Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To examine carefully and critically, especially for flaws.
  • transitive v. To review or examine officially: The commander inspected the troops.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. to examine critically or carefully; especially, to search out problems or determine condition; to scrutinize
  • v. to view and examine officially

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To look upon; to view closely and critically, esp. in order to ascertain quality or condition, to detect errors, etc., to examine; to scrutinize; to investigate.
  • transitive v. To view and examine officially, as troops, arms, goods offered, work done for the public, etc.; to oversee; to superintend.
  • n. Inspection.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To view closely and critically; examine (a thing or place) in order to ascertain its quality or condition; especially, to examine officially in order to make a formal report.
  • Synonyms To scrutinize, investigate, oversee.
  • To look closely; examine: with into.
  • n. Inspection.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. examine carefully for accuracy with the intent of verification
  • v. look over carefully
  • v. come to see in an official or professional capacity

Etymologies

From Latin īnspicere, īnspect- : in-, intensive pref.; see in-2 + specere, to look at; see spek- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin inspectum, past participle of inspicere ("to look into"), from in + spicere ("to look at") (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • And again, just looking here at what we have seen in this very narrow corridor, which we have been able to inspect, that is not surprising.

    CNN Transcript Aug 14, 2004

  • : When true or nil, formats output by calling inspect () on the statement result.

    RubyCorner

  • They are more stringent at the airports and have a cow if you have anything larger than "travel size" tube of toothpaste, not to mention they can bust open your luggage at the other end of the flight and "inspect" your stuff without regard to how the "open" it.

    Director takes blame over lax security at federal buildings

  • What you should do is not buy it and tell me where it is so I can go "inspect" it!

    my dad found me a remington 870 12 guage for $75, no that is not a typo. but apparently the barrel is starting to rust.

  • OH, DEPUTY PM, YOU ARE SPOILING USFifa's six-man "technical inspection" delegation landed in England this morning, presumably to "inspect" all the "technical" aspects of the country's 2018 World Cup bid.

    The Easy Option; and Big Talk

  • The doctored version in the speech is incriminating, but "clean out" is not the same as "inspect," and "make sure there is nothing there" is invented out of whole cloth.

    Marty Kaplan: R-E-S-P-E-C-T for Colin Powell

  • Although Jing Jing and Cha Cha are the names of the two characters, jing means "alert, vigilant," cha means "inspect," and together, jingcha, means police.

    Megan Shank: Chinese Netizens, Rest Easy

  • She and Wenyi also told us of the punishment workers receive for speaking out against their low pay and horrid working conditions, and the bogus factory inspections by Wal-Mart operatives whose arrival is announced to the management before they come to "inspect" the workplace.

    Kerry Candaele: Wal-Sprawl in China

  • And when he was at IBM at the turnaround of IBM, he made the argument that he found that in turning a company around, the word "inspect" often made more sense than the word "respect."

    CNN Transcript Nov 2, 2004

  • In The Way of the Traitor, the third volume of an ongoig series of thrillers, he is caught up in conspiracy and conflict, and finds himself assigned to "inspect" the port city of Nagasaki, Japan's only point of contact with the outside world.

    The Friday Morning "I Need A Coffee" Review: Way Of The Traitor

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