The Meaning of Foray: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of foray? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word foray, including its definition, usage, word origin, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word foray mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language as well as Collins English Dictionary and American Heritage, the word foray can either be used as a noun or a verb. As a noun, this word refers to a sudden or irregular invasion or attack. This is commonly used to refer to a raid for war or spoils, and can also refer to an initial or tentative attempt to do something new or something in a different field or area of activity. As a verb, this intransitive word can be used to mean to make a raid or invasion, or to do something outside of one’s accustomed sphere. Different tenses of foray include forayed (past tense), foraying (present tense), and forays. The pronunciation of foray is ˈfɒreɪ.

There are many different languages that also contain words that mean foray. You might notice that a lot of these words look and sound similar to each other. This is probably because they share a common origin. Often, cognates – which are words that look, sound, and mean something similar across languages – are formed when two words share a common ancestor such as Latin or Greek. This list of translations for the word foray is provided by Word Sense.

  •  Bulgarian: набег‎ (masc.)
  •  Russian: набе́г‎ (masc.), нападе́ние‎ (neut.)
  •  Portuguese: incursão‎ (fem.)
  •  Spanish: incursión‎ (masc.)
  •  Dutch: onverwachte aanval‎, raid‎
  •  Swedish: plundringståg‎, räd‎
  •  Polish: rajd‎ (masc.), napad‎ (masc.), wypad‎ (masc.)

How can the word foray be used in a sentence?

The word foray can be used in many different sentences in the English language. Below are a few examples of using  this word in a sentence.

The army made an initial foray into enemy territory in an initial attempt to pillage the area and make a quick raid. 

The actor decided to make a foray into politics, and leave behind his usual areas of competence in entertainment.

The company decided to foray from their usual area and initial venture of gas cars and start producing their own self-driving electric cars. 

The ​scientists’ forays into DNA testing went largely unnoticed until they had a successful foray. 

In the adventure game, the main character has the option to stray from the story and make a foray into looting. The game allows you to steal goods from other characters. 

The analysts took a serious foray into studying the effects of advertisement on young minds. 

The Italian fashion house decided to foray into an unfamiliar type of activity and unfamiliar Place; they started selling handbags in Turkey, far outside of their own territory. However, this particular thing made them very popular. 

In a moment of anarchy, the guests decided to make a quick attack on the disputed property, destroying the furnishings in the manor. This discreet foray made the estate of his opponent destroyed, and the opponents of the guilty party along with the Starosta officials called for their arrest and the execution of a legal ruling.

In December, the lawyer and her legal practice decided to foray out of the traditional method of law enforcement and advocate for rehabilitation as opposed to legal sanction. 

In a rare foray into vulnerability, the media has given a view of the weakness of the executive in an attempt to gain sympathy. This stunt in journalism did not go unnoticed, as it had been done many times with ​​​membe​rs of the szlachta in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

Garrison decided to quit his job and foray into other quirky activities like massages, surrealism, motor racing lessons, studying the history of Tunisia and Algeria, Vikings, and the Italian rap scene.

The group of soldiers made a foray and sudden raid into Paris, France. They took a rifle and attempted penetration of the defenders during this endeavour and short sudden attack. 

The woman made regular forays outside of the world of advertising. She published fiction, took classes at Princeton University, and studied copyright, the stock market, digital currencies, and foreign industries.

The troop of horse-back soldiers made a sudden foray and decided to swoop into the several hunded infantry. They lost all of their possessions in the sudden short attack on the inroads; their rapid raid was an attempt at a military advance, but they had to retreat back to their base camps. 

What is the origin of the word foray?

According to Etymonline, the word foray has been used since the late fourteenth century to refer to a predatory incursion. This was originally used in Scottish, from the Middle English forrayen. This was a fourteenth-century verb that may have been a back-formation of forrayour or from the Middle English forreyer meaning raider or forager from the mid 14th century. This comes from the Old French forreier and Old French forrier, from forrer, a French verb meaning to forage. This comes from forrage and the Proto-Germanic ​fōdran, and stopped being used in the 17th century or 18th century but was later revived.

What are synonyms and antonyms for the word foray?

There are numerous different words that someone can use in place of the word foray. These are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same meaning as another word or phrase. Synonyms are useful to know if you are trying not to repeat yourself, or if you are working on growing your vocabulary. This list of synonyms for the word foray is provided by Thesaurus

  •  depredation
  •  attempt
  •  inroad
  •  endeavor
  •  undertaking
  •  attack
  •  workout
  •  lick
  •  pursuit
  •  sortie
  •  all one’s got
  •  shot
  •  header
  •  sally
  •  dry run
  •  whack
  •  venture
  •  overstepping
  •  struggle
  •  offensive
  •  infringement
  •  fling
  •  striving
  •  exertion
  •  violation
  •  one’s all
  •  tryout
  •  go
  •  one’s level best
  •  infraction
  •  forced entrance
  •  irruption
  •  foray
  •  transgression
  •  try
  •  raid
  •  crack
  •  entrenchment
  •  assault
  •  intrusion
  •  trial
  •  aggression
  •  usurpation
  •  stab
  •  infiltration
  •  onslaught
  •  incursion
  •  reconnaissance
  •  bid
  •  one’s darnedest
  •  descent
  •  offense
  •  breach
  •  invasion
  •  maraud
  •  experiment
  •  trespass

There are also many different words that mean the opposite of the word foray. These opposite words are called antonyms, and are also useful to know if you are trying to expand your vocabulary or knowledge of the English language. This list of antonyms for the word foray is also provided by Thesaurus

  •  loitering
  •  inactivity
  •  dilly-dallying
  •  inertia
  •  time on one’s hands
  •  dormancy
  •  time to burn
  •  lazing
  •  slouch
  •  stupor
  •  joblessness
  •  otiosity
  •  loafing
  •  own sweet time
  •  time to kill
  •  slothfulness
  •  vegetating
  •  indolence
  •  pottering
  •  leisure
  •  shiftlessness
  •  sloth
  •  inaction
  •  goof-off time
  •  unemployment
  •  sluggishness
  •  truancy
  •  slowness
  •  laze
  •  trifling
  •  lethargy
  •  dawdling
  •  idleness
  •  droning
  •  torpidity
  •  hibernation
  •  torpor
  •  laziness
  •  time-wasting

Overall, the word foray means


  1. foray: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense 
  2. FORAY Synonyms: 13 Synonyms & Antonyms for FORAY | Thesaurus 
  3. IDLENESS Synonyms: 51 Synonyms & Antonyms for IDLENESS | Thesaurus 
  4. foray | Origin and meaning of foray | Online Etymology Dictionary 
  5. Foray | Definition of Foray | Merriam-Webster