Definition of nugatory in English:


See synonyms for nugatory

Translate nugatory into Spanish


  • 1Of no value or importance.

    ‘a nugatory and pointless observation’
    • ‘The state interest in prosecuting those who willfully evade their taxes is of great importance, and we should be careful to avoid rendering nugatory the state's ability to investigate and obtain evidence from these offences.’
    • ‘From my own experience, their sensation and size is so nugatory that they can often be forgotten and by the time you feel one making its way down the pipe, it's already bouncing around in your underwear or careening down your pant leg.’
    • ‘In fact, of course, the amount of government money used to fund such marginal causes is nugatory; but fantasy requires only the smallest provocation, and has little use for reality.’
    • ‘Meanwhile the actual costs of BP's environmental initiatives to date have been nugatory, while the effect of improving its relations with the public has been invaluable.’
    • ‘These aspects of military life do not, of course, render entirely nugatory in the military context the guarantees of the First Amendment.’
    • ‘Given that I have also shown that its practical impact upon children's wellbeing is nugatory, there seems to be no satisfactory justification for its retention.’
    • ‘No paternalistic corporatism for us - instead the bracing reality of a private pension scheme hitched to a declining equity market and a nugatory state pension.’
    • ‘No one makes you feel more like the nugatory little ninny that you are than a disciple of Concordia women's studies, class of '86.’
    • ‘This is at least, one supposes, predicated on the recognition that the Right's symbolic resources are pretty nugatory.’
    • ‘The threat was of course carried out in Iraq - with the nugatory results just mentioned.’
    • ‘First of all, the sums involved in the new savings accounts are nugatory.’
    • ‘Under frontier conditions, observes Carver, the distinction, so crucial to George's position, between property in land and property in other things, seems nugatory.’
    • ‘This may of course be true, and MacDonald is entitled to say that the issue of whether his results are anti-Semitic is nugatory, from a social-science point of view, by comparison with the issue of their truth content.’
    • ‘The diverse problems of succession and authority which face the brothers, the audience, and the poet reflect upon one other throughout, and this self-awareness renders nugatory the traditional criticism of Statius as derivative.’
    • ‘Moreover, as Mr McManus pointed out, if ‘airport’ has so restricted a definition, the ability of an airport operator to make byelaws under section 63 is so curtailed as in practice to be virtually nugatory.’
    • ‘There was a shifting system of quasi-independent states concerned to maintain or improve their positions in a struggle to control the national government, whose authority these very rivalries prevented from being more than nugatory.’
    • ‘There should be little doubt that these men personally believed much of the racist arguments they delivered, but it may be overstating the case somewhat to suggest that all other concerns were nugatory.’
    • ‘The third point is really this: that it would render your Lordship's view of what the legal position is entirely nugatory, if before the local authority made its appropriate decision, the building was knocked down.’
    • ‘As I say, unlike the rest of the bill, which is the Government's alleged response to the Ngati Apa case, this aspect of it would simply have had a nugatory effect without the Supplementary Order Paper.’
    worthless, of no value, of no importance, unimportant, inconsequential, of no consequence, valueless, trifling, trivial, insignificant, meaningless
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    1. 1.1Useless or futile.
      ‘the teacher shortages will render nugatory the hopes of implementing the new curriculum’
      • ‘So, while Hollingworth's rebuttal is mentioned on his website and remains in the vestiges of cyberspace for those willing to peruse it, there is something nugatory about it.’
      • ‘I have also had people tell me personally that this is both a turn off and makes sensation nugatory, in a way that was designed to elicit shame.’
      • ‘The word ‘necessary’ is considered as controlling the whole sentence, and as limiting the right to pass laws for the execution of the granted powers, to such as are indispensable, and without which the power would be nugatory.’
      • ‘In the present case, I find that the attendance of the applicant at the Trustee's solicitors' offices to inspect documents on the two-day period in December, 2002, was rendered nugatory.’
      • ‘An exercise of the power so as to exclude or restrict the entitlement of all of the beneficiaries in respect of some part of the land subject to the trust would render section 12 nugatory to that extent.’
      • ‘Thus even if George's secondary argument were rendered nugatory by Spahr's objection, his primary argument would still vindicate the public appropriation of ground rent.’
      • ‘He added that to interpret the Act that everybody who contemplated legal action was prohibited from requesting access would be to render the Act nugatory for the very purpose for which it was promulgated, he said.’
      • ‘The other was the monitoring of large and extended periods of sewage pollution because at a point that level of sewage pollution rendered nugatory all the efforts of purification from the depuration system.’
      • ‘I also remind myself that in Burgundy Royale it was pointed out that special circumstances may arise where a subject matter of the proposed appeal will be lost without a stay, resulting in a nugatory appeal.’
      • ‘Moreover, non-ratification of the Convention by any of the range states of some of the species listed on Appendix I means that the Convention's provisions for their protection are nugatory.’
      • ‘In essence, the applicants submit that unless such a course is adopted and the matter is dealt with expeditiously, any relevant rights relating to the special leave application or arising from them will be rendered nugatory.’
      • ‘In Briscoe's case the court made the prohibition of bills of credit nugatory.’
      • ‘Although it is true that the applicant does not satisfy the onus of demonstrating that the application for special leave will be rendered nugatory, he has raised a doubt which I am unable to resolve with respect to financial matters.’
      • ‘All those applications were made nugatory by the respondents and we claim that the child was taken out of Australia unlawfully because there was no specific order.’
      • ‘Since it would normally suffer no loss or damage as a result of corruption, there was now no incentive for an exporter to comply with the anti-corruption procedures, which were thereby rendered nugatory.’
      • ‘Moreover, if we were to offer appeal rights on applications which could not succeed, then more nugatory work would be created for the new appeal service, causing delays to claimants who had a justifiable case.’
      • ‘If a third party by such independent act renders nugatory a court order of whose existence he is aware, why should he not be liable for contempt as he would be if he had actively assisted the named person to defeat the operation of the order?’
      • ‘No one could get a Resource Management Act consent if I had an existing use to do something that would be rendered nugatory by that Resource Management Act consent.’
      • ‘In principle, similarly, a testator should not be permitted to render his dependants' statutory rights nugatory by covenants to make bequests by will.’
      • ‘The principle does not involve in my opinion that it is part of the judicial function to treat as nugatory any step whatever which a taxpayer may take with a view to the avoidance or mitigation of tax.’
      futile, useless, vain, unavailing, null and void, null, invalid
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/ˈno͞oɡəˌtôrē/ /ˈnuɡəˌtɔri/


Early 17th century from Latin nugatorius, from nugari ‘to trifle’, from nugae ‘jests’.