View synonyms for outset


[ out-set ]


  1. the beginning or start:

    I wanted to explain the situation at the outset.


/ ˈaʊtˌsɛt /


  1. a start; beginning (esp in the phrase from ( or at ) the outset )

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Word History and Origins

Origin of outset1

First recorded in 1530–40; out- + set

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Idioms and Phrases

see at the outset .

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Compare Meanings

How does outset compare to similar and commonly confused words? Explore the most common comparisons:

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Example Sentences

Goodell and Sills said at the outset that they hoped to use the season to “contribute knowledge and insights that will aid the country’s pandemic response.”

Ensuring your mask isn’t too big from the outset will help you avoid having to constantly pull your mask back up over your nose and prevent gaps from forming at the sides and bottom.

At the outset of the pandemic, hospitals faced a crippling lack of supplies.

At the outset, this is a 137% increase over the revised healthcare estimates of budget 2020-21.

From Quartz

At the outset — in 2010 — almost every state signed up for one of the two testing consortia.

But the real money, Washington believed, lay in the western land investments he had made at the outset of the war.

Bill Clinton courted Mixner and his expertise at the outset of his run for president.

Things seem fine at the outset, as they always do—the children are fun and adorable, the husband and wife happy and carefree.

At the outset, only a handful of the victims spoke out about what had happened to them.

Is it day to day, game to game, or do they prepare a master plan from the outset.

Since we are to learn by thinking we must at the outset learn the definition of the three Laws of Thinking.

Here, however, is the place where the water trouble will first arise, which will have to be provided for at the outset.

From the very outset of his career in Spain he showed a lack of strategic insight and a want of rapidity of movement.

Thereupon began a procedure identical to that which had characterized the outset of every successful case of the Chief Inspector.

Organization was Aguinaldoʼs peculiar talent, without the exercise of which the movement would have failed at the outset.


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Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.