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[ahy-dl-nis] /ˈaɪ dl nɪs/
the quality, state, or condition of being lazy, inactive, or idle:
His lack of interest in the larger world and his consummate idleness were the causes of their dreadful divorce.
Origin of idleness
before 1000; idle + -ness Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for idleness
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But she did not allow herself to fall into the idleness of barren speculation.

    The Secret Agent Joseph Conrad
  • This idleness seemed, to me, to form the summit of human happiness.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • There were long, long days of intrenching, skirmishing and idleness.

    The Rock of Chickamauga Joseph A. Altsheler
  • Put aside frivolity and idleness, and apply yourself in earnest.

    The Channings Mrs. Henry Wood
  • All other goodness is but too often an idleness or powerlessness of will.

    Reflections Francois Duc De La Rochefoucauld
  • He was not a man to do anything—much less be sociable—out of idleness.

    Roden's Corner Henry Seton Merriman
  • Mr. H. Do so;—but mind now this song-writing do not lead you to idleness.

  • But Joseph Hume was not a man to enjoy the fruits of his industry in idleness.

    Self-Help Samuel Smiles
  • Another thinks there is no happiness but in sleep and idleness.

    The Praise of Folly Desiderius Erasmus
Word Origin and History for idleness

Old English idelnes "frivolity, vanity, emptiness; vain existence;" see idle + -ness. Old English expressed the idea we attach to in vain by in idelnisse. Spenser, Scott, and others use idlesse to mean the same thing in a positive, pleasant sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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