Definition of SEVERAL

SEVERAL Adjective and Pronoun

Several is a term that functions as both an adjective and a pronoun, indicating an indeterminate but relatively small number or quantity of something. As an adjective, it describes a quantity that is more than two but not many, often implying a moderate amount or variety. As a pronoun, it represents an unspecified number of items, individuals, or elements, suggesting a small, but discernible, grouping or collection.

SEVERAL as an adjective

Indeterminate Quantity: Several as an adjective denotes a quantity or number that is more than two but not many. It implies a moderate amount or variety of something, suggesting enough to be notable or significant without being numerous. For example, “There were several options available for dinner,” indicates a choice among a modest selection of options.

Moderate Variety: The adjective several may also convey the presence of a diverse range or assortment of items, individuals, or elements within a moderate quantity. It suggests a variety that is discernible or noteworthy, albeit not extensive or exhaustive. For instance, “The store offers several flavors of ice cream,” indicates a selection of flavors without specifying the exact number.

SEVERAL as an pronoun

Indefinite Quantity: Several as a pronoun represents an unspecified number of items, individuals, or elements within a small, discernible grouping or collection. It implies the existence of a noticeable quantity or subset without providing specific numerical details. For example, “I invited several friends to the party,” indicates the invitation of a small but significant number of friends without specifying the exact count.

Implicit Plurality: As a pronoun, several implies the presence of multiple entities or instances, suggesting a collective or aggregate quantity rather than a singular item. It acknowledges the existence of a small group or subset within a larger context without specifying precise numerical boundaries.

Contextual Determination: The interpretation of several depends on the context in which it is used, as it can represent a different quantity or significance based on the specific circumstances or subject matter being discussed. Its meaning may vary from context to context, ranging from a few to several dozen, but generally denotes a modest, discernible quantity or variety.

Several functions as both an adjective and a pronoun, indicating an indeterminate but relatively small number or quantity of something. Whether describing a moderate amount or variety of items, individuals, or elements, or representing an unspecified grouping within a larger context, several implies a notable yet manageable quantity or collection without specifying precise numerical details. Its interpretation depends on the context, conveying a sense of modesty, variety, or discernible grouping within the given context or subject matter.

Difference between SEVERAL as an adjective and as a pronoun

While several is commonly used as an adjective to describe an indeterminate but noticeable quantity or number of items, it is not typically used as a pronoun. Instead, it functions primarily as an adjective modifying a noun. When referring to an unspecified number of things or people without explicitly naming them, alternative pronouns such as “some,” “many,” or “a few” are more commonly employed.

Examples of SEVERAL in a sentence

SEVERAL as an adjective

  • She picked up several books from the library for her research project.
  • We sampled several dishes at the new restaurant to get a taste of their menu.
  • He had several meetings scheduled for the afternoon.
  • The company received several job applications for the open position.
  • There are several options available for solving this problem.
  • She tried on several dresses before finding the perfect one.
  • The team made several attempts to contact the client but received no response.
  • We’ve been to several countries on our travels around the world.

SEVERAL as a pronoun

  • I brought snacks for everyone, but please feel free to grab several if you’d like.
  • The store had different types of chocolate, and I bought several.
  • He asked for advice, and I gave him several suggestions.
  • She received several gifts for her birthday, including books and clothes.
  • The teacher handed out pencils, and each student took several.
  • We needed screws for the project, so I bought several at the hardware store.
  • The children played with toys, and they each had several to choose from.
  • I have several tasks on my to-do list for today, so I’ll be busy.

Etymology of SEVERAL

The term several traverses the linguistic landscape, representing a quantitative measure that denotes a moderate but indefinite amount or number. Rooted in Middle English and Latin, it has evolved into an adjective that signifies a quantity greater than a few but not specified precisely.

  • Middle English and Latin Origins: Several finds its linguistic roots in Middle English, where it originally meant “divided” or “separated.” It stems from the Latin word “separalis,” which conveys a similar sense of division or separation. Over time, its usage expanded to denote an unspecified but moderate quantity or number of items.
  • Indefinite Quantity: Several is used to indicate a quantity that is more than a few but not enough to be precise or specific. It suggests a moderate amount or number, often implying that there are multiple distinct items or entities without specifying an exact count.
  • Versatility in Language: The term several is versatile in its application, capable of describing a range of situations, contexts, and objects. It can refer to several options, several people, several days, or several parts, among other uses, providing a flexible and adaptable way to convey moderate quantities in speech and writing.
  • Semantic Ambiguity: While several offers a degree of specificity in indicating a quantity greater than a few, its lack of precision can sometimes lead to ambiguity or interpretation. Depending on the context, several may represent a relatively small or large number, making it important to consider the context and intended meaning when using or interpreting the term.
  • Common Usage: Several is a common and widely used term in everyday language, appearing frequently in both formal and informal contexts. Its broad applicability and intuitive meaning make it a convenient and effective way to convey moderate quantities without the need for precise enumeration.

Several stands as a versatile and adaptable term in the English language, offering a convenient way to describe moderate quantities or numbers without specifying exact figures. From its origins in Middle English to its contemporary usage in everyday speech and writing, the term embodies the linguistic richness and flexibility that characterize the English lexicon.


  • Many
  • Numerous
  • Various
  • Multiple
  • Various
  • Some
  • A number of
  • Various


  • Few
  • One
  • Singular
  • Alone
  • Solo
  • Only
  • One
  • Lone


  • Multiple
  • Numerous
  • Various
  • Assorted
  • Diverse
  • Plural
  • Abundant
  • Different

🌐 🇬🇧 SEVERAL in other languages

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