Truth be told, the hope of destroying the rubes by ignoring them vainly ignores the most inescapable fact of our lives.
Can we justify manicures and tasteful highlights when others are vainly looking for work?
As Hudson vainly tried to save Lopez, the Honda roared away on just the wheel rims.
The old bulls sensed the cnunbling of their position and vainly tried to placate the reformers.
Jacqueline glanced back; the animal lay motionless; the rider was vainly endeavoring to rise.
He spent some time in vainly calling for her before she came.
Both the Priests were struck with horror at the design, and vainly endeavoured to prevent its execution.
Unfolding a paper, she vainly strove to read her assent to the divorce.
vainly, too, the Spaniards strove to post guns near enough to annoy the fleet.
vainly the midshipmen in the tops tried to bring order out of confusion.
c.1300, "devoid of real value, idle, unprofitable," from Old French vein "worthless," from Latin vanus "idle, empty," from PIE *wa-no-, from root *eue- "to leave, abandon, give out" (cf. Old English wanian "to lessen," wan "deficient;" Old Norse vanta "to lack;" Latin vacare "to be empty," vastus "empty, waste;" Avestan va- "lack," Persian vang "empty, poor;" Sanskrit una- "deficient"). Meaning "conceited" first recorded 1690s, from earlier sense of "silly, idle, foolish" (late 14c.). Phrase in vain "to no effect" (c.1300, after Latin in vanum) preserves the original sense. Related: Vainly.