1590s, of things, places, etc., "affording retirement from society," from recluse (q.v.) + -ive. By 20c. it was used predominantly of persons, "tending to live a retired life and mix little in society." Related: Reclusively; reclusiveness. Recluse alone formerly served also as an adjective in English (early 13c.).
undergraduate honorary society, 1776, from initials of Greek philosophia biou kybernētēs "philosophy, guide of life."
Loneliness expresses the uncomfortable feelings, the longing for society, of one who is alone. Lonesomeness may be a lighter kind of loneliness, especially a feeling less spiritual than physical, growing out of the animal instinct for society and the desire of protection, the consciousness of being alone .... Lonesomeness, more often than loneliness, may express the impression made upon the observer. [Century Dictionary]
chief of a Native American tribe, 1620s, from Narragansett (Algonquian) sachim "chief, ruler," cognate with Abenaki sangman, Delaware sakima, Micmac sakumow, Penobscot sagumo. Applied in jocular use to a prominent member of any society from 1680s; specific political use in U.S. is by 1890, from its use in New York City as the title of the 12 high officials of the Tammany Society.
"loving harmony or music," 1813 (in the name of a society founded in London for the promotion of instrumental music), from French philharmonique (1739), from Italian filarmonico, literally "loving harmony," from Greek philos "loving" (see philo-) + ta harmonika "theory of harmony, music," from neuter plural of harmonikos (see harmonic). The Society name was taken up in the names of many symphony orchestras.
"leading or senior woman in a group or society," 1905, from fem. of French doyen (see doyen). As a type of pear, from 1731.