Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Without success; unsuccessful.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Having no success.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Without success.

Etymologies

success +‎ -less (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Lavinia only answered by compliance; but, after an half hour's useless contest with her riotous brother, returned to her weeping sister, not merely successless with regard to her petition, but loaded with fresh ill tidings that she knew not how to impart.

    Camilla

  • The politic nature of vice must be opposed by policy, and therefore wiser honesties project and plot against sin; wherein notwithstanding we are not to rest in generals, or the trite stratagems of art; that may succeed with one temper, which may prove successless with another.

    Letter to a Friend

  • Women often, for their own sakes, will keep the last secret; but will ostentatiously din the ears of gods and men with their clamours upon a successless offer.

    Clarissa Harlowe

  • After nearly 15 years of successless searching for this record here in Germany, I found it today here in this blog...

    The Demented Leftist Cabaret of Kollektiv Rote Rübe

  • At length, fatigued with so successless an employment, he sought relief from change.

    The History of the Caliph Vathek

  • La Motte, however, being as much surprized as himself, and as ignorant of the route which Adeline had taken, he returned to the villa, impatient of intelligence, and found some of his servants arrived, without any news of Adeline, and those who came afterwards were as successless as the first.

    The Romance of the Forest

  • But as he was a surly kind of fellow, so she contented herself with frequently upbraiding him by disadvantageous comparisons with her first husband, whose praise she had in her mouth; and as she was for the most part mistress of the profit, so she was to take upon herself the care and government of the family, and, after a long successless struggle, to suffer her husband to be master of himself.

    The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling

  • Such was the successless armament of Xerxes described by Herodotus, or the successful expedition of

    The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling

  • If it were love, it might be simple, single, successless love on her side alone.

    Emma

  • Scheme after scheme was discussed and discarded; new plans were hot-beds for new doubts; and impossibilities seemed to overwhelm every succeeding though successless suggestion.

    Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, November 6, 1841,

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