out·​side | \ ˌau̇t-ˈsīd How to pronounce outside (audio) , ˈau̇t-ˌsīd \

Definition of outside

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : a place or region beyond an enclosure or boundary: such as
(1) : the world beyond the confines of an institution (such as a prison)
(2) often capitalized, in Alaska : the world beyond the territory or state of Alaska especially : the 48 contiguous states
b : the area farthest from a specified point of reference: such as
(1) : the side of home plate farthest from the batter
(2) : the part of a playing area toward the sidelines
(3) : the part of a playing area away from the goal
2 : an outer side or surface
3 : an outer manifestation : appearance
4 : the extreme limit of a guess : maximum the crowd numbered 10,000 at the outside



Definition of outside (Entry 2 of 4)

1a : of, relating to, or being on or toward the outer side or surface the outside edge
b : of, relating to, or being on or toward the outer side of a curve or turn
c : of, relating to, or being on or near the outside an outside pitch
2a : situated or performed outside a particular place
b : connected with or giving access to the outside outside telephone line
4a : not included or originating in a particular group or organization blamed the riot on outside agitators
b : not belonging to one's regular occupation or duties outside interests
5 : barely possible : remote an outside chance
6 : made or done from the outside borrowed a basketball and practiced his outside shot



Definition of outside (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : on or to the outside



Definition of outside (Entry 4 of 4)

1 used as a function word to indicate movement to or position on the outer side of
2 : beyond the limits of outside the scope of this report outside the law
3 : except

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Synonyms & Antonyms for outside

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Adverb

Synonyms: Preposition

Antonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adverb

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Examples of outside in a Sentence

Noun The house looks nice from the outside. painted the outside of the house Adjective the outside edge of the foot She turned on the outside light to see what was making the noise. The phone will not let you make outside calls. The company hired an outside consultant. a businessman with few outside interests besides golf There were outside influences that affected his decision to retire early. Adverb The children love playing outside. It's nice outside, with not a cloud in the sky. He ran outside to see what the noise was about. He looked outside at the snow. The candy was hard outside but chewy inside. The car seemed in good condition outside. Preposition We waited outside the store. He kept his hands outside his pockets. There was a dog barking outside the house. She finished the race five seconds outside the record. We live outside the city. I have never traveled outside the U.S. before. No one outside the group knew of their plans.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun From the outside, this structure seems like a recipe for disaster: fiefdoms operating in separate buildings scattered throughout downtown Seattle. Brian Dumaine, Fortune, "Amazon was built for the pandemic—and will likely emerge from it stronger than ever," 18 May 2020 The device had been installed inside the pump and wasn’t visible from the outside. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, "Customer spits at liquor store owner; man found lying on Pickaway Drive: Brook Park Police Blotter," 15 May 2020 Any lasting changes in CEO thinking may end up being spurred most heavily from the outside the boardroom – by workers and watchdog groups or consumers and socially conscious investors. Laurent Belsie, The Christian Science Monitor, "Is this crisis giving capitalism a moral nudge?," 8 May 2020 But the company decided to pick a chief from the outside: Donahoe, who previously ran EBay Inc. and ServiceNow Inc., took the helm last month. Nick Turner, Bloomberg.com, "Nike Elevates CFO to Operating Chief as Part of Reshuffle," 8 May 2020 From the outside, the industrial design differences between the Arc and the old Playbar are noticeable. Lauren Goode, Wired, "Sonos Debuts 3 New Speakers, Including a $799 Soundbar," 6 May 2020 Room numbers were put on windows so families could find their relatives from the outside. Madison Smalstig, Indianapolis Star, "Pajama Day, weird hats and pop-song parodies: How one Indy nursing home cheered residents," 2 May 2020 Non-profit organizations that can provide support have set up hotlines, distributing numbers throughout jails, but have found that identifying clients from the outside can be hit-or-miss. Justin Carissimo, CBS News, "Leaving Rikers Island and coming home to a pandemic," 29 Apr. 2020 From the outside, burl wood appears deformed, all grayish scabs of nasty bark. John Semley, The New Republic, "Turn On, Tune In, Cash In," 27 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Radio Recliner was launched in April as a way to ensure that seniors who are in isolation during the coronavirus pandemic can still connect with the outside world. Catherine Garcia, TheWeek, "The week's good news: May 21, 2020," 21 May 2020 That could lead consumers to break up with subscription services built to optimize their lives in the outside world. Laura Forman, WSJ, "Stitch Fix Needs a Refresh," 20 May 2020 Going to work in prison during a pandemic presents all the same health risks that going to work in the outside world does, and then heaps dozens more potential problems on top of them. Emma Grey Ellis, Wired, "Covid-19's Toll on Prison Labor Doesn't Just Hurt Inmates," 19 May 2020 The outside world passes by, always visible but just out of reach, which creates a tension between the consequences of reality and the freedom of the train's otherworldly isolation. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, "Why HBO's Run is the thirstiest show on TV right now," 17 May 2020 The more permanent residents and select boards of such places, with ample reason and lack of hospitals, let alone ventilators, have asked people from the outside world not to bring the virus. Dan Chiasson, The New York Review of Books, "Pandemic Journal," 15 May 2020 The highway to Anchorage has long been Homer’s avenue to the outside world. Tom Kizzia, Anchorage Daily News, "As Alaska’s summer tourism season nears, a mix of unease, resistance and hope at the end of the road," 11 May 2020 That shutters slides over the camera, physically preventing the lens from seeing the outside world. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Why the new Microsoft Surface devices don't have a webcam shutter," 7 May 2020 Interest in birdwatching is reportedly soaring as Americans emerge from quarantine with a newfound appreciation for the outside world. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Birdwatching Takes Off as Americans Head Outside," 5 May 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Whereas 60% of graduates working for the big four accounting firms used to be based in the capital, in 2018 60% of new starters were outside. The Economist, "Peak capital London may have gone into a covid-accelerated decline," 23 May 2020 In fact, scientists and public health officials have maintained that with proper social distancing, the risk of catching COVID-19 from being outside is very low. Popular Science, "The coronavirus doesn’t care about your long weekend plans.," 22 May 2020 Overall, outside dining is safer than indoor dining with everything else being equal on a nonwindy day due to the larger air volume. Thomas A. Russo, The Conversation, "How to lower your coronavirus risk while eating out: Restaurant advice from an infectious disease expert," 21 May 2020 To be outside is now laden with multiple and conflicting demands: the demand of being safe from a virus that spreads through human contact, but also the desire to be social. Annie Vainshtein, SFChronicle.com, "A Bay Area without smiles: Coronavirus masks are taking away our most vital form of nonverbal communication," 21 May 2020 Podolske said one person will be inside and the other will be outside. Cathy Kozlowicz, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "The popular popcorn wagon to benefit Menomonee Falls' Optimist Club is returning with extra safety measures," 19 May 2020 Getting on a video call outside is an ideal choice for a kid who won’t sit still or gets camera shy. Jamie Kiffel-alcheh, National Geographic, "How to foster relationships between kids and grandparents (and great-grandparents!)," 7 May 2020 Playing when Devi is waiting for Paxton outside after swim practice. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "The "Never Have I Ever" Soundtrack Is Everything You Needed In Life and More," 6 May 2020 Weather is improving, and so cranky humans are venturing outside, into this uneasy world of masks, social distance and 6-foot gaps. Jason Gay, WSJ, "The ‘War on Runners’ Is Getting Hot and Sweaty," 4 May 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'outside.' 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 outside


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1634, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1813, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1795, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for outside

Time Traveler

The first known use of outside was in the 15th century

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Statistics for outside

Last Updated

24 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Outside.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/outside. Accessed 29 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for outside


How to pronounce outside (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of outside

 (Entry 1 of 4)

: an area around or near something (such as a building)
: an outer side, edge, or surface of something



English Language Learners Definition of outside (Entry 2 of 4)

: located on or near an outer side, edge, or surface of something
: located in or near the area around a building and not inside it
: involving people who are not in the same building, group, or organization as you



English Language Learners Definition of outside (Entry 3 of 4)

: in or to a place that is near but separate from another place
: in or to a place that is in the area around or near a building and not inside it
: on the outer side, edge, or surface of something



English Language Learners Definition of outside (Entry 4 of 4)

: in a place that is near but separate from (something)
: beyond the limits or borders of (something)
: not belonging to (a group or organization)


out·​side | \ au̇t-ˈsīd How to pronounce outside (audio) \

Kids Definition of outside

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : an outer side or surface The outside of the house needs painting.
2 : the greatest amount or limit : most The job will take a week at the outside.



Kids Definition of outside (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : of, relating to, or being on the outside the outside edge
2 : not belonging to a place or group outside influences
3 : barely possible an outside chance



Kids Definition of outside (Entry 3 of 4)

: outdoors entry 1 Let's play outside.



Kids Definition of outside (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : on or to the outside of outside the door
2 : beyond the limits of outside the law

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More from Merriam-Webster on outside

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for outside

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with outside

Spanish Central: Translation of outside

Nglish: Translation of outside for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of outside for Arabic Speakers

Comments on outside

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