futile


futile
[[t]fju͟ːtaɪl, AM -t(ə)l[/t]]
ADJ-GRADED: oft it v-link ADJ to-inf
If you say that something is futile, you mean there is no point in doing it, usually because it has no chance of succeeding.

He brought his arm up in a futile attempt to ward off the blow...

It would be futile to sustain his life when there is no chance of any improvement.

Syn:

English dictionary. 2008.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • futile — [ fytil ] adj. • XIVe; lat. futilis 1 ♦ Qui est dépourvu de sérieux, qui ne mérite pas qu on s y arrête. ⇒ insignifiant. Discours, propos futiles. ⇒ creux, frivole, vain, vide. Sous le prétexte le plus futile. ⇒ léger; puéril. S occuper de choses …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • futile — futile, vain, fruitless, bootless, abortive all denote barren of result. Futile and vain parallel each other only when they imply failure to realize an immediate aim {it was equally in vain, and he soon wearied of his futile vigilance Stevenson}… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Futile — Fu tile (?; 277), a. [L. futilis that easily pours out, that easily lets loose, vain, worthless, from the root of fundere to pour out: cf. F. futile. See {Fuse}, v. t.] [1913 Webster] 1. Talkative; loquacious; tattling. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • futile — [fyo͞ot′ l; ] chiefly Brit & Cdn [, fyo͞o′tīl΄] adj. [< Fr or L: Fr futile < L futilis, lit., that easily pours out, hence untrustworthy, worthless, futile < base of fundere: see FOUND3] 1. a) that could not succeed; useless; vain b)… …   English World dictionary

  • futile — I adjective abortive, barren, bootless, feckless, fruitless, futilis, gainless, hopeless, inanis, ineffective, ineffectual, inefficacious, insignificant, inutile, nugatory, otiose, profitless, resultless, unavailing, unfruitful, unimportant,… …   Law dictionary

  • futile — 1550s, from M.Fr. futile, from L. futilis vain, worthless, futile, lit. pouring out easily (of a vessel), hence easily emptied, leaky, unreliable, from base of fundere pour, melt, from PIE root *gheu to pour (see FOUND (Cf. found) (2)). Related:… …   Etymology dictionary

  • futile — FUTILE. adj. de tout genre. Frivole, Qui est de peu de consequence, de peu de consideration. Raison futile. discours futile …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • futile — / futile/ agg. [dal lat. futĭlis, propr. che lascia scorrere ]. 1. [privo di profondità, di scarsa serietà: argomenti, discorsi f. ] ▶◀ e ◀▶ [➨ frivolo (1)]. 2. [di scarso peso, di poca importanza: litigare per f. motivi ] ▶◀ banale,… …   Enciclopedia Italiana

  • futile — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ producing no useful result; pointless. DERIVATIVES futilely adverb futility noun. ORIGIN Latin futilis leaky, futile …   English terms dictionary

  • Futĭle — (röm. Ant.), Opfergefäße in dem Tempel der Vesta, ohne Füße …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • FUTILE — Lutatio ad Stat. Theb. l. 7. v. 297. vas fuit lato ove, quo utebantur in sacris Deae Vestae; quia aqua ad sacra Vestae in terra non ponitur, quod si fiat, piaculumest, ideo excogitatum est vas, quod stare non posset, sed si positum statim… …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale