See also: väin and VAIN

English edit

Alternative forms edit

Etymology edit

From Middle English veyn, from Old French vain, from Latin vānus (empty).

Pronunciation edit

Adjective edit

vain (comparative vainer or more vain, superlative vainest or most vain)

  1. Overly proud of oneself, especially concerning appearance; having a high opinion of one's own accomplishments with slight reason.
    • 1959, Leo Rosten, The return of H*Y*M*A*N K*A*P*L*A*N:
      Every writer is a narcissist. This does not mean that he is vain; it only means that he is hopelessly self-absorbed.
  2. Having no real substance, value, or importance; empty; void; worthless; unsatisfying.
  3. Effecting no purpose; pointless, futile.
    vain toil    a vain attempt
    • 1697, Virgil, “(please specify the book number)”, in John Dryden, transl., The Works of Virgil: Containing His Pastorals, Georgics, and Æneis. [], London: [] Jacob Tonson, [], →OCLC:
      Vain is the force of man / To crush the pillars which the pile sustain.
    • 1850, [Alfred, Lord Tennyson], In Memoriam, London: Edward Moxon, [], →OCLC, Canto XXX, page 48:
      At our old pastimes in the hall
      ⁠We gambol’d, making vain pretence
      ⁠Of gladness, with an awful sense
      Of one mute Shadow watching all.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 6, in A Cuckoo in the Nest:
      But Sophia's mother was not the woman to brook defiance. After a few moments' vain remonstrance her husband complied. His manner and appearance were suggestive of a satiated sea-lion.
  4. Showy; ostentatious.
    • 1735, Alexander Pope, “Epistle 4”, in The Works of Mr. Alexander Pope, volume II, London: [] J. Wright, for Lawton Gilliver [], →OCLC, page 40, lines 25–30:
      Yet ſhall (my Lord) your juſt, your noble Rules / Fill half the land with imitating Fools: / VVho random dravvings from your ſheets ſhall take, / And of one beauty many blunders make; / Load ſome vain Church with old Theatric State, / Turn Arcs of Triumph to a Garden-gate, []

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Translations edit

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Dalmatian edit

Alternative forms edit

Etymology edit

From Latin vīnum. Compare Istriot veîn.

Pronunciation edit

Noun edit

vain m

  1. wine

Finnish edit

Alternative forms edit

  • vaan (colloquial, all senses; also has other non-colloquial meanings)

Etymology edit

Probably an old instructive plural of the stem vaja- (*vajin). Cognate with Estonian vaid.

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /ˈʋɑi̯n/, [ˈʋɑ̝i̯n]
  • Rhymes: -ɑin
  • Syllabification(key): vain

Adverb edit

vain

  1. only, merely, exclusively, solely, just
    Olen vain ihminen.
    I am just/only a human.
    Paita maksoi vain kaksi euroa.
    The shirt cost just/only two euros.
  2. ever (when used with an interrogative pronoun)
    Synonym: tahansa
    mikä vainwhatever
    milloin vainwhenever
  3. An emphatic word used with the negative verb and -kö.
    Kävit siellä, etkö vain?
    You went there, didn't you?
    Tämä on se, eikö vain?
    This is it, right?
  4. (with a verb in imperative) go ahead, be my guest (in positive); definitely (in negative)
    Synonyms: sen kuin, sen kun, ihmeessä
    "Saanko syödä viimeisen suklaapalan?" "Syö vain."
    "May I eat the last piece of chocolate?" "Go ahead (and eat it)."
    Älä vain oleta minun syöneen viimeistä kakkupalaa.
    Definitely don't assume I ate the last slice of cake.

Derived terms edit

Further reading edit

Anagrams edit

French edit

Etymology edit

Inherited from Old French vain, from Latin vānus, from Proto-Indo-European *h₁weh₂- (empty).

Pronunciation edit

Adjective edit

vain (feminine vaine, masculine plural vains, feminine plural vaines)

  1. useless, ineffective, fruitless
  2. vain, shallow

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Norman edit

Etymology edit

From Old French vain, from Latin vānus (empty).

Adjective edit

vain m

  1. (Jersey) vain

Derived terms edit