fray

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See also: Fray

English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • enPR: frā, IPA(key): /fɹeɪ/
    • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪ

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English fraien, borrowed from Old French frayer, from Latin fricāre, present active infinitive of fricō.

Verb[edit]

fray (third-person singular simple present frays, present participle fraying, simple past and past participle frayed)

  1. (transitive, intransitive) To (cause to) unravel; used particularly for the edge of something made of cloth, or the end of a rope.
    The laces frayed at the cut end.
  2. (intransitive, figuratively) To cause exhaustion, wear out (a person's mental strength).
    The hectic day ended in frayed nerves.
    (Metaphorical use; nerves are visualised as strings)
  3. (transitive, archaic) frighten; alarm
  4. (transitive) To bear the expense of; to defray.
    • 1631, Philip Massinger, The Emperor of the East
      The charge of my most curious and costly ingredients frayed, I shall acknowledge myself amply satisfied.
  5. (intransitive) To rub.

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Translations[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle English frai, aphetic variant of affray.

Noun[edit]

fray (plural frays)

  1. A fight or argument
    Though they did not know the reason for the dispute, they did not hesitate to leap into the fray.
    • c. 1591–1595, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Romeo and Ivliet”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act III, scene i]:
      Who began this bloody fray?
    • 2010 December 29, Mark Vesty, “Wigan 2 - 2 Arsenal”, in BBC[1]:
      Wigan, unbeaten in five games at the DW Stadium, looked well in control but the catalyst for Arsenal's improvement finally came when Diaby left the field with a calf injury and Jack Wilshere came into the fray, bringing some much needed determination and urgency to lacklustre Arsenal.
  2. (archaic) Fright.

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Spanish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Apocope of fraile (friar).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /ˈfɾai/, [ˈfɾai̯]

Noun[edit]

fray m (plural frayes)

  1. friar

Synonyms[edit]