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How to pronounce foul (audio)


Monster Trucks in Space

Dictionary definition of foul

Morally offensive, unethical, or contrary to accepted standards of behavior or conduct.
"The referee blew the whistle to signal a foul committed by the defender."


Detailed meaning of foul

It describes actions, behaviors, or language that are considered objectionable, improper, or inappropriate. When applied to a situation, "foul" signifies a violation of rules, regulations, or standards, often resulting in a negative outcome or consequences. In sports, a foul refers to an infringement of the rules that leads to penalties or free-kicks being awarded to the opposing team. Additionally, "foul" can describe an unpleasant or offensive odor or taste, indicating a strong and disagreeable scent or flavor. Overall, "foul" characterizes actions, behaviors, or conditions that are deemed morally, ethically, or socially unacceptable.

Example sentences containing foul

1. The player was given a yellow card for a foul tackle on the opponent.
2. The comedian's jokes contained foul language that offended some members of the audience.
3. The food had a foul odor, indicating that it had spoiled.
4. The air pollution caused a foul taste in the mouth and made breathing difficult.
5. The suspect was arrested for his involvement in a foul crime.
6. The team's victory was marred by allegations of foul play.

History and etymology of foul

The adjective 'foul' has a diverse etymological history. It originates from several sources, primarily Middle English and Old English. In its early usage, 'foul' was associated with physical impurities, bad odor, or something filthy. It can be traced back to the Old English word 'ful,' which meant 'foul' or 'unclean.' Over time, the meaning of 'foul' extended beyond the physical realm to encompass moral impurities and unethical behavior. This transition reflects a broader sense of contamination, where actions or behaviors contrary to accepted standards of conduct were likened to the concept of filth or impurity. Thus, the etymology of 'foul' demonstrates how language evolves to encapsulate both physical and moral notions of offensiveness or deviation from accepted norms.

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Further usage examples of foul

1. The politician's actions were seen as foul and deceitful by the public.
2. The dog rolled in something foul, leaving a strong stench on its fur.
3. The swimmer was disqualified for a foul start in the race.
4. The suspect's foul behavior in court led to a contempt of court charge.
5. The writer received criticism for their foul language and explicit content in the novel.
6. His foul behavior towards his colleagues cost him his job.
7. The politician's foul lies eroded trust among the voters.
8. Cheating on the exam is a foul act of academic dishonesty.
9. The CEO's foul decisions led to the company's downfall.
10. The judge condemned the defendant's foul actions.
11. The foul language used in the meeting was completely inappropriate.
12. Engaging in insider trading is a foul breach of ethics.
13. His foul remarks left a lasting impact on her self-esteem.
14. The scandal exposed the company's foul business practices.
15. The coach was fired for his foul treatment of players.
16. The teacher reprimanded the student for foul language.
17. The company's foul environmental record drew criticism.
18. The journalist uncovered the politician's foul secrets.
19. He was expelled for his foul conduct in school.
20. The film depicted the foul side of human nature.
21. The police officer was dismissed for his foul conduct.
22. Her foul behavior tarnished her reputation irreparably.
23. The CEO's foul play resulted in a major lawsuit.
24. The athlete's foul play led to his suspension.
25. The organization vowed to address the foul practices within its ranks.



vile, pure, ethical, moral


TOEFL 4, High School 9, Unethical and Immoral

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