In general, these two words are very similar in meaning.
They are often interchanged in popular speech.
“Outside” is the opposite of “inside,” not being confined within a structure. It can also refer to the outer surface or outer appearance of something.
It serves as an adverb, an adjective, a preposition, or a noun.
- The dog is barking because he is outside and wants to be inside. If he would quit barking, we would let him back in.
- The thief’s actions were outside the law. Even stealing donuts is a crime. But eating them destroys the evidence.
- It’s snowing outside! Let’s go build forts and throw snowballs at each other.
- Better wear your mittens because it’s cold outside. And don’t forget your wool cap.
- The outside wall was built of bricks, as is the outside of the house.
- Honest, Mr. Game Warden. When I shot the deer, it was outside of the park. It ran back inside after I missed the first time.
“Out” implies movement away from inside.
- Sorry, but she went out about five minutes ago. You just missed her. She won’t be back today.
- We put the dog out because he wouldn’t stop barking. It’s hard to listen to the TV with that much racket.
- We wanted to go out to make a snowman with that much nice, wet snow on the ground.
- He slipped out the door without letting anyone know to meet his friends. They were going swimming in the dark.
- Don’t wear your socks out by sliding on the floor so much.
“Out” is also used in certain verbal phrases. When used in this manner, “out” is not a preposition, so it may end a sentence. Even if it were, that is no longer a grammar crime.
- back out
- shout out
- keep out
- slip out
- take out
- bring out
- hand out
- pop out
- wear out
- work out
- put out
- find out
- eat out
- cut out
- ask out
- head out
- Paul’s plan was to sneak out after everyone went to bed.
- He would have succeeded, but his friend backed out of meeting him with a car.
- Paul was very put out about that.
- “Wait’ll I find out where he went,” he thought.
- What good did it do to ask his girlfriend out when he had no transportation?
- He would have to work out a new plan.
- He wore out his socks stomping back from the park.
Photos by Ben Dumond on unsplash, Andy Li on unsplash.