Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Without accompaniment; solitary: a lone skier on the mountain.
  • adj. Without companionship; isolated or lonely.
  • adj. Being the only one; sole: the lone doctor in the county.
  • adj. Situated by itself: a lone tree on the prairie; a lone blue tile in a white floor.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Solitary; having no companion.
  • adj. Isolated or lonely; lacking companionship.
  • adj. Sole; being the only one of a type.
  • adj. Situated by itself or by oneself, with no neighbours.
  • adj. Unfrequented by human beings; solitary.
  • adj. single; unmarried, or in widowhood

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Being without a companion; being by one's self; also, sad from lack of companionship; lonely.
  • adj. Single; unmarried, or in widowhood.
  • adj. Being apart from other things of the kind; being by itself; also, apart from human dwellings and resort.
  • adj. Unfrequented by human beings; solitary.
  • n. A lane. See loanin.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Being unaccompanied; apart from any other; solitary; lonely; isolated: as, a lone traveler; a lone house.
  • Single in state; living alone; unmated or unmarried.
  • Lonely; secluded; unfrequented.
  • n. A lane. Also loan.
  • n. A Middle English form of loan.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. lacking companions or companionship
  • adj. being the only one; single and isolated from others
  • adj. characterized by or preferring solitude

Etymologies

Middle English, short for alone; see alone.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Shortened from alone. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • As New York City police tracked what they called a "lone wolf" terrorism suspect for more than a year, federal authorities declined to join the case, believing the man didn't pose a serious threat, people familiar with the matter said.

    Police, FBI Split on Terror Suspect

  • Typically, they go after someone who they can turn into what I call the "lone atheist troublemaker."

    Chris Rodda: The Camp Pendleton Cross: The Facts vs. What the "Persecuted" Christians Are Saying

  • You, Peter, really believe that this is part of something larger, this is just not what we call the lone wolf?

    CNN Transcript Dec 27, 2009

  • COOPER (voice-over): Terrorism home grown and the hunt for what they call the lone wolves.

    CNN Transcript Jan 19, 2005

  • "The thing we are all most worried about is what they call a 'lone ranger,' a lone actor, not some extremely complicated plan like it took to take down the World Trade towers," said Biden, who appeared on the trio of network morning TV shows Friday.

    Thestar.com - Home Page

  • "The thing we are all most worried about is what they call a 'lone ranger,' a lone actor, not some extremely complicated plan like it took to take down the World Trade towers," said Biden, who appeared on three morning news shows.

    FOXNews.com

  • "The thing we are all most worried about is what they call a 'lone ranger,' a lone actor, not some extremely complicated plan like it took to take down the World Trade Centre towers," said Biden, who appeared on the trio of network morning TV shows Friday.

    CBC | Top Stories News

  • BY DEVLIN BARRETT AND SEAN GARDINER As New York City police tracked what they called a "lone wolf" terrorism suspect for more than a year, federal authorities declined to join the case, believing the man didn't pose a serious threat, people familiar with the matter said.

    WSJ.com: What's News US

  • As New York City police tracked what they called a "lone wolf" terrorism suspect for more than a year, federal authorities declined to join the case, believing the man didn't pose a serious threat.

    WSJ.com: What's News US

  • Police, FBI Split on Terror Suspect BY DEVLIN BARRETT AND SEAN GARDINER As New York City police tracked what they called a "lone wolf" terrorism suspect for more than a year, federal authorities declined to join the case, believing the man didn't pose a serious threat, people familiar with the matter said.

    WSJ.com: What's News US

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.