or pertinent this design is not foreign from some people's thoughts — Jonathan Swift
5 : related to or dealing with other nations foreign trade
6a : occurring in an abnormal situation in the living body and often introduced from outside a foreign body lodged in the esophagusb : not recognized by the immune system as part of the self foreign proteins
7 : not being within the jurisdiction of a political unit (such as a state) foreign corporations
foreignnessplay \ˈfȯr-ən-nəs, ˈfär-\ noun
Examples of foreign in a sentence
They've visited several foreign countries.
We don't get many foreign visitors.
Have you studied any foreign languages?
She has a foreign accent.
the ministry of foreign affairs
Origin and Etymology of foreign
Middle English forein, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin foranus on the outside, from Latin foris outside — more at forum
First Known Use: 13th century
Synonym Discussion of foreign
FOREIGN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of foreign for English Language Learners
: located outside a particular place or country and especially outside your own country
: coming from or belonging to a different place or country
: relating to or dealing with other nations
FOREIGN Defined for Kids
Definition of foreign for Students
1 : located outside of a place or country and especially outside of a person's own country a foreign nation
2 : belonging to a place or country other than the one under consideration Do you speak a foreign language?
3 : relating to or having to do with other nations foreign trade
4 : not normally belonging or wanted where found foreign material in food
Medical Definition of foreign
1: occurring in an abnormal situation in the living body and often introduced from outside a foreign body lodged in the esophagus
2: not recognized by the immune system as part of the self foreign proteins
Legal Definition of foreign
: not being within the jurisdiction of a political unit (as a state); especially : being from or in a state other than the one in which a matter is being considered a foreign company doing business in South Carolina a foreign executor submitting to the jurisdiction of this court a foreign judgment — compare domestic
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up foreign? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).