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Dissimilation from *semgnus (as in benignus, malignus etc.), from Proto-Indo-European *sem- (one) + *ǵenh₁- (to beget).[1]



singulus m (feminine singula, neuter singulum); first/second declension

  1. single
  2. apiece
  3. every
    • c. 4 BCE – 65 CE, Seneca the Younger, De brevitate vitae 13
      Persequi singulos longum est quorum aut latrunculi aut pila aut excoquendi in sole corporis cura consumpsere uitam.
      It would be tedious to mention all the different men who have spent the whole of their life over chess or ball or the practice of baking their bodies in the sun.
  4. one each, one at a time

Usage notes[edit]

Usually only used in the plural (singulī).


First/second declension.

Number Singular Plural
Case / Gender Masculine Feminine Neuter Masculine Feminine Neuter
nominative singulus singula singulum singulī singulae singula
genitive singulī singulae singulī singulōrum singulārum singulōrum
dative singulō singulō singulīs
accusative singulum singulam singulum singulōs singulās singula
ablative singulō singulā singulō singulīs
vocative singule singula singulum singulī singulae singula

Derived terms[edit]



  1. ^ Pokorny, Julius (1959) Indogermanisches etymologisches Wörterbuch [Indo-European Etymological Dictionary] (in German), volume II, Bern, München: Francke Verlag, page 373