for·​eign·​er | \ ˈfȯr-ə-nər, ˈfär-\

Definition of foreigner

1 : a person belonging to or owing allegiance to a foreign country
2 chiefly dialectal : one not native to a place or community : stranger sense 1c

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Synonyms & Antonyms for foreigner


nonnative, outlander, outsider, stranger



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Examples of foreigner in a Sentence

I can tell by your accent you're a foreigner in these parts.

Recent Examples on the Web

Tesla was the first foreign auto maker to take advantage of a recent rule change allowing foreigners to own their China business, instead of having to work with Chinese partners as previously required. Trefor Moss, WSJ, "Elon Musk’s China Factory—Now a Field, Soon a Plant—Aims to Pump Out Its First Tesla This Year," 7 Jan. 2019 Even though more than 10% of the population of Germany, a country of 82 million, is foreign-born and most Germans welcome foreigners, a small but tenacious minority opposes their presence. Erik Kirschbaum,, "German Neo-Nazi found guilty of murder in execution-style slayings of migrants," 11 July 2018 Earlier this year, the company asked to hire 14 foreign workers to be cooks and waiters at the Trump golf club in Westchester County, N.Y. And the Trump Winery near Charlottesville, Va., sought to employ 23 foreigners. Washington Post,, "Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club wants to hire 40 foreign workers," 6 July 2018 Plenty, though, are complete novices like Singh, who on the morning of a late May day is rolling around a ring alongside three other trainees, all foreigners like him, under the watchful eye of former wrestler Norman Smiley. Jon Tayler,, "Million Dollar Moves: After His Unlikely Baseball Career Flamed Out, Rinku Singh's Next Stop Is WWE," 3 July 2018 Last week, public broadcaster SVT published court data showing that 58% of convicted rapists in the 2012-17 period were foreigners. Bojan Pancevski, WSJ, "Swedes Vote as Establishment Faces Down Far-Right Challenge," 9 Sep. 2018 Still, last year the outlets received some 6.6m visitors, about the same as the British Museum, of whom about half were foreigners. The Economist, "Cash or WeChat?China’s insatiable appetite for foreign travel," 17 May 2018 The language of the intellectuals is threatening; intellectuals, after all, are essentially foreigners in our own country. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "Wallace Shawn’s Late Night," 17 Jan. 2018 Warren — more like Trump — embraces the tradeoff and simply says that politicians should put Americans’ interests ahead of foreigners. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Elizabeth Warren wants to outflank Trump on trade," 29 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'foreigner.' 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 foreigner

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for foreigner

Last Updated

12 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for foreigner

The first known use of foreigner was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of foreigner

: a person who is from a country that is not your own


for·​eign·​er | \ ˈfȯr-ə-nər \

Kids Definition of foreigner

: a person who is from a foreign country

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Comments on foreigner

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


to gather or build up little by little

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