Alien vs Foreign - What's the difference?

alien | foreign | Synonyms |

Alien is a synonym of foreign.

As nouns the difference between alien and foreign

is that alien is a person, animal, plant, or other thing which is from outside the family, group, organization, or territory under consideration while foreign is (informal) foreigner.

As adjectives the difference between alien and foreign

is that alien is pertaining to an alien while foreign is from a different country.

As a verb alien

is to estrange; to alienate.

Other Comparisons: What's the difference?



Alternative forms

* alyaunte


(en noun)
  • A person, animal, plant, or other thing which is from outside the family, group, organization, or territory under consideration.
  • A foreigner residing in a country.
  • * 1773 , William Blackstone, Commentaries on the laws of England: in four books, Volume 1 (Fifth Edition) , page 372
  • An alien born may purchase lands, or other estates: but not for his own use; for the king is thereupon entitled to them.
  • * 1831 , John Marshall, Cherokee Nation v. Georgia , U.S. Government
  • The counsel have shown conclusively that they are not a state of the union, and have insisted that individually they are aliens , not owing allegiance to the United States.
  • * 2004 , Wesley Campbell, Stephen Court, Be a hero: the battle for mercy and social justice , Destiny Image Publishers, page 74
  • Aliens are aliens because of persecution or war or hardship or famine.
  • Any life form of extraterrestrial origin.
  • One excluded from certain privileges; one alienated or estranged.
  • * Bible, Ephes. ii. 12
  • Aliens from the common wealth of Israel.


    * * See also


    (en adjective)
  • Pertaining to an alien.
  • Not belonging to the same country, land, or government, or to the citizens or subjects thereof; foreign.
  • alien subjects, enemies, property, or shores
  • Very unfamiliar, strange, or removed.
  • principles alien to our religion
  • * Wordsworth
  • An alien sound of melancholy.


    (en verb)
  • To estrange; to alienate.
  • (legal) To transfer the ownership of something.
  • Alternative forms

    * aliene




    (en adjective)
  • Located outside a country or place, especially one's own.
  • foreign''' markets''; '''''foreign soil
  • Originating from, characteristic of, belonging to, or being a citizen of a country or place other than the one under discussion.
  • foreign''' car''; '''''foreign''' word''; '''''foreign''' citizen''; '''''foreign trade
  • * {{quote-book, year=1905, author=
  • , title= , chapter=2 citation , passage=The cane was undoubtedly of foreign make, for it had a solid silver ferrule at one end, which was not English hall–marked.}}
  • * {{quote-magazine, date=2013-08-24, volume=408, issue=8850, magazine=(The Economist)
  • , title= Guardian warriors and golden eggs , passage=Foreign' companies love to complain about doing business in China.
  • Relating to a different nation.
  • foreign''' policy''; '''''foreign navies
  • Not characteristic of or naturally taken in by an organism or system.
  • foreign''' body''; '''''foreign''' substance''; '''''foreign''' gene''; '''''foreign species
  • Alien; strange.
  • It was completely foreign to their way of thinking.
  • * (and other bibliographic particulars) (Jonathan Swift)
  • This design is not foreign from some people's thoughts.
  • (label) Held at a distance; excluded; exiled.
  • * (and other bibliographic particulars) (Shakespeare)
  • Kept him a foreign man still; which so grieved him, / That he ran mad and died.
  • From a different one of the states of the United States, as of a state of residence or incorporation.
  • Belonging to a different organization, company etc.
  • Synonyms

    * (from a different country) overseas, international * (strange) alien, fremd * (in a place where it does not belong) extraneous


    * (from a different country) domestic * (not characteristic) native * (native to an area) indigenous

    Derived terms

    {{der3, foreign body , foreign correspondent , foreign country , , foreign debt , foreign exchange , foreignize , foreignization , foreign key , foreignness , foreigner , foreign tongue , foreign policy , Foreign Office}}


    (en noun)
  • (informal) foreigner
  • * {{quote-news
  • , year=2011 , date=August 30 , author= , title=White House Extremely Worried About People Saying Dumb Stuff on 9/11 , work=Gawker citation , page= , passage=The messaging instructions come in two sets: one for domestics, another for the foreigns . }}