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abroad; away from home.
off the beaten path; far and wide:
to go afield in one’s reading.
off the mark:
His criticism was totally afield.
in or to the field or countryside.
beyond the range or field of one’s experience, knowledge, acquaintanceship, etc.:
a philosophy far afield of previous philosophical thought.
Contemporary Examples

If Julie Schenecker is mentally ill, an insanity defense will be difficult for her to prove, afield said.
Did Julie Schenecker Kill Her Kids? Amy Green February 7, 2011

afield said no one knows why Julie Schenecker killed her children, except Julie Schenecker.
Did Julie Schenecker Kill Her Kids? Amy Green February 7, 2011

Historical Examples

Old Wally was afield too; but, so far as I could read from the woods’ record, he fared no better than I on the trail of the buck.
Secret of the Woods William J. Long

But then it must be remembered that it was the early summer, and the troops were all afield.
A Wounded Name Charles King

It is wonderful when a man is afield with a man companion who understands both him and the woods.
The Cassowary Stanley Waterloo

Mr. Kincaid and Bobby were often afield on the beech ridges.
The Adventures of Bobby Orde Stewart Edward White

He would take me with him afield to carry the game bag, and I was the only one of many grandchildren to be named in his will.
Marse Henry (Vol. 2) Henry Watterson

I have been afield all my life and have never owned or used a camera.
Summer Dallas Lore Sharp

Are you going to send me afield still further to some man whom you have taken up in Phrygia or fair Meonia?
The Iliad Homer

On the following morning the preacher-plowman was afield at break of day.
The Redemption of David Corson Charles Frederic Goss

adverb, adjective (postpositive)
away from one’s usual surroundings or home (esp in the phrase far afield)
off the subject; away from the point (esp in the phrase far afield)
in or to the field, esp the battlefield

1590s, contraction of Middle English in felde, from Old English on felda “in the field” (especially of battle), from a- “on” (see a- (1)) + field (n.). Meaning “away from home” is attested by early 15c.


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