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[sens-lis] /ˈsɛns lɪs/
destitute or deprived of sensation; unconscious.
lacking mental perception, appreciation, or comprehension.
stupid or foolish, as persons or actions.
nonsensical or meaningless, as words:
This letter is either cryptic or senseless.
Origin of senseless
First recorded in 1550-60; sense + -less
Related forms
senselessly, adverb
senselessness, noun
1. insensate, insensible. 2. unperceiving, undiscerning. 3. silly, idiotic, inane, witless, asinine.
2. sensitive. 3. intelligent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for senselessly
Historical Examples
  • Drawing one, he senselessly fired, but the men were too far off to be injured.

    In the Wilds of Africa W.H.G. Kingston
  • senselessly, it stood watching Elza with a dull, vacant curiosity.

    Tarrano the Conqueror Raymond King Cummings
  • I said, 'Have you no respect for me or yourself to act so senselessly?'

    A California Girl Edward Eldridge
  • Some helpless thing in him wanted her and she was killing it cruelly and senselessly.

    Narcissus Evelyn Scott
  • He hired extravagantly and fired ruthlessly—to the minds of some, senselessly.

    Triplanetary Edward Elmer Smith
  • Oh, I wish to heaven girls were not so senselessly innocent and sisterly!

    John March, Southerner George W. Cable
  • We senselessly risked our lives on the brinks of precipices.

  • Your life is too much to me to allow you to hazard it senselessly, foolishly.

    A Man's Woman

    Frank Norris
  • He realised in an instant that he was irrevocably, senselessly, in love with her.

    The World's Greatest Books, Vol VIII Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton, Eds.
  • He therefore caught her by the arms, just as she was senselessly keeling over, and raised her to a sitting posture.

    Edith and John Franklin S. Farquhar
British Dictionary definitions for senselessly


lacking in sense; foolish: a senseless plan
lacking in feeling; unconscious
lacking in perception; stupid
Derived Forms
senselessly, adverb
senselessness, 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 senselessly



1550s, "without sensation," from sense (n.) + -less. Of actions, etc., "devoid of purpose, proceeding from lack of intelligence," it is attested from 1570s. Related: Senselessly; senselessness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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