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From Middle English outland, outlond, from Old English ūtland (foreign land, land abroad), from Proto-Germanic *ūtlandą (outland), equivalent to out- +‎ land Cognate to Dutch uitland, Afrikaans uitland, German Ausland. The use in the phrase "outland German" is influenced by (or is a calque of) the German cognate of the same meaning, Auslandsdeutsche (see Ausland). The use in the phrase "outland Chinese" is influenced by (or is a calque of) the Chinese term of the same meaning, 華僑 / 华侨 (huáqiáo).


  • Hyphenation: out‧land


outland (not comparable)

  1. Provincial: from a province (of the same land).
  2. Foreign: from abroad, from a foreign land.
    • 1921, Gordon Bottomley, Gruach and Britain's daughter: two plays, page 74:
      These outland Romans will not kill us all If you permit them to do their governing, Which is so dear to them, over you and us.
    • 1966, Donald Davidson, Poems, 1922-1961, page 107:
      I heard strange pipes when I was young, / Piping songs of an outland tongue.
  3. (used with ethnic nationalities) Living abroad, living in a foreign land, expatriate.
    • 1919, William Milligan Sloane, The powers and aims of western democracy, page 402:
      Whatever dependence the Pan-German chauvinist had placed on outland Germans proved to be a broken reed.
    • 1949, The Reader's Digest, volume 54, page 101:
      When the "outland Danes," who live in other countries, return by the thousand for the summer festivals, they gather first in the grim 13th-century fortress of Kronborg, [...]
    • 1980, New Society, volume 51, page 546:
      To China, it is "Chinese territory under British administration" : its citizens are regarded as "home Chinese," not "outland Chinese," and can travel freely to the mother country.
    • 2001 June 12, "Mike Echo Mike" (username), "Why do I fly !!!", in rec.aviation.student, Usenet:
      And Bruno's name is "Bienenfeld" meaning that I would place him as what are in Cleveland anyway called "Donau Schwaben" i.e., outland Germans living in SE Europe [...]


  • 1905, Edward Strachen Morgan (translator), Chronicles of the city of Perugia 1492-1503 (original by Francesco Matarazzo), page 198:
    But his plan came to naught, and the outland Duke was not even strong enough to bring back Piero dei Medici from his exile into Florence.



outland (plural outlands)

  1. (especially in the plural) Any outlying area of a country; the provinces.


Derived terms[edit]