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Etymology 1[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:

closet (state of concealment) +‎ -ed


closeted (comparative more closeted, superlative most closeted)

  1. (informal) Not open about one's sexual orientation, romantic orientation, or gender identity.
  2. (by extension) Not open about some aspect of one's identity, tendency, or fondness; secret.
    • 1971, Cynthia Ozick, “The Pagan Rabbi”, in Collected Stories, London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, published 2006, page 12:
      [] the remaining quotations, chiefly from English poetry, interested me only slightly more. They were the elegiac favourites of a closeted Romantic.
    • 1982, Marshall Berman, All That Is Solid Melts into Air: The Experience of Modernity, Penguin, published 1988, page 45:
      Now he feels a connection between his own closeted, esoteric sufferings and strivings and those of the poor urban working people all around him.
    • 2022 September 12, “Exploring the SCP Foundation: SCP-7000 - The Loser” (10:38 from the start), in The Exploring Series[1], retrieved 25 March 2023:
      Sokolsky asks if he realizes that this is a walk-in clinic for closeted reality benders, and he's a disaster-response coordinator, not a therapist.
  • (not open about one's sexual orientation, romantic orientation, or gender identity): in the closet
  • (not open about one's sexual orientation, romantic orientation, or gender identity): stealth
Derived terms[edit]
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

See closet (verb)



  1. simple past and past participle of closet


closeted (not comparable)

  1. Confined.
    He's spent all day closeted in his room.
    • 1766, Oliver Goldsmith, chapter X, in The Vicar of Wakefield[2], London: J.C. Nimmo, published 1886, page 68:
      After they had been closeted up with the fortune-teller for some time, I knew by their looks, upon their returning, that they had been promised something great.
    • 1920, Edith Wharton, chapter XI, in The Age of Innocence[3], New York: D. Appleton & Co., page 94:
      It was a winter evening of transparent clearness, with an innocent young moon above the house-tops; and he wanted to fill his soul's lungs with the pure radiance, and not exchange a word with any one till he and Mr. Letterblair were closeted together after dinner.
    • 1924, Herman Melville, chapter 17, in Billy Budd[4], London: Constable & Co.:
      Now when the Foretopman found himself closeted there, as it were, in the cabin with the Captain and Claggart, he was surprised enough.
  2. sheltered; protected.
    • 1985 January 25, Charles Irving, Hansard:
      In my salubrious constituency of Cheltenham and in the leafy lanes of Gloucestershire, we are perhaps somewhat closeted from these unpleasant and harsh realities of the urban world of London, Plymouth, Birmingham and other major cities