1. on the inner side or part of; within: inside the circle; inside the envelope.
  2. prior to the elapse of; within: He promised to arrive inside an hour.


  1. in or into the inner part: Please go inside.
  2. indoors: They play inside on rainy days.
  3. within one’s heart, reason, etc.; by true nature; basically: I know inside that he’s not guilty. Inside, she’s really very shy.
  4. Slang. in prison.


  1. the inner or internal part; interior: the inside of the house.
  2. the inner side or surface: the inside of the hand; He pinned the money to the inside of his jacket.
  3. Usually insides. Informal. the inner parts of the body, especially the stomach and intestines: The coffee scalded my insides.
  4. a select or inner circle of power, prestige, etc.: a man on the inside.
  5. the shortest of several parallel, curving tracks or lanes; the part of an oval track closest to the inner rail: The horse came up fast on the inside.
  6. the inward nature, mind, feelings, etc.
  7. Slang. confidential or secret information.
  8. an inside passenger or place in a coach, carriage, etc.


  1. situated or being on or in the inside; interior; internal: an inside seat.
  2. acting, employed, done, or originating within a building or place: He used to work on the dock but now he has an inside job.
  3. derived from the inner circle of those concerned in and having private knowledge of a situation: inside information.
  4. Baseball. (of a pitched ball) passing between home plate and the batter: The pitch was low and inside.
  1. inside of, Informal. within the space or period of: Our car broke down again inside of a mile.
  2. inside out,
    1. with the inner side reversed to face the outside.
    2. thoroughly; completely: She knew the work inside out.

noun (ˈɪnˈsaɪd)

  1. the interior; inner or enclosed part or surface
  2. the side of a path away from the road or adjacent to a wall
  3. (also plural) informal the internal organs of the body, esp the stomach and bowels
  4. inside of in a period of time less than; within
  5. inside out with the inside facing outwards
  6. know something inside out to know something thoroughly or perfectly

preposition (ˌɪnˈsaɪd)

  1. in or to the interior of; within or to within; on the inside of

adjective (ˈɪnˌsaɪd)

  1. on or of an interior; on the insidean inside door
  2. (prenominal) arranged or provided by someone within an organization or building, esp illicitlythe raid was an inside job; inside information

adverb (ˌɪnˈsaɪd)

  1. within or to within a thing or place; indoors
  2. by nature; fundamentallyinside, he’s a good chap
  3. slang in or into prison

late 14c., ynneside “interior of the body,” compound of in (adv.) + side (n.). The adjective is 1610s, from the noun. Inside job “robbery, espionage, etc., committed by or with the help of a resident or servant of a place” is attested by 1887, American English (also, late 19c., early 20c., “indoors work”). Inside track “advantage” is metaphoric because those lanes are shorter on a curved track. Inside of, in reference to time, is from 1839.

In addition to the idioms beginning with inside

  • inside of
  • inside out
  • inside track, the

also see:

  • on the inside
  • step in (inside)

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