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[wurth-lis] /ˈwɜrθ lɪs/
without worth; of no use, importance, or value; good-for-nothing:
a worthless person; a worthless contract.
Origin of worthless
1580-90; worth1 + -less
Related forms
worthlessly, adverb
worthlessness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for worthless
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This town was named after John Downie, a worthless drunkard.

    Death Valley in '49 William Lewis Manly
  • Even Shakspere could not keep the love of a worthless woman.

    A Dish Of Orts George MacDonald
  • Wonderful as it may seem to some, all the money in the world is worthless in God's balances, compared to grace!

    Practical Religion John Charles Ryle
  • Without that rootless, worthless, devilish fancy, I might have been no worse than other people!

    Salted With Fire George MacDonald
  • You have, from a worthless and idle vagabond, metamorphosed me into a reputable and honest man.

British Dictionary definitions for worthless


without practical value or usefulness
without merit; good-for-nothing
Derived Forms
worthlessly, adverb
worthlessness, 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 worthless

1580s, from worth (1) + -less. Related: Worthlessly; worthlessness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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