hope·​less | \ ˈhō-pləs How to pronounce hopeless (audio) \

Definition of hopeless

1a : having no expectation of good or success : despairing felt hopeless and alone
b : not susceptible to remedy or cure doctors say his condition is hopeless
c : incapable of redemption or improvement She's a hopeless romantic. the most hopeless group of golfers you've ever seen
2a : giving no reason to expect good or success : giving no ground for hope : desperate The situation looked hopeless.
b : incapable of solution, management, or accomplishment : impossible a hopeless task

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Other Words from hopeless

hopelessness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for hopeless

despondent, despairing, desperate, hopeless mean having lost all or nearly all hope. despondent implies a deep dejection arising from a conviction of the uselessness of further effort. despondent about yet another rejection despairing suggests the slipping away of all hope and often despondency. despairing appeals for the return of the kidnapped child desperate implies despair that prompts reckless action or violence in the face of defeat or frustration. one last desperate attempt to turn the tide of battle hopeless suggests despair and the cessation of effort or resistance and often implies acceptance or resignation. the situation of the trapped miners is hopeless

Examples of hopeless in a Sentence

He felt confused and hopeless after losing his job. We were the most hopeless group of golfers you ever saw. He's very ill, but his condition isn't hopeless.
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Recent Examples on the Web So any configuration with an odd invariant is utterly hopeless. Quanta Magazine, "In a Single Measure, Invariants Capture the Essence of Math Objects," 2 June 2020 This is what many parents have had to endure alone in Canada, with their children feeling helpless and hopeless across the border. Tresa Baldas, Detroit Free Press, "Our parents are sick and dying, but Canada won't let us in," 1 July 2020 Particularly when everything else may feel grim and hopeless. Mark Mcclain, Quartz at Work, "How leading in isolation has made me a more present CEO," 29 June 2020 In times like these, where many people feel hopeless, his reputation as a leader becomes very attractive. NBC News, "How LeBron James has become a leading voice for social justice in a racially divided nation," 23 June 2020 Paul Gazelka, the Republican leader of the Senate, described the state of negotiations as essentially hopeless. Jack Healy, BostonGlobe.com, "Protesters demanded police reform. Minnesota lawmakers left without passing a bill.," 20 June 2020 Biden is ahead in most of the battleground states, and his supporters are beginning to campaign in other places that long had seemed hopeless for Democrats. Evan Halper, Los Angeles Times, "Cash floods into pro-Biden super PAC," 19 June 2020 Over the weekend, Clark said in a statement that further negotiations were hopeless and told the league to implement a season. Henry Schulman, SFChronicle.com, "Report: MLB players, owners close to deal on playing ball this season," 17 June 2020 This isn’t to say that those who aren’t happy with food coverage should just jump ship because reform is hopeless. Soleil Ho, SFChronicle.com, "Bon Appetit’s problem is the food media’s problem," 11 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hopeless.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hopeless

1534, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for hopeless

Time Traveler

The first known use of hopeless was in 1534

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Statistics for hopeless

Last Updated

23 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hopeless.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hopeless. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for hopeless


How to pronounce hopeless (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hopeless

: having or feeling no hope
: unable to be changed
informal : unable to be helped or improved : very bad


hope·​less | \ ˈhō-pləs How to pronounce hopeless (audio) \

Kids Definition of hopeless

1 : having no hope He feels hopeless about the future.
2 : offering no hope The situation looks hopeless.

Other Words from hopeless

hopelessly adverb
hopelessness noun

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Comments on hopeless

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