—adj. 1. alone; without companions; unattended: a solitary passer-by. 2. living alone; avoiding the society of others: a solitary existence. 3. by itself; alone: one solitary house. 4. characterized by the absence of companions: a solitary journey. 5. done without assistance or accompaniment; done in solitude: solitary chores. 6. being the only one: a solitary exception. 7. characterized by solitude, as a place; unfrequented, secluded, or lonely: a solitary cabin in the woods. 8. Zool.living habitually alone or in pairs, as certain wasps. Cf. social (def. 10).
—n. 1. a person who lives alone or in solitude, or avoids the society of others.
2. a person who lives in solitude from religious motives.
3. See solitary confinement.