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afoul

[ uh-foul ]
/ əˈfaʊl /
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adverb, adjective
in a state of collision or entanglement: a ship with its shrouds afoul.
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Idioms about afoul

    run / come / fall afoul of,
    1. to become entangled with: The boat ran afoul of the seaweed.
    2. to come into conflict with: The business had fallen afoul of the new government regulations.

Origin of afoul

An Americanism dating back to 1800–10; a-1 + foul
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use afoul in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for afoul

afoul
/ (əˈfaʊl) /

adverb, adjective (postpositive)
(usually foll by of) in or into a state of difficulty, confusion, or conflict (with)
(often foll by of) in or into an entanglement or collision (with) (often in the phrase run afoul of)a yacht with its sails afoul; the boat ran afoul of a steamer
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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