[ ik-steer-ee-er ]
/ ɪkˈstɪər i ər /


outer; being on the outer side: the exterior surface; exterior decorations.
intended or suitable for outdoor use: exterior paint.
situated or being outside; pertaining to or connected with what is outside: the exterior territories of a country.


the outer surface or part; outside.
outward form or appearance: She has a placid exterior, but inside she is tormented.
Mathematics. the collection of points not contained in the closure of a given set.

Nearby words

  1. extenuating,
  2. extenuating circumstance,
  3. extenuating circumstances,
  4. extenuation,
  5. extenuatory,
  6. exterior angle,
  7. exteriority,
  8. exteriorize,
  9. exteriorly,
  10. exterminable

Origin of exterior

1525–35; < Latin, comparative of exter or exterus on the outside, outward. See ex-1

Related formsex·te·ri·or·ly, adverb

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for exterior

British Dictionary definitions for exterior


/ (ɪkˈstɪərɪə) /


a part, surface, or region that is on the outside
the observable outward behaviour or appearance of a person
a film or scene shot outside a studio


of, situated on, or suitable for the outsideexterior cleaning
coming or acting from without; externalexterior complications
of or involving foreign nations
Derived Formsexteriorly, adverb

Word Origin for exterior

C16: from Latin, comparative of exterus on the outside, from ex out of

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 exterior



1520s, from Latin exterior, comparative of exterus "on the outside, outward, outer, of another country, foreign," itself a comparative of ex "out of" (see ex-). As a noun from 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper