Definition of for nothing in US English:

for nothing


  • 1At no cost; without payment.

    ‘working for nothing’
    • ‘Admission was free and the four played for nothing, which has yet to provoke the organisers' gratitude.’
    • ‘In effect that meant money for nothing for those prepared to wait.’
    • ‘Rarely a day passes when letters drop on doorsteps offering an irresistible way to make money or win a free gift for nothing.’
    • ‘I've even had an offer from a designer to put it together for nothing.’
    • ‘I phoned her to say loads of my constituents will do it for nothing!’
    • ‘He will probably even be paid for a job he'd have done for nothing.’
    • ‘Renting china is very expensive so we would like to know if we could use your china for nothing.’
    • ‘Irish rugby is about to get a brand new home, free, gratis and for nothing.’
    • ‘No party ever offered such a cornucopia of naked bribes to the voter, all absolutely free, gratis and for nothing.’
    • ‘I can say to any CEO that if it doesn't cut their costs then they can have the inventory system for nothing.’
    • ‘Nicole Kidman wants to star in a radio play for the BBC and she's so keen that she'll do it for nothing.’
    free, gratis, without charge, without payment, free of charge, at no cost
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  • 2To no purpose.

    ‘he died anyway, so it had all been for nothing’
    • ‘They have been training very hard, Michael Bond hasn't gone back there for nothing.’
    • ‘Not for nothing were his closest guards called the Companion Cavalry.’
    • ‘Surrender and save lives, or resist and let more people be killed for nothing.’
    • ‘Not for nothing is Alastair clad in the finest cloth, his plaid trimmed in gold, his stockings tied with silk garters.’
    • ‘They don't call this sleepy frontier town Little Hollywood for nothing.’
    • ‘They're not going to come back for the hard training, busting a gut for nothing.’
    • ‘I am afraid that a whole country, an entire people, will be destroyed for nothing.’
    • ‘It takes nerves of steel to bite your tongue and say nothing because we'd rather be paid than end up having an argument for nothing.’
    in vain, to no avail, to no purpose, with no result, needlessly, pointlessly, futilely
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