Definition of foil noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//fɔɪl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//fɔɪl//
    Combat sports
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  1. 1(British English also silver foil) [uncountable] metal made into very thin sheets that is used for covering or wrapping things, especially food (British English) aluminium foil (North American English) aluminum foil Cover the fish loosely with foil and bake for 30 minutes. see also tinfoil
  2. 2[uncountable] paper that is covered in very thin sheets of metal The chocolates are individually wrapped in gold foil.
  3. 3[countable] foil (for somebody/something) a person or thing that contrasts with, and therefore emphasizes, the qualities of another person or thing The pale walls provide a perfect foil for the furniture. His mellow guitar technique is the ideal foil for her soaring voice.
  4. 4[countable] a long thin light sword used in the sport of fencing See related entries: Combat sports
  5. Word Originnoun senses 1 to 3 Middle English: via Old French from Latin folium ‘leaf’. noun sense 4 late 16th cent.: of unknown origin.Extra examples I wrapped the sandwiches in kitchen foil. She has used mosses as a foil for the bright red flowers in the bed. The couple provided the perfect foil for one another.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: foil

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