Nearby words

  1. sollar,
  2. solleret,
  3. sollicker,
  4. solmization,
  5. soln.,
  6. solo man,
  7. solo mother,
  8. solo parent,
  9. solo stop,
  10. solo whist

Origin of solo

1685–95; < Italian < Latin sōlus alone



a combining form meaning “alone,” “solitary,” used in the formation of compound words: solifidian.

Origin of soli-

< Latin sōli-, combining form of sōlus. See sole1



a combining form meaning “sun,” used in the formation of compound words: soliform.

Origin of soli-

combining form representing Latin sōl sun; see -i- Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for soli

British Dictionary definitions for soli


adjective, adverb

music (of a piece or passage) to be performed by or with soloistsCompare tutti

Word Origin for soli

plural of solo


noun plural -los

plural -los or -li (-liː) a musical composition for one performer with or without accompaniment
any of various card games in which each person plays on his own instead of in partnership with another, such as solo whist
a flight in which an aircraft pilot is unaccompanied
  1. any performance, mountain climb, or other undertaking carried out by an individual without assistance from others
  2. (as modifier)a solo attempt


music unaccompanieda sonata for cello solo


by oneself; aloneto fly solo


(intr) to undertake a venture alone, esp to operate an aircraft alone or climb alone

Word Origin for solo

C17: via Italian from Latin sōlus alone, sole 1

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 soli



1690s, "piece of music for one voice or instrument," from Italian solo, literally "alone," from Latin solus "alone" (see sole (adj.)). As an adjective in English from 1712, originally in the non-musical sense of "alone, unassisted;" in reference to aircraft flying from 1909. The verb is first attested 1858 in the musical sense, 1886 in a non-musical sense. Related: Soloed; soloing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper