citizen


cit·i·zen

noun \ˈsi-tə-zən also -sən\

: a person who legally belongs to a country and has the rights and protection of that country

: a person who lives in a particular place

Full Definition of CITIZEN

1
:  an inhabitant of a city or town; especially :  one entitled to the rights and privileges of a freeman
2
a :  a member of a state
b :  a native or naturalized person who owes allegiance to a government and is entitled to protection from it
3
:  a civilian as distinguished from a specialized servant of the state
cit·i·zen·ly \-zən-lē also -sən-\ adjective

Examples of CITIZEN

  1. She was a United States citizen but lived most of her life abroad.
  2. a group of Japanese citizens

Origin of CITIZEN

Middle English citizein, from Anglo-French citezein, alteration of citeien, from cité city
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of CITIZEN

citizen, subject, national mean a person owing allegiance to and entitled to the protection of a sovereign state. citizen is preferred for one owing allegiance to a state in which sovereign power is retained by the people and sharing in the political rights of those people <the rights of a free citizen>. subject implies allegiance to a personal sovereign such as a monarch <the king's subjects>. national designates one who may claim the protection of a state and applies especially to one living or traveling outside that state <American nationals working in the Middle East>.

Other Government and Politics Terms

agent provocateur, agitprop, autarky, cabal, egalitarianism, federalism, hegemony, plenipotentiary, popular sovereignty, socialism

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: citizeness
Previous Word in the Dictionary: Citigradae
All Words Near: citizen

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up citizen? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).