What does helpless mean?

Definitions for helpless
ˈhɛlp lɪshelp·less

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word helpless.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. helpless, incapacitatedadjective

    lacking in or deprived of strength or power

    "lying ill and helpless"; "helpless with laughter"

  2. helpless, lostadjective

    unable to function; without help

  3. helplessadjective

    unable to manage independently

    "as helpless as a baby"


  1. helplessadjective

    Unable to defend oneself or to act without help.

  2. helplessadjective


  3. Etymology: From helples, from *, equivalent to. Compare hulpeloos, hilflos, hjälplös.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Helplessadjective

    Etymology: from help.

    One dire shot
    Close by the board the prince’s main-mast bore;
    All three now helpless by each other lie. John Dryden, Ann. Mirab.

    Let our enemies rage and persecute the poor and the helpless; but let it be our glory to be pure and peaceable. John Rogers.

    How shall I then your helpless fame defend?
    ’Twill then be infamy to seem your friend. Alexander Pope.

    Such helpless harms it’s better hidden keep,
    Than rip up grief, where it may not avail. Fairy Queen.

    Naked he lies, and ready to expire,
    Helpless of all that human wants require. Dryden.


  1. Helpless

    Helpless is a song written by Canadian singer-songwriter Neil Young, recorded by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (CSNY) on their 1970 album Déjà Vu. "Helpless" was originally recorded with Young's band Crazy Horse in early 1969, before Young's new CSNY bandmates (he had joined the then-trio in mid-1969) convinced him it would suit them better. The song was simple, at its core effectively the repetition of one melody over a descending D-A-G chord progression. The group found difficulty deciding on an arrangement and many different versions of the song were recorded before the group finally decided on the slow-paced version that appeared on the album. On this final version Young was in the foreground, singing the verses and the chorus with his bandmates providing the "helpless" refrain, while the instrumentation came in the form of acoustic guitar, electric guitar (with volume pedal and tremolo), piano, bass and drums. It became one of the most revered songs from the Déjà Vu album (Q magazine's Peter Doggett regards it as "one of (the album's) showpieces"), and has remained a live favorite of Young's for over forty years. An alternate mix of the CSNY version was released on Neil Young's The Archives Vol. 1 1963–1972. It features Young playing harmonica and electronically-treated percussion.


  1. helpless

    Helpless refers to the state or condition of being unable to defend oneself, take care of oneself, or take action to resolve problems or difficulties due to lack of strength, resources, or abilities. It often refers to feeling overwhelmed or at a loss in a particular situation. This can apply to physical, emotional, or mental aspects, and can be temporary or long-term based on the circumstances.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Helplessadjective

    destitute of help or strength; unable to help or defend one's self; needing help; feeble; weak; as, a helpless infant

  2. Helplessadjective

    beyond help; irremediable

  3. Helplessadjective

    bringing no help; unaiding

  4. Helplessadjective

    unsupplied; destitute; -- with of


  1. Helpless

    Helpless is a play by Dusty Hughes which premièred at the Donmar Warehouse, London on March 2, 2000. It is set in England before, during, and after the 1997 general elections, which resulted in New Labour's landslide victory and in Tony Blair becoming Prime Minister.

How to pronounce helpless?

How to say helpless in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of helpless in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of helpless in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of helpless in a Sentence

  1. Ahmed Korayem:

    People aren’t helpless because they want to be helpless. People are helpless because it’s all they know.

  2. Charles Caleb Colton:

    In America every woman has her set of girl-friends some are cousins, the rest are gained at school. These form a permanent committee who sit on each other's affairs, who 'come out' together, marry and divorce together, and who end as those groups of bustling, heartless well-informed club-women who govern society. Against them the Couple of Ehepaar is helpless and Man in their eyes but a biological interlude.

  3. Inspector Rozia Altaf:

    The tragedy of December 16 has emboldened these women, most of them were mothers and they were helpless then -- they will be never helpless again.

  4. Daunte Wright:

    I felt anger, I felt sadness, I felt loss and I felt helpless, i don't want to feel helpless. I need my son to have justice.

  5. George Orwell:

    For the ordinary man is passive. Within a narrow circle (home life, and perhaps the trade unions or local politics) he feels himself master of his fate, but against major events he is as helpless as against the elements. So far from endeavouring to influence the future, he simply lies down and lets things happen to him.

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Translations for helpless

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"helpless." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 6 Dec. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/helpless>.

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