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solitary

[sol-i-ter-ee] /ˈsɒl ɪˌtɛr i/
adjective
1.
alone; without companions; unattended:
a solitary passer-by.
2.
living alone; avoiding the society of others:
a solitary existence.
3.
by itself; alone:
one solitary house.
4.
characterized by the absence of companions:
a solitary journey.
5.
done without assistance or accompaniment; done in solitude:
solitary chores.
6.
being the only one:
a solitary exception.
7.
characterized by solitude, as a place; unfrequented, secluded, or lonely:
a solitary cabin in the woods.
8.
Zoology. living habitually alone or in pairs, as certain wasps.
Compare social (def 11).
noun, plural solitaries.
9.
a person who lives alone or in solitude, or avoids the society of others.
10.
a person who lives in solitude from religious motives.
Origin of solitary
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English < Latin sōlitārius alone, by itself, solitary, equivalent to sōlit(ās) solitude (sōl(us) sole1 + -itās -ity) + -ārius -ary
Related forms
solitarily, adverb
solitariness, noun
unsolitary, adjective
Synonyms
1. lone. 7. isolated, retired, sequestered, remote. 9, 10. hermit, recluse. 10. eremite.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for solitarily
Historical Examples
  • And the gardener is to plant another maple tree beside it, that it may not stand so solitarily there.

    A Hungarian Nabob Maurus Jkai
  • The man was slowly wandering about, solitarily and distressed.

  • Men moved about solitarily through the night, each saying bitterly to his own heart, 'Would that it had been one of us.'

    The Earl of Mayo William Wilson Hunter
  • Probably he can work in no other way than from the impulse of his enthusiasm, solitarily.

  • He would walk also solitarily in the fields, sometimes reading and sometimes praying; and thus for some days he spent his time.

  • To understand therefore this text, we are not to consider it solitarily, but jointly with the words precedent, and subsequent.

    Leviathan Thomas Hobbes
British Dictionary definitions for solitarily

solitary

/ˈsɒlɪtərɪ; -trɪ/
adjective
1.
following or enjoying a life of solitude: a solitary disposition
2.
experienced or performed alone: a solitary walk
3.
(of a place) unfrequented
4.
(prenominal) single; sole: a solitary speck in the sky
5.
having few companions; lonely
6.
(of animals) not living in organized colonies or large groups: solitary bees, a solitary elephant Compare social (sense 7), gregarious (sense 2)
7.
(of flowers) growing singly
noun (pl) -taries
8.
a person who lives in seclusion; hermit; recluse
9.
(informal) short for solitary confinement
Derived Forms
solitarily, adverb
solitariness, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin sōlitārius, from sōlussole1
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
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Word Origin and History for solitarily

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
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