a street apart from the main or business area of a town.
- Compare side street.
Other definitions for back-street (2 of 2)
taking place in secrecy and often illegally: back-street political maneuvering; back-street drug dealing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use back street in a sentence
His carriage was brought round to a private door, in a back street; and Ripperda was at last persuaded to enter it.The Pastor's Fire-side Vol. 3 of 4 | Jane Porter
Philip Burr led them into a back street, where his own handsome automobile was placed at their service.The Double Four | E. Phillips Oppenheim
Personally, he was subjected to no further annoyance, and soon forgot that unpleasant experience in the back-street.The Secret Glory | Arthur Machen
That means the frontage will have to be in the little back street behind, on the shady side.Dry Fish and Wet | Anthon Bernhard Elias Nilsen
The journalists melted away, and Foyle presently found himself in a dingy back street where the local police station was situated.The Grell Mystery | Frank Froest
British Dictionary definitions for backstreet
a street in a town remote from the main roads
(modifier) denoting illicit activities regarded as likely to take place in such a street: a backstreet abortion
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with back street
Also, back alley. A less prominent or inferior location; also, a scene of clandestine or illegal dealings. For example, The highway department is very slow to clear snow from the back streets, or Before they were made legal, abortions were often performed in back alleys. Although back street literally means “one away from the main or business area of a town or city,” this term, from the early 1600s, became associated with underhanded dealings, and back alley, from the mid-1800s, is always used in this sense.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.