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nugatory

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adjective nu·ga·to·ry \ˈnü-gə-ˌtȯr-ē, ˈnyü-\

Definition of nugatory

  1. 1 :  of little or no consequence :  trifling, inconsequential

  2. 2 :  having no force :  inoperative



Examples of nugatory

  1. <the congressional resolution has symbolic value only, as it relates to a matter governed by the states and is thus nugatory>

  2. <the book is entertaining, but its contributions to Shakespearean scholarship are nugatory>



Origin of nugatory

Latin nugatorius, from nugari to trifle, from nugae trifles


First Known Use: 1603

Synonym Discussion of nugatory

vain, nugatory, otiose, idle, empty, hollow mean being without worth or significance. vain implies either absolute or relative absence of value <vain promises>. nugatory suggests triviality or insignificance <a monarch with nugatory powers>. otiose suggests that something serves no purpose and is either an encumbrance or a superfluity <a film without a single otiose scene>. idle suggests being incapable of worthwhile use or effect <idle speculations>. empty and hollow suggest a deceiving lack of real substance or soundness or genuineness <an empty attempt at reconciliation> <a hollow victory>.

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