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[mee-ning-lis] /ˈmi nɪŋ lɪs/
without meaning, significance, purpose, or value; purposeless; insignificant:
a meaningless reply; a meaningless existence.
Origin of meaningless
First recorded in 1790-1800; meaning + -less
Related forms
meaninglessly, adverb
meaninglessness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for meaninglessness
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Leilah heard what to her was the meaninglessness of technical terms.

    The Monster

    Edgar Saltus
  • Bojo attempted to burst in on the stream of meaninglessness and repeated phrases.

    Making Money Owen Johnson
  • It was distress of soul which made her wince now and then; it was wrung by the emptiness and meaninglessness of her existence.

    Ditte: Girl Alive! Martin Andersen Nexo
  • It was the meaninglessness that seemed to leap out upon me wherever I turned my eyes.

    The Blue Germ Martin Swayne
  • This trick of repetition reaches the climax of meaninglessness in "The Ways of the Hour."

    James Fenimore Cooper Thomas R. Lounsbury
British Dictionary definitions for meaninglessness


futile or empty of meaning
Derived Forms
meaninglessly, adverb
meaninglessness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for meaninglessness



1730, from meaning + -less. Related: Meaninglessly; meaninglessness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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