Origin of separate

1400–50; late Middle English (noun and adj.) < Latin sēparātus (past participle of sēparāre), equivalent to sē- se- + par(āre) to furnish, produce, obtain, prepare + -ātus -ate1
Related formssep·a·rate·ly, adverbsep·a·rate·ness, nounnon·sep·a·rat·ing, adjectivepre·sep·a·rate, verb (used with object), pre·sep·a·rat·ed, pre·sep·a·rat·ing.re·sep·a·rate, verb, re·sep·a·rat·ed, re·sep·a·rat·ing.un·sep·a·rate, adjectiveun·sep·a·rate·ly, adverbun·sep·a·rate·ness, nounun·sep·a·rat·ed, adjectiveun·sep·a·rat·ing, adjectivewell-sep·a·rat·ed, adjective

Synonyms for separate

1, 2. sever, sunder, split. Separate, divide imply a putting apart or keeping apart of things from each other. To separate is to remove from each other things previously associated: to separate a mother from her children. To divide is to split or break up carefully according to measurement, rule, or plan: to divide a cake into equal parts. 3. disjoin, disengage. 13. unattached, severed, discrete. 15. secluded, isolated. 16. independent.

Antonyms for separate

1–3. unite, connect.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for separately

Contemporary Examples of separately

Historical Examples of separately

British Dictionary definitions for separately


verb (ˈsɛpəˌreɪt)

(tr) to act as a barrier betweena range of mountains separates the two countries
to put or force or be put or forced apart
to part or be parted from a mass or group
(tr) to discriminate betweento separate the men from the boys
to divide or be divided into component parts; sort or be sorted
to sever or be severed
(intr) (of a married couple) to cease living together by mutual agreement or after obtaining a decree of judicial separation

adjective (ˈsɛprɪt, ˈsɛpərɪt)

existing or considered independentlya separate problem
disunited or apart
set apart from the main body or mass
distinct, individual, or particular
solitary or withdrawn
(sometimes capital) designating or relating to a Church or similar institution that has ceased to have associations with an original parent organization
Derived Formsseparately, adverbseparateness, noun

Word Origin for separate

C15: from Latin sēparāre, from sē- apart + parāre to obtain
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

Word Origin and History for separately



late 14c., from Latin separatus, past participle of separare "to pull apart," from se- "apart" (see secret) + parare "make ready, prepare" (see pare). Sever (q.v.) is a doublet, via French. Related: Separated; separating.



"detached, kept apart," c.1600, from separate (v.) or from Latin separatus. Separate but equal in reference to U.S. segregation policies on railroads is attested from 1888. Separate development, official name of apartheid in South Africa, is from 1955. Related: Separately (1550s); separateness.

Frequently the colored coach is little better than a cattle car. Generally one half the smoking car is reserved for the colored car. Often only a cloth curtain or partition run half way up separates this so-called colored car from the smoke, obscene language, and foul air of the smokers' half of the car. All classes and conditions of colored humanity, from the most cultured and refined to the most degraded and filthy, without regard to sex, good breeding or ability to pay for better accommodation, are crowded into this separate, but equal (?) half car. [Rev. Norman B. Wood, "The White Side of a Black Subject," 1897]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper