avail

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to little avail

Having or with very little or no benefit, efficacy, or effect. We did our best to keep Sarah from finding out about her dad, but to little avail. All my protesting over the decision to fire Jeff was to little avail.
See also: avail, little

of no avail

Of or having very little or no benefit, efficacy, or effect. We did our best to keep Sarah from finding out about her dad, but it was of no avail. I protested of no avail to keep Jeff in the company.
See also: avail, of

of little avail

Of or having very little or no benefit, efficacy, or effect. We did our best to keep Sarah from finding out about her dad, but it was of little avail. I protested of little avail to keep Jeff in the company.
See also: avail, little, of

avail (oneself) of

To utilize an available resource. I was so overwhelmed trying to get my house ready for the party that I availed myself of a local cleaning service. My dear students, I encourage you to avail yourself of the campus library as much as possible.
See also: avail, of

avail oneself of something

to help oneself by making use of something that is available. We availed ourselves of Tom's goodwill and let him repair the fence. The campers availed themselves of the first chance in a week to take a shower.
See also: avail, of

to no avail

 and of no avail
Cliché with no effect; unsuccessful. All of my efforts were to no avail. Everything I did to help was of no avail. Nothing worked.
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avail yourself of something

to use something for your own benefit Many students avail themselves of government loan programs to help pay for college.
See also: avail, of

to no avail

without any benefit or result The boy pushed against the door to no avail - something heavy was holding it shut.
Usage notes: sometimes used in the phrase to little avail (having almost no benefit or result): Security forces tried to disperse the crowd, but to little avail.
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avail oneself of

1. Take advantage of, benefit by. For example, To get a better mortgage, he availed himself of the employee credit union. [Late 1500s]
2. Use, employ, as in I'll avail myself of the first cab to come along. [Mid-1800s]
See also: avail, of

to no avail

Also, of little or no avail. Of no use or advantage, ineffective, as in All his shouting was to no avail; no one could hear him, or The life jacket was of little or no avail. This idiom uses avail in the sense of "advantage" or "assistance," a usage dating from the mid-1400s. Also see to little purpose.
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avail (oneself) of

To make use of.
See also: avail, of