To become agitated or distressed, especially in a social or public setting. To unravel or become worn at the edge or end, such as a piece of cloth.
Part of speech
Unravel, wear, wear thin, ravel, chafe, annoy, irritate, disturb, unsettle, worry
Mend, repair, soothe, calm, ease, relax
- The tension between the two groups started to fray as they worked towards a common goal.
- The edge of the carpet frayed after being walked on for years.
- Her nerves began to fray as the deadline for the project approached.
- The constant bickering and arguing between the siblings caused their relationship to fray.
The word “fray” has a few different meanings, but its most common usage is to describe the wearing or unraveling of something, such as cloth or rope. This sense of the word can be seen in the example sentence “The edge of the carpet frayed after being walked on for years.” In this context, “fray” means that the carpet’s edge became worn and began to unravel due to use.
Another common usage of “fray” is to describe a situation or relationship that has become tense or agitated. This sense of the word can be seen in the example sentence “Her nerves began to fray as the deadline for the project approached.” In this context, “fray” means that the person’s nerves became agitated and distressed as the deadline approached.
In some cases, “fray” can be used in a more general sense to describe something that is starting to come apart or become unsettled. For example, the sentence “The constant bickering and arguing between the siblings caused their relationship to fray” uses “fray” to describe a relationship that is starting to break down due to constant tension and conflict.
Overall, “fray” is a versatile word that can be used to describe a variety of situations and objects. Its use can range from describing the wear and tear of a physical object to the unraveling of a social relationship, making it a useful word for writers and speakers looking to add detail and nuance to their language