Also found in: Legal.
1. Lit. to wander off the road or path. Stick to the path and try not to go astray. I couldn't see the trail and I almost went astray.
2. Fig. [for something] to get lost or misplaced. My glasses have gone astray again. Mary's book went astray or maybe it was stolen.
3. Fig. to turn bad or wander from the way of goodness; to make an error. I'm afraid your son has gone astray and gotten into a bit of trouble. Iwent astray with the computer program at this point.
1. to fail to arrive where it should I don't understand how my e-mail went astray.
2. to stop doing something in the way that you should Sometimes even the most well-thought-out plans go astray.Related vocabulary: lead somebody astray
Wander off the right path or subject; also, wander into evil or error. For example, It was hard to follow the lecturer's gist, since he kept going astray, or The gang members led him astray, and he ended up in court. This expression alludes to sheep or other animals that stray from the rest of the flock. Indeed, Handel's oratorio Messiah (1741) has this chorus: "All we like sheep have gone astray, Every one to his own way." [c. 1300]