nothing

1 of 4

pronoun

noth·​ing ˈnə-thiŋ How to pronounce nothing (audio)
1
: not any thing : no thing
leaves nothing to the imagination
2
: no part
3
: one of no interest, value, or consequence
they mean nothing to me

see also next to nothing

nothing

2 of 4

adverb

: not at all : in no degree

nothing

3 of 4

noun

plural nothings
1
a
: something that does not exist
b
: the absence of all magnitude or quantity
also : zero sense 1a
2
: someone or something of no or slight value or size
3
: a light, playful, or frivolous remark
usually plural
… from the time of their sitting down to table, it was a quick succession of busy nothings till the carriage came to the door …Jane Austen
He … had the most insinuating way of saying impertinent nothings to his doting female admirers.Charles Dickens
see also sweet nothings

nothing

4 of 4

adjective

: of no account : worthless
Phrases
nothing doing
: by no means : definitely no
nothing for it
: no alternative
nothing for it but to start over
nothing like
: not nearly
it's nothing like thorough enough
for nothing
1
: without reason
2
: at no charge

Examples of nothing in a Sentence

Pronoun There's nothing in my hands. She knows nothing of our plans. You have nothing to worry about. There's nothing fun to do around here. You think that's bad? It's nothing compared to what I went through. Don't get all upset over nothing. Your opinion means nothing to me. “Are you hurt?” “Don't worry. It's nothing.” Adverb She is nothing like her sister. It's nothing close to finished. Noun It appeared out of nothing. The UFO hovered for a while, then vanished into nothing. My children are important to me—I'm nothing without them.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The one whose legs turned nothings into somethings, improvising the Lions’ entire defensive game plan into a pile of ash? Sean Keeler, The Denver Post, 10 Feb. 2024 But nothings more peaceful than tomorrow to a man going through pain today. Becca Longmire, Peoplemag, 22 Feb. 2024 The stereotype of large women in horned helmets warbling silly nothings comes largely from the period when American operagoers had lost the language skills that our great-grandparents had, either as European immigrants or European-admiring, upper-class swells. Nicholas Gallagher, Washington Examiner, 12 Jan. 2024 And just so, these clouds like lines of coke, these fine bird-bone clouds giving structure to the afternoon sky will decompose into faint nothings. Matthew Gavin Frank, Harper's Magazine, 9 June 2023 See all Example Sentences for nothing 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'nothing.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Pronoun

Middle English, from Old English nān thing, nāthing, from nān no + thing thing — more at none

First Known Use

Pronoun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adverb

12th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Adjective

1611, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nothing was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near nothing

Cite this Entry

“Nothing.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nothing. Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

nothing

1 of 3 pronoun
noth·​ing ˈnəth-iŋ How to pronounce nothing (audio)
1
: not anything
there's nothing in the box
2
: one of no interest, value, or importance
your opinion means nothing to me

nothing

2 of 3 adverb
: not at all : in no way

nothing

3 of 3 noun
1
a
: something that does not exist
b
: absence of quantity : zero
2
: something of little or no worth or importance
nothingness noun

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