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[out-let, -lit] /ˈaʊt lɛt, -lɪt/
an opening or passage by which anything is let out; vent; exit.
  1. a point on a wiring system at which current is taken to supply electric devices.
  2. Also called outlet box. the metal box or receptacle designed to facilitate connections to a wiring system.
a means of expression or satisfaction:
an outlet for one's artistic impulses.
a market for goods.
a store, merchant, or agency selling the goods of a particular wholesaler or manufacturer.
a local radio or television station that broadcasts the programs of a large network.
a river or stream flowing from a body of water, as a lake or pond.
the channel such a river or stream follows.
the lower end or mouth of a river where it meets a large body of water, as a lake or the sea.
Origin of outlet
1200-50; Middle English utlete. See out, let1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for outlet
  • Cover with pie-crust in which several incisions have been made that there may be an outlet for escape of steam and gases.
  • Any smaller than this, and the computer would disappear inside the electrical outlet.
  • Anyone who needs their phone charged and won't be near an electrical outlet for a while would be smart to get one.
  • It's as if the reviewer had a grudge and finally found an outlet to unleash his hostile brand of negativity.
  • Hydropower plants are a popular renewable energy outlet.
  • The basin has no outlet, so water escapes only by evaporation.
  • Waterfalls often cascade from the outlet of the upper valley into the drainage below.
  • The daily migration also benefits the lake, which once had an outlet to the sea but has been long since become isolated.
  • Repurpose smaller pieces in scrapbook projects or cover light-switch and outlet covers with them.
  • There is no stream or spring feeding the lake, and it doesn't have a natural outlet.
British Dictionary definitions for outlet


/ˈaʊtlɛt; -lɪt/
an opening or vent permitting escape or release
a means for release or expression of emotion, creative energy, etc
  1. a market for a product or service
  2. a commercial establishment retailing the goods of a particular producer or wholesaler
  1. a channel that drains a body of water
  2. the mouth of a river
a point in a wiring system from which current can be taken to supply electrical devices
(anatomy) the beginning or end of a passage, esp the lower opening of the pelvis (pelvic outlet)
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
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Word Origin and History for outlet

mid-13c., "a river mouth," from out + let (v.). Electrical wiring sense is attested from 1892. Meaning "a retail store" is attested from 1933. Figurative sense "means of relief or discharge" is from 1620s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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