[foi-er, foi-ey; French fwa-yey]

noun, plural foy·ers [foi-erz, -eyz; French fwa-yey] /ˈfɔɪ ərz, -eɪz; French fwaˈyeɪ/.

the lobby of a theater, hotel, or apartment house.
a vestibule or entrance hall in a house or apartment.

Origin of foyer

1855–60; < French: fireplace, hearth (originally a room to which theater audiences went for warmth between the acts) < Gallo-Latin *focārium, equivalent to Latin foc(us) hearth (cf. focus) + -ārium -arium Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for foyer

vestibule, lobby, reception, antechamber, anteroom

Examples from the Web for foyer

Contemporary Examples of foyer

Historical Examples of foyer

  • My heart was heavy, though, as I went back to the foyer, where I had left my hat.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • The rehearsals began in the foyer, which troubled me very much.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • She clucked at the sight of the pool of water he was creating in her foyer.

    Dream Town

    Henry Slesar

  • At that moment Yoga Rama came into the foyer, and he was accused by us of having been able to see.


    W. W. Baggally

  • Something had whisked past the archway leading into the foyer.

    The Doorway

    Evelyn E. Smith

British Dictionary definitions for foyer



a hall, lobby, or anteroom, used for reception and as a meeting place, as in a hotel, theatre, cinema, etc
(in Britain) a centre providing accommodation and employment training, etc. for homeless young people

Word Origin for foyer

C19: from French: fireplace, from Medieval Latin focārius, from Latin focus fire
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

Word Origin and History for foyer

1859, from French foyer "green room, room for actors when not on stage," literally "fireplace," from Old French foier "furnace, stove, hearth, fireplace" (12c.), from Latin focarium, noun use of neuter of adjective focarius "having to do with the hearth," from focus "hearth, fireplace" (see focus (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper