solitary

[sol-i-ter-ee]

adjective

noun, plural sol·i·tar·ies.


Origin of solitary

1300–50; Middle English < Latin sōlitārius alone, by itself, solitary, equivalent to sōlit(ās) solitude (sōl(us) sole1 + -itās -ity) + -ārius -ary
Related formssol·i·tar·i·ly, adverbsol·i·tar·i·ness, nounun·sol·i·tar·y, adjective

Synonyms for solitary

1. lone. 7. isolated, retired, sequestered, remote. 9, 10. hermit, recluse. 10. eremite.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for solitariness

Historical Examples of solitariness

  • On his table was the dust of solitariness; and with his finger he wrote in it "Forever."

    Thoroughbreds

    W. A. Fraser

  • Reardon had not been to call, but Jeff was too sick of solitariness to mind that.

    The Prisoner

    Alice Brown

  • One important limitation, however, belongs to this statement of solitariness.

    John Quincy Adams

    John. T. Morse

  • It is loneliness—it is solitariness itself——' and he shuddered.

    Robert Elsmere

    Mrs. Humphry Ward

  • Your opportunity, for the solitariness of two, will be limited.

    In Her Own Right

    John Reed Scott


British Dictionary definitions for solitariness

solitary

adjective

following or enjoying a life of solitudea solitary disposition
experienced or performed alonea solitary walk
(of a place) unfrequented
(prenominal) single; solea solitary speck in the sky
having few companions; lonely
(of animals) not living in organized colonies or large groupssolitary bees; a solitary elephant Compare social (def. 7), gregarious (def. 2)
(of flowers) growing singly

noun plural -taries

a person who lives in seclusion; hermit; recluse
informal short for solitary confinement
Derived Formssolitarily, adverbsolitariness, noun

Word Origin for solitary

C14: from Latin sōlitārius, from sōlus 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 solitariness

solitary

adj.

mid-14c., "alone, living alone," from Old French solitaire, from Latin solitarius "alone, lonely, isolated," from solitas "loneliness, solitude," from solus "alone" (see sole (adj.)). Meaning "single, sole, only" is from 1742. Related: Solitarily; solitariness. As a noun from late 14c.; from 1854 as short for solitary confinement (that phrase recorded from 1817).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper