Definition of feckless in English:



  • Lacking initiative or strength of character; irresponsible.

    ‘a feckless mama's boy’
    ‘an unfortunate example of feckless filmmaking’
    ‘the feckless exploitation of the world's natural resources’
    • ‘He's not just slobby - he's feckless, almost amoral and as a result Rachel becomes a moral compass for him as much as a lead for the film.’
    • ‘Ever year they spew out a healthy amount of guileless, enthusiastic, hard working feckless idiots, ready to be put to work by their seniors.’
    • ‘Their shared affection for the warmhearted, feckless Martin is a further bond between them.’
    • ‘Young Henry, though, was ever feckless and irresponsible, concerned to cut a fine chivalric figure but utterly uninterested in the serious business of government.’
    • ‘I don't think it's because Glasgow people are particularly feckless.’
    • ‘Many headteachers will feel that such a role could undermine the need to establish a constructive relationship with parents, however feckless and irresponsible they may be.’
    • ‘There are feckless and irresponsible young fathers out there.’
    • ‘Working in Carnaby Street would exacerbate my ire, because it attracts all sorts of feckless tourists.’
    • ‘Now, after seven years in reform school, he is adjusting to life on the outside in the company of his feckless father.’
    • ‘The other villain of course is the absent, feckless father.’
    • ‘Unruly pupils and feckless parents went with the territory.’
    • ‘When they do eventually arrive here, feckless ministers like to lecture us on how we should conduct our business.’
    • ‘Your feckless neighbour, however, will get the full range of government help.’
    • ‘Some feel the poor are at least partly to blame; to have got themselves into such a state, they must be feckless and corrupt, or at least irresponsible.’
    • ‘Secondly, we convinced them that we were a wealthy, feckless country that would not fight.’
    • ‘Either they are feckless and troublesome, or they are being handed exams on a plate.’
    • ‘But when we actually get on TV, we are relatively feckless and ineffective.’
    • ‘Well, his millionaire dad stipulated in his will that the feckless Josh wasn't to get a penny of his inheritance unless he wrote a bestseller.’
    useless, worthless, incompetent, inefficient, inept, good-for-nothing, ne'er-do-well
    lazy, idle, slothful, indolent, shiftless, spiritless, apathetic, aimless, unambitious, unenterprising
    no-good, no-account, lousy
    View synonyms


Late 16th century: from Scots and northern English dialect feck (from effeck, variant of effect) + -less.