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

Victims of domestic abuse often feel isolated and lonely as a result. Ramona Sentinel, "Crime Prevention Corner: Domestic abuse comes in many forms," 26 June 2019 Sophia takes over caring for Jeannie, and neither is lonely and bored anymore. Mary Ann Grossmann, Twin Cities, "After fun in the sun, settle in with one of these good reads for little ones," 23 June 2019 This lonely, flat but immensely interesting road follows the old trade and traveling artery between Missouri and Santa Fe. Joshua Berman, The Know, "6 beautiful Colorado highways that are great for summer road trips," 17 June 2019 Diop's dream wound through the hot streets of Senegal, hitchhiked on her lonely plane ride across the Atlantic, persisted among strangers in a foreign land speaking an unfamiliar tongue in unfamiliar gyms. Danielle Lerner, The Courier-Journal, "How Yacine Diop's long journey to play for Louisville basketball began in Senegal," 28 June 2019 But the main driver has been cultural: an intentional choice made to pool together not just finances but life experience, perspective, and generosity of spirit – forging a new type of home on a city street that can otherwise seem crushingly lonely. Sara Miller Llana, The Christian Science Monitor, "Want to live in the city? Try buying a house with five friends.," 12 June 2019 Some items may seem a little lonely, while others may seem much livelier. Lisa Rosen, latimes.com, "In ‘Tidying Up,’ Marie Kondo finds joy of her own in helping others," 11 June 2019 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

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

17 Jul 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

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