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solitude

[sol-i-tood, -tyood] /ˈsɒl ɪˌtud, -ˌtyud/
noun
1.
the state of being or living alone; seclusion:
to enjoy one's solitude.
2.
remoteness from habitations, as of a place; absence of human activity:
the solitude of the mountains.
3.
a lonely, unfrequented place:
a solitude in the mountains.
Origin
1325-1375
1325-75; Middle English < Middle French < Latin sōlitūdō. See soli-1, -tude
Related forms
solitudinous
[sol-i-tood-n-uh s, -tyood-] /ˌsɒl ɪˈtud n əs, -ˈtyud-/ (Show IPA),
adjective
Synonyms
1. retirement, privacy. Solitude, isolation refer to a state of being or living alone. Solitude emphasizes the quality of being or feeling lonely and deserted: to live in solitude. Isolation may mean merely a detachment and separation from others: to be put in isolation with an infectious disease. 2. loneliness. 3. desert, wilderness.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for solitude
  • One of the chief pleasures of a book is mental solitude, that deep, quiet focus on an author's thoughts-and your own.
  • She balances hours of solitude in flight against days of intense encounters with purveyors of ideas.
  • Books require a certain quiet, a solitude that is all the more valuable for the way it can be achieved in public.
  • The best bosses make time to be with their family, to think in solitude and to stay healthy.
  • Contentment, she wrote, could be found through solitude and introspection.
  • His was the solitude, self-doubt and restlessness of dislocation and displacement.
  • Humans are social people, not grizzly bears living in solitude.
  • But these days a life of solitude is looking much brighter.
  • Wrong solitude vinegars the soul, right solitude oils it.
  • What you can do is find those qualities of presence, focus, and even solitude in your networked existence.
British Dictionary definitions for solitude

solitude

/ˈsɒlɪˌtjuːd/
noun
1.
the state of being solitary or secluded
2.
(poetic) a solitary place
Derived Forms
solitudinous, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Latin sōlitūdō, from sōlus alone, sole1
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 solitude
n.

mid-14c., from Old French solitude "loneliness" (14c.) and directly from Latin solitudinem (nominative solitudo) "loneliness, a being alone; lonely place, desert, wilderness," from solus "alone" (see sole (adj.)). "Not in common use in English until the 17th c." [OED]

A man can be himself only so long as he is alone; ... if he does not love solitude, he will not love freedom; for it is only when he is alone that he is really free. [Schopenhauer, "The World as Will and Idea," 1818]
Solitudinarian "recluse, unsocial person" is recorded from 1690s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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