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  • ... the bright lights made her think only of all the futile efforts that hospitals contained to keep people awake for more bad news—the weak coffee, the hard chairs, the elevators that stopped on every floor...   (source)
    futile = unsuccessful
  • There were days when, all of my men wondered at the futility of that particular exercise, even if they didn't question it openly.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • Caught red-handed, so to speak, they would seem to recognize the futility of outsmarting a whiteman and the hopelessness of outrunning a rifle.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (because there is no gain from it)
  • And the troubles of the 1980s had destabilized the community and imbued longtime residents with a sense of futility when it came to resisting change.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • ...you should know all the dreams I had 'bout buying that house and fixing it up ... And didn't none of it happen. (Dropping her hands in a futile gesture)   (source)
    futile = indicating that effort is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
  • Resistance was futile, and Nate and I were becoming friends, or something like it.   (source)
    futile = pointless because the effort would be unsuccessful
  • I throw up my hands in futility.   (source)
    futility = realization that the effort was pointless
  • ...he'd struggled futilely to try to pull the ghosts off Heath.   (source)
    futilely = in a manner that is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
  • The dread of futility has been my lifelong plague.   (source)
    futility = a pointless life
  • And yet a feeling lingered with me that the whole episode was like an object lesson in the difficulty of Farmer's enterprise, perhaps in its ultimate futility.   (source)
    futility = failure (pointless effort because it is unproductive or unsuccessful)
  • Futility, doom, became a smell in the air,   (source)
    futility = the pointlessness of effort (because it is sure to fail)
  • She moved her hand quickly from the wheel, grabbing the purse in a futile attempt to keep it from him.   (source)
    futile = useless (pointless effort)
  • His name was Clifton, Tod Clifton, he was unarmed and his death was as senseless as his life was futile.   (source)
    futile = pointless because it was unproductive or unsuccessful
  • But her quest had remained futile.   (source)
    futile = unproductive
  • Few people look at stars when p-suited even when Sun doesn't make it futile;   (source)
    futile = pointless effort
  • The cord has been cut at the other end already; it will only be a futile entanglement if you do not cut it at your end, too.   (source)
    futile = pointless (because it is unproductive or unsuccessful)
  • Taleswapper couldn't bear the futility of it.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (because effort will be unproductive or unsuccessful)
  • But Sally's wait was a futile one unless she could...   (source)
    futile = effort that is pointless because it will be unproductive or unsuccessful
  • I have hope that Mr. Boutwell will be reasonable enough to see the futility of massive resistance to desegregation.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • (The futility of it, fury.) All right! We don't question, we don't doubt. We perform.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (or uselessness)
  • Often in the first weeks, Mark was beset by a sense of futility, and always he was lonely.   (source)
    futility = that effort was pointless (because it would be unproductive)
  • Perhaps they both knew the futility of trying to restrain Kali.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • ...Janie knew the futile fight was not with her.   (source)
    futile = pointless (useless because it will be unproductive or unsuccessful)
  • Unless we win, all other things are futile.   (source)
    futile = pointless
  • But, when I had to drop my studies, I very soon realized all that was pretty futile.   (source)
    futile = pointless (because it is unproductive)
  • Because he had no church into which to lure converts, if there should be any, Kiyoshi Tanimoto soon realized, the futility of this evangelism.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness
  • She stood in desperate futility, helplessly enduring the indignity.   (source)
    futility = unable to do anything about it
  • But she is shown how impossible, how futile it is to return.   (source)
    futile = pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
  • He saw that straight flight was futile; inevitably it would bring him face to face with the sea.   (source)
    futile = pointless (because the effort would be unproductive)
  • It was coming to him that perhaps all life as he knew it and vigorously practised it was futile;   (source)
    futile = pointless effort
  • you will very soon come to realise yourself, if you have not done so already, the futility of your idea.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (because it will prove unproductive or unsuccessful)
  • it distressed him to realise that his magnificent struggle was futile:   (source)
    futile = pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
  • Robert had pursued a system of lessons almost daily; and he was nearly at the point of discouragement in realizing the futility of his efforts.   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • One Saturday night he did not come home, and thereafter all their efforts to get trace of him were futile.   (source)
    futile = effort that was pointless because it was unsuccessful
  • The Eloi, like the Carolingian kings, had decayed to a mere beautiful futility.   (source)
    futility = pointless effort
  • my tongue will not utter the bitter, futile words that rise to my lips, and they fall back into my heart like unshed tears.   (source)
    futile = pointless because they would be unproductive
  • ...the futility of all attempt at...   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • But now that I had pulled it, I understood its futility: It did nothing after all.†   (source)
  • Knowing it was futile, he didn't go after her.†   (source)
  • There was the constant rise and fall of her stomach, and the futile hopes that they'd lose their way or change their minds.†   (source)
  • In a moment, he will realize it's futile, she can't be saved.†   (source)
  • Connor's sense of futility makes him feel like a part of himself has already been cut out and taken to market.†   (source)
  • It was the masterful and incommunicable wisdom of eternity laughing at the futility of life and the effort of life.†   (source)
  • As time passed and starvation loomed, this act took on greater and greater importance, and it may have fed Mac's sense of futility.†   (source)
  • He groped like a blind man until he realized it was futile.†   (source)
  • Should is a futile word.†   (source)
  • Then, blushing because it was futile and silly, he forced himself to walk away.†   (source)
  • "It's pretty much futile," I agree.†   (source)
  • After making one last futile attempt at communication, they waved good-bye.†   (source)
  • The futility of our circumstance began to dawn on us just as the first news of fighting and casualties on the George Washington Bridge came over the meshnet.†   (source)
  • Given that it was so late, both men were down to a few sorry pieces of produce; and while this may have lent an air of futility to their argument in the eyes of the observers, it in no way diminished the stakes for the principals.†   (source)
  • Efforts to reinvent downtown Middletown always struck me as futile.†   (source)
  • Instead it shrank to the floor, lifting a forepaw in a futile gesture of defence.†   (source)
  • In Alabama, asking to change venue was an essentially futile act.†   (source)
  • Langdon felt a familiar tinge of wonder as his eyes made a futile attempt to absorb the entire mass of the edifice.†   (source)
  • Pop, pop, pop. Dodging and jumping away from the futile slashes of the creature's blades.†   (source)
  • Or is life so filled with random action that the very notion of caution is futile?†   (source)
  • She no longer begs Madame Manec to take her to the train station, to write another letter, to spend another futile afternoon at the prefecture trying to petition occupation authorities to locate her father.†   (source)
  • I didn't need him to tell me that Mary and Ken had made him stop work on the hog buildings, nor did I need him to confess to me that he'd paid for the weekend's work in a futile attempt to push the construction past some point of no return.†   (source)
  • He hung for a moment, his armpit against the spar, and knew that his light was futile against the fog; nevertheless he adjusted the flame higher before clambering down.†   (source)
  • The orphans had a brief hope that the engine would not start when Stephano turned the key in the ignition, but this was a futile hope.†   (source)
  • It was a futile search; but it was then and there that I started to remember.†   (source)
  • Total futility.†   (source)
  • Yet she said nothing; she was weary of futile arguments with her sister.†   (source)
  • Your efforts are futile.†   (source)
  • Not everything had a cause, and pretending otherwise was an interference in the workings of the world that was futile, and could even lead to grief.†   (source)
  • I was finished with running, especially when it was all futile.†   (source)
  • It would have been futile, and Kai didn't care about her dress.†   (source)
  • There was an overpowering sense of futility.†   (source)
  • Professing his innocence to her was futile, as professions of innocence were likely all she heard all day.†   (source)
  • In what may seem a futile gesture to many, the Art Loss Database The story was continued on the next page; but just then Mrs. Barbour came into the room and I had to put the newspaper down.†   (source)
  • Enrique knows that is futile; the last time he tried running from the police in the cemetery, he was caught and deported.†   (source)
  • Very quickly she realized the futility of this endeavor.†   (source)
  • He futilely tried to push Saphira's muscled leg off his chest and saw that Murtagh was likewise pinned.†   (source)
  • His liquid topaz eyes were penetrating — trying futilely, I assumed, to lift the truth straight from my mind.†   (source)
  • It's a futile attempt.†   (source)
  • Please, God, no. But below the tumble of his chaotic thoughts, below the triphammer beat of his heart, he could hear the soft and futile sound of the doorknob being turned to and fro as something locked in tried helplessly to get out, something that wanted to meet him, something that would like to be introduced to his family as the storm shrieked around them and white daylight became black night.†   (source)
  • He struggles, kicks, tries to pull away, but knows it's futile, that it's over.†   (source)
  • I feel ridiculous asking the question because I know it's futile.†   (source)
  • My futile attempt at digging a grave.†   (source)
  • It is a futile dream, a strange thought to have, but it is there nonetheless.†   (source)
  • I shook my head, a futile gesture in the darkness.†   (source)
  • Institutions, systems, ideologies, and all the vain, futile efforts of humanity that go with them are everywhere, and interaction with all of it is unavoidable.†   (source)
  • Whereas normally in literary works we watch characters who are our equals or even superiors, in an ironic work we watch characters struggle futilely with forces we might be able to overcome.†   (source)
  • Finally, we realized our efforts were futile; we could only pray as we watched her struggle to survive.†   (source)
  • Allow me to quote from Kramer, Samuel Noah, and Maier, John R. Myths of Enki, the Crafty GocL New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989: 'Religion, magic, and medicine are so completely intertwined in Mesopotamia that separating them is frustrating and perhaps futile work.†   (source)
  • Loki kicked at him futilely, turning his face away from the trickle of venom.†   (source)
  • This would, of course, be futile in the event that they decided to wait for cold and hunger to do their job for them.†   (source)
  • She didn't hear Mrs. Liddell knocking at the door, the annoyed but futile turning of the doorknob, or the imperious demand: "Alice, open this door.†   (source)
  • twenty years a fool of the WEST, OR MOUTH AND ROOFLEAF DISEASE: A TREATISE ON futility in the tropics, Etc. Etc. We failed so utterly, he said.†   (source)
  • Boo's body jerked as he tried to fight against Hunting, but it was futile.†   (source)
  • It's futile, probably.†   (source)
  • I spent so many days with my forehead pressed against my glass window, bruising myself with my futile wanting.†   (source)
  • It was futile to leave him to continue it, futile to travel the world only to hear again the same story.†   (source)
  • In the fury of his torment he tried futilely to rouse the omens that had guided his youth along dangerous paths into the desolate wasteland of glory.†   (source)
  • In the end though, being farmer strong, being trained, taking care of my body—it all felt like it would be futile if I couldn't play quarterback.†   (source)
  • You claim that my digging for the truth about Harriet Vanger is some futile form of occupational therapy for Henrik.†   (source)
  • They say they need only sit inside their defenses while you wear yourselves out in futile attack.†   (source)
  • I want to comfort Em, but I have to try to save my artifact, futile as the effort might be.†   (source)
  • But he realized it was futile.†   (source)
  • Later, while Dad retreated to the living room and Mom fumed in the kitchen, the football boys from Coalwood gathered in Jim's room, plotting futile anarchy.†   (source)
  • Yet, the director had so placed him that his drunken somnolence held the scene together, and emphasized the futility of the passionate talkers.†   (source)
  • It was futile, of course; he was forgetting things with every step she took.†   (source)
  • There will always be, I realize, those who would claim that any attempt to analyse greatness as I have been doing is quite futile.†   (source)
  • He could not find a definite reason why he wasted precious energy and time on what might be a futile effort.†   (source)
  • After a futile chase, Hank let the herd go on its way, then veered right and guided the minivan up a low hill.†   (source)
  • But such speculation about unknowns is futile, and with the combination of mental and physical exhaustion, I soon fell deeply asleep.†   (source)
  • Her husband made futile hushing motions with his hands.†   (source)
  • "I recognized the futility of it," she says.†   (source)
  • Attempting to produce a surprise at trial was often futile.†   (source)
  • She'd learned it was futile to object—it would have been like taking exception to oxygen.†   (source)
  • The color drained from his face and he went down to one knee, Sam grabbing futilely on his sleeve.†   (source)
  • But she didn't want to stay there, so she climbed back out the window, through the glass eyes of the seven-foot Good Shepherd, and started again the futile weaving of invisible ifs and slippery mights into an equally unattainable past.†   (source)
  • What he was doing—indeed, his whole life—now seemed to him completely futile.†   (source)
  • He realized immediately that this would be futile and would only bring the whole place round his ears.†   (source)
  • That their gesture is futile.†   (source)
  • Instead of futilely attacking the Klan from the outside, what if he could somehow unleash all the secret inside information that John Brown was gathering from the Klan's weekly meetings?†   (source)
  • Because if I can't interact with people and be able to deal with different personalities, all of these things are futile.†   (source)
  • And what he yearned for at that moment, vaguely but with all his might, was unbounded music, absolute sound, a pleasant and happy all-encompassing, overpowering, window-rattling din to engulf, once and for all, the pain, the futility, the vanity of words.†   (source)
  • He worked for a movie distributor part-time and also produced documentaries, or coproduced, or made phone calls, and it was a process that carried just enough slanting light to make it renewably futile.†   (source)
  • But I think he knew it was futile to hide out or resist.†   (source)
  • He was aware how futile was this threat of withdrawing his proposition.†   (source)
  • He didn't speak, for he knew the futility of words to change such things and that even the passing of years might leave her certainty undimmed.†   (source)
  • Helene hands me a threadbare blanket, and I pull it over the girl, knowing how futile it is.†   (source)
  • I felt a palpable sense of evil and I struck back with my tongue, even though I knew that argument was futile.†   (source)
  • I guess trying to explain it is futile, since it would be like trying to explain starving to someone who thinks hungry is being late for dinner.†   (source)
  • He had run the gauntlet of flames, risked his life several times in a futile effort to locate his young nieces and nephew, and barely managed to escape.†   (source)
  • Howe wanted to keep the Americans on the run, and continue to clear the board, so to speak—to clear New Jersey and Rhode Island of the rebel forces just as he had cleared New York, and by such conquests of vital territory bring the deluded American people and their political leaders to their senses and end their demonstrably futile rebellion.†   (source)
  • It would be futile.†   (source)
  • Five years later, American forces would learn the futility of trying to hunt down guerillas familiar with these hills.†   (source)
  • Max was hoisted off the ground again and held by a grip now so numbingly strong that any resistance was utterly futile.†   (source)
  • Tom tried his patience with futile attempts to lure them into discussing possible courses of action now that they had found a temporary haven from the Shataiki.†   (source)
  • The Caretaker screamed and dropped to his knees, trying futilely to draw his own sword.†   (source)
  • But his efforts were futile.†   (source)
  • This time, in daylight, we not only heard the screams but saw the flapping of women's arms as they futilely fought the air.†   (source)
  • Looking around the car for something to write on is futile.†   (source)
  • But it proved futile; her tongue, it seemed, could not lift itself to steer the liquid down her throat.†   (source)
  • He took another futile swing before he answered.†   (source)
  • Mark dug his heels in and pushed his back against the wall behind his bed in the futile hope that he'd crash through and escape out the other side.†   (source)
  • The guards swung the weapons futilely and charged off after the cat, screaming an alert to the rest of the camp.†   (source)
  • "Well, that's a relief," said Fought, expressing the view of many professional linguists that holding the line on such rules as those against split infinitives, or insisting on "is" I instead of the widely used It's me, is futile.†   (source)
  • Despite how Ahjuhma felt about the three of us, our unusual little family, Lelia made several more futile attempts before she gave up.†   (source)
  • He didn't know if Michelle, Chrissie, and Nina had been able to breathe or if, choking on the billowing soot, they had struggled futilely to find fresh air.†   (source)
  • APRIL 14—The inflamed mob action which has been taking place in Egypt, Tunisia, Iran and elsewhere should point a major lesson to democratic western policy makers—the futility of placing too much faith in logic and reason when dealing with angry, impassioned peoples.†   (source)
  • Exhausted, their horses wrung out from the long night, the soldiers are starting to feel as if this is just another futile lead.†   (source)
  • Oz, sensing that further pleading was futile, stepped back.†   (source)
  • We need this thing straight or this was an exercise in futility.†   (source)
  • I considered backing away from him, but saw its futility.†   (source)
  • "Resistance is futile," Hatton added in a deep voice, slowly backing away into the darkness outside.†   (source)
  • To live in a world where men do not love, where they cheat and are callous, is to sink into a preoccupation with death, and to see the futility of anything except virtue.†   (source)
  • Oh, it was all so foolish and gallant and futile.†   (source)
  • It seemed futile to spend a lifetime search-tog fur secrets that the Overlords had probably uncovered ages before.†   (source)
  • His only fear was that they might miss them, exhaust their gas in futile cruising, and lose their one best chance to wipe them out.†   (source)
  • It will be futile to run through adjacent Shadows, for if it is truly us that he follows.†   (source)
  • Futile were also the merchant's attempts, to convince Siddhartha that he should eat his bread.†   (source)
  • A contingent of black students went to the principal in a futile attempt to get him to lower the flag to half-mast.†   (source)
  • Pio was leading off at a dead run, and from behind us came rifle shots, but they were futile shots, for we were beyond several obstacles and well into the darkness.†   (source)
  • I am putting an end to this futile discussion.†   (source)
  • Convinced of the futility of trying to get any news by mail, she had decided to go and look for Pasha.†   (source)
  • To speak out unnecessarily would be politically costly and clearly futile.†   (source)
  • It was a futile spread of pink rocks sleeping on a rise of sand, a few tumbled pillars, one lonely shrine, and then the sweep of sand again.†   (source)
  • She could not exist without that impersonal, casual friendship from other people; and now it seemed to her there was pity in the way they looked at her, and a little impatience, too, as if she were really rather a futile woman after all.†   (source)
  • ...as she gazed into the mirror and recognized the futility of her attempt she...   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (because her effort would not succeed)
  • the futility of what is written in that spirit   (source)
    futility = pointlessness (uselessness)
  • She had the distinctly uncomfortable look of a woman who knows the futility of a polite refusal.†   (source)
  • It smiles at my futility and raises the sword with both hands.†   (source)
  • I struggled violently, with total futility.†   (source)
  • He started crying, futilely asking his mother what to do.†   (source)
  • Are those the words on her passport to futility?†   (source)
  • Your own skin like a map, a diagram of futility, crisscrossed with tiny roads that lead nowhere.†   (source)
  • This guy's kneecaps are mine....Langdon sensed the futility and let her go.†   (source)
  • Ignoring futility, Papa walked to the doorway and called out to his son.†   (source)
  • His lungs burned, but he kept on going, racing a sense of futility.†   (source)
  • Surely there must be something here for us, other than this futility and bathos.†   (source)
  • Now it's my turn to smile at its own futility.†   (source)
  • All I could think of was the futility of trying to hurt this creature.†   (source)
  • After five minutes I began to sense the futility of it.†   (source)
  • The ironwood staff rose and beat futilely at the air about his head.†   (source)
  • The horse's campaign became a road show of athletic futility.†   (source)
  • She fell silent and he watched as confusion gave way to frustration, then finally futility.†   (source)
  • Nor about "throwing rocks," nor even futility of beating a cow.†   (source)
  • He dropped his hand in a gesture of futility.†   (source)
  • If you do the right thing well, you avoid futility.†   (source)
  • She attacked him from behind with her tiny fists, pounding' at him in futility and frustration.†   (source)
  • "The question you asked me," Jerry countered but knowing the futility of it.†   (source)
  • The pain was returning, the sense of futility also.†   (source)
  • As a younger lawyer, Jake had learned the futility of arguing with a true expert.†   (source)
  • He felt only a sense of weariness, of futility.†   (source)
  • He told me their story as a justification for his belief in the futility of human intelligence.†   (source)
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