lonely

adjective
lone·​ly | \ ˈlōn-lē How to pronounce lonely (audio) \
lonelier; loneliest

Definition of lonely

1a : being without company : lone too many lonely nights at home
b : cut off from others : solitary the train stopped frequently at lonely little stations— Robert Hichens
2 : not frequented by human beings : desolate a lonely spot in the woods
3 : sad from being alone : lonesome He was feeling lonely without his wife and children.
4 : producing a feeling of bleakness or desolation it's a lonely thing to be a champion— G. B. Shaw

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Other Words from lonely

loneliness \ ˈlōn-​lē-​nəs How to pronounce loneliness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for lonely

Synonyms

alone, lone, lonesome, single, solitary, solo, unaccompanied

Antonyms

accompanied

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Choose the Right Synonym for lonely

alone, solitary, lonely, lonesome, lone, forlorn, desolate mean isolated from others. alone stresses the objective fact of being by oneself with slighter notion of emotional involvement than most of the remaining terms. everyone needs to be alone sometimes solitary may indicate isolation as a chosen course glorying in the calm of her solitary life but more often it suggests sadness and a sense of loss. left solitary by the death of his wife lonely adds to solitary a suggestion of longing for companionship. felt lonely and forsaken lonesome heightens the suggestion of sadness and poignancy. an only child often leads a lonesome life lone may replace lonely or lonesome but typically is as objective as alone. a lone robin pecking at the lawn forlorn stresses dejection, woe, and listlessness at separation from one held dear. a forlorn lost child desolate implies inconsolable grief at loss or bereavement. desolate after her brother's death

Examples of lonely in a Sentence

He was lonely without his wife and children. She was a lonely child with few friends. It was lonely living out in the country. She spent too many lonely nights at home. She had a lonely childhood. a lonely spot in the woods a lonely stretch of road
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Recent Examples on the Web

Ernesto is just a normal, kind man who sees that Sean is hurting and lonely, and provides a friendly shoulder for him. Randy Cordova, azcentral, "In 'Papi Chulo,' a lonely weatherman and a day laborer form a delightful friendship," 10 June 2019 Further Reading Two weeks in, Fallout 76 is a lonely, glitchy, flawed mess Fallout 76 was savaged by critics (including our own) at launch for widespread glitches and half-baked content. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Did Fallout 76 launch too early or just in time to be saved?," 4 June 2019 The national mood on this matter was nicely summarized in a recent New York Times book review that mentioned one man’s effort to unplug completely from the churn of daily news: His life seemed sad and lonely, not exhilarating. Christopher Beha, Harper's magazine, "Winning the Peace," 10 May 2019 The blood on your pitchfork still dripping because the mob has always got a thirst for scalps and without the swarm, these lonely people are just idle cranks. Fox News, "Gutfeld: It's the cry babies vs. the jerk," 8 Sep. 2018 There’s no blood test to prove if someone is, in fact, lonely. Maggie Bullock, Vogue, "Is Telefitness the Wave of the Future? Or Another Way Tech Is Keeping Us Apart?," 15 May 2019 Iceland is playing nine in the box right now, with only Finnbogason a lonely figure further up the field. Rory Smith, New York Times, "World Cup: Iceland Ties Argentina, but You Can Call It a Victory," 17 June 2018 Baldwin also admitted to feeling lonely in her first weeks as a newlywed. Glamour, "Hailey Baldwin Responded to Rumors She and Justin Bieber Are Having "Trust Issues"," 18 Mar. 2019 Because you can be married and still be quite lonely. Sean Illing, Vox, "A divorce lawyer’s guide to staying together," 3 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lonely.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of lonely

circa 1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for lonely

Last Updated

19 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lonely

The first known use of lonely was circa 1598

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More Definitions for lonely

lonely

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of lonely

: sad from being apart from other people
: causing sad feelings that come from being apart from other people
: not visited by or traveled on by many people

lonely

adjective
lone·​ly | \ ˈlōn-lē How to pronounce lonely (audio) \
lonelier; loneliest

Kids Definition of lonely

1 : lone sense 1 I saw a lonely figure in the distance.
2 : not often visited a lonely spot
3 : sad from being alone : lonesome a lonely child
4 : producing sad feelings from being alone I spent a lonely evening at home.

Other Words from lonely

loneliness noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on lonely

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lonely

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lonely

Spanish Central: Translation of lonely

Nglish: Translation of lonely for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lonely for Arabic Speakers

Comments on lonely

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