Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12
  1. #1
    jctgf is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Tuvalu
      • Current Location:
      • Tuvalu
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    1,860
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    hi,
    what's the difference in meaning among these words, please?
    thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    142
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Lonely
    .ADJECTIVE:
    1.Without companions; lone.
    2.Characterized by aloneness; solitary.
    3.Unfrequented by people; desolate; lonely crossroads.
    4.Dejected by the awareness of being alone.
    5.Producing such dejection: the loneliest night of the week.


    Lonesome.
    ADJECTIVE:
    1.Dejected because of a lack of companionship.
    2.Producing such dejection: a lonesome hour at the bar.
    3.Deserted; unfrequented: a lonesome valley.
    Solitary; lone: a lonesome pine.
    NOUN (informal):
    Self: He ate the meal all by his lonesome.


    Solitary.
    ADJECTIVE:
    1.Existing, living, or going without others; alone: a solitary traveler.
    2.Happening, done, or made alone: a solitary evening; solitary pursuits such as reading and sewing.
    3.Remote from civilization; secluded: a solitary retreat.
    4.Having no companions; lonesome or lonely.
    5.Zoology: Living alone or in pairs only: solitary wasps; solitary sparrows.
    6.Single and set apart from others: a solitary instance of cowardice.

    Alone.
    ADJECTIVE:
    1.Being apart from others; solitary.
    2.Being without anyone or anything else; only.
    3Considered separately from all others of the same class.
    4.Being without equal; unique.
    ADVERB:
    1.Without others: sang alone while the choir listened.
    2.Without help: carried the suitcases alone.
    3.Exclusively; only: The burden of proof rests on the prosecution alone.

    alone - Dictionary definition and pronunciation - Yahoo! Education

    They are all synonyms.
    Last edited by NanetteDee; 20-Sep-2008 at 04:50. Reason: typing

  3. #3
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19,400
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Quote Originally Posted by NanetteDee View Post
    Lonely
    .ADJECTIVE:
    1.Without companions; lone.
    2.Characterized by aloneness; solitary.
    3.Unfrequented by people; desolate; lonely crossroads.
    4.Dejected by the awareness of being alone.
    5.Producing such dejection: the loneliest night of the week.


    Lonesome.
    ADJECTIVE:
    1.Dejected because of a lack of companionship.
    2.Producing such dejection: a lonesome hour at the bar.
    3.Deserted; unfrequented: a lonesome valley.
    Solitary; lone: a lonesome pine.
    NOUN (informal):
    Self: He ate the meal all by his lonesome.


    Solitary.
    ADJECTIVE:
    1.Existing, living, or going without others; alone: a solitary traveler.
    2.Happening, done, or made alone: a solitary evening; solitary pursuits such as reading and sewing.
    3.Remote from civilization; secluded: a solitary retreat.
    4.Having no companions; lonesome or lonely.
    5.Zoology: Living alone or in pairs only: solitary wasps; solitary sparrows.
    6.Single and set apart from others: a solitary instance of cowardice.

    Alone.
    ADJECTIVE:
    1.Being apart from others; solitary.
    2.Being without anyone or anything else; only.
    3Considered separately from all others of the same class.
    4.Being without equal; unique.
    ADVERB:
    1.Without others: sang alone while the choir listened.
    2.Without help: carried the suitcases alone.
    3.Exclusively; only: The burden of proof rests on the prosecution alone.

    alone - Dictionary definition and pronunciation - Yahoo! Education

    They are all synonyms.
    They are not all synonyms. 1. Lonely and 2. Lonesome are synonyms.
    3. Alone can mean 4. solitary, and are synonyms in some of their uses.
    You could not simply interchange 1 or 2 with 3 or 4.
    You could possibly interchange 1 and 2 OR 3 and 4.

    People who are alone and solitary are not necessarily lonely or lonesome, and vice versa.

  4. #4
    jctgf is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Tuvalu
      • Current Location:
      • Tuvalu
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    1,860
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    They are not all synonyms. 1. Lonely and 2. Lonesome are synonyms.
    3. Alone can mean 4. solitary, and are synonyms in some of their uses.
    You could not simply interchange 1 or 2 with 3 or 4.
    You could possibly interchange 1 and 2 OR 3 and 4.

    People who are alone and solitary are not necessarily lonely or lonesome, and vice versa.

    hi,
    so, "lonely" and "solitary" doesn't mean the same? could you elaborate more? as you can see on Nanette's, one word is used to explain the other. it's still blurred to me.
    thanks.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,425
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Let's start with 'alone' (and only consider it's meaning as it relates to your other three words).
    This simply means 'on one's own' , no other people around. This can be in both a physical sense and an emotional sense:
    physical:
    "The parents went down to the pub and left their young child all alone in the house." (No one was home other than the young child).
    "I need to be alone so I can concentrate on finishing my school assignment." The person is asking for others not to come into the room and disturb his train of thought - he wants to be on his own.
    emotional sense:
    "My parents had died, then my brothers died, and then my closest friend died. I suddenly felt all alone in the world."
    The speaker may be saying this at a party in a room full of people; still have acquaintances and work colleagues, neighbours...but he is feeling the loss of a sense of emotional closeness to another human, and emotionally feels 'alone'. Firstly, his life is empty of someone he feels close to. Secondly, if you fall ill, then a family member or best friend is there to take care of those matters that you are temporarily unable to deal with, unable to manage. When one feels 'alone in the world', it is the emotional sense of not having anyone to turn to for help - whatever happens, it's all up to oneself. Now, there is no one in the world with whom the speaker feels an emotional bond - he feels 'alone'.

    'solitary': this means 'existing on one's own', the state of being on one's own. So -
    a hermit lives his life in a cave, all alone. We say that he lives a solitary life.
    a prisoner is placed in a cell with no other people, on his own, with minimal contact with his gaolers. We say he is in solitary confinement.
    These refer to a 'state of existing alone'

    'lonely': When we don't feel a sense of closeness, of having an emotional bond with other people, then we may feel 'lonely' - a sense of sadness because one has no friends or company.

    'lonesome': this is the more poetic, more whimsical word for being 'lonely'. Look at these two songs:
    Elvis Presley:
    "Are you lonesome tonight,
    Do you miss me tonight,
    Are you sorry we drifted apart..."

    MGM Musical:
    "Wednesday night and I'm all alone
    When I oughta be up at some sweetheart's home -
    And I'm lonesome, awful lonesome - gee -
    I wish I had a girl."
    Last edited by David L.; 20-Sep-2008 at 15:17.

  6. #6
    SUDHKAMP's Avatar
    SUDHKAMP is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Kannada
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    18,932
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Laugh and the whole world laughs with you, cry and you cry alone.

  7. #7
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19,400
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Quote Originally Posted by jctgf View Post
    hi,
    so, "lonely" and "solitary" doesn't mean the same? could you elaborate more? as you can see on Nanette's, one word is used to explain the other. it's still blurred to me.
    thanks.
    "Lonely" means "lonesome", as I agreed. That means feeling sad because one is alone, wanting company. Perhaps is Saturday night and you think everyone is out having fun except you. You feel miserable because you have no one to talk to. And your best friend, your cat, has just died. That is loneliness.

    A fisherman may go off for a weekend, wanting to get away from the office, and even his family for a while. He finds a nice quiet spot and drops a line in. He is solitary, he is alone; but his mind is at peace. He is not lonely.

    People can be lonely in a crowd. And being a solitary type of person does not necessarily mean you are lonely.

  8. #8
    WUKEN is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • Taiwan
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    205
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    So if people like to spend lot of time alone, not gregarious. We should say " He likes to be solitary."
    Is it right?

  9. #9
    jctgf is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Tuvalu
      • Current Location:
      • Tuvalu
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    1,860
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    "Lonely" means "lonesome", as I agreed. That means feeling sad because one is alone, wanting company. Perhaps is Saturday night and you think everyone is out having fun except you. You feel miserable because you have no one to talk to. And your best friend, your cat, has just died. That is loneliness.

    A fisherman may go off for a weekend, wanting to get away from the office, and even his family for a while. He finds a nice quiet spot and drops a line in. He is solitary, he is alone; but his mind is at peace. He is not lonely.

    People can be lonely in a crowd. And being a solitary type of person does not necessarily mean you are lonely.
    thanks.
    can I say that 'solitary' and 'alone' are related to the physical situation of an object meanwhile 'lonely' has to do with emotions, state of spirit and soul?
    thanks.

  10. #10
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19,400
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: lonely, solitary, lonesome, alone

    Quote Originally Posted by WUKEN View Post
    So if people like to spend lot of time alone, not gregarious. We should say " He likes to be solitary."
    Is it right?
    Yes.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. [General] cut a lonely figure
    By dilermando in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-Sep-2008, 18:57
  2. the adverb of lonely
    By enydia in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 23-Apr-2008, 10:18
  3. I can't stand to be lonely
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 24-Jan-2008, 08:32
  4. Solitary / Lonely
    By Belly T in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 18-Mar-2007, 14:58
  5. "in a lonely way" & "by oneself"...
    By sula54 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-Apr-2005, 02:44

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk