Adjective "civilian" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


A person not in the armed services or the police force.
  1. 'People were brutally assaulted by police, and by civilians who acted in collusion to them.'
  2. 'Most of the estimated 300 000 victims were civilians, according to the United Nations.'
  3. 'Authorities said at least 150,000 civilians fleeing the fighting needed emergency food and shelter.'
  4. 'Nine civilians who were in the vicinity of such operations were also killed.'
  5. 'The obligation to protect civilians accompanying the force falls mainly to the tactical commander.'
  6. 'Her work included accompanying unarmed civilians being threatened by an armed group, serving as a protective presence.'
  7. 'He reported personally witnessing at least 20 cases where soldiers had beaten or robbed civilians at checkpoints.'
  8. 'The awards are made to civilians and police officers who put their lives at risk to save others.'
  9. 'The war dragged on, costing the lives of many thousands of civilians and servicemen.'
  10. 'Bombing civilians in retaliation is ineffective and counterproductive.'
  11. 'I talk to a lot of actresses and they say that civilians are scared of them'
  12. 'Do famous people have to go out with other famous people? 'No, the girl I'm seeing now is a civilian.''
  13. 'Was he a civilian or a celebrity?'
  14. 'Like a family —or a cult—AA has its own language, recognizable only to initiates. People who aren't in AA are known as civilians.'
  15. 'When you're a football player, you're a football player, not a civilian.'


Relating to civilians.
  1. 'I got back to the hotel and my room had been let and my civilian clothes had been lost.'
  2. 'The mother is in civilian clothes, but she might almost as well wear the habit.'
  3. 'We have an ethical duty to avoid civilian casualties wherever possible.'
  4. 'Many of the paramilitaries are wearing civilian clothes and hiding amongst the population.'
  5. 'Besides torture and ill-treatment, civilian contractors are also accused of involvement in wrongful deaths.'
  6. 'Full details are not yet available and estimates vary as to the number of civilian casualties.'
  7. 'The man next to him was dressed in civilian clothes and carried a brown briefcase.'
  8. 'The arrest was a seizure by seven armed men dressed in civilian clothes who abducted him in an unlicensed car.'
  9. 'And the 94 working as civilian staff comprise just 2.8 per cent of the workforce.'
  10. 'Civilian contractors may work well enough in peacetime, critics say.'


1. a person who is not on active duty with a military, naval, police, or fire fighting organization.

2. Informal. anyone regarded by members of a profession, interest group, society, etc., as not belonging; nonprofessional; outsider: We need a producer to run the movie studio, not some civilian from the business world.

3. a person versed in or studying Roman or civil law. adjective

4. of, pertaining to, formed by, or administered by civilians.

More examples(as adjective)

"rules can be civilian."

"populations can be civilian."

"presidents can be civilian."

"governments can be civilian."

"lives can be civilian."

More examples++


Late Middle English (denoting a practitioner of civil law): from Old French civilien, in the phrase droit civilien ‘civil law’. The current sense arose in the early 19th century.