private meaning

[ 'praivit ] Pronunciation:   "private" in a sentence
Adjective: private  prIvut
  1. Confined to particular persons or groups or providing privacy
    "a private place"; "private discussions"; "private lessons"; "a private club"; "a private secretary"; "private property"; "the former President is now a private citizen"; "public figures struggle to maintain a private life" 
  2. Concerning things deeply private and personal
    "private correspondence"; "private family matters" 
  3. Concerning one person exclusively
    "each room has a private bath"
    - individual 
  4. Not expressed
    "private thoughts"
    - secret
Noun: private  prIvut
  1. An enlisted man of the lowest rank in the Army or Marines
    "our prisoner was just a private and knew nothing of value"
    - buck private [US], common soldier, squaddie [Brit]

Derived forms: privates

See also: backstage, clannish, cliquish, cloistered, close, closed-door, clubby, confidential, esoteric, head-to-head, insular, inward, nonpublic, offstage, one-on-one, personal, privately, privateness, privy, reclusive, secluded, secret, semiprivate, sequestered, snobbish, snobby, tête-à-tête, toffee-nosed [Brit]

Type of: enlisted man [N. Amer]

Antonym: public

Encyclopedia: Private Private, 1st class


1 [usually before noun]

owned, managed or provided by an individual person or an independent company, rather than by the state:

a private law firm

private medical insurance

There is no shortage of private funding for biotechnology.

Much of the energy industry is now in private hands (= owned by private companies rather than the government).


2 [usually before noun]

working or acting for yourself rather than for the state or for an organization or a company:

A group of private investors got together to buy the company.

As a private IT consultant he could earn ten times what he made as an employee.

a doctor in private practice She decided to go private (= pay for medical care rather than use state services).


belonging to or for the use of a particular person or group; not for public use:

This car park is private.

A number of their clients have their own private jets.

The share documents were found among her private papers.

The sign said 'Private Property. Keep out.'


4 (Commerce ; Finance ) [only before noun]

sold only to particular people or organizations; not offered to the public in general to buy:

a private sale of $1.25 billion of shares

The company announced a planned private offering of stock.



intended for or involving a particular person or group of people; not for people in general to attend or know about:

The council held a private meeting this morning.

The letter was marked 'Private'.

An employee's salary is considered a private matter.


6 [usually before noun]

not connected with your work or official position:

You should not make private calls from the office.

She had some private business to attend to.

Problems in his private life were affecting his work.


privately adverb:

One in three rented properties is privately owned.

a privately funded organization

Can we speak privately?


go private; take a company private (Finance )

if a company whose shares are sold on the stock market goes private, it becomes independent by buying back shares from shareholders; to make a company independent in this way:

a plan for the public utility companies to go private

1 : of, relating to, or receiving hospital service in which the patient has more privileges than a semiprivate or ward patient
2 : of, relating to, or being private practice ‹a private office› ‹a private practitioner›


More:   Next
  1. are you having me tailed by the private eye?
  2. they may desire you to be in private.
  3. they farmed the tasks out to private persons.
  4. it is my private persuasion that he is right.
  5. it is my private persuasion that he is mad ...

Related Words

  1. privacy switch meaning
  2. privado meaning
  3. privat-dozent meaning
  4. privatdocent meaning
  5. privatdozent meaning
  6. private act meaning
  7. private activity bond (pab) meaning
  8. private annuity meaning
  9. private area meaning
  10. private automatic branch exchange meaning
PC Version