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[adverb, noun oh-ver-seez; adjective oh-ver-seez] /adverb, noun ˌoʊ vərˈsiz; adjective ˈoʊ vərˈsiz/
over, across, or beyond the sea; abroad:
to be sent overseas.
of or relating to passage over the sea:
overseas travel.
situated beyond the sea:
overseas territories.
pertaining to countries, associations, activities, etc., beyond the sea:
overseas military service; overseas commitments.
(used with a singular verb) countries or territories across the sea or ocean.
Also, especially British, oversea
[adverboh-ver-see; adjectiveoh-ver-see] /adverbˌoʊ vərˈsi; adjectiveˈoʊ vərˈsi/ (Show IPA),
(for defs 1–4).
Origin of overseas
before 1150; oversea (Middle English overse, Old English ofer sǣ; see over-, sea) + -s3 or -s1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for oversea
Historical Examples
  • For this reason it was decided to disembark the oversea passage crews from each blockship before arriving within the danger zone.

    The Blocking of Zeebrugge Alfred F. B. Carpenter
  • There was nothing heterodox in the view put forward by this preacher from oversea.

    The Message Alec John Dawson
  • In the days of the Hansa and of the Hohenstaufen the Germans cut a great figure in oversea commerce and in war.

  • But Napoleon's oversea move of nine years later was rash in the extreme.

    Terre Napoleon Ernest Scott
  • Great Britain's control of these teeming millions is unique in the history of oversea rule.

    East of Suez Frederic Courtland Penfield
  • The oversea voyage possesses a greater appeal to the imagination.

    Merchantmen-at-Arms David W. Bone
  • Buenos Aires is the intermediary between the provinces and oversea countries.

    The Argentine Republic Pierre Denis
  • Dagda's cauldron came from Murias, probably an oversea world.

  • And why these rather than what now constitutes the bulk of oversea and overland commerce?

    Creative Chemistry Edwin E. Slosson
  • "My private overland and oversea express," he called to Frederick.

    Atlantis Gerhart Hauptmann
British Dictionary definitions for oversea


adverb (ˌəʊvəˈsiːz)
beyond the sea; abroad
adjective (ˈəʊvəˈsiːz)
of, to, in, from, or situated in countries beyond the sea
Also oversea (ˌəʊvəˈsiː). of or relating to passage over the sea
noun (ˌəʊvəˈsiːz)
(functioning as sing) (informal) a foreign country or foreign countries collectively
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for oversea



1580s, from over + sea. Popularized during World War I as a British euphemism for "colonial."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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