intimate

adjective
in·​ti·​mate | \ ˈin-tə-mət How to pronounce intimate (audio) \

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
b : belonging to or characterizing one's deepest nature

intimate

noun
in·​ti·​mate | \ ˈin-tə-mət How to pronounce intimate (audio) \

Definition of intimate (Entry 2 of 3)

: a very close friend or confidant : an intimate friend

intimate

verb
in·​ti·​mate | \ ˈin-tə-ˌmāt How to pronounce intimate (audio) \
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

Other Words from intimate

Adjective

intimately adverb
intimateness noun

Verb

intimater noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for intimate

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Noun

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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 See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Audiences have a far more intimate relationship with social media stars than with A-list singers or actors – especially on TikTok, where authenticity is one of the platform's most important currencies. Emily Jensen, Allure, 14 June 2022 That intimate relationship between jeweler and customer was what appealed to Sameer Sadhu. Indya Brown, Harper's BAZAAR, 3 June 2022 To read an essay about a writer’s work is to enter an intimate, three-person relationship among critic, author, and reader. Jane Yong Kim, The Atlantic, 16 May 2022 Even though authorities did not allege Jeudy committed violence, the sheriff's office said such enhancers are typically added to cases when there is an intimate relationship between the victim and the suspect. Staff And Wire Report, USA TODAY, 13 May 2022 The intimate relationship, the love and tenderness between the two touched me deeply. Vogue, 8 May 2022 And his organization has an intimate relationship with government officials there after decades of restitution talks. New York Times, 29 Apr. 2022 Its narrative subject is the evolution of an often-faltering people, seeking both autonomy and an intimate relationship with its god, while struggling to create a civil and religious order that would unite the earthly and the divine. Edward Rothstein, WSJ, 21 Apr. 2022 Responding officers learned the two had been in a previous intimate relationship and subsequently issued a domestic violence warrant for the arrest of the 30-year-old Cleveland man. cleveland, 13 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The pop star married her longtime boyfriend in an intimate, at-home wedding last Thursday. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 13 June 2022 Gracious, intelligent and blessed with boyish good looks, Mr. Hawkins became a fixture on the elite party circuit and an intimate of its prime movers. New York Times, 30 Mar. 2022 To kick off New York Fashion Week, Saks Fifth Avenue hosted an intimate—but star-studded—dinner at its sceney midtown restaurant, L’Avenue. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 11 Feb. 2022 The conversation tacks back and forth from the intimate to the existential. Kathryn Schulz, The New Yorker, 17 Jan. 2022 Themes of race, religion, class, and education appear throughout this ambitious novel, but its abiding focus is on the intimate, and the way broader social forces can impinge upon it. Claire Messud, Harper's Magazine, 28 Sep. 2021 Under such a guise, I was granted an intimate, if narrow, view into the lives of strangers. Lizzie Widdicombe, The New Yorker, 25 Sep. 2021 With these two venues — one intimate and indoors, the other larger and outdoors, both superior in aesthetic quality — San Diego is now home to two of the finest music venues in the nation. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 Aug. 2021 Grande, 28, married Dalton Gomez on May 15 during an intimate, at-home ceremony with less than 20 people in attendance, the singer's rep told PEOPLE at the time. Benjamin Vanhoose, PEOPLE.com, 22 July 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Shugrue dos Santos says research shows criminal responses to intimate partner violence have not lessened rates. Alia E. Dastagir, USA TODAY, 15 June 2022 Over 400 chefs, beverage producers and food personalities will partake in over 90 events this year ranging from walk-around tastings to masterclasses to intimate sit-down dinners. Cheryl Tiu, Forbes, 1 Feb. 2022 Many events from food festivals to intimate tasting sessions will be held throughout the year. David Nikel, Forbes, 1 Jan. 2022 DJs would intimate that this was a new British band. Sam Whiting, San Francisco Chronicle, 11 Nov. 2021 Act 1 is the 1939 May Co. department store made over into the Saban Building, airy home for exhibition galleries, restaurant, store and intimate below-ground theater. Los Angeles Times, 10 Sep. 2021 What would truly intimate, loving and pleasurable encounters or relationships with men actually look like? Vicky Spratt, refinery29.com, 25 June 2021 Public health lockdowns were the last thing the industry — from big, corporate cineplexes to intimate art houses — needed, said Jeff Bock, senior media analyst at Exhibitor Relations, which tracks the performance of films and other media. James Rainey, Los Angeles Times, 21 Mar. 2021 Not unlike the movies of Hollywood, the real world is bursting with romantic settings that range from over-the-top lavish to discreetly intimate. Roger Sands, Forbes, 2 Mar. 2021 See More

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.

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 and Noun

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

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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Time Traveler for intimate

Time Traveler

The first known use of intimate was in 1522

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Dictionary Entries Near intimate

intimado

intimate

intimate with

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Statistics for intimate

Last Updated

20 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Intimate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/intimate. Accessed 30 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for intimate

intimate

verb
in·​ti·​mate | \ ˈin-tə-ˌmāt How to pronounce intimate (audio) \
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 How to pronounce intimate (audio) \

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 How to pronounce intimate (audio) \

Kids Definition of intimate (Entry 3 of 3)

: a very close and trusted friend

More from Merriam-Webster on intimate

Nglish: Translation of intimate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of intimate for Arabic Speakers

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