Definition of captive
- captive breeding
- a captive mine
- a captive audience
The captive soldiers planned their escape.
the captive soldiers were treated humanely by the guards
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'captive.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
: captured and kept in a prison, cage, etc.
: forced to watch or listen to something because you cannot leave
What made you want to look up captive? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
of yeast or being unsettled or frivolous
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