Definition of 'futile'
Pointless, incapable of achieving the desired outcome, or destined to fail due to its inherent impracticality or ineffectiveness.
"The company's attempts to enter the highly competitive market were ultimately futile."
Detailed Meaning of 'futile'
When applied to actions, efforts, or endeavors, it signifies that they are without purpose or result, often leading to disappointment or frustration. For example, a futile attempt to solve an unsolvable problem highlights the hopelessness of the effort. This term conveys a sense of futility and emphasizes the idea that the subject being described is a waste of time, energy, or resources. "Futile" suggests that the objective is unattainable or that the means employed to achieve it are incapable of producing the desired result.
Examples of 'futile' in a Sentence
1. It is futile to try to argue with someone who is unwilling to listen.
2. The attempt to lift the heavy object proved to be futile.
3. It is often futile to try to reason with a child in the midst of a tantrum.
4. The search for the missing hiker was eventually called off as it seemed futile to continue.
5. It is futile to try to change someone's deeply held beliefs.
6. Many people see the pursuit of fame and fortune as a futile endeavor.
Origins & Etymology of 'futile'
The adjective 'futile' has its origins in Latin. It is derived from the Latin word 'futilis,' which means 'vain' or 'futile.' 'Futilis' itself comes from 'futuere,' a Latin verb that means 'to pour out' or 'to waste.' Therefore, the etymology of 'futile' conveys the idea of something being poured out or wasted, emphasizing its pointlessness or lack of effectiveness. In English, 'futile' is used to describe actions, efforts, or endeavors that are incapable of achieving the desired outcome or are destined to fail due to their inherent impracticality or ineffectiveness. The term 'futile' underscores the concept of actions that result in a sense of waste, reflecting its historical connection to the idea of futility and pointlessness.