A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
        Search Transcribed Entries:

Private (adjective)

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1573

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1573

Prívate. adj. [privatus, Lat.]

  1. Not open; secret.

                    You shall go with me;
    I have some private schooling for you both.
    Shakesp.

                    Fancy retires
    Into her private cell, when nature rests.
    Milton.

    The harmless freedom, and the private friend. Anon.

  2. Alone; not accompanied.

  3. Being upon the same terms with the rest of the community; particular: opposed to publick.

    When publick consent of the whole hath established any thing, every man's judgment, being thereunto compared, were not private, howsoever his calling be to some kind of publick charge; so that of peace and quietness there is not any way possible, unless the probable voice of every intire society or body politic overrule all private of like nature in the same body. Hooker's Preface.

                            He sues
    To let him breathe between the heav'ns and earth,
    A private man in Athens.
    Shakesp. Ant. and Cleop.

    What infinite heartease must kings neglect,
    That private men enjoy? and what have kings,
    That private have not too, save ceremony?
    Shakesp.

    Peter was but a private man, and not to be any way compared with the dukes of his house. Peacham of Antiquities.

    The first principles of christian religion should not be farced with school points and private tenets. Sanderson.

                        Dare you,
    A private man presume to love a queen.
    Dryden.

  4. Particular; not relating to the publick.

    My end being private, I have not expressed my conceptions in the language of the schools. Digby.

  5. In Private. Secretly; not publickly; not openly.

    In private grieve, but with a careless scorn;
    In publick seem to triumph, not to mourn.
    Granville.

Sources: Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra (57) · Digby, Kenelm (13) · Dryden, John (788) · Granville, George (23) · Shakespeare's Henry V (66) · Hooker, Richard (175) · Johnson, Samuel (5) · Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream (28) · Milton, John (449) · Peacham, Henry (53) · Sanderson, Robert (8)

Attributes: No attributes defined yet for this entry.

Search for this word in: American Heritage · Cambridge · Dictionary.com · The Free Dictionary · Longman · Merriam-Webster · OneLook · Oxford Dictionaries · Vocabulary.com · Wiktionary · Wordnik

Discuss this entry in the forums.

Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Private (adjective)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: November 11, 2012. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=6016.


  1. The “anonymous” quotation is from Samuel Johnson’s “The Vanity of Human Wishes.”

  2. Brandi on May 12th, 2011 at 10:47 pm

Leave a Reply


Disclaimer:
johnsonsdictionaryonline.com is completely free to use. Johnson's dictionary is in the public domain, but please respect the hours of work put into this site by linking to it or crediting it. This site assumes no liability for its content or for the content of external sites linked to it, and has no warranty or guarantee concerning accuracy or availability.