in·​spect | \ in-ˈspekt How to pronounce inspect (audio) \
inspected; inspecting; inspects

Definition of inspect

transitive verb

1 : to view closely in critical appraisal : look over
2 : to examine officially inspects the barracks every Friday

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Other Words from inspect

inspective \ in-​ˈspek-​tiv How to pronounce inspective (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for inspect

scrutinize, scan, inspect, examine mean to look at or over. scrutinize stresses close attention to minute detail. scrutinized the hospital bill scan implies a surveying from point to point often suggesting a cursory overall observation. scanned the wine list inspect implies scrutinizing for errors or defects. inspected my credentials examine suggests a scrutiny in order to determine the nature, condition, or quality of a thing. examined the specimens

Examples of inspect in a Sentence

She had the car inspected by a mechanic before she bought it. The candles are inspected for damage before being packaged. After the storm, we went outside to inspect the damage. He inspected the soldiers' barracks. inspecting a restaurant for health code violations
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Recent Examples on the Web

The ground brush and ground ring on the Red Line train that derailed were inspected on October and December of 2018 and in March and May of 2019, Gonneville said., "The fracture – on the front axle of the third car — derailed the Red Line train on the morning of June 11 near the JFK-UMass station.," 17 Sep. 2019 Kosher certification is exhaustive and costly work — every ingredient must be inspected, the facility may have to be washed down at high temperature, and then there’s a waiting period. Washington Post, "Shalt thou eat an Impossible Burger? Religious doctrine scrambles to catch up to new food technology.," 12 Sep. 2019 Taylor also gave Witherspoon help to ensure the jobs Witherspoon worked on would be inspected quickly, prosecutors said. Eric Heisig,, "Warrensville Heights contractor pleads guilty to giving bribes to former Cleveland demolition bureau chief," 9 Sep. 2019 Dewhirst said that only a small portion of the hull has been thoroughly inspected for rivet damage. Peter Passi / Forum News Service, Twin Cities, "Popular Duluth museum ship’s corrosion extends to its rivets," 5 Sep. 2019 The report details several potential violations of federal law or Border Patrol standards: — Two facilities inspected had not provided children access to hot meals until the week that auditors arrived. Nomaan Merchant, The Denver Post, "Government photos show detained migrants pleading for help," 2 July 2019 This means long outages during the storm and days later while wires are inspected. Letters To The Editor, The Mercury News, "Letter: Environmentalists at root of state’s wildfire problem," 29 Aug. 2019 Earlier this year, drivers said that while buses were inspected daily, there was pressure to keep them on the road and that intermittent problems like broken air conditioners, horns and turn signals often emerged. Kurtis Alexander,, "Yosemite’s review of park concessionaire Aramark slams it for poor service," 28 Aug. 2019 Shortly after, another man who claimed to work for a shipping company asked FK for money to ensure the package was not inspected at customs, the complaint alleges. Faith Karimi, CNN, "2 Nigerian men in California oversaw a romance scam that targeted women worldwide, feds say," 23 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inspect.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of inspect

circa 1623, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for inspect

Latin inspectus, past participle of inspicere, from in- + specere to look — more at spy

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Statistics for inspect

Last Updated

21 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for inspect

The first known use of inspect was circa 1623

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More Definitions for inspect



English Language Learners Definition of inspect

: to look at (something) carefully in order to learn more about it, to find problems, etc.
: to officially visit a school, hospital, etc., in order to see if rules are being followed and things are in their proper condition


in·​spect | \ in-ˈspekt How to pronounce inspect (audio) \
inspected; inspecting

Kids Definition of inspect

1 : to examine closely Doctors inspected the injury.
2 : to view and examine in an official way The president inspected the troops.

Other Words from inspect

inspector \ ˌin-​ˈspek-​tər \ noun


transitive verb

Legal Definition of inspect

1 : to view closely and critically
2 : to examine officially inspect the facility for code violations

intransitive verb

: to make an inspection

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More from Merriam-Webster on inspect

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with inspect

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inspect

Spanish Central: Translation of inspect

Nglish: Translation of inspect for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inspect for Arabic Speakers

Comments on inspect

What made you want to look up inspect? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to spread over or through

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