intimate

adjective
in·​ti·​mate | \ˈin-tə-mət \

Definition of intimate 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : marked by a warm friendship developing through long association intimate friends

b : suggesting informal warmth or privacy intimate clubs

c : engaged in, involving, or marked by sex or sexual relations It must have been a shock for the author to realize—somewhere between contract and completed manuscript—that while Ms. Brickman was intimate with dozens of mobsters, she was close to none of them.— Amy Pagnozzi The father of three children by three women doesn't have a girlfriend and says he hasn't been intimate with anyone in two months.— Michael Silver

2 : of a very personal or private nature intimate secrets

3 : marked by very close association, contact, or familiarity intimate knowledge of the law

4a : intrinsic, essential

b : belonging to or characterizing one's deepest nature

intimate

noun
in·​ti·​mate | \ˈin-tə-mət \

Definition of intimate (Entry 2 of 3)

: a very close friend or confidant : an intimate friend

intimate

verb
in·​ti·​mate | \ˈin-tə-ˌmāt \
intimated; intimating

Definition of intimate (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to communicate delicately and indirectly : hint

2 : to make known especially publicly or formally : announce

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Other Words from intimate

Adjective

intimately adverb
intimateness noun

Verb

intimater noun
intimation \ˌin-​tə-​ˈmā-​shən \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for intimate

Synonyms: Adjective

bosom, buddy-buddy, chummy, close, especial, familiar, friendly, inseparable, inward, near, thick, tight

Synonyms: Noun

alter ego, amigo, buddy, chum, compadre, comrade, confidant, confidante, crony, familiar, friend, mate [chiefly British], musketeer, pal

Synonyms: Verb

allude, hint, imply, indicate, infer, insinuate, suggest

Antonyms: Adjective

distant

Antonyms: Noun

enemy, foe

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Choose the Right Synonym for intimate

Verb

suggest, imply, hint, intimate, insinuate mean to convey an idea indirectly. suggest may stress putting into the mind by association of ideas, awakening of a desire, or initiating a train of thought. a film title that suggests its subject matter imply is close to suggest but may indicate a more definite or logical relation of the unexpressed idea to the expressed. measures implying that bankruptcy was imminent hint implies the use of slight or remote suggestion with a minimum of overt statement. hinted that she might get the job intimate stresses delicacy of suggestion without connoting any lack of candor. intimates that there is more to the situation than meets the eye insinuate applies to the conveying of a usually unpleasant idea in a sly underhanded manner. insinuated that there were shady dealings

Examples of intimate in a Sentence

Adjective

The dining room is plush and intimate, set off by some of the most extravagant floral arrangements in the city. — Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, 31 Mar. 2009 When a little-known writer undertakes a manifesto—a statement, after all, of sober purpose and principle—it is likely also to be a cri de coeur, and its reasoned argument will derive from the intimate wounds of autobiography. — Cynthia Ozick, Harper's, April 2007 The company would sit around after dinner in the lavishly plain living room or wander out to the pool for more intimate conversation … — Arthur Miller, Timebends, 1987 They remained intimate friends throughout their lives. They are in an intimate and committed relationship.

Noun

Musicians … tend not, as writers do, to write hundreds of letters sharing with intimates what is going on in their hearts or heads. — August Kleinzahler, New York Times Book Review, 18 Oct. 2009 She might not mind his assistance, and he was hungering for the company of an intimate to whom he could give and from whom he could receive, and who better in all the world than Nancy? — Philip Roth, Everyman, 2006 So this is a biography rich in information, written in a humble and tasteful way by an intimate whose aim is to put a lot of material at the reader's disposal … — Martha C. Nussbaum, New Republic, 31 Dec. 2001 & 7 Jan. 2002 His coworkers knew him as “Robert,” but his intimates called him “Robbie.” usually quite aloof in public, he's actually quite relaxed with his intimates

Verb

Is he really—as his advisers keep intimating to Western journalists—a serious reformer waiting to emerge from the closet? — Murray Scot Tanner, Newsweek, 6 May 2002 The dome tops look like pieces of the older ridged plains, intimating that the domes formed when the plains were pushed upward from below. — Robert T. Pappalardo et al., Scientific American, October 1999 He bounded on stage wearing a polo T-shirt and trousers whose sleekness intimated a large American Express bill. — Caroline Sullivan, Times (London), 15 Oct. 1992 trying to intimate that there was more going on than anyone knew
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Pick your topic, take advantage of local expertise, and enjoy Europe’s most intimate cultural experiences. Rick Steves' Europe, The Seattle Times, "Specialized tours enrich travel," 14 Nov. 2018 Cardi B just shared the first look into her intimate bedroom wedding to Offset to honor their one year anniversary. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Cardi B Wore a Tracksuit at Her Wedding and We Couldn't Love It More," 21 Sep. 2018 Dear Carolyn: My daughter wants a small, intimate wedding. Carolyn Hax, Detroit Free Press, "Friend inserts God into every conversation," 24 June 2018 Highlight: There are three theaters of assorted size but even the largest is an intimate experience perfect for serious music lovers. Ed Masley, azcentral, "23 of the most popular concert venues in metro Phoenix, ranked by size," 19 June 2018 The new facility also will provide a more intimate concert experience, with 1,750 seats, compared with 2,300 at the Marcus Center. Tom Daykin, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee Symphony's $89 million concert hall will have huge impact on downtown's west side," 15 June 2018 Our team decided to take action and mobilized to recreate an intimate wedding for them. Lindsay Silberman, Town & Country, "The Best Room At...Andaz Costa Rica," 14 June 2018 The May 24 crowd was intimate, a few hundred people who included friends of Michaela Kearney and coworkers of her parents — Michael Kearney also works in insurance, at The Hartford. Rebecca Lurye, Courant Community, "Former Middletown Swimmer Putting A Face To PTSD," 3 June 2018 Compared to his contemporaries still performing stadiums, Simon’s show was notably more intimate. Zack Ruskin, San Francisco Chronicle, "Paul Simon bids a fond ‘Farewell’ at Oracle Arena with final Bay Area concert," 26 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

American Eagle reported its profit nearly tripled from a year earlier to $60.3 million, or 34 cents a share, driven largely by tax benefits and by sales growth from jeans at American Eagle and intimates at Aerie. Kimberly Chin, WSJ, "Sales Soar 27% at American Eagle’s Aerie, Still Short of Investors’ Hopes," 29 Aug. 2018 Your intimates drawer will thank you for stopping by True&Co. Halie Lesavage, Glamour, "80+ Labor Day Sales That Are Definitely Worth Shopping This Year," 28 Aug. 2018 This isn't the first time the beauty mogul has rocked the Yeezy intimates look. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Internet Turned Kim Kardashian's Latest Underwear Instagram Into a Meme," 8 Aug. 2018 Of course, as Mr. Woodward’s book intimates, containing the president’s self-destructive tendencies is not easy. Karl Rove, WSJ, "Republicans’ Turn in the Barrel," 12 Sep. 2018 Intimissimi Select women’s intimates and sleepwear styles are 50 percent off until Wednesday, July 4. Halie Lesavage, Glamour, "All the 4th of July Sales Worth Shopping This Year," 3 July 2018 Hockney is known for his sensual, often hedonistic celebrations of his physical surroundings — lovely landscapes and lovelier portraits of friends and intimates. David Pagel, latimes.com, "Nazarian show mixes Hockney and Kelley with lesser-knowns, to splendid effect," 13 June 2018 Intimissimi Select intimates from Intimissimi are 30 percent off through Monday, May 28. Glamour, "The Best 2018 Memorial Day Sales to Shop This Weekend," 22 May 2018 Head there now to peep the live countdown ⏱ Early in March, there was mounting speculation that Rihanna might be launching her own line of intimates. Megan Decker, Harper's BAZAAR, "Rihanna Announces the Launch Date for Her Lingerie Line, Savage x Fenty," 24 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Russian officials have been coy about how the leak was caused, even (falsely) intimating shortly after the leak's discovery that a NASA astronaut may have drilled the hole while in space. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "NASA concerned about culture of “inappropriateness” at SpaceX," 20 Nov. 2018 But researchers have found many spiral disks that appear to be far below this mass threshold, intimating that another mechanism may be at work. Joshua Sokol, WIRED, "These Spinning Disks of Gas and Dust Reveal How Planets Get Made," 28 May 2018 Lovullo intimated that catcher Alex Avila would be activated from the disabled list and be in the starting lineup on Saturday vs. Padres right-hander Tyson Ross. Nick Piecoro, azcentral, "Diamondbacks outfielder Jon Jay opening eyes with sliding catches," 6 July 2018 Edwards, who hasn’t pitched since May 29 because of inflammation in his right shoulder, might need only one appearance before he’s activated, manager Joe Maddon intimated. Mark Gonzales, chicagotribune.com, "Until Yu Darvish returns, Jose Quintana says he and other Cubs starters will 'have his back'," 29 June 2018 Earlier episodes intimated that after Juliet died, the Man in Black fled to Westworld; Emily then followed him, seeking answers about her mother’s suicide. Sandra Upson, WIRED, "Westworld Recap, Season 2 Episode 9: The Many Lives of the Man in Black," 18 June 2018 In the documentary, Sly intimated that Manning took HGH that had been prescribed for his wife, Ashley, and shipped to her from Guyer Institute. Jenny Green, Indianapolis Star, "5 things we now know about the Al Jazeera-Peyton Manning legal battle," 13 June 2018 Also, the report found that 32% of blacks said they or someone in their family had been threatened or intimated by someone with a gun, compared with 20% of whites and 24% of Hispanics. Jacqueline Howard, CNN, "The disparities in how black and white men die in gun violence, state by state," 23 Apr. 2018 Philip proving to her, physically, that she actually wasn't prepared, as Elizabeth had intimated, for the spy game was important. Tim Goodman, The Hollywood Reporter, "Critics' Conversation: Tim Goodman and Daniel Fienberg on "Powerful" 'Americans' Series Finale," 31 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'intimate.' 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 intimate

Adjective

circa 1632, in the meaning defined at sense 4a

Noun

1659, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1522, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for intimate

Adjective

alteration of obsolete intime, from Latin intimus — see intimate entry 3

Noun

see intimate entry 1

Verb

Late Latin intimatus, past participle of intimare to put in, announce, from Latin intimus innermost, superlative of Old Latin *interus inward — more at interior

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Statistics for intimate

Last Updated

1 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for intimate

The first known use of intimate was in 1522

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More Definitions for intimate

intimate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of intimate

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to say or suggest (something) in an indirect way

intimate

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of intimate (Entry 2 of 3)

: having a very close relationship : very warm and friendly

: very personal or private

: involving sex or sexual relations

intimate

noun

English Language Learners Definition of intimate (Entry 3 of 3)

: a very close and trusted friend : an intimate friend

intimate

verb
in·​ti·​mate | \ˈin-tə-ˌmāt \
intimated; intimating

Kids Definition of intimate

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to say indirectly : hint at She intimated that I should go.

intimate

adjective
in·​ti·​mate | \ˈin-tə-mət \

Kids Definition of intimate (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : very personal or private intimate thoughts

2 : marked by very close association intimate friends

3 : suggesting closeness or warmth : cozy an intimate restaurant

Other Words from intimate

intimately adverb

intimate

noun
in·​ti·​mate | \ˈin-tə-mət \

Kids Definition of intimate (Entry 3 of 3)

: a very close and trusted friend

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More from Merriam-Webster on intimate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with intimate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for intimate

Spanish Central: Translation of intimate

Nglish: Translation of intimate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of intimate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on intimate

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