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See more synonyms for eyelet on Thesaurus.com
  1. a small hole, usually round and finished along the edge, as in cloth or leather for the passage of a lace or cord or as in embroidery for ornamental effect.
  2. a lightweight fabric pierced by small holes finished with stitching and often laid out in flowerlike designs.
  3. a metal ring for lining a small hole; grommet.
  4. an eyehole in a wall, mask, etc.
  5. Also oillet, oyelet, oylet. (in medieval architecture) a small aperture in a wall used as a window or loophole.
  6. a small eye.
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verb (used with object), eye·let·ed or eye·let·ted, eye·let·ing or eye·let·ting.
  1. to make an eyelet in.
  2. to insert metal eyelets in.
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Origin of eyelet

1350–1400; Middle English oillet < Old French oillet, equivalent to oill eye (< Latin oculus; see ocular) + -et -et; influenced by eye
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for eyelet

Historical Examples

  • It should be fastened at the back, with hooks and eyelet holes.

    The Ladies' Work-Table Book


  • His appetite fell off and his belt hooked in the fourth eyelet.

  • Sometimes you might like to make an eyelet to represent a grape.

  • Fig. 110 shows the rope passed around and whipped to an eyelet.

    Rustic Carpentry

    Paul N. Hasluck

  • The eyelet holes were next worked, and the method is shown in the diagram.

British Dictionary definitions for eyelet


  1. a small hole for a lace or cord to be passed through or for a hook to be inserted into
  2. a small metal ring or tube with flared ends bent back, reinforcing an eyehole in fabric
  3. a chink or small opening, such as a peephole in a wall
  4. embroidery
    1. a small hole with finely stitched edges, forming part of an ornamental pattern
    2. Also called: eyelet embroiderya piece of embroidery decorated with such work
  5. fabric decorated with such work produced by machine
  6. a small eye or eyelike marking
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  1. (tr) to supply with an eyelet or eyelets
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Word Origin

C14: from Old French oillet, literally: a little eye, from oill eye, from Latin oculus eye; see eye 1
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 eyelet


"small hole," late 14c., oilet, from Middle French oeillet, diminutive of oeil "eye," from Latin oculus (see eye (n.)). Spelling influenced by eye.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper