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Definitions of vain

  1. Proud of petty things, or of trifling attainments; having a high opinion of one's own accomplishments with slight reason; conceited; puffed up; inflated. Webster Dictionary DB
  2. Having no real substance, value, or importance; empty; void; worthless; unsatisfying. Webster Dictionary DB
  3. Vainest. The Winston Simplified Dictionary. By William Dodge Lewis, Edgar Arthur Singer. Published 1919.
  4. Vanity; emptiness; - now used only in the phrase in vain. Webster Dictionary DB
  5. Vainness. The Concise Standard Dictionary of the English Language. By James Champlin Fernald. Published 1919.
  6. Vainly. The Concise Standard Dictionary of the English Language. By James Champlin Fernald. Published 1919.
  7. unproductive of success; "a fruitless search"; "futile years after her artistic peak"; "a sleeveless errand"; "a vain attempt" Scrapingweb Dictionary DB
  8. characteristic of false pride; having an exaggerated sense of self-importance; "a conceited fool"; "an attitude of self-conceited arrogance"; "an egotistical disregard of others"; "so swollen by victory that he was unfit for normal duty"; "growing ever more swollen-headed and arbitrary"; "vain about her clothes" Wordnet Dictionary DB
  9. Valueless; empty; trifling; as, vain words; without force or effect useless; as, rain efforts; proud of small accomplishments or of personal appearance; conceited; as, a vain person; showy: in vain, without success. The Winston Simplified Dictionary. By William Dodge Lewis, Edgar Arthur Singer. Published 1919.
  10. Unsatisfying: fruitless: unreal: conceited: showy: vacant, worthless, so in B. The american dictionary of the english language. By Daniel Lyons. Published 1899.
  11. Fruitless; ineffectual; conceited; showy. The Clarendon dictionary. By William Hand Browne, Samuel Stehman Haldeman. Published 1894.
  12. Empty; unreal; ineffectual; fruitless. The Concise Standard Dictionary of the English Language. By James Champlin Fernald. Published 1919.
  13. Empty; worthless; having no substance, value or importance; fruitless; ineffectual; proud of trifling attainments; conceited; unreal; ostentatious; inconstant; unsatisfying; deceitful; having no efficacy. In vain, to no purpose; with levity or profaneness. Nuttall's Standard dictionary of the English language. By Nuttall, P.Austin. Published 1914.
  14. Proud of trifling attainments; having an unduly high opinion of one's own accomplishments; ineffectual; fruitless, as an effort; unsatisfying. Etymological and pronouncing dictionary of the English language. By Stormonth, James, Phelp, P. H. Published 1874.

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Usage examples for vain

  1. In vain she angrily told herself that it only needed common sense. – His Second Wife by Ernest Poole
  2. Expostulations were in vain – Worldly Ways and Byways by Eliot Gregory
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