AskDefine | Define indent

Dictionary Definition



1 an order for goods to be exported or imported
2 the space left between the margin and the start of an indented line [syn: indentation, indenture]


1 set in from the margin; "Indent the paragraphs of a letter"
2 cut or tear along an irregular line so that the parts can later be matched for authentication; "indent the documents"
3 make a depression into; "The bicycle dented my car" [syn: dent]
4 notch the edge of or make jagged
5 bind by or as if by indentures, as of an apprentice or servant; "an indentured servant" [syn: indenture]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A cut or notch in the margin of anything, or a recess like a notch.
  2. A stamp; an impression.
  3. A certificate, or intended certificate, issued by the government of the United States at the close of the Revolution, for the principal or interest of the public debt.
  4. A requisition or order for supplies, sent to the commissariat of an army.


  1. To notch; to jag; to cut into points like a row of teeth; as, to indent the edge of paper.
  2. To dent; to stamp or to press in; to impress; as, indent a smooth surface with a hammer; to indent wax with a stamp.
  3. To bind out by indenture or contract; to indenture; to apprentice; as, to indent a young man to a shoemaker; to indent a servant.
  4. To begin (a line or lines) at a greater or less distance from the margin; as, to indent the first line of a paragraph one em; to indent the second paragraph two ems more than the first. See Indentation, and Indention. Normal indent pushes in a line or paragraph. "hanging indent" pulls the line out into the margin.
  5. To make an order upon; to draw upon, as for military stores.
  6. To be cut, notched, or dented.
  7. To crook or turn; to wind in and out; to zigzag.
  8. To contract; to bargain or covenant.

Extensive Definition

Indent has several meanings:
  • In computing, indent is a computer program that formats C programming language files with a particular indent style. See indent (Unix).
  • An indent can be an addition to a legal contract
  • Indent is a genus of moths whose larvae are known as vernonia worms
  • Text can be indented, meaning it is shifted horizontally from the margin to set it apart from surrounding text.
  • Indentation may also refer to the dividing of a document in a zigzag line.
  • To indent in Wikipedia, use the : key.

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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