See more synonyms for outpost on Thesaurus.com
  1. a station established at a distance from the main body of an army to protect it from surprise attack: We keep only a small garrison of men at our desert outposts.
  2. the body of troops stationed there; detachment or perimeter guard.
  3. an outlying settlement, installation, position, etc.

Origin of outpost

First recorded in 1750–60; out- + post2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for outpost

settlement, station, frontier, position, boundary

Examples from the Web for outpost

Contemporary Examples of outpost

Historical Examples of outpost

British Dictionary definitions for outpost


  1. military
    1. a position stationed at a distance from the area occupied by a major formation
    2. the troops assigned to such a position
  2. an outlying settlement or position
  3. a limit or frontier
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 outpost

1757, "military position detached from the main body of troops," from out + post (n.2). Originally in George Washington's letters. Commercial sense of "trading settlement near a frontier" is from 1802. Phrase outpost of Empire (by 1895) in later use often echoes Kipling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper