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[lohn-lee] /ˈloʊn li/
adjective, lonelier, loneliest.
affected with, characterized by, or causing a depressing feeling of being alone; lonesome.
destitute of sympathetic or friendly companionship, intercourse, support, etc.:
a lonely exile.
lone; solitary; without company; companionless.
remote from places of human habitation; desolate; unfrequented; bleak:
a lonely road.
standing apart; isolated:
a lonely tower.
Origin of lonely
First recorded in 1600-10; lone + -ly
Related forms
lonelily, adverb
loneliness, lonelihood, noun
unlonely, adjective
4. uninhabited, unpopulated. 5. secluded.
Synonym Study
1. See alone. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for lonelier
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Would that my hiding-place were lonelier, so that the past might not find me!

  • She leaned over me as if I had been a lonely child and she a lonelier woman.

    City of Endless Night Milo Hastings
  • In a while she went away, and left him lonelier than before.

    Despair's Last Journey David Christie Murray
  • Summer was over, and the Glimmerglass was lonelier than ever.

    Forest Neighbors

    William Davenport Hulbert
  • There is probably no lonelier man in the parish than the constable.

    Change in the Village (AKA George Bourne) George Sturt
  • The signs of Christmas preparation and the sounds of Christmas cheer but made him lonelier.

    The Christmas Peace Thomas Nelson Page
  • Lone as to the situation in which it stands, it is yet lonelier in its desolation.

    The Death Shot Mayne Reid
British Dictionary definitions for lonelier


adjective -lier, -liest
unhappy as a result of being without the companionship of others: a lonely man
causing or resulting from the state of being alone: a lonely existence
isolated, unfrequented, or desolate
without companions; solitary
Derived Forms
loneliness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for lonelier



c.1600, "solitary, lone," from lone + -ly (1). Meaning "dejected for want of company" is from 1811. Lonely heart (n.) "a lonely-hearted person" is from 1922. Lonely hearted (adj.) is attested from 1820.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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