[ noun in-let, -lit; verb in-let, in-let ]
/ noun ˈɪn lɛt, -lɪt; verb ˈɪnˌlɛt, ɪnˈlɛt /


an indentation of a shoreline, usually long and narrow; small bay or arm.
a narrow passage between islands.
a place of admission; entrance.
something put in or inserted.

verb (used with object), in·let, in·let·ting.

to put in; insert.

Nearby words

  1. inlaut,
  2. inlaw,
  3. inlay,
  4. inlay graft,
  5. inlaying,
  6. inlier,
  7. inline,
  8. inly,
  9. inlying,
  10. inmate

Origin of inlet

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at in, let1

Can be confusedbay cove gulf inlet Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for inlet

British Dictionary definitions for inlet


noun (ˈɪnˌlɛt)

a narrow inland opening of the coastline
an entrance or opening
the act of letting someone or something in
something let in or inserted
  1. a passage, valve, or part through which a substance, esp a fluid, enters a device or machine
  2. (as modifier)an inlet valve

verb (ɪnˈlɛt) -lets, -letting or -let

(tr) to insert or inlay
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 inlet



1570s, "narrow opening into a coast, arm of the sea," a special use of Middle English inleten "to let in" (c.1300), from in + let (v.). In this sense said by old sources to be originally a Kentish term.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for inlet


[ ĭnlĕt′, -lĭt ]


A passage leading into a cavity.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.