futile

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Related to futilely: vilely

futile

adjective abortive, barren, bootless, feckless, gainless, hopeless, inanis, ineffective, ineffectual, inefficacious, insignificant, inutile, nugatory, otiose, profitless, resultless, unavailing, unfruitful, unimportant, unproductive, unprofitable, unsubstantial, unsuccessful, useless, vain, vanus, wasted, worthless
Associated concepts: failure to exhaust a futile remedy
Foreign phrases: Lex neminem cogit ad vana seu inutilia peragenda.The law compels no one to do futile or useless things. Lex nil facit frustra, nil jubet frustra. The law does not do anything nor commands anyone to do anything which would be futile.
See also: expendable, idle, ineffectual, invalid, minor, needless, nugatory, otiose, powerless, unavailing, unproductive
References in classic literature ?
With a roar that mingled with the booming thunder from above he leaped toward the panther, who could only claw futilely with one huge paw while he clung to the branch with the other; but the ape-man did not come within that parabola of destruction.
Upon his face hovered a faint, cold smile of haughty pride as the sword arm, displaying its mighty strength and skill in every move, played with the sweating, puffing, steel-clad enemy who hacked and hewed so futilely before him.
The landing-party that followed had futilely pursued along the jungle runways.
So strong was the play-instinct in him, as well as was his constitution strong, that he continually outplayed Scraps to abject weariness, so that he could only lie on the deck and pant and laugh through air-draughty lips and dab futilely in the air with weak forepaws at Michael's continued ferocious-acted onslaughts.
He had waited too often and futilely in the past for porcupines to unroll, to waste any more time.
He panted and sobbed, wasting his effort by too much effort, losing sanity and control and futilely trying to compensate for the loss by excess of physical endeavor.
We stood there, grouped about the body of the dead Grabritin, looking futilely down the river to where it made an abrupt curve to the west, a quarter of a mile below us, and was lost to sight, as though we expected to see the truant returning to us with our precious launch--the thing that meant life or death to us in this unfriendly, savage world.
Instead of struggling futilely and perilously against this lack of sustension, he yielded to it.
Great ears were thrown forward, and a long, supple trunk rose quickly to wave to and fro in search of the scent of an enemy, while two weak, little eyes peered suspiciously and futilely about in quest of the author of the noise which had disturbed his peaceful way.
Then the rope tightened mercilessly, while Buck struggled in a fury, his tongue lolling out of his mouth and his great chest panting futilely.
She gripped herself and her iron with a visible effort, and dabbed futilely at the frail, frilled garment on the board under her hand.
Spearheaded by leading Israeli security experts, Morphisec is offering a powerful and easy-to-use prevention solution that turns the tables on attackers, forcing them to futilely chase after unpredictable moving targets.