futile [ fyoot-l, fyoo-tahyl] Synonyms Word Origin See more synonyms for futile on Thesaurus.com incapable of producing any result; ineffective; useless; not successful: Attempting to force-feed the sick horse was futile. trifling; frivolous; unimportant. Origin of futile 1545–55;
Latin fūtilis, futtilis
easily broken, vain, worthless, equivalent to
to pour, melt) +
-ilis -ile Related forms fu·tile·ly, adverb fu·tile·ness, noun non·fu·tile, adjective un·fu·tile, adjective
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for futileness having no effective result; unsuccessful pointless; unimportant; trifling inane or foolish don't be so futile! Derived Forms futilely, adverb futileness, noun Word Origin
C16: from Latin
futtilis pouring out easily, worthless, from fundere to pour out
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Word Origin and History for futileness futile adj.
1550s, from Middle French
futile, from Latin futilis "vain, worthless, futile," literally "pouring out easily" (of a vessel), hence "easily emptied, leaky, unreliable," from base of fundere "pour, melt," from PIE root *gheu- "to pour" (see found (v.2)). Related: Futilely.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper