The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Person \Per"son\ (p[~e]r"s'n; 277), n. [OE. persone, persoun,
person, parson, OF. persone, F. personne, L. persona a mask
(used by actors), a personage, part, a person, fr. personare
to sound through; per + sonare to sound. See Per-, and cf.
1. 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. [Archaic]
His first appearance upon the stage in his new
person of a sycophant or juggler. --Bacon.
No man can long put on a person and act a part.
To bear rule, which was thy part
And person, hadst thou known thyself aright.
How different is the same man from himself, as he
sustains the person of a magistrate and that of a
2. The bodily form of a human being; body; outward
appearance; as, of comely person.
A fair persone, and strong, and young of age.
If it assume my noble father's person. --Shak.
Love, sweetness, goodness, in her person shined.
3. A living, self-conscious being, as distinct from an animal
or a thing; a moral agent; a human being; a man, woman, or
Consider what person stands for; which, I think, is
a thinking, intelligent being, that has reason and
4. A human being spoken of indefinitely; one; a man; as, any
5. A parson; the parish priest. [Obs.] --Chaucer.
6. (Theol.) Among Trinitarians, one of the three subdivisions
of the Godhead (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost);
an hypostasis. "Three persons and one God." --Bk. of Com.
7. (Gram.) 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.
Note: A noun or pronoun, when representing the speaker, is
said to be in the first person; when representing what
is spoken to, in the second person; when representing
what is spoken of, in the third person.
8. (Biol.) 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. --Haeckel.
True corms, composed of united person[ae] . . .
usually arise by gemmation, . . . yet in sponges and
corals occasionally by fusion of several originally
distinct persons. --Encyc. Brit.
Artificial person, or Fictitious person (Law), a
corporation or body politic; -- this term is used in
contrast with natural person, a real human being. See
also legal person. --Blackstone.
Legal person (Law), an individual or group that is allowed
by law to take legal action, as plaintiff or defendent. It
may include natural persons as well as fictitious persons
(such as corporations).
Natural person (Law), a man, woman, or child, in
distinction from a corporation.
In person, by one's self; with bodily presence, rather than
by remote communication; not by representative. "The king
himself in person is set forth." --Shak.
In the person of, in the place of; acting for. --Shak.