Too few friends for Facebook? So what
Too few friends for Facebook? So whatReuters

Following the news that 10% of Britons have no best friends, we decided to find out what - if anything, solitude has going for it.

Millions of people are having to deal with the absence of a 'bestie' according to a new study by wellbeing charity, Relate.

Experts think this is "very concerning" and it is bound to fuel fears about what condition the social fabric is in.

But it is not hard at all to find people down history who have sung the praises of being alone.

Here are a few quotes for those feeling tragic, right now.

Be warned the list is comprised mainly of writers and there is a dearth of inspirational quotes from gimlet-eyed tech-entrepreneurs.

But then poets have been the "unacknowledged legislators of the world," whereas Mark Zuckerberg just wants you for money, right?

The writer of Paradise Lost should know a thing or two about being cut off;

Poet and author John Milton: "Solitude sometimes is best society."

Deep and brooding Scandinavian philosophy says you're truly free when you're by yourself;

Philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer: "A man can be himself only so long as he is alone; and if he does not love solitude, he will not love freedom; for it is only when he is alone that he is really free."

And you can rule the world alone;

Writer Criss Jami: "Closed in a room, my imagination becomes the universe, and the rest of the world is missing out."

Being alone can be a sign you're a mature person - or possibly a world great in waiting;

Scientist Albert Einstein: "I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity."

Play-wright Henrik Ibsen: "You see, the point is that the strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone."

Just be careful to make sure you're worth spending time alone with, ok?

Poet May Sarton: "Loneliness is the poverty of self; solitude is richness of self."

And it could be worse ...

Novellist Toni Morrison: "Lonely was much better than alone."

And fundamentally, how possible is it to really know another individual, anyway?

Writer Aldous Huxley: "In spite of language, in spite of intelligence and intuition and sympathy, one can never really communicate anything to anybody. The essential substance of every thought and feeling remains incommunicable, locked up in the impenetrable strong-room of the individual soul and body. Our life is a sentence of perpetual solitary confinement."

Bad news for Facebook, but perhaps good news for everyone else.