/pruy"vit/, adj.1. belonging to some particular person: private property.2. pertaining to or affecting a particular person or a small group of persons; individual; personal: for your private satisfaction.3. confined to or intended only for the persons immediately concerned; confidential: a private meeting.4. personal and not publicly expressed: one's private feelings.5. not holding public office or employment: private citizens.6. not of an official or public character: private life.7. removed from or out of public view or knowledge; secret: private papers.8. not open or accessible to the general public: a private beach.9. undertaken individually or personally: private research.10. without the presence of others; alone.11. solitary; secluded.12. preferring privacy; retiring: a very private person.13. intimate; most personal: private behavior.14. of, having, or receiving special hospital facilities, privileges, and services, esp. a room of one's own and liberal visiting hours: a private room; a private patient.15. of lowest military rank.16. of, pertaining to, or coming from nongovernmental sources: private funding.n.17. a soldier of one of the three lowest enlisted ranks.18. privates. See private parts.19. in private, not publicly; secretly: The hearing will be conducted in private.[1350-1400; ME < L privatus private, lit., taken away (from public affairs), special use of ptp. of privare to rob. See DEPRIVE, -ATE1]Syn. 2. singular, particular, peculiar. 10. sequestered, retired.Ant. 2. general, public.
* * *▪ military rankin most armies, the lowest grade of enlisted personnel. In the armies of the United States, Germany, and France, a private ranks below a private first class, who in turn ranks below a corporal. In the army of the People's Republic of China, private second class ranks below private first class. The grade equivalent to private in other branches of the armed services in the United States varies; in the U.S. Navy it is seaman, in the U.S. Air Force, airman.
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