belonging to some particular person: private property.
confined to or intended only for the persons immediately concerned; confidential: a private meeting.
personal and not publicly expressed: one's private feelings.
not holding public office or employment: private citizens.
not of an official or public character; unrelated to one's official job or position: a former senator who has returned to private life;a college president speaking in his private capacity as a legal expert.
removed from or out of public view or knowledge; secret: private papers.
not open or accessible to the general public: a private beach.
undertaken individually or personally: private research.
without the presence of others; alone: Let's go into another room where we can be private.
preferring privacy; retiring: a very private person.
intimate; most personal: private behavior.
of, having, or receiving special hospital facilities, privileges, and services, especially a room of one's own and liberal visiting hours: a private room;a private patient.
of lowest military rank.
of, relating to, or coming from nongovernmental sources: private funding.
a soldier of one of the three lowest enlisted ranks.
privates. private parts.
Idioms about private
- pri·vate·ly, adverb
- pri·vate·ness, noun
- quasi-private, adjective
- qua·si-pri·vate·ly, adverb
- un·pri·vate, adjective
- un·pri·vate·ly, adverb
- un·pri·vate·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use private in a sentence
But less than two days later, Iranian media outlets reported on funerals held for privates killed in the incident.
On the other hand the robot can replace at least three privates, and the average income in South Korea is $35,400 a year.Smoke Rings, Mystery Backpacks and Gun-Toting Robots: The Weird Wartech of the Korean Conflict | Kyle Mizokami | April 3, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
When new privates now arrive, even their most junior leaders are likely to be combat veterans.
Because the mayor sent no pics of his privates and was nothing but a “perfect gentleman.”Lynsie Lee Isn’t a Vegan and Other Fun Facts About the Stripper Tweeting Cory Booker | Winston Ross | September 26, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
I was in charge of 14 privates in my unit, almost all young Sunni Arab guys.Former Syrian Soldier Describes Life in the Army at the Start of War | Andrew Slater | September 4, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
The total American losses that day were two officers and four privates killed, and three officers and 40 men wounded.The Philippine Islands | John Foreman
That privates should obey, and that they should be smartly punished if they disobey, this one can understand very well.Little Travels and Roadside Sketches | William Makepeace Thackeray
We were here saluted both by privates and officers, the Imperial Guard being considered as part of the household.
The lieutenants and sergeants flushed; the girl privates jumped their fingers onto typewriter keys.The Great Potlatch Riots | Allen Kim Lang
In his flight he came upon a Rebel major, two captains, and three privates, who were captured and paroled.The Boys of '61 | Charles Carleton Coffin.
British Dictionary definitions for private
not widely or publicly known: they had private reasons for the decision
confidential; secret: a private conversation
not for general or public use: a private bathroom
(prenominal) individual; special: my own private recipe
(prenominal) having no public office, rank, etc: a private man
(prenominal) denoting a soldier of the lowest military rank: a private soldier
of, relating to, or provided by a private individual or organization, rather than by the state or a public body: the private sector; private housing
(of a place) retired; sequestered; not overlooked
(of a person) reserved; uncommunicative
in private in secret; confidentially
a soldier of the lowest rank, sometimes separated into qualification grades, in many armies and marine corps: private first class
- privately, adverb
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 private
In addition to the idiom beginning with private
- private eye
- free (private) enterprise
- in private
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.