- a person who feels enmity, hatred, or malice toward another; enemy: a bitter foe.
- a military enemy; hostile army.
- a person belonging to a hostile army or nation.
- an opponent in a game or contest; adversary: a political foe.
- a person who is opposed in feeling, principle, etc., to something: a foe to progress in civil rights.
- a thing that is harmful to or destructive of something: Sloth is the foe of health.
Origin of foe
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for foes
But Brown had not been among those Johnson heard speak of the cops as foes.90 Seconds of Fury in Ferguson Are the Key to Making Peace in America
November 26, 2014
Nevertheless, Grande manages to shoot her foes to smithereens.Ariana Grande’s Gay-Friendly Intergalactic Dance Party
August 13, 2014
For Nixon, it was the Watergate break-in, designed to filch political plans of his 1972 foes.How Iraq Became Obama’s War
July 6, 2014
In fact, foes of abortion have opposed most every single public policy that contributes to lowering the abortion rate in America.Thank The Pill For Abortion Rate Drop
February 3, 2014
That perception is a much bigger problem for supporters of same-sex marriage than its foes.Why Pushing a Catholic School to Keep a Married Gay Man Is Bad for the LGBT Movement
January 24, 2014
In the next scene Richard meets his foes, and at first plays the king.The Man Shakespeare
With foes in front, and foes in our rear, our journey is like to be one of danger.The Last of the Mohicans
James Fenimore Cooper
The truce of the water was over, but these foes did not meet again that night.
At one stroke of his sword Grant had cut apart the circle of his foes.
Quite otherwise, I call them not foes (as some would), but friends.
- formal, or literary another word for enemy
- Friends of the Earth
Word Origin and History for foes
Old English gefa "foe, enemy, adversary in a blood feud" (the prefix denotes "mutuality"), from fah "at feud, hostile," from Proto-Germanic *fakhaz (cf. Old High German fehan "to hate," Gothic faih "deception"), probably from PIE root *peig- "evil-minded, treacherous, hostile" (cf. Sanskrit pisunah "malicious," picacah "demon;" Greek pikros "bitter;" Lithuanian piktas "wicked, angry," pekti "to blame"). Weaker sense of "adversary" is first recorded c.1600.