- a right, immunity, or benefit enjoyed only by a person beyond the advantages of most: the privileges of the very rich.
- a special right, immunity, or exemption granted to persons in authority or office to free them from certain obligations or liabilities: the privilege of a senator to speak in Congress without danger of a libel suit.
- a grant to an individual, corporation, etc., of a special right or immunity, under certain conditions.
- the principle or condition of enjoying special rights or immunities.
- any of the rights common to all citizens under a modern constitutional government: We enjoy the privileges of a free people.
- an advantage or source of pleasure granted to a person: It's my privilege to be here.
- Stock Exchange. an option to buy or sell stock at a stipulated price for a limited period of time, including puts, calls, spreads, and straddles.
- to grant a privilege to.
- to exempt (usually followed by from).
- to authorize or license (something otherwise forbidden).
Origin of privilege
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for privileges
These entrepreneurs have chosen to incorporate as private businesses, with all the legal rights and privileges that entails.Refusing to Marry Same-Sex Couples Isn’t Religious Freedom, It’s Just Discrimination
October 23, 2014
Remember that old marketing line: “Wealth has its privileges”?Rich People Want You to Work for Free
October 20, 2014
In addition to sparing their lives, Kruger offered the prisoners better food and other privileges for their hard work.On the Trail of Nazi Counterfeiters
Dr. Kevin C. Ruffner
September 20, 2014
While none of this will shield her from racism, it grants her privileges that other black people are actively denied.Lupita Nyong’o’s ‘Acceptable Blackness’ and the Myth of a Post-Racial Hollywood
May 29, 2014
“We did not rescue Marcus for money or privileges,” Gulab says.The Afghan Village That Saved Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell
Sami Yousafzai, Ron Moreau
November 8, 2013
There are others, perhaps, who have not been fully sensible of the privileges which they enjoyed.Brave and Bold
We have asked for no privileges we would not extend to others.
The white man's prestige and privileges were invested in him.The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
Doubtless his new ethereal form has its capacities and privileges.A Dish Of Orts
They will not readily yield up their scapegoat or sacrifice their privileges.The Truth About Woman
C. Gasquoine Hartley
- a benefit, immunity, etc, granted under certain conditions
- the advantages and immunities enjoyed by a small usually powerful group or class, esp to the disadvantage of othersone of the obstacles to social harmony is privilege
- any of the fundamental rights guaranteed to the citizens of a country by its constitution
- the right of a lawyer to refuse to divulge information obtained in confidence from a client
- the right claimed by any of certain other functionaries to refuse to divulge informationexecutive privilege
- the rights and immunities enjoyed by members of most legislative bodies, such as freedom of speech, freedom from arrest in civil cases during a session, etc
- US stock exchange a speculative contract permitting its purchaser to make optional purchases or sales of securities at a specified time over a limited period of timeSee also call (def. 61), put (def. 20), spread (def. 24c), straddle (def. 9)
- to bestow a privilege or privileges upon
- (foll by from) to free or exempt
Word Origin and History for privileges
mid-12c. "grant, commission" (recorded earlier in Old English, but as a Latin word), from Old French privilege "right, priority, privilege" (12c.) and directly from Latin privilegium "law applying to one person, bill of law in favor of or against an individual," later "privilege," from privus "individual" (see private (adj.)) + lex (genitive legis) "law" (see legal (adj.)). Meaning "advantage granted" is from mid-14c. in English.