- The definition of captive is someone who is confined, controlled or has no alternatives.
An audience that cannot get up and leave even if they want to is an example of a captive audience.
- A captive is defined as a person or animal who has been confined or held hostage.
- An animal locked in a cage is an example of a captive.
- A person who has been held hostage is an example of a captive.
captive definition by Webster's New World
- a person caught and held prisoner, as in war
- a person who is captivated, as by beauty or love
Origin: Classical Latin captivus ; from captus, past participle of capere, to take: see have
- taken or held prisoner
- not able to act independently: a captive nation
- ☆ obliged or forced to listen, whether wanting to or not: a captive audience
- of captivity
captive definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- One, such as a prisoner of war, who is forcibly confined, subjugated, or enslaved.
- One held in the grip of a strong emotion or passion.
- Taken and held prisoner, as in war.
- Held in bondage; enslaved.
- Kept under restraint or control; confined: captive birds.
- Restrained by circumstances that prevent free choice: a captive audience; a captive market.
- Enraptured, as by beauty; captivated.
Origin: Middle English captif, from Old French, from Latin captīvus, from captus, past participle of capere, to seize; see kap- in Indo-European roots.