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secret

[see-krit] /ˈsi krɪt/
adjective
1.
done, made, or conducted without the knowledge of others:
secret negotiations.
2.
kept from the knowledge of any but the initiated or privileged:
a secret password.
3.
faithful or cautious in keeping confidential matters confidential; close-mouthed; reticent.
4.
designed or working to escape notice, knowledge, or observation:
a secret drawer; the secret police.
5.
secluded, sheltered, or withdrawn:
a secret hiding place.
6.
beyond ordinary human understanding; esoteric.
7.
  1. bearing the classification secret.
  2. limited to persons authorized to use information documents, etc., so classified.
noun
8.
something that is or is kept secret, hidden, or concealed.
9.
a mystery:
the secrets of nature.
10.
a reason or explanation not immediately or generally apparent.
11.
a method, formula, plan, etc., known only to the initiated or the few:
the secret of happiness; a trade secret.
12.
a classification assigned to information, a document, etc., considered less vital to security than top-secret but more vital than confidential, and limiting its use to persons who have been cleared, as by various government agencies, as trustworthy to handle such material.
Compare classification (def 5).
13.
(initial capital letter) Liturgy. a variable prayer in the Roman and other Latin liturgies, said inaudibly by the celebrant after the offertory and immediately before the preface.
Idioms
14.
in secret, unknown to others; in private; secretly:
A resistance movement was already being organized in secret.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English secrette < Old French secret < Latin sēcrētus hidden, orig. past participle of sēcernere to secern
Related forms
secretly, adverb
secretness, noun
nonsecret, adjective, noun
nonsecretly, adverb
quasi-secret, adjective
quasi-secretly, adverb
semisecret, adjective
semisecretly, adverb
supersecret, noun
ultrasecret, adjective
ultrasecretly, adverb
unsecretly, adverb
Synonyms
1. clandestine, hidden, concealed, covert. 1, 2. private, confidential. 3. secretive. 6. occult, obscure, mysterious.
Antonyms
1. open, manifest.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for secretness

secret

/ˈsiːkrɪt/
adjective
1.
kept hidden or separate from the knowledge of others related adjective cryptic
2.
known only to initiates: a secret password
3.
hidden from general view or use: a secret garden
4.
able or tending to keep things private or to oneself
5.
operating without the knowledge of outsiders: a secret society
6.
outside the normal range of knowledge
noun
7.
something kept or to be kept hidden
8.
something unrevealed; mystery
9.
an underlying explanation, reason, etc, that is not apparent: the secret of success
10.
a method, plan, etc, known only to initiates
11.
(liturgy) a variable prayer, part of the Mass, said by the celebrant after the offertory and before the preface
12.
in the secret, among the people who know a secret
Derived Forms
secretly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: via Old French from Latin sēcrētus concealed, from sēcernere to sift; see secern
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for secretness

secret

n.

late 14c., from Latin secretus "set apart, withdrawn; hidden, concealed, private," past participle of secernere "to set apart, part, divide; exclude," from se- "without, apart," properly "on one's own" (see se-) + cernere "separate" (see crisis).

As an adjective from late 14c., from French secret, adjective use of noun. Open secret is from 1828. Secret agent first recorded 1715; secret service is from 1737; secret weapon is from 1936.

v.

"to keep secret" (described in OED as "obsolete"), 1590s, from secret (n.). Related: Secreted; secreting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for secretness

secret

Related Terms

dirty little secret


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with secretness

secret

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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