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[priv-uh-lijd, priv-lijd] /ˈprɪv ə lɪdʒd, ˈprɪv lɪdʒd/
belonging to a class that enjoys special privileges; favored:
the privileged few.
entitled to or exercising a privilege.
restricted to a select group or individual:
privileged information; a privileged position.
  1. not rendering the person making them liable to prosecution for libel or slander, in view of the attendant circumstances.
  2. not requiring any testimony concerning them to be presented in court.
Navigation. (of a vessel) having the right of way.
Compare burdened.
Origin of privileged
Middle English word dating back to 1350-1400; See origin at privilege, -ed2, -ed3
Related forms
nonprivileged, adjective
quasi-privileged, adjective
unprivileged, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for unprivileged
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The privileged theatres had no other course than to emulate the unprivileged ones.

    The English Stage Augustin Filon
  • Henceforth we shall have to compete with other nations on unprivileged conditions.

    The Victorian Age

    William Ralph Inge
  • Young men and unprivileged persons are forbidden to touch it, on pain of severe penalties, which are strictly enforced.

  • There I, an unprivileged and unsuspected hanger-on, lost their trail, returning to my own affairs.

    Plum Pudding

    Christopher Morley
  • By degrees also in this twelfth century forms of literature which busy themselves with the unprivileged classes begin to be born.

  • And yet some people profess to be scandalised at the excesses of the unprivileged classes!

    The Churches of Paris S. Sophia Beale
  • But, in both cases alike, the distinction between a privileged and an unprivileged body of free-born residents is fundamental.

  • Rebecca Mary sometimes did her "stents" there as a special privilege; she might be there now, unprivileged.

    Rebecca Mary Annie Hamilton Donnell
  • It is absurd that such large numbers of them are still as far from exuberance as the unprivileged.

    The Joyful Heart Robert Haven Schauffler
British Dictionary definitions for unprivileged


enjoying or granted as a privilege or privileges
  1. not actionable as a libel or slander
  2. (of a communication, document, etc) that a witness cannot be compelled to divulge
(nautical) (of a vessel) having the right of way
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for unprivileged



late 14c. of things; mid-15c. of persons, past participle adjective from privilege (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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