• WordNet 3.6
    • adj unsuccessful failing to accomplish an intended result "an abortive revolt","a stillborn plot to assassinate the President"
    • adj unsuccessful not successful; having failed or having an unfavorable outcome
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • a Unsuccessful Not successful; not producing the desired event; not fortunate; meeting with, or resulting in, failure; unlucky; unhappy.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Unsuccessful not successful or fortunate
    • ***


  • Ernest Hemingway
    “I do not think I had ever seen a nastier-looking man. Under the black hat, when I had first seen them, the eyes had been those of an unsuccessful rapist.”
  • Percy Bysshe Shelley
    “Reviewers, with some rare exceptions, are a most stupid and malignant race. As a bankrupt thief turns thief-taker in despair, so an unsuccessful author turns critic.”
  • H. L. Mencken
    “Historian -- an unsuccessful novelist.”
  • Ambrose Bierce
    “Insurrection. An unsuccessful revolution; disaffection's failure to substitute misrule for bad government.”
  • Erich Fromm
    “The successful revolutionary is a statesman, the unsuccessful one a criminal.”
  • Brian Tracy
    “Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, What's in it for me?”


In literature:

The forenoon was passed by the Arabs in trying to train their slaves to the work, but in this they were sadly unsuccessful.
"The Boy Slaves" by Mayne Reid
He was, however, unsuccessful.
"The Rise of Canada, from Barbarism to Wealth and Civilisation" by Charles Roger
That unsuccessful expedition was the commencement of the great colonial contest in which Canada was conquered.
"A Modern History, From the Time of Luther to the Fall of Napoleon" by John Lord
His first attempt, greatly to Mr Cripps's glee, was unsuccessful.
"The Fifth Form at Saint Dominic's" by Talbot Baines Reed
An expedition conducted by Hawkins and Drake against Panama had been unsuccessful.
"Sir Walter Ralegh" by William Stebbing
The attack on the fence was equally unsuccessful.
"The Political History of England - Vol. X." by William Hunt
Should they be unsuccessful the sides change.
"Games for the Playground, Home, School and Gymnasium" by Jessie H. Bancroft
Alliance of England with the Huguenots; renewal of the war; siege of La Rochelle; Buckingham makes an unsuccessful attempt on the Isle of Re.
"The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 11" by Various
He had previously seen some service as a captain in the unsuccessful expedition against Carthagenia.
"An Historical Account of the Settlements of Scotch Highlanders in America" by J. P. MacLean
This was unsuccessful, and he breathed in a quantity of wood-ash.
"Miss Mapp" by Edward Frederic Benson

In poetry:

With the farming of a verse
Make a vineyard of the curse,
Sing of human unsuccess
In a rapture of distress;
"In Memory Of W.B. Yeats" by W H Auden
"If I 'd been rather later, I'll
Be bound," I added, trying
(Most unsuccessfully) to smile,
"You'd have been busy all this while,
Trimming and beautifying?"
"Phantasmagoria Canto V (" by Lewis Carroll
Poet,oracle and wit
Like unsuccessful anglers by
Th ponds of apperception sit,
Baiting with the wrong request
The vectors of their interest;
At nightfall tell the angler's lie.
"The Waters" by W H Auden

In news:

Searchers unsuccessful Thursday in finding missing quadriplegic .
Well, I have no right to talk about fashion – being the gal who wore an unsuccessful road-crossing pheasant in her hair today.
Ameren Illinois tried unsuccessfully to get a rate increase passed earlier this year for smart grid upgrades.
Dinesh D'Souza Unsuccessfully Reaches With 2016.
Glen Warchol's Crawler: When newspapers age unsuccessfully .
And his efforts to shake a police chief in pursuit of a felony collar also proved to be unsuccessful in the early afternoon of July 5.
One Valley state legislator tried unsuccessfully to move the Ohio primary to.
The federal government has been billed more than $3 million for its unsuccessful attempts to keep a high-stakes battle over First Nations child welfare out of the courts.
Experts recommend considering surgery only for adolescents (at least 13 and 15 years old for females and males, respectively) classified as severely obese who have tried unsuccessfully to lose weight over a 6-month period.
Efforts to reach Hart Thursday night for comment were unsuccessful.
Ryan Lee said they were unsuccessful.
Many, after having responded to God's call to missionary service have struggled unsuccessfully to raise and maintain support.
Beth Anne Rankin , who led an unsuccessful run for the Fourth District congressional seat last year against incumbent Rep Mike Ross, will take another bite at the apple in 2012.
He said Jane Joy had been unsuccessful in petitioning the city for assistance in relocating her organization.
Don Wirtshafter spoke after an unsuccessful appearance Monday morning before the Athens County Board of Revision .

In science:

These included an unrealistic spacetime dimension (d = 10 or d = 26), an unrealistic spectrum (including a tachyon and massless particles), and the absence of pointlike constituents. A few years of attempts to do better had been unsuccessful.
The Early History of String Theory and Supersymmetry
The fact that the naive approach, with K = 1, is unsuccessful, indicates that the approximation of Eq. (3.41) is not a very good one.
Quantum Optimal Control Theory of Harmonic Generation
Returning to the de finition of q , m (delta function in (8)) and remembering that x is the result of recovery and x0 is the original input, we can see that q = m = ρ must be satisfied at the extremal of q , m when the recovery is successful, whereas q 6= m is expected in the unsuccessful case.
A study of the universal threshold in the L1 recovery by statistical mechanics
We chose games only in the top 20 with equal probability in the simulation process (implying that there is the same probability to create a top game and an average/unsuccessful one).
When games meet reality: is Zynga overvalued?
For these squares we are sure that depositions on them will be unsuccessful, and thus they will not be on the list of candidates for trials.
Series expansion and computer simulation studies of random sequential adsorption