for·​eign·​er | \ ˈfȯr-ə-nər How to pronounce foreigner (audio) , 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

Facebook said on Tuesday that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security may not proceed with a plan to create fake profiles to monitor the social media accounts of foreigners seeking to enter the country. CBS News, "Facebook tells Homeland Security: Don't create fake accounts," 3 Sep. 2019 However, Indian television outlet NDTV reports that local authorities are promising that everyone will have a fair hearing and that no one will be officially declared a foreigner until all legal options are exhausted. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Nearly 2 million people in India have just been rendered stateless by a bureaucratic act," 31 Aug. 2019 The news conference came days after Israel barred their entry, citing a 2017 law that bars foreigners who publicly support boycotts of the country, and President Donald Trump personally urging the country to block their visit. Christal Hayes, USA TODAY, "After blocked visit, Tlaib gets emotional as Omar questions whether Israel is an ally," 19 Aug. 2019 This populist side was again on display in 2016, when Johnson helped stoke prejudice against foreigners who wanted to immigrate to the U.K. in the final few weeks of the Brexit referendum campaign that would see Britain decide to leave the EU. Luke Reader, The Conversation, "Is Boris Johnson, Britain’s new prime minister, anti-immigrant, a homophobe, a bigot – or just politically expedient?," 24 July 2019 It’s unclear if Zakka’s release could open the door to the release of other foreigners held by Iran, including several Americans. Dan De Luce, NBC News, "Iran says it will release U.S. permanent resident Nizar Zakka," 11 June 2019 The warning — the latest salvo in a trade battle that appears to be escalating by the day — threatens to further hurt some U.S. luxury goods makers, which depend on deep-pocketed foreigners for a not-insignificant part of their sales. Times Wire Reports,, "China warns against U.S. travel, threatening luxury goods makers that rely on tourists," 4 June 2019 In the bidding war for Denmark’s increasingly strident anti-immigrant vote, the SD is promising more limits on foreigners. The Economist, "Under left or right, Denmark will get ever tougher with migrants," 4 June 2019 The camp houses Iraqis and other foreigners as well as Syrians, all deemed civilians. Raja Abdulrahim, WSJ, "Battle to Oust Islamic State Takes Toll on Syrian Civilians," 13 Feb. 2019

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

7 Sep 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 How to pronounce foreigner (audio) \

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).


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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