Dictionary

secretive

adjective se·cre·tive \ˈsē-krə-tiv, si-ˈkrē-\

: not letting people see or know what you are doing or thinking : tending to act in secret

Full Definition of SECRETIVE

:  disposed to secrecy :  not open or outgoing in speech, activity, or purposes
se·cre·tive·ly adverb
se·cre·tive·ness noun

Examples of SECRETIVE

  1. He's very secretive about his work.
  2. <the intelligence agency remained secretive despite the media's demands for more openness in government>

Origin of SECRETIVE

back-formation from secretiveness, part translation of French secrétivité
First Known Use: 1835

Synonym Discussion of SECRETIVE

silent, taciturn, reticent, reserved, secretive mean showing restraint in speaking. silent implies a habit of saying no more than is needed <the strong, silent type>. taciturn implies a temperamental disinclination to speech and usually connotes unsociability <taciturn villagers>. reticent implies a reluctance to speak out or at length, especially about one's own affairs <was reticent about his plans>. reserved implies reticence and suggests the restraining influence of caution or formality in checking easy informal conversational exchange <greetings were brief, formal, and reserved>. secretive, too, implies reticence but usually carries a suggestion of deviousness and lack of frankness or of an often ostentatious will to conceal <the secretive research and development division>.
SECRETIVENESS Defined for Kids

secretive

adjective se·cre·tive \ˈsē-krə-tiv, si-ˈkrē-\

Definition of SECRETIVE for Kids

:  tending to act in secret or keep secrets

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: secret markPrevious Word in the Dictionary: secretionAll Words Near: secretive
June 30, 2015
disinformation Hear it
false information deliberately spread
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears