Definition of privateer
: an armed private ship licensed to attack enemy shipping; also : a sailor on such a ship
Recent Examples of privateer from the Web
The tiny town of Jean Lafitte, located on Bayou Barataria and named after the infamous privateer, has seen its population fall from more than 2,000 people in 2000.
The Privateers ended the night by honoring their seven seniors after the game with a plaque presentation and fireworks.
After the vessel was captured by a French privateer, it was seized under instructions from the U.S. president for violating a trade law barring commercial dealings between the U.S. and France (or its dependents).
Visitors learning about the American Revolution through the eyes of children, for instance, can take a photo in the gallery featuring the story of James Forten, an African-American who at 14 joined a privateer fighting the British.
And of course, my favorite scenery-chewer Geoffrey Rush (the pirate Barbossa, now a privateer for the Royal Navy) and the darling derelict Johnny Depp himself as Captain Jack Sparrow.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'privateer'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of privateer
PRIVATEER Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of privateer for English Language Learners
: a ship used in the past to attack and rob other ships; also : a sailor on a privateer
PRIVATEER Defined for Kids
Definition of privateer for Students
1 : a privately owned armed ship permitted by its government to make war on ships of an enemy country
2 : a sailor on a privateer
Seen and Heard
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