- 1Belonging to or for the use of one particular person or group of people only: all bedrooms have private facilities his private planeMore example sentences
- Darknets are gated communities that run on the Internet but are open only to those who belong to the private network.
- It's a facility that's widely used and currently caters for several private planes.
- In fact, in Australia, fewer women belong to private golf clubs now than they did 20 years ago.
- 1.1(Of a conversation, activity, or gathering) involving only a particular person or group, and often dealing with matters that are not to be disclosed to others: this is a private conversation a small private service in the chapelMore example sentences
confidential, strictly confidential, secret, top secret, classified, unofficial, off the record, not for publication, not to be made public, not to be disclosed, closet; backstage, offstage, privileged, one-on-one, tête-à-tête; covert, clandestine, surreptitious; Latin in camera• informal hush-hush
- We were in the beer garden outside a pub on the Thames, and there was a private function in a sectioned off part of the ‘garden’.
- Weddings, party nights and private functions already booked will now have to be rearranged.
- I was once working a private function, and four of us were slammed with about 150 cars arriving at the same time.
- 1.2(Of thoughts and feelings) not to be revealed to others: she felt awkward at intruding on private griefMore example sentences
- But the murder of the two ten-year-old Soham girls has sent shockwaves of grief far beyond the private agony of their families.
- It flourishes on the back of faxes and in the margins of copybooks, doodles reveal a billion private boredoms.
- A source of aggravation could be your temporary inability to sort out intensely private feelings.
- 1.3(Of a person) choosing not to reveal their thoughts and feelings to others: he was a very private manMore example sentences
- She was a private person, often revealing herself more in her drawings than in anything she said.
- Friends recall him as a private man, a man who did not often reveal his feelings.
- My mom chooses to be more private, and she lives in the western part of the United States.
- 1.4(Of a place) quiet and free from people who may interrupt: can we go somewhere a little more private?More example sentences
- As if by instinct, he retreats to the woodshed, a quiet and private place where he sometimes goes just to sit and think.
- You might also want to designate a quiet, private space where you can dim the lights and play your favorite relaxing music.
- We didn't go where we normally go; we went out into the country to a little private place.
- 1.5 [predic.] (Especially of two people) alone and undisturbed by others: we can phone from the library—we’ll be private in thereMore example sentences
- So most of that stuff is just kind of a way for me to be private, and alone, and my daughter rides horses, and my wife does.
- He needed some private moments alone to reshuffle his current emotions.
- In the absence of tragedy and terror, they were left undisturbed to create private, coded worlds.
- 2(Of a person) having no official or public role or position: the paintings were sold to a private collectorMore example sentences
- If he wants you to act a poor man, a cripple, a public official, or a private person, see that you act it with skill.
- Future revenue would be paid to private individuals, and public spending would be financed by income tax.
- Anyone can access it: companies big and small, public institutions and private individuals.
- 2.1Not connected with one’s work or official position: the ambassador visited the school in a private capacityMore example sentences
- Gardaí in Killarney stressed they were here in a private capacity and not part of an official Swedish army party.
- This was so whether or not the accused was abroad on official business or in a private capacity.
- And he emphasises he is making his comments in his private capacity.
- 3(Of a service or industry) provided or owned by an individual or an independent, commercial company rather than the state: this research was carried out by private industryMore example sentences
- But more business doctoral grads are entering private industry rather than academia.
- In fact this was nothing more than a way of deflecting criticism away from the state while at the same time providing profits for private industry.
- So it turned to private industry to provide the extra manpower needed to implement the program.
- 3.1(Of education or medical treatment) conducted outside the state system and charging fees to those who make use of it: private education if I could afford it I’d go privateMore example sentences
- Both also have private practices and perform infertility treatment at the private Assuta Hospital and Herzliya Medical Centre.
- NHS treatment is attractive to patients because the charges are lower than private treatment, sometimes significantly.
- Should you stay in the public system or go private with your medical insurance?
- 3.2Relating to or denoting a transaction between individuals and not involving commercial organizations: it was a private sale—no estate agent’s commissionMore example sentences
- Since opening in March, the home has mostly relied on private donations from charitable organizations.
- It's a private transaction between me and the landlord/ landlady/ shopowner.
- Many charters served simply to confirm previous charters, judgements or private transactions.
nounBack to top
- 1The lowest rank in the army, below lance corporal or private first class.More example sentences
private soldier, common soldier; infantryman, foot soldier, trooper; British sapper, ranker; in the US GI, enlisted man; French poilu; Indian jawanNorth American • informal grunt, buck privateAustralian/New Zealand • informal diggerSouth African • informal troopie• archaic swad, swaddy
- He enlisted in the Army in 1980 and was first assigned as a young private as a supply clerk in Germany.
- Abroad, the death of an army private has been followed by the murder of five innocent civilians.
- Even a third class pilot had more power than a private in the army.
- With no one else present: I’ve got to talk to you in privateMore example sentences
- The judge was today hearing a bail application on Colin's behalf in private.
- There is even a coffee table and two armchairs if you want to chat with your girlfriend in private.
- Rome has an obsession with secrecy - a lot goes on in private but it need not.
late Middle English (originally denoting a person not acting in an official capacity): from Latin privatus 'withdrawn from public life', a use of the past participle of privare 'bereave, deprive', from privus 'single, individual'.