[ bil-it ]
See synonyms for: billetbilletedbilleting on

  1. lodging for a soldier, student, etc., as in a private home or nonmilitary public building.

  2. Military. an official order, written or verbal, directing the person to whom it is addressed to provide such lodging.

  1. a place assigned, as a bunk, berth, or the like, to a member of a ship's crew.

  2. Archaic. a written note, short letter, or the like.

verb (used with object),bil·let·ed, bil·let·ing.
  1. Military. to direct (a soldier) by ticket, note, or verbal order, where to lodge.

  2. to provide lodging for; quarter: We arranged with the townspeople to billet the students.

verb (used without object),bil·let·ed, bil·let·ing.
  1. to obtain lodging; stay: They billeted in youth hostels.

Origin of billet

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English billet, bylet “official register; record,” from Anglo-French, Old French billette, variant of Old French bullette, equivalent to bulle bill1 + -ette -ette

Other words from billet

  • bil·let·er, noun
  • un·bil·let·ed, adjective

Other definitions for billet (2 of 2)

[ bil-it ]

  1. a small chunk of wood; a short section of a log, especially one cut for fuel.

  2. Metalworking. a comparatively narrow, generally square, bar of steel, especially one rolled or forged from an ingot; a narrow bloom.

  1. an iron or steel slab upon concrete, serving as a footing to a column.

  2. Architecture. any of a series of closely spaced cylindrical objects, often in several rows, used as ornaments in a hollow molding or cornice.

  3. a strap that passes through a buckle, as to connect the ends of a girth.

  4. a pocket or loop for securing the end of a strap that has been buckled.

  5. Heraldry. a small, rectangular figure with the longer sides generally vertical, said to represent a block of wood.

Origin of billet

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English billet, bylet, from Old French billette, equivalent to bille “log, tree trunk” (from unrecorded Gaulish bilia “tree trunk”; compare Old Irish bile “landmark tree”) + -ette -ette Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use billet in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for billet (1 of 2)


/ (ˈbɪlɪt) /

  1. accommodation, esp for a soldier, in civilian lodgings

  2. the official requisition for such lodgings

  1. a space or berth allocated, esp for slinging a hammock, in a ship

  2. informal a job

  3. archaic a brief letter or document

verb-lets, -leting or -leted
  1. (tr) to assign a lodging to (a soldier)

  2. (tr) informal to assign to a post or job

  1. to lodge or be lodged

Origin of billet

C15: from Old French billette, from bulle a document; see bull ³

Derived forms of billet

  • billetee, noun
  • billeter, noun

British Dictionary definitions for billet (2 of 2)


/ (ˈbɪlɪt) /

  1. a chunk of wood, esp for fuel

  2. metallurgy

    • a metal bar of square or circular cross section

    • an ingot cast into the shape of a prism

  1. architect a carved ornament in a moulding, with short cylinders or blocks evenly spaced

Origin of billet

C15: from Old French billette a little log, from bille log, probably of Celtic origin

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