- Incapable of producing results; useless; not successful; not worth attempting.
1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 4, in The Celebrity:
- No matter how early I came down, I would find him on the veranda, smoking cigarettes, or […] . And at last I began to realize in my harassed soul that all elusion was futile, and to take such holidays as I could get, when he was off with a girl, in a spirit of thankfulness.
1915, George A. Birmingham, “chapter I”, in Gossamer (Project Gutenberg; EBook #24394), London: Methuen & Co., published 8 January 2013 (Project Gutenberg version), OCLC 558189256:
- There is an hour or two, after the passengers have embarked, which is disquieting and fussy. […] Stewards, carrying cabin trunks, swarm in the corridors. Passengers wander restlessly about or hurry, with futile energy, from place to place.
2011 December 15, Marc Higginson, “Shamrock Rovers 0-4 Tottenham”, in BBC Sport:
- Goals from Steven Pienaar, Andros Townsend, Jermain Defoe and Harry Kane sealed the win, but Rubin Kazan's 1-1 draw against PAOK Salonika rendered Spurs' efforts futile.
incapable of producing results
futile (plural futiles)
- “futile” in le Trésor de la langue française informatisé (The Digitized Treasury of the French Language).
futile (masculine and feminine plural futili)