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Act   Listen
verb
Act  v. i.  
1.
To exert power; to produce an effect; as, the stomach acts upon food.
2.
To perform actions; to fulfill functions; to put forth energy; to move, as opposed to remaining at rest; to carry into effect a determination of the will. "He hangs between, in doubt to act or rest."
3.
To behave or conduct, as in morals, private duties, or public offices; to bear or deport one's self; as, we know not why he has acted so.
4.
To perform on the stage; to represent a character. "To show the world how Garrick did not act."
To act as or To act for, to do the work of; to serve as.
To act on, to regulate one's conduct according to.
To act up to, to equal in action; to fulfill in practice; as, he has acted up to his engagement or his advantages.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Act" Quotes from Famous Books



... regret I call my sister, should be more careful than she is of your honor. I advise you, therefore, to watch the communications of Margot with Turenne, that she does not bring shame on the house of Bourbon. Act as soon as you shall be sure of the fact, into which I pray you to inquire as soon as Chicot shall have ...
— The Forty-Five Guardsmen • Alexandre Dumas

... the act, Jack suddenly assumed an air of paternal authority, and, arresting his cousin as she was about to begin again, he said, in a tone ...
— Kitty's Class Day And Other Stories • Louisa M. Alcott

... important, as will appear when we come to the last act of the tragedy. Captain Roald Amundsen was one of the most notable of living explorers, and was in the prime of life—forty-one, two years younger than Scott. He had been in the Antarctic before Scott, with the Belgica Expedition ...
— The Worst Journey in the World, Volumes 1 and 2 - Antarctic 1910-1913 • Apsley Cherry-Garrard

... friendly with these precocious beings was to be a "hostile." I looked round. Beppo stood at rigid attention, and at the studio back window I saw two grinning heads surveying my performance. I was not at all clear in my mind how a hostile should act; it was thirty years since I had read "Deerslayer." Should I drop on my knees and crawl through the long grass, snooping round the beanpoles and taking the devoted block-house in flank? I swallowed my stiff-necked English pride and began ...
— Aliens • William McFee

... warned me, Signor Marchese, not to make any remarks on the communication you have just made to me. There is one, however, which perforce I must make. It is that I must decline to take any instructions, or to act in any way, for the ...
— A Siren • Thomas Adolphus Trollope

... it, but he did not stir. "It'll be a bully thing to see when it comes. What you doin'? You act like you was crazy," he exclaimed, as Ruth Mary waded through the water and ...
— In Exile and Other Stories • Mary Hallock Foote

... 1429, that the little band rode away into the open country on their perilous journey. Joan, besides adopting a military attire, had trimmed her dark hair close, as it was then the fashion of knights to do—cut round above the ears. Even this harmless act was later brought as an accusation against her. Joan was then in her seventeenth year, and, although nothing but tradition has reached us of her looks and outward form, it is not difficult to imagine her as she rides out of that old gate, ...
— Joan of Arc • Ronald Sutherland Gower

... but three or four letters a year from his own people, and the time had not come for his own people to write much more than bare facts. They were chary of opinions. Harry supposed that the new discontent in the Colonies, after the repeal of the Stamp Act and the withdrawal of the two regiments from Boston Town to Castle William, was but that of the perpetually restless, the habitual fomenters, the notoriety-seeking agitators, the mob, whose circumstances could ...
— The Continental Dragoon - A Love Story of Philipse Manor-House in 1778 • Robert Neilson Stephens

... give me a safe conduct?" said Penn, who thought the advice excellent, and would have been only too glad to act upon it. ...
— Cudjo's Cave • J. T. Trowbridge

... one of the wildest parts of the forest, while its rider sat trembling at the strange sights he saw. Sometimes the earth seemed to open in front of them and he was looking into a bottomless pit; sometimes the trees burst into flames and he found himself in the midst of a fire; often in the act of crossing a stream the water rose and threatened to sweep him away; and again, at the foot of a mountain, great rocks would roll towards him, as if they would crush him and his colt beneath their weight. To his dying day Peronnik never knew whether these things were real or if ...
— The Lilac Fairy Book • Andrew Lang

... despair: 'I couldn't, Willis. I don't feel light, and I don't feel confident, and I couldn't act it. If ...
— The Garotters • William D. Howells

... had not been associated with hers in any such manner as Stanton's. His cooler head, or heart more correctly, had enabled him to act very prudently. He would enjoy a walk or conversation with her, and there it would end. Neither by lingering glances nor steps did he show that he could not interest himself in other people and things. He did not attend the excursions or rides to which Stanton ...
— A Face Illumined • E. P. Roe

... "'That, moreover, every act of his life, besides the facts with reference to the widow Jeanrenaud and the Baron Jeanrenaud, her son, are those of a madman; that for nearly ten years he has given his thoughts exclusively to China, its customs, manners, and history; that he refers everything ...
— The Commission in Lunacy • Honore de Balzac

... you have no reason to complain. But should it happen that he fails to treat you fairly and honourably (of which I have no fear), you can let me know, and matters will soon be put right. You and the tenants, however, must not act towards Mr. Williamson in a selfish or hard way either, for it is quite as possible for you to do so to him as it is for him to do so to you. Both he and you all must work together, heartily and agreeably; ...
— Second Shetland Truck System Report • William Guthrie

... daisies, said "quit! quit!" to me, and returned to the brooding mother-tones that kept her family around her. Tiring of my position while waiting for the concert to resume, I laid my head back among the ferns, letting the daisies and buttercups tower above my face,—strangely enough, by this simple act realizing as never before the real motherhood of ...
— Little Brothers of the Air • Olive Thorne Miller

... and on it was sculptured the figure of a young man with curly head and classic profile. He was wearing sandals and a loose mantle held to his breast with one hand, while in the other hand he carried a bunch of leaves and flowers. He appeared in the act of stepping ashore from a boat of antique shape, and the artist had been singularly successful in producing the idea of free and vigorous motion in the figure as well as of some absorbing object in his mind. The figure was undoubtedly symbolical, and I began to ...
— Afoot in England • W.H. Hudson

... Miller, Ina Coolbrith, and many others, to their first circle of admirers. In the large mail-box at its threshold—a threshold I dared not cross for awe of it—I dropped my earliest efforts in verse, and then ran for fear of being caught in the act. ...
— In the Footprints of the Padres • Charles Warren Stoddard

... face burning with blushes. The words and act revealed how deeply in her heart lay the sting which had at times tortured her her whole life through—shame for that personal imperfection with which Nature had marked her from her birth, and which, forgotten in an hour by those who learned to love her, still seemed ...
— Olive - A Novel • Dinah Maria Craik, (AKA Dinah Maria Mulock)

... council is to interest public-spirited women and men, particularly artists and scientists, in girl-scout work and to get them to act as referees in awarding ...
— Educational Work of the Girl Scouts • Louise Stevens Bryant

... is one of a series of six lyrics called "The Phases of Love," with this motive from the "Anatomy of Melancholy": "I am resolved, therefore, in this tragi-comedy of love, to act several parts, some satirically, some comically, some in a mixed tone." The poems are all by American poets, and the group, opus 6, is an invaluable addition to our musical literature. The first of the series, "My Silent Song," is a radiantly beautiful ...
— Contemporary American Composers • Rupert Hughes

... soul above this earth, or the wail of a child moves you to compassion, you have felt the magic power stirring in your own soul. You feel it when some mysterious power, without any will of your own, prompts you to some act, be it what it may. And, besides all this, if a leaf flutters off the table without being touched by any visible hand, you do not doubt that a draught of air, which you can neither hear nor see, has swept through the room. If ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... self-power,[8] is the substance of the J[o]-d[o] doctrine; but the expanded term ta-riki chin no ji-riki, or "self-effort depending on another," while expressing the whole dogma, is rather scornfully applied to the J[o]-d[o]ists by the men of the Shin sect. The invocation of Amida is a meritorious act of the believer, much repetition being the substance of this combination of ...
— The Religions of Japan - From the Dawn of History to the Era of Meiji • William Elliot Griffis

... morning a subscription pool@ brought me for our parish; Lord Granville had refused to subscribe. This is in the style of his friend Lord Bath, who has absented himself whenever any act of authority was to ...
— The Letters of Horace Walpole, Volume 1 • Horace Walpole

... he was almost dull in comparison. Hurstwood entertained them both, and now it was driven into Carrie's mind that here was the superior man. She instinctively felt that he was stronger and higher, and yet withal so simple. By the end of the third act she was sure that Drouet was only a kindly soul, but otherwise defective. He sank every moment in her estimation by ...
— Sister Carrie • Theodore Dreiser

... wolves prowling about, too; or I might by chance find myself in the grasp of a hungry bear, bent on a visit to the hog-pens in the settlement. Intending to return early, I had left without my gun—an act of folly I resolved not to repeat. Should I lose myself, I should have no means of making a signal, and I might very possibly be frozen to death ...
— Afar in the Forest • W.H.G. Kingston

... to which it was a relief to give way. She wandered about the veranda in the dark after his departure, trying to realize fully what had happened. It had all come upon her so suddenly. She had been forced to act throughout without a moment's pause for thought. Now that it was all over she wanted to collect herself ...
— Rosa Mundi and Other Stories • Ethel M. Dell

... purblind as a punishment for the sin of those who sent them. Before long a second iconoclastic fury would infallibly have followed, but for the prescience of a statesman who succeeded in passing an Act to the effect that no statue of any public man or woman should be allowed to remain unbroken for more than fifty years, unless at the end of that time a jury of twenty-four men taken at random from the street pronounced in favour of its being allowed ...
— Erewhon • Samuel Butler

... down!" cried Amy incredulously. "Not much! You're a bloomin' hero, Clint, and you've got to act the part. You're the chap who knocked the 'laf' out of Claflin! Hold your head up ...
— Left Tackle Thayer • Ralph Henry Barbour

... nominations having been considered and confirmed by the authorities, as provided by section 6 of the act of Congress relating to the approval of the awarding of premiums, the appointments to the international jury shall be made in accordance with section 6 of Article XXII of the official rules and regulations of the Louisiana Purchase ...
— Final Report of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition Commission • Louisiana Purchase Exposition Commission

... lot, poor chap," cried the old Captain; but Nellie did not need this admonition, being in the very act of handing over the parcel of sandwiches to Dick even while the old sailor spoke. "There's no good in his making two bites of a cherry, ...
— Bob Strong's Holidays - Adrift in the Channel • John Conroy Hutcheson

... Jersey town. That night, though there was no furore or general uprising of the audience, there was enough hand-clapping to arouse the troupe's dejected spirits. The leading man stepped to the foot-lights after the first act and bowed profoundly. Still the ...
— Toaster's Handbook - Jokes, Stories, and Quotations • Peggy Edmund & Harold W. Williams, compilers

... a draught at present. But if a breeze should get up, don't hoist sail without instructions. We keep together—that's the main point. Just pull along easy—I'll set the pace—and keep in my wake, course due south. Those that aren't pulling will act wise to trust in God and get some sleep. . . . Is that Doctor Foe there ...
— Foe-Farrell • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... peasants are impatient to begin the field labour. An old proverb which they all know says: "Sow in mud and you will be a prince"; and they always act in accordance with this dictate of traditional wisdom. As soon as it is possible to plough they begin to prepare the land for the summer grain, and this labour occupies them probably till the end of May. Then comes the work ...
— Russia • Donald Mackenzie Wallace

... description of themselves. Often in the train to and from the city, or while walking in the street, I think over myself—what I have been, what I am, what I might be if, financially speaking, it would run to it. I imagine how I should act under different circumstances—on the receipt of a large legacy, or if for some specially clever action I were taken into partnership, or if a mad bull came down the street. I may say that I make a regular study of myself. I have from time ...
— Eliza • Barry Pain

... in a paroxysm of mania, he was going to throw away, as I shall show you by an unanswerable document. He comes here to slander us and mulet us out of five thousand pounds; but I shall show you he is already ten thousand pounds the richer for that act of ours, for which he debits us five thousand pounds instead of crediting us twice the sum. Gentlemen, I cannot, like my learned friend, call witnesses from the clouds, from the United States, and from the grave; for it has not occurred ...
— Hard Cash • Charles Reade

... "'We must act,' interrupted Fouche. 'In all probability the battle is now going on; the Austrians outnumber us; Genoa has surrendered; Massena has committed the great mistake of embarking for Antibes; it is very doubtful if he can rejoin Bonaparte, ...
— An Historical Mystery • Honore de Balzac

... act of transfer, whether it take the form of confiscation or otherwise, must be the will of a legal majority of the people. If the unit is the city, a legal majority of the citizens there; if the unit is the state, then a legal majority of the citizens ...
— Socialism - A Summary and Interpretation of Socialist Principles • John Spargo

... accumulation of complexities, with the piling up of encumberments of thought and deed during fifteen hundred busy years of intensive civilization. As long as that piling up had not entirely covered away Tao, the Supreme Simplicity, the Clear Air;—as long as men could find scope to think and act and accomplish things;—so long the manvantara lasted; when nothing more that was useful could be accomplished, and action could no longer bring about its expectable results (because all that old dead weight was there to interpose itself between new causes set in motion and ...
— The Crest-Wave of Evolution • Kenneth Morris

... our calamities began to multiply. Indigence and famine stared us in the face; and it was with the utmost difficulty that we resisted their attacks, by selling or pledging our wearing apparel, until we were left almost quite naked, when we found ourselves discharged by an act passed for the relief of insolvent debtors. This charitable law, which was intended for a consolation to the wretched, proved to us the most severe disaster; for we were turned out into the streets, utterly destitute of ...
— The Adventures of Ferdinand Count Fathom, Complete • Tobias Smollett

... dissolved. The consuls, like barons of old, dwelt each in his armed citadel. The rank and file of the white nationalities dared each other, and sometimes fell to on the street like rival clansmen. And the little town, not by any fault of the inhabitants, rather by the act of Becker, had fallen back in civilisation ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 17 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... said. "I did think so, but I have changed my mind since this morning. I suppose it was just his grief that made him act so queerly." ...
— 32 Caliber • Donald McGibeny

... He'll want the money himself—a simpleton. Let him wait till he comes to the master-piece. What pleases me most in the story, is his contentment and his humility. He is not ashamed of his old silver watch yet. It is not everybody that could act so. There must be strong legs to support such extraordinary good-luck. These ...
— Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 436 - Volume 17, New Series, May 8, 1852 • Various

... Circe; agent provocateur; lobbyist. V. induce, move; draw, draw on; bring in its train, give an impulse &c. n.; to; inspire; put up to, prompt, call up; attract, beckon. stimulate &c. (excite) 824; spirit up, inspirit; rouse, arouse; animate, incite, foment, provoke, instigate, set on, actuate; act upon, work upon, operate upon; encourage; pat on the back, pat on the shoulder, clap on the back, clap on the shoulder. influence, weigh with, bias, sway, incline, dispose, predispose, turn the scale, inoculate; lead by the nose; have influence with, have influence over, have influence ...
— Roget's Thesaurus • Peter Mark Roget

... best ropehorse the Tomahawk had ever owned. For a few seconds he stood braced, his neck arched, his eyes bright and watchful. Then he leaped forward, straight at the horse and the rider who was in the act of leveling his gun. The horse hesitated, taken unaware by the onslaught. When he started to run Stopper was already passing him, turning sharply to the right again so that the rope raked the horse's front legs. Two jumps and Stopper had stopped, faced the horse ...
— Cow-Country • B. M. Bower

... object of the Inquisition that such people should not indeed be spared, but should not perish without a trial and without opportunity of resipiscence, so that they might save their souls if not their lives. Its founders could claim to act from motives both of mercy and of justice against members of a satanic association. And it was not against error or noncomformity simply, but against criminal error erected into a system, that the Inquisitors ...
— Lectures on Modern history • Baron John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton

... such a squeaky voice, all fled but a poor country cobbler. Now he not long before had mended the shoes of an old hermit, who, having no money gave him a box of ointment for the cure of the leprosy, and a bottle of spirits for a harsh voice. So the cobbler having a mind to do an act of charity, was induced to go up to her and ...
— English Fairy Tales • Joseph Jacobs (coll. & ed.)

... to burn; and Jizo put his arms about her and lifted her out. And he went with her before King Emma, and asked that she should be pardoned for his sake, forasmuch as she had become related to him by one act of goodness. So she found pardon, and returned ...
— Glimpses of an Unfamiliar Japan - First Series • Lafcadio Hearn

... we all know of the reverence he felt in the presence of the king. Divine Right and non-resistance were dead, but they had not died without a struggle. Freedom of the press and legal equality may have been obtained; but it was not until the passage of Fox's Libel Act that the first became secure, and Mr. and Mrs. Hammond have recently illumined for us the inward meaning of the second. The populace might, on occasion, be strong enough to force the elder Pitt upon an unwilling king, or to shout for Wilkes ...
— Political Thought in England from Locke to Bentham • Harold J. Laski

... He had endured seven years of physical misery and mental torment because he had too much grit to resort to the cowardly expedient of taking his own life; but now, now fate—he no longer believed in the existence of such a being as God—fate had taken pity upon him and, through no act of his own, he was going to be relieved of his intolerable burden. For he knew that, with that fighting mob of raging maniacs struggling madly round the boats, escape was a sheer impossibility, and that in a few minutes—or hours, at the outside—for he was a strong swimmer—he would go down ...
— Dick Leslie's Luck - A Story of Shipwreck and Adventure • Harry Collingwood

... you loved anybody regular old fashioned the way I do, people could send little children here to trade, and you wouldn't palm off any wilted vegetables on to them, or give them short weight—if you was in love, and felt that the one you loved saw every act of yours, and you could see her eyes every minute, you would throw away anything that was spoiled, and not try to sell it, for fear you would offend her. I don't think any man is fit to do business honestly unless he is in love, or has been in love once. Now I couldn't ...
— The Grocery Man And Peck's Bad Boy - Peck's Bad Boy and His Pa, No. 2 - 1883 • George W. Peck

... duty. The aides are authorized to carry oral orders and to explain them, to call for and to bring oral reports, and as the general's confidential and official representatives they should be of the most intelligent and soldierly men of their grade. All the other staff officers may be called upon to act as aides when it is necessary, but these are ex officio the ordinary go-betweens, and, if fit for their work, are as cordially welcomed and almost as much at home with the brigade commanders as with their ...
— Military Reminiscences of the Civil War V2 • Jacob Dolson Cox

... and sharing for many years their honors and privileges, his heart yearned toward his brethren in the land of Goshen, and he went out to see them in their sufferings and slavery. His impetuous nature broke out in sudden indignation at the sight of some act of cruelty, and he smote the overseer who was torturing the Jewish slave. That act made him an exile, and sent him to live in Arabia Petrea, as a shepherd. If he had thought only of his own prospects and position, he would not have gone near ...
— Ten Great Religions - An Essay in Comparative Theology • James Freeman Clarke

... young wife prevented our examining the harbour and the boats in it; and we afterwards found ourselves locked up in the room allotted us to sleep in. I do not, in consequence, think we are suspected; for it is very natural that the gruff old pirate, who seems to act as lieutenant-governor, or major-domo, of the castle—I scarcely know what to call him—should not think fit to leave a party of strangers at liberty to wander about and examine into the state of his defences. I have now to ...
— The Pirate of the Mediterranean - A Tale of the Sea • W.H.G. Kingston

... two!" barked Strong. "Plug your jets! By the craters of Luna, one minute you act like hot-shot spacemen, and the next, you behave like children in ...
— The Space Pioneers • Carey Rockwell

... official character of the old Norwich Corporation, strangely uniformed and accoutred, who headed the annual procession on Guildhall day, flourishing a sword in a marvellous manner. All this was abolished on the passage of the Municipal Reform Act in 1835. As a consequence, says a contemporaneous writer, "the Aldermen left off wearing their scarlet gowns, Snap was laid up on a shelf in the 'Sword Room' in the Guildhall, and the Whifflers no longer danced at the head of the procession in their picturesque ...
— Lavengro - The Scholar, The Gypsy, The Priest • George Borrow

... juncture was the way her apprehension that he would break out to her with some merely general profession was mixed with her dire need to forgive him, to reassure him, to respond to him, on no ground that she didn't fully measure. To do these things it must be clear to her what they were FOR; but to act in that light was, by the same effect, to learn, horribly, what the other things had been. He might tell her only what he wanted, only what would work upon her by the beauty of his appeal; and the result of the direct appeal of ANY beauty in him would ...
— The Golden Bowl • Henry James

... feet. Then, all on fire to slay him, with a shout That rent the air Achilles rapid flew 545 Toward him; but him wrapt in clouds opaque Apollo caught with ease divine away. Thrice, swift Achilles sprang to the assault Impetuous, thrice the pitchy cloud he smote, And at his fourth assault, godlike in act, 550 And terrible in utterance, thus exclaim'd. Dog! thou art safe, and hast escaped again; But narrowly, and by the aid once more Of Phoebus, without previous suit to whom Thou venturest never where the javelin sings. 555 But when we next encounter, then expect, If one of all in heaven aid also ...
— The Iliad of Homer - Translated into English Blank Verse • Homer

... was practically complete. The Devonport Staff Officers wished us "a good voyage," and went home to their teas in Plymouth. And, just before dinner, the gangway was hauled on to the quay. This was the final act, for, though the ship was not yet moving, we had broken ...
— Tell England - A Study in a Generation • Ernest Raymond

... most remote countries; and if they pleased him, he not only gave the merchants their full price, but loaded them with honours and benedictions, in hopes that at last he might be so happy as to meet with one by whom he might have a son. There was scarcely an act of charity but he performed, to prevail with heaven. He gave immense sums to the poor, besides large donations to the religious; building for their use many noble colleges richly endowed, in hopes of obtaining by their prayers what he ...
— The Arabian Nights Entertainments Complete • Anonymous

... eyewitness. He told me that when he saw Al jump toward Jimmy he thought sure both boys would be crushed. Seizing Jimmy in his arms just as the box car was about to strike them, young Edison threw himself off the track. There wasn't a tenth of a second to lose. By this instinctive act he saved his own life, for if he had thrown the little chap first and then himself, he would have ...
— Radio Boys Cronies • Wayne Whipple and S. F. Aaron

... greater Empire still, a nobler history, and a prouder lot: a lot to last, because based upon institutions which have stood, and will stand, the test of time and trouble. Unfortunately we have had a "little England" party in our country. A Liberal Government, immediately following the Act of Confederation, took every red-coat out of the Dominion of Canada, shipped off, or sold, the very shot and shell to any one, friend or foe, who chose to buy: and the few guns and mortars Canada demanded were charged to her "in account" with the ruth of the miser. ...
— Canada and the States • Edward William Watkin

... dreamed of his doing the distress that the present state of affairs caused her. He liked her in a spirit of comradeship. She seemed to him sensitive, yet he felt that in an emergency she would prove as strong to act as to endure. In no case, he told himself, could he ever be in love with her; she was too cold, too intellectual, she had not enough softness or sweetness to charm him even if his fair cousin had never existed. But when there was need of a woman with pride and resolution enough to deny strenuously ...
— The Bay State Monthly, Volume 3, No. 2 • Various

... wiring act in the same capacity as a safety valve on a steam boiler. Whenever there is an overload on the circuit or a short circuit these fuses blow and relieve the strain ...
— Fowler's Household Helps • A. L. Fowler

... Artists, "he first modeled his figure in clay, and explained to Morse, who was then his pupil, the advantages resulting from a plan so frequently adopted by the old masters. His young countryman was at this time meditating his first composition—a dying Hercules—and proceeded at once to act upon this suggestion. Having prepared a model that exhibited the upper part of the body—which alone would be visible in the picture—he submitted it to Allston, who recognized so much truth in the anatomy and expression that he ...
— Great Fortunes, and How They Were Made • James D. McCabe, Jr.

... tried our hand at it, Miss Cassandra, M. La Tour and all. I send you the verse that seemed to our umpire the best. One of the charming Connecticut ladies, whom we met at Amboise, called upon us this evening and was kind enough to act as umpire in our little war of wits. She was so polite as to say that all of the translations were so good that it was difficult to choose between them, but this is the one that she thought most in the spirit of the ...
— In Chteau Land • Anne Hollingsworth Wharton

... sick, or the place may be unsuited to you, or you to the place, and you may know that it is best for you to go. But speak first to the doctor, tell him candidly why you wish to go, and take counsel of him how you should act. If he tells you you may go, and you know that your place must be filled, do not offer as your substitute your best friend, or anyone else. If he wishes your counsel he will ask, and then you may tell him ...
— Making Good On Private Duty • Harriet Camp Lounsbery

... offer; but he would not: why? I am sure he had no reason, for I put the question to him more than once, and even after reflecting, he had no explanation to give. He stayed because to stay was easier than to make an immediate decision and act on it energetically. He had very little will power to begin with and his mode of life had ...
— Oscar Wilde, Volume 1 (of 2) - His Life and Confessions • Frank Harris

... Clearly he had unstinted visions of lucrative patronage, dreams, probably, of a piece of coloured ribbon for his button-hole, and a right to try to induce people to call him "Chevalier." He made Coralie a present, handsome enough. I respected the conscientiousness of this act; my friendship was an unlooked-for profit, a bonus on the marriage, and he gave his wife her commission. But he seemed cased in steel against any confidence; he trembled as he poured me out a glass of wine. He had pictured me only as a desirable ...
— The King's Mirror • Anthony Hope

... was detailed by the adjutant this morning to act as sergeant-major in place of Sergeant Temple, who is assigned to the command of a company. Very few commissioned officers are with the regiment at present. This leaves the command of several companies to enlisted men. Some of our officers are out on detached service, while not ...
— Three Years in the Federal Cavalry • Willard Glazier

... Gadfly returned to Florence in the diligence from Pistoja. He went straight to Gemma's lodgings, but she was out. Leaving a message that he would return in the morning he went home, sincerely hoping that he should not again find his study invaded by Zita. Her jealous reproaches would act on his nerves, if he were to hear much of them to-night, like the rasping of a ...
— The Gadfly • E. L. Voynich

... they are allowed to pull them out with their hands. "The piercing of the hut with their heads symbolises the piercing of the clouds; the fall of the hut, the fall of the rain." Obviously, too, the act of placing high up in trees the two stones, which stand for clouds, is a way of making the real clouds to mount up in the sky. The Dieri also imagine that the foreskins taken from lads at circumcision have a great power of producing rain. ...
— The Golden Bough - A study of magic and religion • Sir James George Frazer

... the valley of Baca, maketh it a well." Why so? On what ground? If a man had settled down in that valley for life, there would have been no merit in his making it a well. It might, in that case, have been an act of lean-hearted selfishness on his part. Further than this, a man might have done it who could have had the heart to wall it in from the reach of thirsty travellers. No such man was meant in the blessing; nor any man resident ...
— A Walk from London to John O'Groat's • Elihu Burritt

... put two hundred more men to work right here and right now," he said, swiftly. "You get double salary to act as general foreman over the two hundred and fifty. Divide your old gang of fifty into five parts, ten each. Break up the new gang of two hundred into five sections, forty men to a section. Then put ten of our old men to work with each section of forty, ...
— Under Handicap - A Novel • Jackson Gregory

... of Soul. He is the direct oppo- site of material sensation, and there is but one Ego. We 250:1 run into error when we divide Soul into souls, multiply Mind into minds and suppose error to be mind, then mind 250:3 to be in matter and matter to be a lawgiver, unintelligence to act like intelligence, and mor- tality to be the matrix ...
— Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures • Mary Baker Eddy

... though he was conscious of nothing so much as of her hand in his, he was aware that she felt in his own merely a needed support. As she leaned upon him in the descent, he divined that her fear increased, instead of diminishing, with their progress into the circumjacent darkness, as if the act of flight intensified an appreciation of the original cause. He strove to dispel the emotion his own words had done so much to arouse, not without a guilty self-congratulation that his thoughtlessness ...
— The Mayor of Warwick • Herbert M. Hopkins

... the morsel eagerly, watching all the time lest some enemy surprise him in the act. Indeed, one noticeable thing about all the birds is their nervousness while eating. The chickadee turns that bead-like eye of his in all directions incessantly, lest something seize him while he is not looking. He is not off his guard for a moment. It is almost ...
— The Wit of a Duck and Other Papers • John Burroughs

... outa me.' Words just poured from that woman's mouth. She roasted him to a turn, told how he was crooked as a dog's hind leg an' every deal he touched was dirty. Said he couldn't even be square to his own pardners, that he couldn't get a man, woman, or child in Colorado to say he'd ever done a good act. Believe me, she laid him out proper, an' every word of it was true, ...
— Tangled Trails - A Western Detective Story • William MacLeod Raine

... the House ROWLAND HUNT chanced to be to the fore. The other day, burning with patriotism, he issued a circular letter addressed to non-commissioned officers of the Army, advising them how to act in certain contingencies relating to Ulster. It happens that one CROWSLEY had previously circulated amongst soldiers at Aldershot a handbill urging the men to disobey orders when on duty. He was prosecuted for inciting to mutiny, convicted and sentenced. Members in Radical stronghold below ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 146, April 15, 1914 • Various

... temper and principle of Metternich's rule was opposed to the development of national spirit, whether in one race or another; and the patronage which the Croats appeared at this time to receive at Vienna was probably no more than an instinctive act of conservatism, intended to maintain the balance of interests, and to reduce within the narrowest possible limits such changes as ...
— History of Modern Europe 1792-1878 • C. A. Fyffe

... it's loikin' his book or what it is, he's the wan to have handy for the little b'ys to pattern by. As far as he's gone he knows, and he can't be beat in knowin' how to treat other folks nice. And he's that quiet about what he knows that you wouldn't think he knows anything only for seein' him act it out." ...
— The Widow O'Callaghan's Boys • Gulielma Zollinger

... not yet been able to divest itself of its hypothetical character. Religion might, therefore, refuse to define its position in reference to theories which are still of a quite problematic and hypothetical nature. But by giving such a refusal, religion would not act in its own interest. The reproach is often made that it has an open or hidden aversion to the freedom of scientific investigation—a reproach which, it is true, is often enough provoked by its own advocates; ...
— The Theories of Darwin and Their Relation to Philosophy, Religion, and Morality • Rudolf Schmid

... the excessive power of the State has been attractively set forth by Mr. G. D. H. Cole in his "Self-Government in Industry.''[54] "Where now,'' he says, "the State passes a Factory Act, or a Coal Mines Regulation Act, the Guild Congress of the future will pass such Acts, and its power of enforcing them will be the same as that of the State'' (p. 98). His ultimate ground for advocating this system is that, in his opinion, it will tend to preserve individual liberty: "The fundamental ...
— Proposed Roads To Freedom • Bertrand Russell

... then a few more, and, finally, the whole hundred. As a rule, during a concert like this they sit well down, stretch their heads as high in the air as they can, and howl to their hearts' content. During this act they seem very preoccupied, and are not easily disturbed. But the strangest thing is the way the concert comes to an end. It stops suddenly along the whole line — no stragglers, no "one cheer more." What is it that imposes this simultaneous stop? I ...
— The South Pole, Volumes 1 and 2 • Roald Amundsen

... the public affairs that make the subject matter of this narrative, a line of discrimination must be drawn at the year 1890. In that year the Church began a progressive course of submission to the civil law, and the nation received each act of surrender with forgiveness. The previous defiance's of the Mormon people ceased to give grounds for a complaint against them. The old harshnesses of the Federal government were canceled by the new generosity of a placated nation. And neither ...
— Under the Prophet in Utah - The National Menace of a Political Priestcraft • Frank J. Cannon and Harvey J. O'Higgins

... moment he left Ronder's door, his mind made up, and now that it was made up he wished to act as speedily as possible. And instantly there followed an appeal of the Town, so urgent and so poignant that he was taken by surprise. He had lived there most of his days and never seen it until now, but every step that he took soon haunted him. He made his plans decisively, irrevocably, but he ...
— The Cathedral • Hugh Walpole

... mosaic of the Capitol, found in Hadrian's Villa, may give an idea of the perfection which the Greeks attained to in that art. It represents a vase full of water, on the sides of which are four doves, one of which is in the act of drinking. It is supposed by some to be the mosaic of Pergamus mentioned by Pliny. It is entirely composed of cubes of marble, without any admixture of colored glass. Mosaic of this kind may be considered as the most ancient; it was only by degrees that the art ...
— Museum of Antiquity - A Description of Ancient Life • L. W. Yaggy

... You hev, hev ye? Well, look yar, ole man. Suppose I REFUSE. Suppose I'd rather go than act as a spy on that young gal your darter! Suppose that—hic—allowin' she's my friend, I'd rather starve in the gutters of the Mission than stand between her and the man she fancies. Hey? Suppose I would—damn me! Suppose I'd see you and your derned old rancho in—t'other ...
— Two Men of Sandy Bar - A Drama • Bret Harte

... relation to the position of the crank-pin need not be commented upon here, more than to remark that obviously the cam C must operate to open the steam inlet valve in advance of cam D, which operates to close it and cause the steam to act expansively in the cylinder, and that the angle of the throw line of the cut-off valve D to the other cam or to the crank-pin varies according as it is required to cut off the steam either earlier or later in ...
— Mechanical Drawing Self-Taught • Joshua Rose

... has other properties besides its steady temperature. I was early abroad in my garden last Thursday week, and in the act of tossing a snail over my box hedge, when I heard some girls' voices giggling, and caught a glimpse of half-a-dozen sun-bonnets gathered about the well. Straightening myself up, I saw a group of maids from the village, and, in the middle, one who bent over the water. ...
— The Delectable Duchy • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... Ministry consists of a Procureur d'Etat appointed by the Sovereign, who acts in the Court of Appeal and of substitutes appointed by the Governor General, who act in the other Courts. Their duty is to discover all infractions of the law in the whole territory of the State and to see that all decrees, arrests, ordinances and penal regulations are carried out. They are especially instructed to arrange that ...
— A Journal of a Tour in the Congo Free State • Marcus Dorman

... at first mild in her opposition, but finally resorted to such violence of speech and act, as to indicate a state of feeling really deplorable, and a spirit diametrically opposed to all the teachings of the Christian religion—a religion which she loudly professed, and which assures us that "God is no respecter ...
— The American Prejudice Against Color - An Authentic Narrative, Showing How Easily The Nation Got - Into An Uproar. • William G. Allen

... madame votre mere, monsieur votre frere, mademoiselle votre soeur; but Charles, as valet, should have said, madame la comtesse alone. The reader should note that from the first his speeches show a refinement which to Leonie seems a surprising presumption. The disguised noble is too courteous to act a menial ...
— Bataille De Dames • Eugene Scribe and Ernest Legouve

... feel a deep sense of doubt as to the accuracy of his conclusions regarding Seltz's guilt. Would a man of his type have taken the trouble to place the gruesome seal upon the dead man's lips? This seemed, on second thoughts, the act of a hardened and unfeeling criminal—a man to whom murder was a scientific accomplishment, not a hasty and hideous crime. Was Seltz such a man? There was no answer to this question—the fleeting glimpses which Duvall had ...
— The Ivory Snuff Box • Arnold Fredericks

... his mother had begun to feel very anxious about him on that score. She had no wish that he should become a total abstainer; indeed she was, at this very time, giving him, by the doctor's orders, as much porter and wine as he could bear; but she thought that Mary's total abstinence might act as a check upon him to keep him within the bounds of strict moderation. She knew, too, that Mary was a genuine Christian, and she sincerely believed that true religion in a wife was the only solid foundation of domestic happiness. Before, therefore, ...
— Frank Oldfield - Lost and Found • T.P. Wilson

... men, by interest or punishment, to say or swear they believe, and to act as if they believed: You can go ...
— The Prose Works of Jonathan Swift, Vol. III.: Swift's Writings on Religion and the Church, Vol. I. • Jonathan Swift

... The act of seeming put them both above the world, said retro Sathanas! So much, as a piece of tactics: he was highly civilized: in the second instance, he knew it to be the world which must furnish the dry sticks for the bonfire of a woman's ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... more than a pie, a partridge, or a hen. What then, said Sylla, is it upon the old fabulous account of killing her son, that they deny the swallow entertainment, by that means showing their dislike to those passions which (as the story goes) made Tereus and Procne and Philomel both act and suffer such wicked and abominable things? And even to this day they call the birds Daulides. And Gorgias the sophister, when a swallow muted upon him, looked upon her and said, Philomel, this was not well done. Or ...
— Essays and Miscellanies - The Complete Works Volume 3 • Plutarch

... no temo ningn castigo. The philosophy of stoicism is especially attractive to Galds, and he plays with it in several of his works. Thus, Orozco, of Realidad, strives to attain stoic perfection; and the chief characters of other plays sometimes act like stoics (Paternoy, Los condenados, II, 14; Pantoja, Electra, IV, 10; Berenguer, La fiera, III, 5). That the stoicism of Seneca (a Spaniard) is the fundamental trait of Spanish character, is the contention brilliantly ...
— Heath's Modern Language Series: Mariucha • Benito Perez Galdos

... leaves them feeling like an old, old man, vowing one will never again submit to such a process of demoralization, and understanding, better than ever, the justification of monarchies and tyrannies: these creatures are born to act and think and believe as others tell them. You may be drawn to one or the other, detecting an unusual kindliness of nature or some endearing trick; for the most part, one studies them with a kind of medical interest. How comes it that this man, respectably equipped by birth, has ...
— Alone • Norman Douglas

... mother shrieks: "My babes and me you'd sever? If God there be, such cruel act Shall find forgiveness never! But first, oh judge, must you condemn To death their wretched mother— I cannot leave my children dear With ...
— Songs of Labor and Other Poems • Morris Rosenfeld

... that, without descending to a smaller size of type than would have been compatible with the dignity of the several societies to be named, I could not compress my intended list within the limits of a single page, and thinking, moreover, that the act would carry with it an air of decorous modesty, I have chosen to take the reader aside, as it were, into my private closet, and there not only exhibit to him the diplomas which I already possess, but also to furnish him with ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of James Russell Lowell • James Lowell

... foolish of me to care," said the Duchessa slowly. "But I happen to have trusted someone rather implicitly. I never dreamed it possible the person could stoop to act a lie. I would not have minded the thing itself,—it would have been absurd for me to have done so. But it hurt rather considerably that the person should have deceived me in the matter, in fact have acted a deliberate ...
— Antony Gray,—Gardener • Leslie Moore

... James, Viscount Hamilton, and thus became doubly connected with the family of the marquess of Abercorn. During the ensuing thirteen years Aberdeen took a less prominent part in public affairs, although he succeeded in passing the Entail (Scotland) Act of 1825. He kept in touch, however, with foreign politics, and having refused to join the ministry of George Canning in 1827, became a member of the cabinet of the duke of Wellington as chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... thought is, as to cause, that a crime is caused by the inscrutable moral free will of the human being, doing or not doing the crime, just as it pleases; absolutely free in advance, at any moment of time, to choose or not to choose the criminal act, and therefore in itself the sole and ultimate cause of crime. As to treatment, there still are just two traditional measures, used in varying doses for all kinds of crime and all kinds of persons,— jail, or a fine (for death is now employed ...
— Robin Hood • J. Walker McSpadden

... light skirmishing, but the next day it was ascertained the Confederates had commenced a retreat, and in a few days the "Squirrel Hunters" returned to their homes amid the plaudits of a loyal people, and business was resumed in the Queen City. A single act of disorder is reported in Cincinnati on the part of some citizens who began tearing up a street railroad because it was believed to be invidious to allow it to do business "when lager- beer saloons could ...
— Slavery and Four Years of War, Vol. 1-2 • Joseph Warren Keifer

... loss of which he laments, is, for the enormous majority, a mere training to act as ...
— The Communist Manifesto • Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

... hour funds will be poured in at such a spot.' But in whom could he confide? Du Tillet had no suspicion of his own complicity in Nucingen's plot; and the bold Baron had learned from his previous experiments in suspensions of payment that he must have some man whom he could trust to act at need as a lever upon the creditor. Nucingen had never a nephew, he dared not take a confidant; yet he must have a devoted and intelligent Claparon, a born diplomatist with a good manner, a man worthy of him, and fit to take office ...
— The Firm of Nucingen • Honore de Balzac

... that inference,' said I. 'Your grandfather's adventure was fortunate for himself, whom it saved from ruin and distress; and fortunate for his landlord also, whom it prevented from committing a gross act of injustice.' ...
— Redgauntlet • Sir Walter Scott

... size which the planets look when viewed with the naked eye, we are not able to note them in the act of passing over stars and so blotting them out; but such occurrences may be seen in the telescope, for the planetary bodies then display ...
— Astronomy of To-day - A Popular Introduction in Non-Technical Language • Cecil G. Dolmage

... Hill was followed by the complete surrender of the Gladstonian Government, an act which was either the most pusillanimous or the most magnanimous in recent history. It is hard for the big man to draw away from the small before blows are struck, but when the big man has been knocked down ...
— The War in South Africa - Its Cause and Conduct • Arthur Conan Doyle

... sense of its great effect no doubt induced our Milton both to the use and the abuse of Latin derivatives. But still these prefixed particles, conveying no separate or separable meaning to the mere English reader, cannot possibly act on the mind with the force or liveliness of an original and homogeneous language such as the German is, and besides ...
— Biographia Literaria • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... things,—real people; abstractions are nothing to me. Then I think that he systematically contradicts on one Sunday what he preaches on another. One Sunday he tells us that God is the immediate efficient Author of every act of will; the next he tells us that we are entire free agents. I see no sense in it, and can't take the trouble to put it together. But then he and you have something in you that I call religion,—something that makes you good. When I see a man working away on an entirely honest, ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 3, Issue 15, January, 1859 • Various

... streams which are overflowing the country above, or being ejected in the shape of scoriae from some crater. If the walls of a rent, moreover, are heated by hot vapour before the lava rises, as we know may happen on the flanks of a volcano, the additional heat supplied by the dike and its gases will act more powerfully. ...
— The Student's Elements of Geology • Sir Charles Lyell

... their own good money against the "Divine Right" of any Habsburg or Bourbon or Stuart. They knew that their guilders and shillings could beat the clumsy feudal armies which were the only weapons of the King. They dared to act, where others were condemned to suffer in silence or run the risk ...
— The Story of Mankind • Hendrik van Loon

... precipitating apparatus, which is also provided with a cooling jacket, for the purpose of regulating the temperature. The bottom of this vessel is double and perforated, and here is placed a layer of gun-cotton to act as a filter. This vessel is filled with spent nitro-sulphuric acid obtained as a waste product from the nitro-glycerine manufactory, and the solution of starch in nitric acid is sprayed into it through an injector worked by compressed air, whereby ...
— Nitro-Explosives: A Practical Treatise • P. Gerald Sanford

... little rapier practice ends the act; the shopman is wounded, and his adversary takes the usual oath of being his ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 1, October 16, 1841 • Various

... morning after the ball, with the promise of returning again. After talking over the various unaccountable circumstances of the case, without once suspecting that Feemy had consented to and had actually been in the act of going off with Ussher, Mrs. McKeon agreed, at the instigation of her husband and the priest, to accompany Feemy to the inquest, and after it was over to bring her to her own house, and to allow her to remain there till something should be definitely ...
— The Macdermots of Ballycloran • Anthony Trollope



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