Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adv. Without protection or assistance.
  • adv. Without the ability to help oneself.
  • adv. Without the ability to react actively.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In a helpless manner or condition.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adv. in a helpless manner

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

helpless +‎ -ly

Examples

  • Nearly every man in the hundred million people -- in what we call helplessly "the public group" and looking on at strikes would be ready, except in his own strike, to write a book like this.

    The Ghost in the White House Some suggestions as to how a hundred million people (who are supposed in a vague, helpless way to haunt the white house) can mak

  • I called helplessly, not wanting to say aloud the title of the poem.

    Why I Can't Be a Hare Krishna

  • With James watching helplessly from the bench after fouling out for only the third time in his career, a trio of teammates made big plays in the final 4 minutes as the Cavaliers held off the Charlotte Bobcats 118-114 on Wednesday to snap a six-game road skid.

    USATODAY.com

  • Elton Brand had 25 points and 10 rebounds, Tim Thomas also scored 25 and the Clippers snapped a four-game home losing streak with a 100-77 victory Wednesday night as the Celtics 'leading scorer watched helplessly from the bench in street clothes.

    USATODAY.com - Basketball - Boston vs. L.A. Clippers

  • But he apparently felt too much pain and changed back into street clothes, watching helplessly from the bench as Miami's offense grinded to a halt without him.

    USATODAY.com

  • While Duncan watched helplessly from the bench, Kidd made a dramatic return less than six weeks after suffering what many figured to be a season-ending injury.

    National Basketball Association - Spurs vs. Suns

  • "Tessibel," he called helplessly, under his breath, but Tessibel did not hear.

    Tess of the Storm Country

  • As one Dark Elf sword helplessly followed the pattern, moving out of line, Kevin thrust, feeling his sword cut flesh, hearing a choked snarl of pain.

    The Chaos Gate

  • He repeated the last word helplessly; he seemed to have lost all his backbone, and lapsed into a flabby, jellified mass of quivering white humanity.

    The Crimson Blind

  • I get tired of the finger pointing at the junta as if they are operating all alone while the world stands "helplessly" by.

    How to Grow Tragedies - Myanmar

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