A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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Vainly

View Scan · View Transcription · from pages 2123, 2124

View Scan · View Transcription · from pages 2123, 2124

Vaínly. adv. [from vain.]

  1. Without effect; to no purpose; in vain.

    Our cannons malice vainly shall be spent
    Against th' invulnerable clouds of heav'n.
    Shakesp.

    In weak complaints you vainly waste your breath;
    They are not tears that can revenge his death.
    Dryden.

  2. Proudly; arrogantly.

    My forepast proofs, howe'er the matter fall,
    Shall tax my fears of little vanity,
    Having vainly fear'd too little.
    Shakespeare.

    Humility teaches us to think neither vainly nor vauntingly of ourselves. Delany.

  3. Idly; foolishly.

    Nor vainly hope to be invulnerable. Milton.

    If Lentulus be ambitious, he shall be vainly credulous; presuming his advancement to be decreed by the Sybilline oracles. Grew's Cosmol.

Sources: Shakespeare's All's Well That Ends Well (21) · Delany, Patrick (2) · Dryden, John (788) · Grew, Nehemiah (36) · Shakespeare's King John (43) · Milton, John (449)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Vainly." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: November 12, 2012. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=6552.


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