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[pur-puh s-lis] /ˈpɜr pəs lɪs/
having no purpose or apparent meaning.
having no aim or goal; aimless:
to lead a purposeless existence.
Origin of purposeless
1545-55; purpose + -less
Related forms
purposelessly, adverb
purposelessness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for purposeless
  • Comfort would make us want to extend the option to others who, in society's view, are suffering and leading purposeless lives.
  • Without the perspective of mankind expanding to space, all space science is purposeless.
  • It could be unique or multiple, meaningful or intrinsically purposeless.
  • The condition of fear is in all cases purposeless and its lack of purpose is obvious when it reaches a higher level.
  • But without their master to use them, their existence seems lonely and purposeless.
  • It may be a purposeless process, in which case the emergence of human beings is a fortuitous accident.
  • The study is part of an ongoing project focused on weeding out purposeless procedural traps.
British Dictionary definitions for purposeless


having no fixed plan or intention
Derived Forms
purposelessly, adverb
purposelessness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for purposeless

1550s, from purpose (n.) + -less. Related: Purposelessly; purposelessness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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