lon·​er | \ ˈlō-nər How to pronounce loner (audio) \

Definition of loner

1 : one that avoids others: such as
a : a person who is often alone or likes to be alone : someone who usually avoids the company of others He is a moody loner who doesn't become chummy with anyone.— Sam Moses Many rowers will agree that sculling is a sport for loners who relish the more quixotic elements of the sport.— D. C. Churbuck … she found that the image of the scientist as an antisocial loner is a myth …— Warren E. Leary
b : a typically solitary animal Black bears are loners and usually wander by themselves in search of food.— Mark Carwardine Despite the fact they are loners, cats do have a well-organized social system based on scent marks and mutual avoidance.— Fiona Sunquist

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Examples of loner in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Pagourtzis, who students described as a quiet loner, was held Friday without bond at the Galveston County jail, charged with capital murder and aggravated assault on a peace officer. Brittney Martin, Washington Post, "Ten killed in Texas high school shooting were mostly students; police say suspect confessed," 19 May 2018 Police characterized him as a loner with no religious or political affiliations who began stockpiling weapons about a year before the attack. Ken Ritter, The Seattle Times, "FBI finds no specific motive in Vegas attack that killed 58," 30 Jan. 2019 The man who went on a shooting rampage that killed two people and wounded 13 in Toronto was an emotionally disturbed loner and did not appear to act out of any particular ideological motivation, according to police documents released Thursday. Fox News, "Police papers say Toronto shooter 'emotionally disturbed'," 20 Sep. 2018 Children with paracosms, like children with imaginary companions, weren’t neurotic loners either, as popular stereotypes might suggest. Alison Gopnik, WSJ, "Imaginary Worlds of Childhood," 20 Sep. 2018 Each of these men may have seemed like a loner — but in fact, each was part of a group of people with similarly toxic views directed at Jewish people, women, or people of color. Anna North, Vox, "How mass shooters practice their hate online," 4 Nov. 2018 The onetime loner from the cabin now sits at the center of a multipronged creative movement. WSJ, "‘Big Red Machine’ Review: Playing to Their Strengths," 30 Aug. 2018 Roberts, described as a loner by neighbors, died last year of natural causes. Ashley May, USA TODAY, "Mummified body found in hoarder's home. Police investigate 'suspicious' cause of death," 1 June 2018 After the shooting students described Cruz as a loner who struggled in school. CBS News, "Florida shooting suspect was troubled after mother's death, neighbor says," 15 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'loner.' 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 loner

1947, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for loner

Last Updated

10 May 2019

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Time Traveler for loner

The first known use of loner was in 1947

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More Definitions for loner



English Language Learners Definition of loner

: a person who is often alone or who likes to be alone

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More from Merriam-Webster on loner

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with loner

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for loner

Spanish Central: Translation of loner

Nglish: Translation of loner for Spanish Speakers

Comments on loner

What made you want to look up loner? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one that collects or salvages junk

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