alone

1 adjective
1 (not before noun) without any other people: She lives alone. | alone together (=if two people are alone together there is no one else in the place where they are): Suddenly they found themselves alone together in the room.
2 without any friends or people who you know: all alone (=completely alone): It was scary being all alone in a strange city.
3 (not before noun) feeling very unhappy and lonely: He felt terribly alone when June left.
4 you alone know/have/can do sth used to say that you are the only person who knows or can do something: Julie alone knew the terrible truth. | Of all the applicants, she alone had the right qualifications.
5 used to emphasize that one particular thing is very important or has a great effect in a situation: The price alone was enough to put me off the idea.
6 be alone in (doing) sth be the only person to do something: You're not alone in feeling upset by all this, believe me.
USAGE NOTE: ALONE WORD CHOICE: alone, on your own, by yourself, lonely, lonesome, lone, solitary If you are alone, or less formally, on your own/by yourself that just means that no one else is with you, and is neither good nor bad: I just wanted to stay at home alone/by myself. With verbs of action, on your own and by yourself often suggest that no one is helping you: I want to swim alone (=with no one else there).| I want to swim on my own/by myself (=either with nobody else there or with other people there but not helping). If you are lonely or lonesome (AmE) you are unhappy because you are alone: I feel lonely living away from home/a lonely old man. Places etc can be lonely or lonesome if they make people feel lonely: a lonesome little town on the prairie. Things that you do can also be lonely: a lonely journey/job/life etc. Lonely is never an adverb but alone often is: She travelled alone (NOT lonely). A lone or solitary person or thing is simply the only one in a place, and therefore might seem a little lonely: a lone figure in the middle of the square (=it is the only one there). In spoken English, you are more likely to talk about: a figure on its own in the middle of the square. Sometimes solitary can suggest that you choose to be alone: She is a very solitary person. 2 adverb
1 if you do something difficult alone you do it on your own: Brian was left to put up the tent alone.
2 go it alone to start working or living on your own, especially after working or living with other people: After years of working for a big company I decided to go it alone.
3 leave/let sb alone to stop annoying or interrupting someone: Go away and leave me alone will you.
4 leave/let sth alone to stop touching an object or changing something: Leave that vase alone or you'll break it!
5 stand alone if an object or building stands alone it is not near other buildings or objects: The house stood alone at the end of the road.

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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