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From Middle English al one ‎(alone, literally all one), contracted from the Old English phrase eall āna ‎(entirely alone, solitary, single), equivalent to al- ‎(all) +‎ one. Cognate with Scots allane ‎(alone). Compare also West Frisian allinne ‎(alone), Dutch alleen ‎(alone), German allein ‎(alone), Danish alene ‎(alone). More at all, one.



alone ‎(comparative more alone, superlative most alone)

  1. By oneself, solitary.
    I can't ask for help because I am alone.
  2. Apart from, or exclusive of, others.
    Jones alone could do it.
    • Richard Bentley (1662-1742)
      God, by whose alone power and conversation we all live, and move, and have our being.
  3. Considered separately.
    • 1915, Emerson Hough, The Purchase Price, chapterI:
      “[…] it is not fair of you to bring against mankind double weapons ! Dangerous enough you are as woman alone, without bringing to your aid those gifts of mind suited to problems which men have been accustomed to arrogate to themselves.”
    • 2013 May 25, “No hiding place”, in The Economist[1], volume 407, number 8837, page 74:
      In America alone, people spent $170 billion on “direct marketing”—junk mail of both the physical and electronic varieties—last year. Yet of those who received unsolicited adverts through the post, only 3% bought anything as a result.
  4. Without equal.
    • 2013 August 23, Ian Traynor, “Rise of Europe's new autocrats”, in The Guardian Weekly, volume 189, number 11, page 1:
      Hungary's leader is not alone in eastern and southern Europe, where democratically elected populist strongmen increasingly dominate, deploying the power of the state and a battery of instruments of intimidation to crush dissent, demonise opposition, tame the media and tailor the system to their ends.
  5. (obsolete) Unique; rare; matchless.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)

Derived terms[edit]

Usage notes[edit]

  • Used after what it modifies.



alone ‎(not comparable)

  1. By one's self; apart from, or exclusive of, others; solo.
    She walked home alone.
  2. Without outside help.
    The job was too hard for me to do alone.
  3. Exclusively.
    The responsibility is theirs alone.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Unlike most focusing adverbs, alone typically appears after a noun phrase.
    Only the teacher knew vs. The teacher alone knew


Derived terms[edit]


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.


Most common English words before 1923: held · help · number · #343: alone · body · point · letter




From Latin halo.


alone m ‎(plural aloni)

  1. halo
  2. glow