listlessness

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From listless +‎ -ness.

Noun[edit]

listlessness (countable and uncountable, plural listlessnesses)

  1. The state of being listless; apathetic indifference; lethargy.
    • 1749, John Cleland, Fanny Hill: Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure, Letter the First,[1]
      But every thing must have an end. A motion made by this angelic youth, in the listlessness of going off sleep, replac'd his shirt and the bed-cloaths in a posture that shut up that treasure from longer view.
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick, Chapter 35,[2]
      [] lulled into such an opium-like listlessness of vacant, unconscious reverie is this absent-minded youth by the blending cadence of waves with thoughts, that at last he loses his identity; takes the mystic ocean at his feet for the visible image of that deep, blue, bottomless soul, pervading mankind and nature; and every strange, half-seen, gliding, beautiful thing that eludes him; every dimly-discovered, uprising fin of some undiscernible form, seems to him the embodiment of those elusive thoughts that only people the soul by continually flitting through it.

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