ins and outs

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia.
Related to ins and outs: insightful, shrewd

the ins and outs

The particular details and nuances of a situation, task, etc. I'm not surprised he made such a stupid mistake—he doesn’t know the ins and outs of this business.
See also: and, INS, out

ins and outs (of something)

the correct and successful way to do something; the special things that one needs to know to do something. I don't understand the ins and outs of politics. Jane knows the ins and outs of repairing computers.
See also: and, INS, out

ins and outs

1. The intricate details of a situation or process. For example, It takes a newcomer some time to learn the ins and outs of the legislative process, or David really knows the ins and outs of how this engine works. This usage alludes to the tortuous windings and turnings of a road or path. [Second half of 1600s]
2. Those with position and influence and those without, especially those in office versus those who are not, as in "Juan stood well both with Ins and Outs" (Byron, Don Juan, 1823). [Mid-1700s]
See also: and, INS, out

ins and outs, the

All the intricacies or ramifications of a situation. Originally this term referred to those in favor and those out of it, and then to those in or out of political office. As Chaucer put it in Troilus and Criseyde, “Weep if thou wolt, for out of doute, this Diomede is inne, and thou art oute.” Years later Thomas Jefferson (Writings, ca. 1814) similarly referred to “two parties, the ins and the outs.” Only in the nineteenth century did the term come to mean intricacies, referring to the windings and turnings of a complicated path or passage. Thomas Hood so used it in a late poem (“Laying Down the Law,” 1845): “The celebrated judge, too prone to tarry, to hesitate on devious ins and outs.”
See also: and, INS
References in periodicals archive ?
The program offers two-hour workshops where presenters and panelists--financial and homeownership experts and professionals from related industries--teach graduating seniors the ins and outs of purchasing a home.
His friends go along with the ruse, teaching Simon about the ins and outs of high school stardom and showmanship.
He said: ``Only a handful of people know all the ins and outs of why I haven't signed so far, but that does not mean I'm not going to sign.
It's tough to learn the ins and outs of a secret society if you don't know the handshake.
Markey and Shimkus counter that while a .kids domain wouldn't be perfect, it would at least be safer than what they see as a world where an unwitting child seeking information about the White House might accidentally discover the ins and outs of bukkake instead.
INS AND OUTS can make it third time lucky by landing the Seavington Maiden Hurdle (Div I) (2.20) at Wincanton today, writes Scott Moore.
To capitalize on this opportunity, GE has conducted processing trials at its Plastics Processing and Development Center in order to be able to educate thermoformers about the ins and outs of using this material.
It's a mite-eat-mite world out there on the leaf surfaces of trees and shrubs, and survival may go to the bug that takes better advantage of the ins and outs of its terrain.
There are stories of three strikes, told from different viewpoints (including a scab!), and with varying levels of success that make for great reading, explaining along the way some of the ins and outs of commercial fishing and dabbling in working class, lefty politics, and DIY culture.
"The ins and outs of the curves make the shape of the building like an amoeba," DiGiorgi said.