Definition of inner in US English:



  • 1Situated inside or further in; internal.

    ‘an inner courtyard’
    ‘the inner thigh’
    • ‘They appeared in the stable yard, just inside the inner gates.’
    • ‘Today's reusable nappies are shaped with Velcro fastenings, washable outer and inner liners and an inside liner which can be flushed away.’
    • ‘Inside, an inner armature repeats the sweep of the outer structure, and the visitor is enveloped by emerald garden mesh.’
    • ‘With your knees about shoulder width, slowly roll forward on the ball until you're balanced on top of it by just the insides of your knees and the lower half of your inner thighs.’
    • ‘The signs will divert all through traffic away from the city centre onto designated inner and outer orbital routes.’
    • ‘By adding an inner layer of cover inside a hoop and picking cold-hardy varieties, you can grow right through winter - even in the coldest climates.’
    • ‘My legs are really sore today, stiff in places and ways I'm not used to… calves, inner thighs, quads, glutes and that crease just inside the hip at the top of the leg.’
    • ‘All three will be open during the week, giving non-masons a rare peep inside the grand inner temple and a chance to see the ceremonial regalia.’
    • ‘The new plan provides complete protection right inside the inner part which is south of the river; this makes a great place to leave your dinghy if there is a swell at the main dock.’
    • ‘We pass through the arch and inside to the inner courtyard.’
    • ‘Drill 4 holes, one in each corner inside the inner line.’
    • ‘If they're not, they need to be in their homes in an internal situation, in an inner side room, no windows.’
    • ‘The cabinet defines an outer region outside of the computer system and an inner region inside of the computer system.’
    • ‘If, on the other hand, your feet are touching the inside of your opponent's inner thighs then they are usually too shallow.’
    • ‘In the houses of prominent persons and local notables, another set of stairs is located immediately inside the front door without a view of the inner sanctuary of the courtyard.’
    • ‘The report claims that the shape of the wreckage fragments also proves the bomb was attached to the aircraft's inner wall rather than inside the luggage container.’
    • ‘A wireless transmitter is strapped in a garter to my inner thigh and a video rig is micro-contained inside horn-rimmed glasses.’
    • ‘It's important to moisturize your skin from the inside to keep the inner layers of the skin from drying out and to provide necessary nutrients to the surface.’
    • ‘Ornate doorways offer glimpses of inner courtyards and enticing interiors; many are university buildings, but just as many are candlelit bistros and bars.’
    • ‘Theo reached inside his jacket, putting the blueprints in his inner vest pocket and pulling out his gloves he had put in at the last minute.’
    internal, interior, inside, inmost, innermost, intramural
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    1. 1.1 Close to the center.
      ‘the inner solar system’
      • ‘In recent years, Laganside Corporation has transformed the inner core of Belfast city centre, specifically along the Lagan river and in the surrounding area.’
      • ‘It is a shocking fact that despite the vast tracts of industrial wasteland in inner Glasgow the city now has a shortage of developable land.’
      • ‘In some inner London boroughs, 54% of children are living in poverty and this is simply unacceptable.’
      • ‘Only inner Sydney, the eastern suburbs, and the lower north had a smaller proportion.’
      central, innermost, mid, middle, interior, nuclear
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    2. 1.2 Close to the center of power.
      ‘the inner cabinet’
      • ‘February 1986 - Yeltsin is made a candidate member of the politburo, the inner cabinet of the Soviet Union's ruling party.’
      • ‘Prime Minister Ariel Sharon called an emergency meeting of his inner Cabinet in response to the killing of the six Israeli soldiers.’
      • ‘This weekend, the inner cabinet is preparing the ground for the latest U-turn, which they hope will square Souter and Cardinal Winning.’
      • ‘The extent of these divisions, however, made Major suspicious of his Cabinet colleagues and increasingly he began to rely upon an inner cabinet of policy advisors.’
      • ‘Its citizens would directly elect its own president, who would choose a cabinet, with an inner core of MEPs at Strasbourg acting as a democratic counterbalance.’
      • ‘But to elevate them to an inner cabinet committee is a qualitative step toward non-elected rule.’
      • ‘First, there are divergent views within the inner Cabinet on the strategic importance of the recent meetings held in Helsinki.’
      • ‘Two members of the inner war cabinet were from the Labour Party.’
      • ‘An inner cabinet in Tokyo authorized Japan's only officially sanctioned diplomatic initiative.’
      • ‘These charges were absolutely correct, and reflect much credit on Callaghan and his inner Cabinet.’
      • ‘But he is a man with his own agenda and not part of Chirac's inner core of close associates.’
      • ‘With a 179 majority after 1997, he could afford to ignore it altogether and rule through an inner cabinet.’
      • ‘This week, in the wake of Newman's retirement, Abbott was promoted into Howard's inner cabinet as Workplace Relations Minister.’
      • ‘This followed Hitler's taking over command of the German army in February of 1938 and his setting up of an inner foreign policy cabinet which met in secret.’
      • ‘This issue will provide the people of York with a chance to see if the new inner cabinet and scrutiny committees are any more effective in dealing with the siting of controversial Park and Ride sites than people power.’
      • ‘The vice president is in effect the prime minister of the inner cabinet.’
      • ‘But as a member of the inner cabinet or cabal, his judgement seems less good than his spirit.’
      privileged, restricted, exclusive, secret, private, confidential, intimate
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  • 2Mental or spiritual.

    ‘a test of inner strength’
    • ‘If she gets more close to exploring her inner life than she can bear, she often will feel a strong burning sensation in her abdomen.’
    • ‘Stay with them and it isn't hard to see how their hypnotic quality has the power to induce an extraordinary sensation of inner peace and a state of almost transcendental contemplation.’
    • ‘Silent space dissolves the gap, it creates an inner spaciousness where mental, emotional and spiritual needs are brought together, appreciated and nourished.’
    • ‘After couple of months, I felt a change inside my inner self.’
    • ‘Then a metaphor focusing on spiritual inner strength and age progression was introduced.’
    • ‘I thought I saw the power of an inner gaze, a power which when looking outward sees through and beyond to what is really there.’
    • ‘To use herbs and inner wisdom is a spiritual, psychic and intuitive process.’
    • ‘Their personalities complemented each other and seemed to personify George's psychic, inner conflicts.’
    • ‘An elder looks not to the external beauty of a creature, but to their inner power, for it is within our souls that the power of Divinity rests, and it is the soul of a person that truly matters.’
    • ‘Her third eye represents the creative vision of the artist, a kind of inner perception mingled with spirituality.’
    • ‘But I think it also does carry the idea of the internal vision, the inner eye.’
    • ‘This adds to the psychological burden and inner conflict that homosexuals may have, seriously influencing their lives and mental health.’
    • ‘Also, you seem to know much about inner strength and the powers I have been given.’
    • ‘Then Christ's image is revived, and our distorted features become harmonized by the inner power of divine beauty working in us.’
    • ‘Their real universe is the spiritual realm of the inner life.’
    • ‘For others there may be even greater challenges when deep inner emotional and spiritual conflicts emerge.’
    • ‘His baby face belies his inner strength and mental toughness in the mountains.’
    • ‘‘He has a mental strength and an inner conviction about his ability that I have come to admire,’ Ellis said.’
    • ‘Many Eastern breathing practices help you develop physical strength, spiritual growth and inner peace.’
    • ‘It's where most of my family live and friends live and the sum of many things physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual that create my inner landscape.’
    mental, intellectual, psychological, psychic, spiritual, emotional
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    1. 2.1 (of thoughts or feelings) private and not expressed or discernible.
      • ‘They have to learn that there are people who love them dearly without knowing how to express or show their inner feelings.’
      • ‘In spite of that, Williams speculates that she won't be happy to see her inner thoughts in print.’
      • ‘These wonderful complements would extend your inner thoughts, your feelings, your emotions, and your experiences.’
      • ‘A sadness reflecting her inner feelings and unspoken thoughts.’
      • ‘Some authors aim at a narrative of drama, skipping the plateaux of family life or inner thoughts and move through a series of peaks of achievement.’
      • ‘Everyone has inner feelings about themselves that no one else knows about.’
      • ‘How much do you share your inner feelings or secrets with your best friend?’
      • ‘Jerry could feel her emotions surge, as her inner thought suddenly manifested feelings of remorse, regret, sadness, and guilt.’
      • ‘You allow yourself to ponder for a moment, ever so briefly, if the other person had the slightest indication of your inner thoughts.’
      • ‘His calm gaze masked inner feelings of frustrated anger.’
      • ‘It is impossible to know the man's inner thoughts, so intimately linked as he is to machines, a set of cold devices enabling him to move, speak, and breathe.’
      • ‘The audience hears their inner thoughts as they go about their lives home in the office or out and about.’
      • ‘Disaster dreams reveal a connection between your inner feelings and outer actions.’
      • ‘This plot device enables us to hear Nicholson's inner feelings without resort to awkward monologues.’
      • ‘Build up your inner feelings so they project only love for others.’
      • ‘Do something different - don't follow everybody else, go with your inner feelings.’
      • ‘It is a law of nature that inner thoughts will manifest an outer counterpart in due time.’
      • ‘Friends and associates rarely realize just how sensitive these people truly are because it isn't easy to probe this sign's inner feelings, or arouse deep passion.’
      • ‘But by launching into the realm of her inner thoughts it makes the show less about the work and more about her.’
      • ‘This is the real me, everything from my secrets to my inner thoughts.’
      unapparent, veiled, obscure, esoteric, hidden, secret, unrevealed
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    2. 2.2 Denoting a concealed or unacknowledged part of a person's personality.
      ‘it's time to get in touch with your inner geek’
      ‘join a choir and give voice to that inner diva who has been hidden away too long’
      • ‘Tell her to find her own inner beauty because you know it's there.’
      • ‘When we finally realise our inner strength, we can make some progress.’


  • 1The inner part of something.

    ‘using his rock shoes as inners for his double boots’
    • ‘He wears the inner of a football helmet to protect his skull, which is baby soft.’
    • ‘Items that might come in handy around the place - duvet inners, bookshelves, power tools - I eschew.’
    • ‘Our synthetic inners are hypo-allergenic and our feather/down option is non-allergenic.’
    • ‘The lower fascia, door inners and headliner uses an ivory leather.’
    • ‘They looked like they had been assembled from the cardboard tube inners of toilet rolls.’
    • ‘Nolan watched the race from the inner of the racetrack and every manic tic of his fevered reaction was captured by the television cameras.’
    • ‘Bodyside inners, for example, are made from low carbon laser welded blanks.’
    • ‘So, for example, on a stamping for a door inner, the area where the hinge will be located will be stronger than other areas, where there are fewer physical demands.’
    • ‘These coats are basically a heavy cotton outer and a fake fur inner.’
    • ‘The exhaust manifolds are dual-skin, with stainless steel inners.’
    • ‘But once his gloves, pads, inners and headgear became unable to accommodate any more bespoke alterations, he turned his fussing towards his dietary requirements.’
    • ‘I particularly like the feel of it when worn without the fleecy inner.’
    • ‘He got a long way back and tried to thread his way through the field on the inner on the final turn.’
    • ‘The technology for building aluminum inners and mating them to aluminum outers is much more difficult.’
    • ‘The various moon boot types with inners are all adequate.’
    • ‘He is also hoping that a spares supplier will offer to donate or subsidise solid inners for the tyres, so that the bikes will not be out of action with punctures too often.’
    • ‘I often find the book outer way better than the inner.’
    • ‘After a huge search, I finally found the cushion inners - everyone wants to sell ready-covered ones, but the uncovered versions are hard to find.’
    • ‘The Romans are documented wearing padding under their mailshirts which consisted of two layers of linen either side of a felt inner.’
    • ‘The lightweight vest is made from a Sportwool inner which wicks moisture away from the body and transfers it to the front of the garment producing a cooling effect.’
    1. 1.1 (in archery and shooting) a division of the target next to the bullseye.
      • ‘She cleared her magazine of bullets, taking aim and hitting three shots in the outer rings, two in the inner.’
    2. 1.2 A shot that strikes the inner.


Old English innerra, innra, comparative of in.