Definition of spineless in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈspʌɪnləs/


1Having no spine or backbone; invertebrate.
Example sentences
  • It remains a lifeless and spineless human creation.
  • The lowly Zayante band-winged grasshopper is now listed, along with the Ohlone tiger beetle and 184 other spineless creatures.
  • To tease out the details of the transition, other researchers recently turned to lancelets, vertebrates' closest spineless relatives.
2Weak and purposeless: a spineless coward
More example sentences
  • Ofelia, who was used to being the boss all the time, would now have to obey every word that was uttered from Stolly - a weak, spineless, cowardly man in her mind.
  • He described career envoys as weak or spineless.
  • Sure, they have vegetable plates too, if you're weak and spineless.
weak, weak-willed, weak-kneed, feeble, spiritless, soft, ineffectual, inadequate, irresolute, indecisive;
British informal wet
North American vulgar slang candy-assed, chickenshit
3(Of an animal or plant) lacking spines: spineless forms of prickly pear have been selected
More example sentences
  • Rauwerdink later merged the two species into M. sagu, based on the fact that seeds from spineless palms can produce spiny seedlings.
  • In addition, it is an attractive and spineless cactus, which increases its potential as an ornamental plant; therefore, collection may become a problem in the future.
  • Coral are tiny spineless animals essential in building reefs, one of the planet's oldest and most complex ecosystems.



Pronunciation: /ˈspʌɪnləsli/
Example sentences
  • They accuse Schröder of spinelessly orienting policy according to headlines in the tabloid-style Bild, Germany's most widely read newspaper.
  • He was famous for his shouting matches, but also for standing up to the House Un-American Activities Committee when most producers spinelessly caved in.
  • She couldn't believe she had behaved so spinelessly.


Pronunciation: /ˈspʌɪnləsnəs/
Example sentences
  • Fischer's obsequiousness is not simply, or even primarily, a reflection of his subjective cowardice and political spinelessness.
  • The supposed spinelessness and ineptitude of politicians is often one of the few things about which military officers can agree.
  • It went to the bunker, ranting about a conspiracy by animal rights fanatics and admonishing the biologists for spinelessness.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: spine|less

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