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See single, Middle English senglely.


singly (not comparable)

  1. In a single or unaccompanied manner; without a companion.
    • 1651, Thomas Hobbes, “Chapter I: Of Sense”, in LeviathanWikisource:
      Singly, they are every one a representation or appearance of some quality, or other accident of a body without us, which is commonly called an object.
    • 1901, Lew Walllace, Ben Hur[1], Book 8, Chapter 10:
      The cross, reared now above all other objects, and standing singly out against the sky, was greeted with a burst of delight; and all who could see and read the writing upon the board over the Nazarene's head made haste to decipher it. Soon as read, the legend was adopted by them and communicated, and presently the whole mighty concourse was ringing the salutation from side to side, and repeating it with laughter and groans -"King of the Jews! Hail, King of the Jews!"
    • 1883, Robert Louis Stevenson, “How My Shore Adventure Began”, in Treasure IslandWikisource:
      Grey-coloured woods covered a large part of the surface. This even tint was indeed broken up by streaks of yellow sand-break in the lower lands, and by many tall trees of the pine family, out-topping the others--some singly, some in clumps....
  2. Individually; particularly; severally
    to make men singly and personally good
  3. Without partners, companions, or associates; single-handed
    to attack another singly
  4. Honestly; sincerely; simply.
  5. (obsolete) Singularly; peculiarly.