sin·​gle | \ ˈsiŋ-gəl How to pronounce single (audio) \

Definition of single

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : not married
b : of or relating to celibacy
2 : unaccompanied by others : lone, sole the single survivor of the disaster
3a(1) : consisting of or having only one part, feature, or portion single consonants
(2) : consisting of one as opposed to or in contrast with many : uniform a single standard for men and women
(3) : consisting of only one in number holds to a single ideal
b : having but one whorl of petals or ray flowers a single rose
4a : consisting of a separate unique whole : individual every single citizen
b : of, relating to, or involving only one person
5a : frank, honest a single devotion
b : exclusively attentive an eye single to the truth
7 : having no equal or like : singular
8 : designed for the use of one person only a single room a single bed



Definition of single (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : a separate individual person or thing
b : an unmarried person and especially one young and socially active usually used in plural
c(1) : a recording having one short tune on each side
(2) : a music recording having two or more tracks that is shorter than a full-length album also : a song that is particularly popular independent of other songs on the same album or by the same artist
2 : a base hit that allows the batter to reach first base
3a singles plural : a tennis match or similar game with one player on each side
b : a golf match between two players usually used in plural
4 : a room (as in a hotel) for one guest — compare double sense 7


singled; singling\ ˈsiŋ-​g(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce single (audio) \

Definition of single (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to select or distinguish from a number or group usually used with out
2a : to advance or score (a base runner) by a single
b : to bring about the scoring of (a run) by a single

intransitive verb

: to make a single in baseball

Synonyms & Antonyms for single

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of single in a Sentence

Adjective A single shoe was found. It costs $10 for a single glass of wine! a single serving of carrots He earns $2,000 in a single week. Noun He hit a single to right field. Do you want to play singles or doubles? Verb He singled to right field. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective His 2,727 passing yards were the third-highest single-season total for a Wisconsin player. Matthew Vantryon, The Indianapolis Star, 17 May 2022 The six victories matches the club's previous single-season high in MLS (six in 2019) and marks the latest stage in a season the club has had a winning record. Pat Brennan, The Enquirer, 17 May 2022 His parents continued to live in Milwaukee for more than 30 years, and his brother, Darrell, played on the University of Wisconsin baseball team (and held the single-season stolen-base record for a program that went defunct in 1991). Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 16 May 2022 The Suns set the franchise single-season wins record with their 63rd victory, which came against the Los Angeles Lakers in a game that knocked the Lakers out of playoff contention. New York Times, 15 May 2022 Shai Robinson has his sights set on two single-season school records at Homewood-Flossmoor. Steve Millar, Chicago Tribune, 14 May 2022 His 20½ tackles for loss tied the single-season conference record. Bob Mcmanaman, The Arizona Republic, 13 May 2022 Hutchinson, who set the Michigan single-season record with 14 sacks last year, wore No. 97 at Michigan because his father, Chris, had the same number during his playing career with the Wolverines. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, 13 May 2022 Kleiman, who has led basketball operations in Memphis for the last three years, assembled a roster that finished with the second-best record in the NBA (56-26) and matched the franchise single-season record for victories. Chris Fedor, cleveland, 12 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Gilley began his recording career in 1959 in Houston, cutting his first single with another aspiring young musician, Kenny Rogers, on bass. Chris Morris, Variety, 8 May 2022 Torkelson snapped an 0-for-15 stretch with his single in the second inning. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 7 May 2022 Sylas Amick and Michael Glover supplied the fly ball outs, scoring Zac Hill, who reached on an error, and courtesy runner Ashton Parker subbing for catcher Aaron Wallace after his single. Ben Thomas |, al, 6 May 2022 The latest single off Jewel’s upcoming album, Freewheelin’ Woman. Glamour, 15 Apr. 2022 With a smile from ear to ear and a full denim outfit that's giving us major Brittany and Justin on the red carpet in 2001 vibes, Carrie jammed out to her new single in the driver's seat. Chaise Sanders, Country Living, 25 Mar. 2022 The suggestive single, which appears on Charli’s upcoming record Crash, is accompanied by a music video directed by Imogen Strauss and Luke Orlando. Kat Bouza, Rolling Stone, 2 Mar. 2022 Miguel Cabrera joined an exclusive club nearly 130 years in the making, with his single in the first inning Saturday at Comerica Park. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, 24 Apr. 2022 But then Chris Taylor shot a double up the middle for another pair of runs, Gavin Lux walked, and, with two outs, Freeman drove in two more with his second single of the inning. Jack Harris, Los Angeles Times, 17 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Despite the tough words by Guterres and report co-chairs, the full report, numbering thousands of pages condensed into a summary by governments and scientists, doesn’t single out individual countries for blame. Seth Borenstein,, 4 Apr. 2022 All of it comes into play rather than just trying to single it on one group. Mark Inabinett |, al, 26 Feb. 2022 And while no justice (or lawyer, or court) will single handedly introduce massive social change in our country, there are many reasons to be hopeful. Premal Dharia, CNN, 8 Apr. 2022 What is curious about the public response, especially that of Smith’s peers, is that Hollywood always picks and chooses who to single out for violence. Ineye Komonibo,, 28 Mar. 2022 What depraved mentality, you’re forced to wonder, could issue and execute such an order, could single out structures that offer ordinary citizens respite, and target them for annihilation? Washington Post, 11 Mar. 2022 If the blustery winter weather's got you down, take some style inspiration from Jennifer Lopez, who single handedly just showed us all how to brave frigid temperatures in style. Jennifer Chan,, 4 Feb. 2022 Instead, companies bought one, a few or a few dozen homes, and the report does not single out any one company as problematic. Eric Heisig, cleveland, 6 Mar. 2022 White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki suggested Biden will single out Trump for blame. Peter Weber, The Week, 6 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of single


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1604, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1628, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for single


Middle English sengle, from Anglo-French, from Latin singulus one only; akin to Latin sem- one — more at same

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Time Traveler for single

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The first known use of single was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

19 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Single.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for single


sin·​gle | \ ˈsiŋ-gəl How to pronounce single (audio) \

Kids Definition of single

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : being alone : being the only one He … made a single effort to jump …— Walter Farley, The Black Stallion
2 : being a separate whole : individual … the sheriff pretended to study the menu—though he knew every single word on it by heart.— Robert McCloskey, Homer Price
3 : not married
4 : made up of or having only one The word has a single syllable.
5 : made for only one person a single bed


singled; singling

Kids Definition of single (Entry 2 of 3)

: to select or distinguish (as one person or thing) from a number or group My sister was singled out for praise.



Kids Definition of single (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a separate individual person or thing
2 : a hit in baseball that enables the batter to reach first base

More from Merriam-Webster on single

Nglish: Translation of single for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of single for Arabic Speakers


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