He made a small choking noise, then looked round at Kingsley and the man with short grey hair, who alone of everyone in the room had remained entirely silent so far.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

I don't quite understand the grammar of "alone of everyone". It seems to say Kingsley stands away from everyone else in the room. Is "alone of" a collocation?

  • I deleted my answer because I thought you were asking about the meaning of the phrase. Upon looking more closely, I see it is a grammatical question, which I can't address in this case. I should have known that someone with that much rep would be able to understand the meaning of such a phrase. I was looking at the title of question, so I thought it was a meaning question.
    – Don B.
    Commented Mar 30, 2019 at 4:37
  • @DonB. I'm still a learner, so I might simply misunderstand it. It's nice for you to explain its meaning. Thanks anyway!
    – dan
    Commented Mar 30, 2019 at 4:55

1 Answer 1


It's another way to phrase something like:

Out of everyone in the room, he alone had remained silent so far.

Ngram suggests this is not a very common phrase, at least relative to "out of everyone". I can't say why Rowling chose to use it instead of the more common version, but it's a legitimate expression.

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