Definition of outside in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈoutsīd/
1The external side or surface of something: record the date on the outside of the file
More example sentences
  • The inside was just about as nice looking as the outside for a police building.
  • The outsides of buildings are horrible facades of doom and brimstone and that gunky stuff that forms in your eye when you're sleepy.
  • A pair of peak-like chicken croquettes drizzled in yellow giblet gravy have extra-crunchy outsides and smooth white-meat insides.
outer/external surface, exterior, outer side/layer, case, skin, shell, covering, facade
1.1The side of a bend or curve where the edge or surface is longer in extent.
Example sentences
  • With this loop you cannot tell which side is the inside and which is the outside.
1.2The side of a racetrack further from the center, where the lanes are longer.
Example sentences
  • Before they can turn they are having to swerve to the outside lane to give themselves some place.
1.3The external appearance of someone or something: was he as straight as he appeared on the outside?
More example sentences
  • He answered that it was only the outside which appeared different; people were the same everywhere.
  • I'll remember how she was even more beautiful on the inside than the outside.
1.4(In basketball) the area beyond the perimeter of the defense: he often set up the Lakers' plays from the outside
More example sentences
  • If the pass goes to the baseline, a good shot often presents itself on a return pass to the outside.


Pronunciation: /ˈoutsīd/
1Situated on or near the exterior or external surface of something: put the outside lights on
More example sentences
  • Neither of its outside surfaces had touched anything but air during its creation.
  • The outside surface is polished nicely to give a classy look to a very practical tool.
  • Is an ear part of the inside or the outside of a body, and how can we distinguish its own inside and outside surfaces?
exterior, external, outer, outdoor, out-of-doors
1.1 Baseball (Of a pitch) passing home plate on the side of the plate away from the batter, not in the strike zone.
Example sentences
  • This occurs most often on outside pitches with an ump having a wide strike zone.
  • Grissom looks like he has moved closer to the plate to handle the outside pitch.
  • Next was Paul Lo Duca, who took a good outside pitch down the first base line for a double.
1.2(In soccer and other sports) denoting positions nearer to the sides of the field.
Example sentences
  • Baxendell is still one of the most talented outside centres in the country.
  • Skipper Andy Baggett moves to outside centre, with Chris Malherbe on the left wing.
  • That last reference was perhaps a hint that Townsend will be given a game at outside centre to recover his confidence and form.
1.3(In basketball) taking place beyond the perimeter of the defense: he needs work on his outside shot
More example sentences
  • Stoudamire has improved his outside shot and has limited his rushes to the basket.
  • Two free throws from Walsh, followed by two more foul shots and an outside shot from Fahey put them back on track.
2Not belonging to or coming from within a particular group: I have some outside help
More example sentences
  • At the moment, highways maintenance is carried out by a mix of the council's own teams and outside contractors.
  • But Mr Blyth stressed it was a mistake by the outside contractors who printed the ballot forms.
  • There is abundant evidence that reveals the resistance to outside control that exists within the universities.
independent, hired, temporary, freelance, casual, external, extramural
2.1Beyond one’s own immediate personal concerns: I was able to face the outside world again
More example sentences
  • My music got a lot better when I stopped concerning myself with outside influences.
  • Last year's tourist season was disappointing due to a number of outside factors beyond our control.
  • People who lack resilience tend to pin their problems on other people or outside events.
3Highest possible; greatest; maximum: new monthly charges that, according to outside estimates, may total $8 per line
More example sentences
  • It should acknowledge the outside possibility of a risk but stress the balancing benefits.

preposition& adverb

Pronunciation: /outˈsīd/
1Situated or moving beyond the boundaries or confines of: [as preposition]: there was a boy outside the door [as adverb]: the dog was still barking outside outside, the wind was as wild as ever
More example sentences
  • He was running towards a little boy outside an open door, down the hall.
  • The crowd was now situated right outside her door, with the Duke's coach not too far away.
  • The outside world usually stays outside or confined neatly in the TV box in the corner.
1.1Not being a member of (a particular group): [as preposition]: those of us outside the university
More example sentences
  • She warmly thanked the many members both in and outside the committee who have given sterling service over the year.
  • He knows full well that no one may refer to anyone outside the 120 members of this House.
  • The comments the member is referring to were made by a member outside the House.
1.2(In football, soccer, and other sports) closer to the side of the field than (another player): [as preposition]: Swift appeared outside him with Andrews on his left
More example sentences
  • The only home score came when full-back Leigh Hinton came up outside his winger to make the extra man.
2 [preposition] Beyond the limits or scope of: the high cost of shipping has put it outside their price range
More example sentences
  • The suggestion for which the award is made is outside the scope of the employee's normal duties.
  • This venue provides substantial meals outside our price range but, with care, modest snacks are available.
  • Vague terms give no perspective on experiences outside the normal range.


Outside of tends to be more commonly used in the US than in Britain, where outside usually suffices, but, like its cousin off of, it is colloquial and not recommended for formal writing. (See off (usage).) The adverb outside is not problematic when referring to physical space, position, etc. ( I’m going outside), but the compound preposition outside of is often used as a colloquial (and often inferior) way of saying except for, other than, apart from ( outside of what I just mentioned, I can’t think of any reason not to). Besides possibly sounding more informal than desired, outside of may cause misunderstanding by suggesting physical space or location when that is not the point to be emphasized, or when no such sense is intended—consider the ambiguity in this sentence: outside of China, he has few interests. Does this mean that his primary interest is China? Or does it mean that whenever he is not in China, he has few interests?.



at the outside

(Of an estimate) at the most: every minute, or at the outside, every ninety seconds
More example sentences
  • It didn't take long, five minutes at the outside.
  • With only a handful of motions on the agenda, and most of them applicable to Saturday night's county convention in any event, my expectation is that Thursday night's business will be concluded in two hours at the outside.
  • That's $140 billion dollars a year, at the outside.

on the outside

Away from or not belonging to a particular circle or institution: when you’re on the outside, then you have a much better view of what they’re doing
More example sentences
  • As an only child growing up in Aberdeen, she remembers the sense of always being slightly on the outside.
  • Talk to someone on the outside, like other people in your family, a trusted teacher or another adult.

on the outside looking in

(Of a person) excluded from a group or activity.
Example sentences
  • Most people would understand that we need to get an element of comfort because we are on the outside looking in.
  • The time is now critical for members of both parties to decide, once and for all, if they can again be part of the same household, or if maintaining their differences is worth the price of remaining forever on the outside looking in.
  • I used to be on the outside looking in, but now I am right in the middle of it, and I can see what it's all about.

an outside chance

A remote possibility.
Example sentences
  • She could ride next Sunday's women's road race, where she has an outside chance of a medal, or spend the week relaxing, and basking in some of the glory of her historic achievement.
  • There is still an outside chance that we might escape the dreaded drop but the statistics are firmly stacked against us and it will now take an exceptional effort to avoid the drop.
  • It now means his lead is down to 30 points over us, and there are five races to go, so it gives us an outside chance.
slight, slender, slim, small, tiny, faint, negligible, remote, vague

outside of

informal Beyond the boundaries of: a village 20 miles outside of New York
More example sentences
  • The site is in the Green Belt, and outside of any defined development boundary.
5.1Apart from: outside of his family, nobody cares too much about him
More example sentences
  • Stop thinking the day is about anything outside of religion besides having a good time.
  • This means that members of the public will have to use the park's public toilets outside of these hours.
  • He accepts that, outside of a handful of top flight clubs, few will have his take-home pay.

Words that rhyme with outside

abide, applied, aside, astride, backslide, beside, bestride, betide, bide, bride, chide, Clyde, cockeyed, coincide, collide, confide, cried, decide, divide, dried, elide, five-a-side, glide, guide, hide, hollow-eyed, I'd, implied, lied, misguide, nationwide, nide, offside, onside, outride, pan-fried, pied, pie-eyed, pitch-side, popeyed, pride, provide, ride, Said, shied, side, slide, sloe-eyed, snide, square-eyed, starry-eyed, statewide, Strathclyde, stride, subdivide, subside, tide, tried, undyed, wall-eyed, wide, worldwide

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: out·side

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