Roget's Thesaurus: Entry 638 (Waste)

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#638. Waste. -- N. consumption, expenditure, exhaustion; dispersion &c. 73; ebb; leakage &c. (exudation) 295; loss &c. 776; wear and tear; waste; prodigality &c. 818; misuse &c. 679; wasting &c. v.; rubbish &c. (useless) 645. mountain in labor.

V. spend, expend, use, consume, swallow up, exhaust; impoverish; spill, drain, empty; disperse &c. 73.

cast away, fool away, muddle away, throw away, fling away, fritter away,; burn the candle at both ends, waste; squander &c. 818.

" waste its sweetness on the desert air " [Gray]; cast one's bread upon the waters, cast pearls before swine; employ a steam engine to crack a nut, waste powder and shot, break a butterfly on a wheel; labor in vain &c. (useless) 645; cut blocks with a razor, pour water into a sieve.

leak &c. (run out) 295; run to waste; ebb; melt away, run dry, dry up.

Adj. wasted &c. v.; at a low ebb.

wasteful &c. (prodigal) 818; penny wise and pound foolish.

Phr. magno conatu magnas nugas[Lat]; le jeu ne vaut pas la chandelle[Fr]; " idly busy rolls their world away " [Goldsmith].