vain definition, meaning - what is vain in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online

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English definition of “vain”

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vain

adjective uk   us   /veɪn/

vain adjective (NOT SUCCESSFUL)

C2 unsuccessful; of no value: The doctors gave him more powerful drugs in the vain hope that he might recover.formal It was vain to pretend to himself that he was not disappointed.in vain C1 unsuccessfully: I tried in vain to start a conversation. All the police's efforts to find him were in vain.

vain adjective (SELFISH)

C2 too interested in your own appearance or achievements: He was very vain about his hair and his clothes.
(Definition of vain from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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