civilian

noun
ci·​vil·​ian | \ sə-ˈvil-yən How to pronounce civilian (audio) also -ˈvi-yən \

Definition of civilian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a specialist in Roman or modern civil law
2a : one not on active duty in the armed services or not on a police or firefighting force

civilian

adjective

Definition of civilian (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or made up of civilians civilian concerns/demands the civilian population civilian customers/casualties The Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom are the highest civilian honors in the United States.
b : having the status of a civilian a civilian pilot
2 : operated or controlled by civilians civilian industry : possessed by or vested in civilians civilian authority
3 : intended or suited for use or consumption by civilians civilian goods With twin 2,520-horsepower engines and up to 19 seats, the Sikorsky S-92 is among the world's most powerful civilian helicopters.— Josh Harkinson

Examples of civilian in a Sentence

Noun The bomb injured 12 civilians.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun One civilian was shot inside the Capitol on Wednesday. BostonGlobe.com, "Trump officials resign after Capitol mayhem," 7 Jan. 2021 Duncan's insight for the lack of females in flight test comes from her perspective as a civilian, and the lack of awareness about the existence of TPS for people outside the Air Force. Jaide Timm-garcia, CNN, "Air Force graduates its largest class of female test pilots and engineers in history," 19 Dec. 2020 During nearly a month of social unrest, which led to the death of one civilian and the shooting of four St. Louis police officers, Gardner opted to release 34 of 36 individuals arrested on charges ranging from assault and theft to property damage. Joseph Simonson, Washington Examiner, "Soros reshapes prosecutor landscape with crucial victories despite Democratic down-ballot struggles," 17 Dec. 2020 Anton Black, 19, died two years ago after being wrestled to the ground by three officers and one civilian, all of whom were White. Washington Post, "Family of Maryland teen who died in encounter with police sues in federal court," 17 Dec. 2020 What will happen to President Donald Trump as a civilian? Lindsay Deutsch, USA TODAY, "Can you please not? ✈️," 25 Nov. 2020 The clashes killed a dozen Azerbaijanis, including soldiers, officers and at least one civilian, and five Armenian soldiers. Nabih Bulos, Los Angeles Times, "War uprooted them. Now it gives these Azerbaijanis hope," 9 Nov. 2020 Valentine is one of five women - two active duty soldiers, two veterans and one civilian - who spoke to The Associated Press about experiencing harassment, assault or rape by soldiers at Fort Hood, the other four since 2014. CBS News, "Women allege harassment, assault and rape by Fort Hood soldiers: "The military's #MeToo moment"," 8 Oct. 2020 Officers also can manually activate the cameras, and must record any interaction with a civilian. Anna Kim, chicagotribune.com, "Northlake police launching body-worn cameras, expect all officers to wear them," 29 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'civilian.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of civilian

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1817, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for civilian

Time Traveler

The first known use of civilian was in the 15th century

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Statistics for civilian

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Civilian.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/civilian. Accessed 25 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for civilian

civilian

noun
How to pronounce civilian (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of civilian

: a person who is not a member of the military or of a police or firefighting force

civilian

noun
ci·​vil·​ian | \ sə-ˈvil-yən How to pronounce civilian (audio) \

Kids Definition of civilian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who is not a member of a military, police, or firefighting force

civilian

adjective

Kids Definition of civilian (Entry 2 of 2)

: of or relating to people who are not members of a military, police, or firefighting force After serving in the army, he got a civilian job.

civilian

noun
ci·​vil·​ian

Legal Definition of civilian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a specialist in Roman or modern civil law

civilian

adjective

Legal Definition of civilian (Entry 2 of 2)

: of or relating to civil law as distinguished from common law

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Comments on civilian

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