\ ˈlet How to pronounce let (audio) \
let; letting

Definition of let

 (Entry 1 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to cause to : make let me know
2a : to give opportunity to or fail to prevent live and let live a break in the clouds let us see the summit let the opportunity slip
b used in the imperative to introduce a request or proposallet us pray
c used as an auxiliary to express a warninglet him try
3 : to free from or as if from confinement let out a scream let blood
4 : to permit to enter, pass, or leave let them through let them off with a warning
5a chiefly British : to offer or grant for rent or lease let rooms
b : to assign especially after bids let a contract
6 : to make an adjustment to let out the waist

intransitive verb

1 chiefly British : to become rented or leased
2 : to become awarded to a contractor
let alone
: to leave undisturbed let the flowers alone also : to leave to oneself wanted to be let alone
let fly
1 : to hurl an object
2 : to give unrestrained expression to an emotion or utterance let fly with some sharp rebukes— Janice Castro
let go
1 : to relax or release one's hold used with oflet go of stress— Kathy McCoylet go of my arm
2 : to abandon self-restraint : let fly spoke in clipped sentences, as if fearful of letting go— David Kline there just to party, just to let go— Philippe Vergne
3 : to dismiss from employment the firm let him go at the end of the month
4 : to fail to take care of : neglect let himself go and got real fat— Bill Parcells
let it all hang out
: to reveal one's true feelings : act without dissimulation
let one have it
: to subject to vigorous assault
let one's hair down
: to act without pretense or self-restraint
let rip
1 : to utter or release without restraint let 'er rip
2 : to do or utter something without restraint let rip at the press
let the cat out of the bag
: to give away a secret

let

noun

Definition of let (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : something that impedes : obstruction ruled his little world without hindrance or let— B. F. Reilly
2 : a shot or point in racket games that does not count and must be replayed
letted; letted or let; letting

Definition of let (Entry 3 of 4)

Definition of -let (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : small one booklet
2 : article worn on wristlet

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for let

Verb (1)

hire, let, lease, rent, charter mean to engage or grant for use at a price. hire and let, strictly speaking, are complementary terms, hire implying the act of engaging or taking for use and let the granting of use. we hired a car for the summer decided to let the cottage to a young couple lease strictly implies a letting under the terms of a contract but is often applied to hiring on a lease. the diplomat leased an apartment for a year rent stresses the payment of money for the full use of property and may imply either hiring or letting. instead of buying a house, they decided to rent will not rent to families with children charter applies to the hiring or letting of a vehicle usually for exclusive use. charter a bus to go to the game

Examples of let in a Sentence

Noun The first serve was a let. a private resort that allows vacationers to experience without let the joys of nudism
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Don’t let minor misunderstandings interfere with the basic harmony within a relationship. Tribune Content Agency, oregonlive, "Horoscope for Jan. 10, 2021: Cancer, work smarter, not harder; Aquarius, chart a path," 10 Jan. 2021 Please do not let President Trump continue to serve as the leader of our country while Americans are in fear of what Trump supporters will do next to carry out President Trump’s legacy of injustice. Tatiana Cirisano, Billboard, "Music Industry Groups Call for Trump's Removal: 'Americans Are in Fear'," 8 Jan. 2021 Don’t let your hips sink or hike up to the ceiling. Jen Murphy, WSJ, "The Family-Friendly Workout to Fight Cabin Fever," 2 Jan. 2021 Don’t let a teenage ruffian move into the house and start boning your daughter. Brian Moylan, Vulture, "Cobra Kai Recap: Money for Nothing," 1 Jan. 2021 The concept is so simple at its core: Don’t let one mistake beget another. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, "SDSU basketball’s secret sauce: Its ‘next play’ mentality," 30 Dec. 2020 Atlanta Rapper Jeezy didn’t let stay at home orders stop him from pulling off the perfect quarantine proposal to his girlfriend, The Real host Jeannie Mai. Charli Penn, Essence, "Feel The Love! The Celebs Who Got Engaged Or Married In 2020," 28 Dec. 2020 And even though everyone in the NFL was forced to hold the offseason program remotely, the Dolphins didn’t let that stop them from producing early wins. Omar Kelly, sun-sentinel.com, "Kelly: Dolphins’ Brian Flores deserves Coach of the Year consideration | Commentary," 27 Dec. 2020 Michigan basketball did not let Teddy Allen and Trey McGowens spoil Christmas. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan basketball pulls away from Nebraska in 80-69 win on Christmas Day," 26 Dec. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of let

Verb (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for let

Verb (1)

Middle English leten, from Old English lǣtan; akin to Old High German lāzzan to permit, and perhaps to Lithuanian lėnas tranquil

Verb (2)

Middle English letten, from Old English lettan to delay, hinder; akin to Old High German lezzen to delay, hurt, Old English lǣt late

Noun suffix

Middle English, from Middle French -elet, from -el, diminutive suffix (from Latin -ellus) + -et

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about let

Time Traveler for let

Time Traveler

The first known use of let was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for let

Last Updated

16 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Let.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/let. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for let

let

noun

English Language Learners Definition of let

 (Entry 1 of 2)

tennis : a serve that is not accepted or allowed officially and must be done again

English Language Learners Definition of -let (Entry 2 of 2)

: small one

let

verb
\ ˈlet How to pronounce let (audio) \
let; letting

Kids Definition of let

1 : to allow or permit to Let them go.
2 : to allow to go or pass Let me through.
3 : to cause to : make Let it be known that I'm not going to confess.
4 : rent entry 2 sense 2 rooms to let
5 used as a warningJust let him try to do it again!
let alone
: to leave undisturbed
let down
: disappoint Don't let me down.
let go
1 : to relax or release a grip Please let go of my arm.
2 : to dismiss from employment
3 : to fail to take care of They let the garden go.
let on
: to admit or reveal … Sam Fraunces never let on that he knew any of them.— Judith Berry Griffin, Phoebe the Spy
let up
1 : to slow down
2 : stop entry 1 sense 4, cease The rain has finally let up.
\ lət \

Kids Definition of -let

1 : small one booklet
2 : something worn on anklet

let

verb
let; letting

Legal Definition of let

transitive verb

1 : to offer or grant for rent, lease, or hire : lease may not be alienated, let, or encumbered corporeal things may be let out
2 : to assign especially after bids were attempting to let a contract without going through the bidding processUnion Springs Tel. Co. v. Rowell, 623 So. 2d 732 (1993)

intransitive verb

1 : to become rented, leased, or hired
2 : to become awarded to a contractor

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on let

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!