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  1. a young actress promoted and publicized as a future star, especially in motion pictures.
  2. a small star or other heavenly body.
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Origin of starlet

First recorded in 1820–30; star + -let
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for starlet


  1. a young and inexperienced actress who is projected as a potential star
  2. a small star
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for starlet


1830, "small star," from star (n.) + diminutive suffix -let. Meaning "promising young female performer" is from 1920.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper