Definitions for personˈpɜr sən

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word person

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

per•son*ˈpɜr sən(n.)

  1. a human being; a man, woman, or child.

  2. a human being as distinguished from an animal or a thing.

  3. the actual self or individual personality of a human being.

  4. the body of a living human being, sometimes including the clothes being worn:

    He had no money on his person.

  5. the body in its external aspect.

  6. a human being or other entity, as a partnership or corporation, recognized by law as having rights and duties.

    Category: Law

  7. a grammatical category applied esp. to pronouns and verbs, used to distinguish between the speaker of an utterance, the person addressed, and other people or things spoken about.

    Category: Grammar

    Ref: Compare first person, second person, third person.

  8. any of the three modes of being in the Trinity: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

    Category: Religion

Idioms for person:

  1. in person,in one's own bodily presence; personally.

    Category: Idiom

  2. one's own person,free from restrictions or influence; independent:

    Now that she's working, she feels that she's her own person.

* Usage: See individual, party, people.

Origin of person:

1175–1225; ME persone < L persōna role (in life, a play, or a tale) (LL: member of the Trinity), orig. actor's mask < Etruscan phersu (< Gk prósōpa face, mask) +-na a suffix



  1. a combining form of person , replacing in existing compound words such paired, sex-specific forms as -man and -woman or -er1 and -ess:

    salesperson; waitperson.

    Category: Common Vocabulary, Affix, Usage Note

* Usage.: The -person compounds are used, esp. by the media and in government and business communications, to avoid the -man compounds (anchorman; businessman) for individuals of either sex or the -woman compounds (anchorwoman; businesswoman) to specify the individual's sex. Some find the new -person compounds unnecessary, regarding the long-used compounds in -man as generic, not sex-marked. Alternatives to some of the -person forms have won acceptance, as anchor and chair; other coinages, as congressmember, have had only marginal use. See also -ess, lady, -man, -woman.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. person, individual, someone, somebody, mortal, soul(noun)

    a human being

    "there was too much for one person to do"

  2. person(noun)

    a human body (usually including the clothing)

    "a weapon was hidden on his person"

  3. person(noun)

    a grammatical category used in the classification of pronouns, possessive determiners, and verb forms according to whether they indicate the speaker, the addressee, or a third party

    "stop talking about yourself in the third person"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. person(noun)ˈpɜr sən

    a human being

    What sort of person would steal money from a child?; He's the one person I thought I could trust.

  2. personˈpɜr sən

    done yourself and not by letter, on the telephone, etc.

    You can apply for your passport online or in person.


  1. person(Noun)

    A single human being; an individual.

  2. person(Noun)

    The physical human body seen as distinct from the mind, character etc.

  3. person(Noun)

    Any individual or formal organization with standing before the courts.

    By common law a corporation or a trust is legally a person.

  4. person(Noun)

    A linguistic category used to distinguish between the speaker of an utterance and those to whom or about whom he is speaking. See grammatical person.

  5. person(Noun)

    Someone who likes or has an affinity for (a specified thing).

    Jack's always been a dog person, but I prefer cats.

  6. Origin: From parsone, persoun et al. (Old French persone, French personne), and its source persona, perhaps a loanword; compare Etruscan φersu. Displaced native wight (from wiht).

Webster Dictionary

  1. Person(noun)

    a character or part, as in a play; a specific kind or manifestation of individual character, whether in real life, or in literary or dramatic representation; an assumed character

  2. Person(noun)

    the bodily form of a human being; body; outward appearance; as, of comely person

  3. Person(noun)

    a living, self-conscious being, as distinct from an animal or a thing; a moral agent; a human being; a man, woman, or child

  4. Person(noun)

    a human being spoken of indefinitely; one; a man; as, any person present

  5. Person(noun)

    a parson; the parish priest

  6. Person(noun)

    among Trinitarians, one of the three subdivisions of the Godhead (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost); an hypostasis

  7. Person(noun)

    one of three relations or conditions (that of speaking, that of being spoken to, and that of being spoken of) pertaining to a noun or a pronoun, and thence also to the verb of which it may be the subject

  8. Person(noun)

    a shoot or bud of a plant; a polyp or zooid of the compound Hydrozoa Anthozoa, etc.; also, an individual, in the narrowest sense, among the higher animals

  9. Person(verb)

    to represent as a person; to personify; to impersonate


  1. Person

    A person is a being, such as a human, that has certain capacities or attributes constituting personhood, which in turn is defined differently by different authors in different disciplines, and by different cultures in different times and places. In ancient Rome, the word "persona" or "prosopon" originally referred to the masks worn by actors on stage. The various masks represented the various "personae" in the stage play. The current concept of person was developed during the Trinitarian and Christological debates of the 4th and 5th centuries in contrast to the word natura. During the theological debates, some philosophical tools were needed so that the debates could be held on common basis to all theological schools. The purpose of the debate was to establish the relation, similarities and differences between the Λóγος/"Verbum" and God. The philosophical concept of person arose, taking the word "prosopon" from the Greek theatre. Therefore, Christus and God were defined as different "persons". This concept was applied later to the Holy Ghost, the angels and to all human beings. Since then, a number of important changes to the word's meaning and use have taken place, and attempts have been made to redefine the word with varying degrees of adoption and influence. In addition to the question of personhood, of what makes a being count as a person to begin with, there are further questions about personal identity: both about what makes any particular person that particular person instead of another, and about what makes a person at one time the same person as he or she was or will be at another time despite any intervening changes. The common plural of "person", "people", is often used to refer to an entire nation or ethnic group, so the plural "persons" is often used in contexts which require precision such as philosophical and legal writing.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'person' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #369

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'person' in Written Corpus Frequency: #383

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'person' in Nouns Frequency: #87

Anagrams of person

  1. nopers, preons, spreon

Translations for person

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


a human being

There's a person outside who wants to speak to you.

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