[ sol-i-ter-ee ]
/ ˈsɒl ɪˌtɛr i /


noun, plural sol·i·tar·ies.

Nearby words

  1. solion,
  2. soliped,
  3. solipsism,
  4. solipsistic,
  5. solitaire,
  6. solitary bee,
  7. solitary bone cyst,
  8. solitary confinement,
  9. solitary follicle,
  10. solitary sandpiper

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

1. lone. 7. isolated, retired, sequestered, remote. 9, 10. hermit, recluse. 10. eremite.

Related formssol·i·tar·i·ly, adverbsol·i·tar·i·ness, nounun·sol·i·tar·y, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for solitariness

British Dictionary definitions for solitariness


/ (ˈsɒlɪtərɪ, -trɪ) /


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



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