Definition of identity noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//aɪˈdentəti//
    ; NAmE NAmE//aɪˈdentəti//
    (pl. identities)
    jump to other results
  1. 1  [countable, uncountable] (abbreviation ID) who or what somebody/something is The police are trying to discover the identity of the killer. Their identities were kept secret. She is innocent; it was a case of mistaken identity. Do you have any proof of identity? The thief used a false identity. She went through an identity crisis in her teens (= was not sure of who she was or of her place in society).
  2. 2  [countable, uncountable] the characteristics, feelings or beliefs that distinguish people from others a sense of national/cultural/personal/group identity a plan to strengthen the corporate identity of the company see also gender identity
  3. 3[uncountable] identity (with somebody/something) | identity (between A and B) the state or feeling of being very similar to and able to understand somebody/something an identity of interests There's a close identity between fans and their team.
  4. Word Originlate 16th cent. (in the sense ‘quality of being identical’): from late Latin identitas, from Latin idem ‘same’.Extra examples He changed his identity and moved abroad on his release from prison. He changed his identity on his release from prison. He felt that having a job gave him an identity. He had not resolved his identity issue. He refused to reveal the identity of his client. He was discovered living under an assumed identity in South America. Her voice was disguised to conceal her identity. His identity was stolen and used to purchase goods from a catalogue. His search for his cultural identity took him to where his parents were born. It is crucial that she reclaim her identity and confirm where she belongs. It is important to know the identity and nature of the enemy. It was easy to guess the identity of the thief. Many minority groups are struggling to maintain their cultural identity. Scotland has never lost its identity as a separate nation. Shanghai itself has multiple identities. She was given a false passport and assumed a new identity. Someone in the administration leaked the identity of an undercover CIA agent. The company adopted a new corporate identity, including a new logo. The company forged its own identity by producing specialist vehicles. The country suffered from an identity crisis for years after the civil war. The police officer asked him for proof of identity. The system will verify the identity of incoming visitors. The technology is typically used for identity verification. The victim picked out her attacker in an identity parade. These populations have managed to maintain distinct identities. They are still struggling to establish their identity as a political party. They didn’t reveal her secret identity to her family members. They share a collective identity, united by an independent spirit. This is obviously a case of mistaken identity. an ethnic identity based on their common national ancestry credit-card identity theft the ability to maintain a strong brand identity the identity politics of gender or race the importance of family history within identity formation the shared genetic identity of identical twins the struggle for black identity the stylistic identity between the first text and the others the use of a stolen identity in the commission of a crime the way in which African American writers have asserted their identity He feels a strong sense of identity with his fellow men. The close identity between the fans and the team has been eroded. The organization has no clear corporate identity. The people have a strong sense of national identity. The two companies started working together as a result of a clear identity of interest. a sense of national/​cultural/​personal/​group identity
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: identity