futility

[fyoo-til-i-tee]
noun, plural futilities for 2, 3.
1.
the quality of being futile; ineffectiveness; uselessness.
2.
a trifle or frivolity: the large collection of futilities that clutter our minds.
3.
a futile act or event.

Origin:
1615–25; < Latin fūtilitās. See futile, -ity

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World English Dictionary
futility (fjuːˈtɪlɪtɪ)
 
n , pl -ties
1.  lack of effectiveness or success
2.  lack of purpose or meaning
3.  something futile

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

futility
1620s, from L. futilitatem, from futtilis (see futile). Hence, jocular futilitarian (1827).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Repairs to the existing fence have been an exercise in futility, as mended
  segments are often torn down within hours.
Futility of interjectional and sound-imitative theories of the origin of speech.
Many of his poems are full of a slow, sad contemplation of life and a
  reflection of its brave futility.
In the jargon of the industry, the trials crossed the futility boundary.
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