thank·​less | \ ˈthaŋk-ləs How to pronounce thankless (audio) \

Definition of thankless

1 : not likely to obtain thanks : unappreciated a thankless task
2 : not expressing or feeling gratitude : ungrateful how sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child— William Shakespeare

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Other Words from thankless

thanklessly adverb
thanklessness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for thankless



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Examples of thankless in a Sentence

a thankless boss who seems oblivious to the extra effort his subordinates have made the thankless job of cleaning up after a party
Recent Examples on the Web Traveling with young kids and babies can be a tough and thankless task. Popular Science, "Traveling with a baby? Here are the supplies you’ll need," 12 June 2020 Reuters/Joe Penney Running e-commerce businesses in Africa’s overwhelmed cities can be a thankless task due to the basic infrastructure gaps and a reluctant customer base. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "African e-commerce is getting a much needed boost from coronavirus lockdowns," 19 May 2020 The thankless job of the congressional whip is supplemented high on the Hill by the lonely voteherd. Washington Post, "Style Invitational Week 1372: Trash talk, 1880-style," 20 Feb. 2020 The Boston native is known for both her toughness and her empathetic approach to what is largely a thankless job, quietly working behind the scenes on projects that advocated for women and elevated the communications business. Dave Brooks, Billboard, "Live Nation Communications Chief Carrie Davis Exiting Company," 14 Feb. 2020 For many, hitting the road early for Thanksgiving, turned out to be thankless. Adriana Diaz, CBS News, "Winter weather a headache for early Thanksgiving travelers," 22 Nov. 2019 Wale Lawal The life of a digital media entrepreneur in Nigeria is often thankless. Quartz Staff, Quartz Africa, "Quartz Africa Innovators 2019: leading the change for Africa’s future," 19 Sep. 2019 Though Gary's efforts might have been thankless, Hale, 48, has earned a supporting actor nom for his role on the HBO show's seventh and final season. Leigh-ann Jackson, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Veep' Star Tony Hale on the "Huge Gift" of Gary's Sad Farewell," 8 Aug. 2019 For a brewery, in fact, lager can feel like a thankless labor. Esther Mobley,, "The hot new thing in craft beer? Good old-fashioned lager," 31 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'thankless.' 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 thankless

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for thankless

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The first known use of thankless was in the 15th century

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Statistics for thankless

Last Updated

22 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Thankless.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for thankless


How to pronounce thankless (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of thankless

: difficult and not valued by other people
: not showing or feeling thanks


thank·​less | \ ˈthaŋk-ləs How to pronounce thankless (audio) \

Kids Definition of thankless

2 : not appreciated It's a necessary but thankless job.

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More from Merriam-Webster on thankless

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for thankless

Spanish Central: Translation of thankless

Nglish: Translation of thankless for Spanish Speakers

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