Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Having no life; inanimate.
  • adj. Having lost life; dead. See Synonyms at dead.
  • adj. Not inhabited by living beings; not capable of sustaining life.
  • adj. Lacking vitality or animation; dull: a lifeless party.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. inanimate; having no life
  • adj. dead; having lost life
  • adj. uninhabited, or incapable of supporting life
  • adj. dull or lacking vitality
  • adj. departed

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Destitute of life, or deprived of life; not containing, or inhabited by, living beings or vegetation; dead, or apparently dead; spiritless; powerless; dull

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Deprived of life; dead; also, in a state of suspended animation.
  • Not possessing life; inanimate; inorganic: as, lifeless matter.
  • Destitute of power, force, vigor, or spirit; wanting animation or vital energy; dull; heavy; inactive; vapid; insipid: as, a lifeless style of oratory; lifeless movements.
  • Destitute of living beings.
  • Synonyms Defunct.
  • Inert, torpid, sluggish, spiritless, passive; flat, frigid, pointless.

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

  • adj. deprived of life; no longer living
  • adj. lacking animation or excitement or activity
  • adj. destitute or having been emptied of life or living beings
  • adj. not having the capacity to support life

Etymologies

life +‎ -less (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • WASHINGTON (RNS) As Democrats conduct a grim postmortem on Tuesday's (Nov. 2) elections, some liberal leaders say one diagnosis is already clear: the party's outreach to religious voters was lifeless from the start.

    Have Democrats Lost Faith In Faith-Based Outreach?

  • The big, corporate commissioned public art pieces in lifeless lower Manhattan plazas are old news.

    Jaime Rojo & Steven Harrington: NY's Nuit Blanche: "Bring To Light"

  • It's no secret, he's drinking himself to death - Jarvis stared in lifeless horror at the sky.

    Banano's Bar

  • But then, I keep a blog to prove my existence, to show people how lifeless is my life ....

    Archive 2006-04-01

  • There the sea became for me a being with a soul - as everything is, though we do not perceive it - and there her aspects and her voice acquired a meaning, as all that we call lifeless has a meaning.

    The Bride of Dreams

  • But the figure that is like you will remain lifeless in the bed, and will be duly buried.

    The Brownies and Other Tales

  • At that hour, standing alone in the high-walled garden when the convent bells are tolling, and the convent itself, with its iron-barred, Gothic windows, and its gray-green olive-trees that look so unreal and lifeless, is tinged by the last rays of the sun, the whole seems like a vision, or a half-remembered sketch, or a memory of romance.

    Life in Mexico, During a Residence of Two Years in That Country

  • I must proceed to Windsor, to calm the anxiety of Clara, who would wait anxiously for us -- yet I would fain spare her the heart-breaking spectacle of Idris, brought in by me lifeless from the journey.

    III.3

  • Homer, too, having discovered from the ancient and divine history which says, "Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return," [2579] calls the lifeless body of Hector dumb clay.

    ANF01. The Apostolic Fathers with Justin Martyr and Irenaeus

  • His instructors had referred to the lifeless, crumbling cities and vast transportation networks of that planet to stress the importance of exploration and discovery.

    THE WAR OF THE PROPHETS

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.