A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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Singular

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1841

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1841

Síngular. adj. [singulier, Fr. singularis, Latin.]

  1. Single; not complex; not compound.

    That idea which represents one particular determinate thing is called a singular idea, whether simple, complex, or compound. Watts.

  2. [In grammar.] Expressing only one; not plural.

    If St. Paul's speaking of himself in the first person singular has so various meanings, his use of the first person plural has a greater latitude. Locke.

  3. Particular; unexampled.

                So singular a sadness
    Must have a cause as strange as the effect.
    Denham's Sophy.

    Doubtless, if you are innocent, your case is extremely hard, yet it is not singular. Female Quixote.

  4. Having something not common to others. It is commonly used in a sense of disapprobation, whether applied to persons or things.

                  His zeal
    Not seconded, as singular and rash.
    Milton.

    It is very commendable to be singular in any excellency, and religion is the greatest excellency: to be singular in any thing that is wise and worthy is not a disparagement, but a praise. Tillots.

  5. Alone; that of which there is but one.

    These busts of the emperors and empresses are all very scarce, and some of them almost singular in their kind. Addis.

Sources: Addison, Joseph (408) · Denham, John (75) · Lennox, Charlotte (2) · Locke, John (269) · Milton, John (449) · Tillotson, John (68) · Watts, Isaac (117)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Singular." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: November 1, 2012. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=10143.


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