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[toon-lis, tyoon-] /ˈtun lɪs, ˈtyun-/
unmelodious; unmusical.
making or giving no music; silent:
In the corner stood a tuneless old piano.
Origin of tuneless
First recorded in 1585-95; tune + -less
Related forms
tunelessly, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for tuneless
Historical Examples
  • There was genuine feeling in her voice, usually loud, harsh, and tuneless.

    The Dop Doctor

    Clotilde Inez Mary Graves
  • Dyck's voice was tuneless, his manner rigid, his eyes burning.

    No Defense, Complete Gilbert Parker
  • Some one was piping on a reed flageolet—an eerie, tuneless wailing.

    Caravans By Night Harry Hervey
  • I always sing at my work, and what's more, my song is not tuneless.

    Canadian Fairy Tales Cyrus Macmillan
  • "There is the other alternative," said Guido, with a tuneless little laugh.

    Cecilia F. Marion Crawford
  • It was a dismal service, with its dreary sermon and its tuneless hymns.

    John Wesley, Jr. Dan B. Brummitt
  • Abe's hat was tilted over his eyes and he whistled a tuneless air.

    Potash & Perlmutter Montague Glass
  • He put his hands in his pockets, staring out and emitting a tuneless whistle.

    Married Life

    May Edginton
  • If tuneless and bad, the public will not fail to condemn him.

  • But the aged Chetonquin muttered to herself in a tuneless quaver, and shook her head doubtingly.

British Dictionary definitions for tuneless


having no melody or tune
(mainly poetic) not producing or able to produce music; silent
Derived Forms
tunelessly, adverb
tunelessness, 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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