"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[out-set] /ˈaʊtˌsɛt/
the beginning or start:
I wanted to explain the situation at the outset.
Origin of outset
1530-40; out- + set Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for outset
  • But the carmakers do not have to convince everyone at the outset.
  • His work was subjected to peer review from the outset.
  • Clay's political gifts were apparent from the outset.
  • But what they know after all that research is essentially what they knew at the study's outset.
  • The authors acknowledge that with economic metrics as a frame, the study of costs and benefits is limited from the outset.
  • Remember to establish a scale and a north arrow at the outset.
  • Our communication gap when it came to math was a yawning chasm at the outset.
  • True to the novel, our heroine is dead from the outset.
  • Good headnotes and questions at the outset and good summary questions as well.
  • It will be the first large-scale city car-sharing service to use only electric vehicles right from the outset.
British Dictionary definitions for outset


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

"act of setting out on a journey, business, etc." 1759, from out + set (v.). The earlier word for this was outsetting (1670s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with outset


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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