one by one

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one

 

(wŭn)

1. Being a single entity, unit, object, or living being:

I ate one peach.

2. Characterized by unity; undivided:

They spoke with one voice.

3.

a. Of the same kind or quality:

two animals of one species.

b. Forming a single entity of two or more components:

three chemicals combining into one solution.

4. Being a single member or element of a group, category, or kind:

I’m just one player on the team.

5. Being a single thing in contrast with or relation to another or others of its kind:

One day is just like the next.

6. Occurring or existing as something indefinite, as in time or position:

He will come one day.

7. Occurring or existing as something particular but unspecified, as in time past:

late one evening.

8. Used as an intensive:

That is one fine dog.

9. Being the only individual of a specified or implied kind:

the one person I could marry; the one horse that can win this race.

1. The cardinal number, represented by the symbol 1, designating the first unit in a series.

2. A single person or thing; a unit:

This is the one I like best. Of her many books, the best ones are the last two.

3. A one-dollar bill.

1. An indefinitely specified individual:

She visited one of her cousins.

2. An unspecified individual; anyone:

“The older one grows the more one likes indecency”

(Virginia Woolf).

In accord or unity.

Everyone.

Individually in succession.

on

, from Old English

ān

; see

[Middle English, from Old English; see oi-no- in Indo-European roots .]

In formal usage, the pronoun is sometimes used as a generic pronoun meaning “anyone”: The informal counterpart of is Trouble arises when is used in a series of sentences, and there is a need for a relative pronoun to refer back to One option is to use and repeatedly, as in But in a sequence of sentences this inevitably becomes tedious. A traditional alternative has been to use and This has the drawback of raising the specter of gender bias. Because of these problems, the temptation may arise to switch to but this will undoubtedly be distracting to the reader. It is better to use the same generic pronoun throughout. · As a generic pronoun, should be avoided as the direct object of a verb or a preposition, especially if it comes at the end of the sentence. Thus the sentence may sound stilted, but sounds almost ungrammatical. As a subject or in the possessive form, fares much better. sounds somewhat formal, but is acceptable. · Does the phrase where is a plural noun phrase, take a singular or a plural verb? Sometimes the answer is straightforward. In the sentence the one defective rotor is contrasted with, rather than being an example of, the larger group of rotors. A singular verb is almost always used here because it agrees with the singular “one.” In 2001, 99 percent of the Usage Panel accepted the singular verb in this sentence. In many cases, the contrastive use of can be easily identified by the fact that the phrase containing is introduced by the definite article: (not ) Constructions such as are more problematic. In the sentence the one man, rather than being in contrast to the larger group, is an example of a larger group of men who complain. The relative pronoun appears to refer to and so the verb should be plural: But the use of a singular verb in sentences like these has long been common, even among the best writers, presumably because the relative clause, though semantically modifying the adjacent noun (), feels like it fits equally well with the subject noun (). The Usage Panel, accordingly, does not have a strict preference for the plural form. In our 2014 survey, although 72 percent accepted the plural 57 percent accepted the singular In some cases the Panel actually preferred the supposedly incorrect singular: 64 percent accepted while only 55 percent accepted Several Panelists commented that they decide by ear which verb form to use, and that appears to be the most viable advice. In some (but not all) cases, the sentence can be rewritten to avoid the choice: · Constructions using or always take a plural verb: Note that when followed by a fraction, ordinarily gets a plural verb: The fraction rule has an exception in that amounts are sometimes treated as singular entities: Note also that the plural rule does not apply to these one-plus-a-fraction constructions that are introduced by the indefinite article. These constructions are always singular: See Usage Note at 1.

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In formal usage, the pronounis sometimes used as a generic pronoun meaning “anyone”:The informal counterpart ofisTrouble arises whenis used in a series of sentences, and there is a need for a relative pronoun to refer back toOne option is to useandrepeatedly, as inBut in a sequence of sentences this inevitably becomes tedious. A traditional alternative has been to useandThis has the drawback of raising the specter of gender bias. Because of these problems, the temptation may arise to switch tobut this will undoubtedly be distracting to the reader. It is better to use the same generic pronoun throughout. · As a generic pronoun,should be avoided as the direct object of a verb or a preposition, especially if it comes at the end of the sentence. Thus the sentencemay sound stilted, butsounds almost ungrammatical. As a subject or in the possessive form,fares much better.sounds somewhat formal, but is acceptable. · Does the phrasewhereis a plural noun phrase, take a singular or a plural verb? Sometimes the answer is straightforward. In the sentencethe one defective rotor is contrasted with, rather than being an example of, the larger group of rotors. A singular verb is almost always used here because it agrees with the singular “one.” In 2001, 99 percent of the Usage Panel accepted the singular verb in this sentence. In many cases, the contrastive use ofcan be easily identified by the fact that the phrase containingis introduced by the definite article:(notConstructions such asare more problematic. In the sentencethe one man, rather than being in contrast to the larger group, is an example of a larger group of men who complain. The relative pronounappears to refer toand so the verb should be plural:But the use of a singular verb in sentences like these has long been common, even among the best writers, presumably because the relative clause, though semantically modifying the adjacent noun (), feels like it fits equally well with the subject noun (). The Usage Panel, accordingly, does not have a strict preference for the plural form. In our 2014 survey, although 72 percent accepted the plural57 percent accepted the singularIn some cases the Panel actually preferred the supposedly incorrect singular: 64 percent acceptedwhile only 55 percent acceptedSeveral Panelists commented that they decide by ear which verb form to use, and that appears to be the most viable advice. In some (but not all) cases, the sentence can be rewritten to avoid the choice:· Constructions usingoralways take a plural verb:Note that when followed by a fraction,ordinarily gets a plural verb:The fraction rule has an exception in that amounts are sometimes treated as singular entities:Note also that the plural rule does not apply to these one-plus-a-fraction constructions that are introduced by the indefinite article. These constructions are always singular:See Usage Note at he

Why do we pronounce (wŭn) and (wŭns) while other words derived from like and are pronounced with a long Over time, stressed vowels commonly become diphthongs, as when Latin the feminine singular of the adjective meaning “good,” became in Italian and in Spanish. A similar diphthongization of and began in the late Middle Ages in the west of England and in Wales and is first recorded around 1400. The vowel sound underwent a series of changes, such that the word’s pronunciation went from (ōn) to (o͞oōn), with two syllables, to (wōn) to (wo͞on) to (wo͝on) and finally to (wŭn). In southwest England, this diphthongization happened to other words beginning with the long sound, such as pronounced there now as (wŭts). Only in and did this diphthongal pronunciation gain widespread usage.

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American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

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