single out

Choose or distinguish from others, as in We singled him out from all the other applicants. This idiom was first recorded in 1629.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

How to use single out in a sentence

  • It was Hendrik's intention to single out one of the bulls, and run him down—leaving the others to gallop off wherever they wished.

  • Of them we may here single out, as a particularly characteristic type, those which deal with devourment.

  • Gertrude was first to single out Alfonso, whose handkerchief waved a brother's welcome to the old world.

    The Harris-Ingram Experiment | Charles E. Bolton
  • Wolves always single out an animal to attack; they wouldn't dare enter an inclosure.

    Wells Brothers | Andy Adams
  • Focusing his gaze to a searching squint he tried to single out a culprit from their midst.

    Whispering Wires | Henry Leverage