1 solitary, lonely, isolated, deserted, forlorn, forsaken, friendless, alone, abandoned, neglected; desert, uninhabited, empty, unfrequented, bare, barren, bleak, remote:
He felt desolate after his wife's death. Tristan da Cunha is a group of four desolate islands in the Atlantic.
2 laid waste, ruined, devastated, ravaged, destroyed:
The explosion left the surrounding countryside desolate.
3 dreary, dismal, wretched, joyless, cheerless, comfortless, miserable, unhappy, down, disconsolate, sad, melancholy, sorrowful, forlorn, mournful, woebegone, gloomy, broken-hearted, heavy-hearted, inconsolable, dejected, downcast, downhearted, dispirited, low-spirited, depressed, melancholy, spiritless, despondent, dismal, distressed, discouraged, hopeless:
He has brought some happiness into her desolate existence.
The country was desolated by famine.
5 destroy, devastate, ruin, lay waste, despoil, ravage, demolish, obliterate, annihilate, raze, gut:
Invaders desolated the countryside.
6 dismay, dishearten, depress, daunt, dispirit, sadden, deject, dispirit, discourage:
He was either buoyed up by renewed hope or desolated by despair.