private


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private branch exchange

A telephone system within an institution or business that can only be used by the people inside that establishment. There was an issue with the private branch exchange this morning, but we hope to have the phones working again shortly.
See also: branch, exchange, private

private language

1. A way of communicating that is shared between and understood by only a few people. My sister and I have had our own private language ever since we were girls—our brothers still can't understand it! After working together for so many years, Ellen and I have a private language that is all our own.
2. philosophy A type of inner language only comprehensible to a single person. The concept was introduced by Ludwig Wittgenstein, who argued that it could not exist. The concept of private language is still a topic of debate among philosophers, especially due to its potential ramifications for metaphysics.
See also: language, private

private message

A way to communicate only with a select person or people on social media sites or Internet forums. It is most commonly used as a verb. Private message me if you have any questions. If you don't want everyone to see it, send a private message instead of posting it.
See also: message, private

private parts

euphemism One's external genitalia. The images of Adam and Eve most people are familiar with show their private parts covered by fig leaves. It's important to teach your children that their private parts are private, but not something to be ashamed of.
See also: part, private

private dick

slang A private investigator or detective. "Dick" is a slang shortening of "detective." The disgraced police detective moved to another state and started a business as a private dick. It turned out they'd hired a private dick to keep tabs on her after she left the law firm.
See also: dick, private

private eye

slang A private investigator or detective. "Eye" is a pun on the letter "i" in "investigator." The disgraced police detective moved to another state and started a business as a private eye. It turned out they'd hired a private eye to keep tabs on her after she left the law firm.
See also: eye, private

free enterprise

Something that one pursues, often illegally, as a means to personal gain. Did you hear that she's started dabbling in some free enterprise and selling things on the black market?
See also: enterprise, free

private enterprise

Something that one pursues, often illegally, as a means to personal gain. Did you hear that she's started dabbling in some private enterprise and selling things on the black market?
See also: enterprise, private

go private

To take a publicly-traded company into private ownership by having an investor or group of investors purchase all of its outstanding shares. The CEO thinks the company would benefit greatly from going private and avoiding all the regulatory costs and hassles that come with being public.
See also: go, private

in private

Away from others or in a way that others will not be able to observe; privately, as opposed to in public. We need to meet in private so that the paparazzi don't see us together. You better speak to him in private about that, instead of ambushing him in front of the whole staff.
See also: private

in private

privately; without others present. I'd like to speak to you in private. I enjoy spending the evening in private.
See also: private

free enterprise

Also, private enterprise. An undertaking on one's own behalf, especially a shady or illegal one. For example, The city treasurer didn't bother with competitive bids; the spirit of free enterprise just led him to his brother-in-law , or The sergeant indulged in a little private enterprise, selling cigarettes on the black market . This sarcastic application of a term that has meant, since about 1885, the freedom of private businesses to operate competitively for profit with a minimum of government control, dates from the mid-1900s.
See also: enterprise, free

in private

Not in public; secretly, confidentially. For example, The hearings will be conducted in private, or May I speak to you in private? [Late 1500s] For an antonym, see in public.
See also: private

private eye

A privately employed detective, as opposed to one working for the police or another authority. For example, The children loved stories about private eyes, and Janey wanted to become one. This expression comes from the term private investigator, the "i" of investigator being changed to "eye," which plays on the idea of a person looking into things. [1930s]
See also: eye, private

a ˌprivate ˈeye

(informal) a detective who is not in the police, but who can be employed to find out information, find a missing person, follow somebody, etc: They hired a private eye to look for more evidence.
See also: eye, private

private ˈparts

a polite way of referring to the sexual organs without saying their names
See also: part, private

private eye

n. a detective who is licensed to work privately rather than for a police department. I worked for a while as a private eye.
See also: eye, private

go private

To take a publicly owned company into private ownership, as by a leveraged buyout.
See also: go, private

in private

Not in public; secretly or confidentially.
See also: private
References in periodicals archive ?
Infanta - preschool to senior high school (public and private)
Lingayen - preschool to senior high school (public and private)
Iloilo City - preschool to senior high school (public and private)
Mr Hussain pointed out that there was clear contradiction between the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Private School Regulatory Authority Act 2018 and the Peshawar High Court verdict.
Similarly, he said that the first enrolled student in the private school should pay full fee while other siblings only half fee in the light of the court verdict.
Mr Hussain expressed fear that the smaller private educational institutions would gradually close down in the province if the court decision was implemented.
'The private schools management is now unable to decide whether they should work according to the law or accept the directives of the regulatory body,' he maintained.
Naseer said the new act bounds the private schools not to receive fees from students during summer vacations that were unjustified.
'Most of private schools are in rented buildings and owners of those buildings also receive rent during summer vacations,' he said.
Murphy joins Boston Private from TD Bank, where he served as the New England and Metro New York Regional Investment Director, overseeing staff in eight states.
Boston Private is a provider of fully integrated wealth management, trust and private banking services.
Headquartered in Boston, Boston Private has 35 offices across the US including Boston, San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles and Palm Beach.
privaTe SHaDricK anDreWS, 22, Yorkshire Regiment, of Choppington, Northumberland.
privaTe cHarLeS FoSTer arKLe, 29, Northumberland Fusiliers, of Shiremoor, Northumberland.
privaTe WiLLiaM arMSTronG, 26, West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales's Own), of Seaton Delaval, Northumberland.