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Entrance vs Entry vs Entrée vs Ingress vs Access

Entranceentryentréeingressaccess are comparable when meaning the act, fact, or privilege of going in or coming in. All but entrée also carry the denotation of a way or means of entering. Their differences are largely in their applications and in their connotations.

Entrance is the widest in its range of application and the thinnest in its specific implications; it fits in with nearly every context.

Entry, by comparison, typically imputes a formal or ceremonial character to the act of entering. When used with reference to a place where one enters, it usually signifies a door, a gate, a portico, or more commonly a vestibule or entrance hall. It has largely yielded its meaning of the privilege or right of entrance to entrée.

The latter word, however, is usually restricted in its application and suggests exclusiveness in those admitting or distinction or social gifts in those admitted.

Ingress, because of legal use, carries more than any of the others the implication either of permission to enter or of encroachment. When used concretely it more often suggests a natural passageway than an architectural structure.

Access, like ingress , implies admission where barriers are imposed, but they may be of many kinds: social, legal, or personal, as well as natural. Access is distinguished from the other words of this group by its emphasis on approach rather than on entrance.