There are 2 main definitions of intimate in English:

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intimate 1

Syllabification: in·ti·mate
Pronunciation: /ˈin(t)əmət/


1Closely acquainted; familiar, close: intimate friends they are on intimate terms
More example sentences
  • Although Johnson himself was a fervent Tory, it is interesting to note that he was on friendly and intimate terms with several well-known Whigs.
  • The Heskeths were on intimate terms with Henry Stanley, 4th Earl of Derby, whose country seat was Knowsley Hall (six miles east of Liverpool).
  • Examples include finding yourself wandering by a dual carriageway at 5am, or finding yourself snogging someone with no idea how you got onto intimate terms with them.
close, bosom, dear, cherished, faithful, devoted, fast, firm, familiar
informal chummy
1.1(Of a place or setting) having or creating an informal friendly atmosphere: an intimate little Italian restaurant
More example sentences
  • The ‘open mike’ idea gives an opportunity to singers and musicians of every style to come up and perform in a relaxed, intimate setting.
  • All ten members of the team had to hot-foot it round the corner to Studio 7, a cosy, intimate place but not our friend S6.
  • This small restaurant is hidden away in the bowels of the place, and has a cosy, intimate atmosphere more akin to a city-centre restaurant than a golf club.
friendly, warm, welcoming, hospitable, relaxed, informal;
informal comfy
1.2 [predicative] Used euphemistically to indicate that a couple is having a sexual relationship: he was sickened by the thought of others having been intimate with her
More example sentences
  • About a year ago I really started to miss being sexually intimate with a man.
  • Two questions - how did you come to find out that he'd been intimate with other women?
  • I felt I'd found the perfect person for me and thought he felt the same… until recently, when he told me of his desire for me to be intimate with another man and him.
sexual, carnal, romantic, amorous, amatory
1.3Involving very close connection: their intimate involvement with their community
More example sentences
  • There is a more intimate connection between substance involvement and crime than merely that the same permanent personality traits predict both.
  • In helping with challenging campers, the nursing staff can address the intimate mind/body connection of the camper.
  • That in itself might seem extraordinary, considering the intimate connection between Dutch and Scottish painting, and the fact that the artist painted 3,000 pictures.
2Private and personal: going into intimate details of his sexual encounters intimate correspondence
More example sentences
  • In still fewer cases will the ads disclose some of the most private, intimate details of our personal feelings and sexual histories.
  • Banking is a private, intimate activity and most people want to do it with someone they know, rather than a different person every week.
  • Why does the government care so much about the twists and turns of people's private, intimate lives?
3(Of knowledge) detailed; thorough: an intimate knowledge of the software
More example sentences
  • Let me ask you this, because you do have experience, intimate knowledge of the country, its people.
  • Steve possesses deep, intimate knowledge of both Churchill and Reagan, having written books on each, though he deploys his learning lightly.
  • People know where they live at a level of intimate knowledge that no professional can compete with.
detailed, thorough, exhaustive, deep, in-depth, profound;
direct, personal, immediate, firsthand
informal up-close-and-personal


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A very close friend: his circle of intimates
More example sentences
  • And though it strewed the stage with disaster and disgrace, nevertheless, not even their closest intimates could presume to reproach them.
  • She is increasingly agitated and anxious over her medical condition, keeping it secret from all but her closest intimates.
  • We were intimates, friends who could share our deepest fears, loves and hopes.
close friend, best friend, bosom friend, confidant, confidante
informal chum, pal, crony, buddy, bosom buddy, bud, gal pal, BFF
chiefly British informal mate


Early 17th century (as a noun): from late Latin intimatus, past participle of Latin intimare 'impress, make familiar', from intimus 'inmost'.

Definition of intimate in:
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There are 2 main definitions of intimate in English:

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intimate 2 Syllabification: in·ti·mate
Pronunciation: /ˈin(t)əˌmāt/


[with object]
1Imply or hint: [with clause]: he had already intimated that he might not be able to continue
More example sentences
  • I understand that five NCL teams have already intimated that they would like to join the summer-based league.
  • He has implied it, insinuated it, hinted it, and intimated it, but he has not suggested it.
  • ‘Selecting himself for the national team has intimated that,’ he suggested.
1.1State or make known: Mr. Hutchison has intimated his decision to retire
More example sentences
  • This bird of night portends misplaced anger and hasty decisions, and intimates an imminent death.
  • Lane intimated the donations were disclosed in the annual report, however finding the exact reference in the 110 pages has eluded your correspondent.
  • It was a male voice, but it must have been someone from her office, or what ever celebrities have, because I get another nasty e-mail intimating legal action.
announce, state, proclaim, declare, make known, make public, publicize, disclose, reveal, divulge, set forth
imply, suggest, hint at, insinuate, indicate, signal, allude to, refer to, convey
informal get at, drive at


Early 16th century (earlier (late Middle English) as intimation): from late Latin intimat- 'made known', from the verb intimare (see intimate1).

Definition of intimate in:
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