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English definition of “stray”

stray

verb [I] uk   /streɪ/ us  
to travel along a route that was not originally intended, or to move outside a limited area: A herd of cattle had strayed into the road. They got lost when they strayed too far from the footpath. The ship strayed off course during the storm. to start thinking or talking about a different subject from the one you should be giving attention to: I think we've strayed too far from our original plan. Sorry - I've strayed from the subject.

stray

noun [C] uk   /streɪ/ us  
a pet that no longer has a home or cannot find its home: a stray dog "Who owns that cat?" "I don't know. I think it must be a stray."

stray

adjective [before noun] uk   /streɪ/ us  
Stray things have moved apart from similar things and are not in their expected or intended place: There are still a few stray spots of paint on the window pane. Several journalists have been killed or injured by stray bullets while reporting on the civil war.
(Definition of stray from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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