Origin of selfless

First recorded in 1815–25; self + -less
Related formsself·less·ly, adverbself·less·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for selflessly

Contemporary Examples of selflessly

Historical Examples of selflessly

British Dictionary definitions for selflessly


  1. having little concern for one's own interests
Derived Formsselflessly, adverbselflessness, 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

Word Origin and History for selflessly



"devoted to others' welfare or interest and not one's own," 1825, from self + -less. First attested in Coleridge. Related: Selflessly; selflessness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper