Dictonary.netDictonary.net
Synonyms, antonyms, pronunciation

  Home
English Dictionary      examples: 'day', 'get rid of', 'New York Bay'




Incisive   Listen
adjective
Incisive  adj.  
1.
Having the quality of incising, cutting, or penetrating, as with a sharp instrument; cutting; hence, Sharp; acute; sarcastic; biting; trenchant. "An incisive, high voice." "And her incisive smile accrediting That treason of false witness in my blush."
2.
(Anat.) Of or pertaining to the incisors; incisor; as, the incisive bones, the premaxillaries.
3.
Clearly and succinctly stated, with penetrating insight into the issue at hand; as, an incisive comment.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








Advanced search
     Find words:
Starting with
Ending with
Containing
Matching a pattern  

Synonyms
Antonyms
Quotes
Words linked to  

only single words



Share |





"Incisive" Quotes from Famous Books



... he, his voice sharp and incisive. "Killing is murder, and I am your friend. But if you wish to fight a fellow, or say twenty fellows, b'gad, I'm with you! The more the merrier—so ...
— Peregrine's Progress • Jeffery Farnol

... contrasted in respect of the qualities of lyric and thematic writing respectively. The prelude in C minor, for instance, is almost an exercise, being without clearly expressed melody (although the accents in the soprano distinctly suggest a melody), and the whole is rapid and incisive. The fugue, on the other hand, opens with a very sprightly idea, which is carried out delightfully, quite in the manner of a scherzo. The prelude in D major, again, is very light and graceful, yet having a character somewhat between a fancy piece of tone-poetry and an exercise, ...
— The Masters and their Music - A series of illustrative programs with biographical, - esthetical, and critical annotations • W. S. B. Mathews

... affair any more than other critics. He sums all their opinions up in one piquant phrase, which it appears he was unable to resist, and which made him smile in uttering it. "Conde," said he, "for that once, was wanting in boldness." The dictum is both brief and incisive, but there was no foundation for it, in a military point of view. There was, in truth, no want of boldness on Conde's part throughout that campaign: far from it, his whole line of conduct was a succession of audacious actions and combinations. What could be bolder than that forced journey ...
— Political Women (Vol. 1 of 2) • Sutherland Menzies

... will be lasting is hardly to be presumed. The lesson given by firing on Atua was not sufficiently sharp and incisive to leave a lasting impression on the forgetful Samoan temperament. In fact, conditions are existing which show that peace will not last and is not seriously intended. Malietoa, the King, and his chiefs are convinced that the departure of the war ships will be a signal ...
— Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents - Volume 8, Section 2 (of 2): Grover Cleveland • Grover Cleveland

... isn't the word for it. There isn't any quarrel, Mr. Ware." He stepped down from the door-stone to the sidewalk as he spoke, and stood face to face with Theron. Working-men with dinner-pails, and factory girls, were passing close to them, and he lowered his voice to a sharp, incisive half-whisper as he added, "It wouldn't be worth any grown man's while to quarrel with so poor a ...
— The Damnation of Theron Ware • Harold Frederic

... Pierre could not help feeling surprised at Narcisse's language, for he remembered his incisive voice and clear, precise, financial acumen when speaking of money matters. And, at this recollection, the young priest's mind reverted to the castle fields, and intense sadness filled his heart as for the last time all the want and suffering rose before him. Again he beheld the horrible ...
— The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete - Lourdes, Rome and Paris • Emile Zola

... that has a drop of this 'hound's' blood in his veins, hey?" Page had snarled. "Well, you just watch the old 'hound' close his jaws." Suddenly he became the masterful, domineering man the world knew; he addressed Maillot in the curt, incisive tones which never failed ...
— The Paternoster Ruby • Charles Edmonds Walk

... one unacquainted with his history would have deemed him more than fifty: a man of distinguished appearance, commanding stature, with rather haughty, martial mien, healthful ruddy complexion, and sparkling blue eyes keen and incisive. ...
— Infelice • Augusta Jane Evans Wilson

... certainly far superior, in point of precision and positiveness, to anything of the sort ever written when I was a young man. The author of the article, Monsieur Paul Meyer, points out every error with a remarkably lucid power of incisive criticism. ...
— The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard • Anatole France

... inspected; in the morning, bareback exercise; at twelve, tents struck; at 12.30 dinner; at one, 'boot and saddle.' When we were hooked in and mounted, the Captain made a splendid little speech in the incisive forcible voice we had learned to know so well, saying we had had for long the most trying experience that can befall a soldier, that of standing fast, while he sees his comrades passing him up to the ...
— In the Ranks of the C.I.V. • Erskine Childers

... Van" was an affable, firm, and crafty politician. Although he was not a creative statesman, neither was he a mere schemer. He had definite ideas, if not convictions, of the proper lines of policy, and was able to state them with incisive and forcible argument when occasion demanded. To him, perhaps, more than to any other of the politicians, fell the task of organizing the campaign of Crawford, and afterwards of making the political combinations that brought in the reign of Andrew Jackson. He was the leader of ...
— Rise of the New West, 1819-1829 - Volume 14 in the series American Nation: A History • Frederick Jackson Turner

... justified of his reasonings had there existed no flaw in his premises. The San Reve was far from being gifted with that cold, incisive wisdom which he ascribed to her. Given a situation wherein the San Reve had no concern, and she would be sound enough; her speculations would defend themselves, her advice be worth a following. Endow the San Reve with a personal interest, the more if that interest were one mixed of love and ...
— The President - A novel • Alfred Henry Lewis

... a glance at his brother, and the keen instinct of childhood had perceived that Donald was not in league with his judges. So he looked up into the minister's face and said with incisive impudence, ...
— Duncan Polite - The Watchman of Glenoro • Marian Keith

... surging as of an ocean tide, drowned the accents of the magistrate. At first the words were as meaningless as some Sanskrit formula, but gradually her attention grasped and comprehended. In a strident incisive voice he read from a paper ...
— At the Mercy of Tiberius • August Evans Wilson

... will "stand out gigantic" in mass of imperishable work, in that far-off day, I for one cannot credit. His poetic shortcomings seem too essential to permit of this. That fatal excess of cold over emotive thought, of thought that, however profound, incisive, or scrupulously clear, is not yet impassioned, is a fundamental defect of his. It is the very impetuosity of this mental energy to which is due the miscalled obscurity of much of Browning's work—miscalled, because, however remote in his allusions, ...
— Life of Robert Browning • William Sharp

... Webster proposed a government with enlarged powers, and a legislature of two houses. "If they disagree," said he, "let them sit still until they recover their good humor." The method in which the new government was to enforce its powers was put in a quaint and incisive form. "My principle is," said Webster, "the soul that sinneth, it shall die. Every person ... who shall disobey the supreme authority shall be answerable to Congress." The idea that the constitution needed radical amendment had at last found ...
— Formation of the Union • Albert Bushnell Hart

... at her with the keen, incisive eye of his profession, and pressed his ear once more to her heart, listening to ...
— St. Elmo • Augusta J. Evans

... of intentional notification to those with whom he conversed that he was the greatest logician, metaphysician, moralist, and economist of the day,—his speech was always, even on the most trivial subjects, so clear and incisive, that it at once betrayed the intellectual vigor of the speaker. Not less remarkable also than his uniform refinement of thought, and the deftness with which he at all times expressed it, were the grasp and keenness of his observation, and the strength of ...
— John Stuart Mill; His Life and Works • Herbert Spencer, Henry Fawcett, Frederic Harrison and Other

... you to come and see us once a month; I wonder you don't send us your cards in an envelope. When you do, pray have them with black edges; it will be for the death of my last illusion." It was in this incisive strain that Mrs. Tristram moralized over Newman's so-called neglect, which was in reality a most exemplary constancy. Of course she was joking, but there was always something ironical in her jokes, as there was always something jocular ...
— The American • Henry James

... second satire, is largely autobiographical. It shows, as does The Powers of the Pen, some clever turns of phrases, pithy expressions, and amusing images. It also contains incisive criticism of corruption in the Church, of declining respect for Christianity, and, what seems to Lloyd almost the same thing, of a collapsing class structure. The Church wardens, "uncivil and unbred! ...
— The Methodist - A Poem • Evan Lloyd

... this," he began in a clear, incisive voice, though he could hardly control the trembling of his legs. "I will have no more of it. I shall not permit anyone.... I can see very well what you are at with those allusions.... Inquire, investigate! I defy you, but I will ...
— Under Western Eyes • Joseph Conrad

... front of the platform, he seemed transfigured. His rapid and incisive words poured from ...
— The Authoritative Life of General William Booth • George Scott Railton

... and of officials of the Third Republic, of grandes dames and of dames not so very grand, of ornate Latinists and of inarticulate street hawkers, of priests and generals—in fact, the history of all humanity as it appears to his penetrating eye, serving a mind marvellously incisive in its scepticism, and a heart that, of all contemporary hearts gifted with a voice, contains the greatest treasure of charitable irony. As to M. Anatole France's adventures, these are well-known. They lie open to this prodigal world in the four volumes of the Vie Litteraire, ...
— Notes on Life and Letters • Joseph Conrad

... fervid movement, or the large clearness; a picturesque talent will express itself in concrete images; a genial nature will smile in pleasant firms and inuendos; a rapid, unhesitating, imperious mind will deliver its quick incisive phrases; a full deliberating mind will overflow in ample paragraphs laden with the weight of parentheses and qualifying suggestions. The style which is good in one case would be vicious in another. The broken rhythm which increases the energy of one style would ruin the LARGO ...
— The Principles of Success in Literature • George Henry Lewes

... the Lowell Institute were among the most noted of that distinguished platform, and everywhere the poet was one of the most popular of "attractions". There were not wanting those who maintained that his use of the platform was the correct one, and that the orators who, often by happy but incisive indirection, fought the good fight of the hour ...
— Literary and Social Essays • George William Curtis

... so easily and well that his early desertion of fiction is surprising. His mocking spirit has often suggested comparison with Voltaire, whom he studied and admired. He too is a skeptic and an idol-breaker; but his is a kindlier irony, a less incisive philosophy. Perhaps, however, this influence led to lack of faith in his own work, to his loss of an ideal, which Zola thinks the real secret of his sudden change from novelist to journalist. Voltaire taught him to scoff and disbelieve, to demand "a quoi ...
— Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern, Vol. 1 • Charles Dudley Warner

... stepped briskly at Miss Elting's incisive command. He shinned up the tree without loss ...
— The Meadow-Brook Girls in the Hills - The Missing Pilot of the White Mountains • Janet Aldridge

... Fitch on many diverse occasions. Through incisive comment on people, contemporary manners, and plays, which was let drop in conversation, I was able to estimate the natural tendency of Fitch's mind. His interest was never concerned solely with dominant characters; he was quick rather to sense the idiosyncrasies of the ...
— Representative Plays by American Dramatists: 1856-1911: The Moth and the Flame • Clyde Fitch

... line of development, and so establish the bond between it and the general history of mankind. This psychologic ability contributes vastly to the interest aroused by Mr. Dubnow's historical works outside of the limited circle of scholars. There is a passage in one of his books[1] in which, in his incisive manner, he expresses his views on the limits and tasks of historical writing. As the passage bears upon the methods employed in the present essay, and, at the same time, is a characteristic specimen of our author's style, I take the ...
— Jewish History • S. M. Dubnow

... only of notes, but of rhythm, tempo, phrasing, dynamics, instead of the slovenly muddling which then passed for breadth of style, and the substitution of the conductor's own subjectivity for that of the composer. It has been well expressed in a few incisive words by one of the greatest of the school: "The privilege of an interesting subjectivity is given to few, its expression will always give evidence of that instinctive logic which is a necessary condition of intelligibility."[6] Call Wagner perverse, dislike his art, ...
— Wagner's Tristan und Isolde • George Ainslie Hight

... The others came closer to him. A strange smile was playing about his face, and Wendy saw it and shuddered. While that smile was on his face no one dared address him; all they could do was to stand ready to obey. The order came sharp and incisive. ...
— Peter and Wendy • James Matthew Barrie

... and protested thing couldn't be done. Hour after hour Debate went forward, Ministers refusing to budge; JOSEPH chanced to look in after dinner; thinks it would be well to accept Amendment; says so in brief incisive speech, a very model of debate; and OLD MORALITY straightway capitulates. Remarkable state of things; as a study more interesting ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 101, July 11, 1891 • Various

... and incisive, and brilliant with epigram and point. It contains pithy aphoristic sentences which Burke himself would not have disowned. But these are not its best features: its sustained power of reasoning, its wide sweep of observation and reflection, its elevated ethical ...
— MacMillan & Co.'s General Catalogue of Works in the Departments of History, Biography, Travels, and Belles Lettres, December, 1869 • Unknown

... as most people know, his speeches are remarkable for their point, force, logical reasoning, incisive language, and straight, hard hitting, but, as I have observed, he rarely if ever essays to be funny. By his sharp remarks and his adept turns of speech he often, however, creates much laughter—as, for ...
— A Tale of One City: The New Birmingham - Papers Reprinted from the "Midland Counties Herald" • Thomas Anderton

... Forty teeth, namely twenty-four grinders, four eye-teeth, and twelve incisive. Sheds coat in the spring; in marshy countries sheds hoofs too. Hoofs hard, but requiring to be shod with iron. Age known by marks in mouth." ...
— Adventures in Criticism • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... wholly unlooked for amongst us Friends, and that description of any part of the Lord's works is as unnecessary and carries with it as little of what we mean as can be. Incidents are greater than description, as the telling to me how a tree looked when it was in full foliage is not near so incisive as that the tree fell with a great crash during a storm in the night. Therefore it would be using needless language, which a Friend's discipline enjoins him to beware of, for me to say how friend Hicks's daughter might have seemed to those to whom I wished to impart ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Volume 22. October, 1878. • Various

... President Finney's useful life were indeed mellow and most lovable. In the days of his prime he had a commanding form, a striking face and a clear, incisive style of speech. Simple as a child in his utterances, he sometimes startled his hearers by his unique prayers. For example, he was one day driven from his study at Oberlin by a refractory stovepipe which persisted in tumbling down. At family worship in the evening he said ...
— Recollections of a Long Life - An Autobiography • Theodore Ledyard Cuyler

... from Mr. Pulitzer the secretary began to read in a clear, incisive voice some historical work, novel or play. After a few minutes Mr. Pulitzer would say "Softly," and the secretary's voice was lowered until, though it was still audible, it assumed a monotonous and soothing quality. After a while the order came, "Quite ...
— An Adventure With A Genius • Alleyne Ireland

... he asked gently as the boy sat quietly down; and made irritably incisive by the tendency of near-by men and women to listen as well as watch, he emphasized his expensive order of foods and wines, repeated each item loudly to cheapen the listeners, and ...
— The Best Short Stories of 1919 - and the Yearbook of the American Short Story • Various

... with tubes of extraordinary shapes, holding living organisms, and with instruments—some of them of a form unknown to my experience. I saw too that books, papers and rolls of parchment littered the bare wooden floor. Then Smith's voice rose above the confused sounds about me, incisive, commanding: ...
— The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu • Sax Rohmer

... who are no fools, that are headlong in their language as in their acts, because of their want of forbearance and self-restraining patience. The impulsive genius, gifted with quick thought and incisive speech—perhaps carried away by the cheers of the moment—lets fly a sarcastic sentence which may return upon him to his own infinite damage. Even statesmen might be named, who have failed through their inability to resist the temptation of saying clever and spiteful things at their ...
— Character • Samuel Smiles

... you the truth," he said, speaking in a low, clear, and incisive tone. "You would yourself marry Barbara Lanison, and, having established a hold over her guardian, you have attempted to force her to such an alliance by threats. At every turn in the game you have been foiled. You have failed to impress Mistress Lanison; you failed ...
— The Brown Mask • Percy J. Brebner

... think you heard me, Nan." Lady Gertrude's incisive voice cut sharply across the pulsing excitement of the ...
— The Moon out of Reach • Margaret Pedler

... seems little doubt as to her intellectual distinction. "AEschines, in his dialogue entitled 'Aspasia,'" writes Gomperz, the historian of Greek philosophy (Greek Thinkers, vol. iii, pp. 124 and 343), "puts in the mouth of that distinguished woman an incisive criticism of the mode of life traditional for her sex. It would be exceedingly strange," Gomperz adds, in arguing that an inference may thus be drawn concerning the historical Aspasia, "if three authors—Plato, Xenophon and AEschines—had agreed in fictitiously enduing ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 6 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... was handed to Joan across the luncheon table at the Plaza. She read the characteristic effusion with keen amusement. She could hear the old lady's incisive voice in every word and the tap of her stick across the hall as she laid the letter in the box. How good to see the country again and go through the woods to the old high place where she had turned and found Martin. How good to go back to that old prison house as ...
— Who Cares? • Cosmo Hamilton

... dear," said Mrs. Phelps. The Boston woman's tone would always be incisive, her words clear. But she kept Manzanita's hand. "I think I will get up for dinner. I've been lying here thinking that I've wasted quite enough time, if we are to have a wedding ...
— Poor, Dear Margaret Kirby and Other Stories • Kathleen Norris

... were nevertheless strong men and thoroughly prepared. Sullivan was a good lawyer and a fluent and ready speaker, with great power of illustration. Bartlett was a shrewd, hard-headed man, very keen and incisive, and one whom it was impossible to outwit or deceive. He indulged, in his argument, in some severe reflections upon Mr. Webster's conduct toward Wheelock, which so much incensed Mr. Webster that he referred to Mr. Bartlett's argument in a most contemptuous way, and strenuously ...
— Daniel Webster • Henry Cabot Lodge

... is French," said Lydia, in an incisive haste, "Lydia French. I came to talk with ...
— The Prisoner • Alice Brown

... Baroness was incisive; and though Acton bade her good night and departed, he was still a good ...
— The Europeans • Henry James

... His devotion, wellnigh heroic, to scholarly aims; his quiet studiousness; his filial virtue; his genial sociability, graced by, and gracing, the self-supporting habit of his soul; his intrepidity of intellect, matched by a beautiful boldness and openness in speech; the absence, too, from works so incisive, of a single trace of truculence: all this will now be remembered; and those are unamiable persons, in whom the remembrance does not breed a desire to believe him as great in thought as he was brave, as prosperous in labor ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 11, No. 63, January, 1863 - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... their rector himself. The older members of the congregation loved Brenton as a son, the younger ones as something a little dearer than a brother. One and all, they missed his pastoral visitations, his incisive sermons on the righteousness of honest living; above all else, they missed his voice. If they could have kept these personal marks of the man himself, their rector might have been welcome to believe anything he chose. He was their shepherd ...
— The Brentons • Anna Chapin Ray

... implies. They are the commonalty of language,—private, proletarian words, who do the work, "dum alteri tulerunt honores." They come to us from all handiworks and callings, where you will always find them at their posts. Sharp, energetic, incisive, they do the hard labor of speech,—that of carrying heavy loads of ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 6, No. 38, December, 1860 • Various

... understood. His face was not as red as it had been and there was a different look in his eye. Jed's rough handling had not frightened him, but the Major's cold, incisive tones and the threat of a term in prison had their effect. Nevertheless ...
— Shavings • Joseph C. Lincoln

... half turned back as if to speak, but thinking better of it, he resumed his chair and watched the approach of the detective with an angry frown. Clancy did not glance at Radnor, but gave his evidence in a quick incisive way which forced the breathless attention of every one in the room. He told without interruption the story of his arrival at Four-Pools and his conclusions in regard to the ha'nt and the theft; he omitted, however, all mention ...
— The Four Pools Mystery • Jean Webster

... she, 'come!' and she ushered me without much ado into a den of discomfort where sat a man, with a great beard and such heavy overhanging eyebrows that I could hardly detect the twinkle of his eyes, keen and incisive as they were. ...
— The Staircase At The Hearts Delight - 1894 • Anna Katharine Green (Mrs. Charles Rohlfs)

... and incisive teeth closing level, or upper just fitting over under. Skull: wide at front of brow, narrowing between the ears, and tapering gradually towards the muzzle, with little falling in between or behind the eyes. Eyes: hazel, medium size, close set. Muzzle: ...
— Dogs and All About Them • Robert Leighton

... the law grows dogmatic and incisive in proportion as he approaches the borderland between his law and the natural instincts: "The last revelation of intellect and of sentiment is that in a manner it severs the man from all other men; makes known ...
— Emerson and Other Essays • John Jay Chapman

... not have been possible in the following pages to reproduce the elegant and incisive style of a master of French prose, not even the inadequacies of a translation can obscure the force of his argument. The only introduction, therefore, that seems possible must take the form of a request to the reader to study M. Faguet's criticism ...
— The Cult of Incompetence • Emile Faguet

... complete churches have owed their origin each to a single founder; this is due to the fact that the insight and constructive genius of the founder have chosen out of the mass of the existing thought those broad principles that the times demanded and have presented them in incisive form and with freshness and enthusiasm.[2035] Buddha's followers quickly formed themselves into associations, the entrance into which was by free choice. As his doctrine of salvation was nontheistic, so his church was nontheistic, ...
— Introduction to the History of Religions - Handbooks on the History of Religions, Volume IV • Crawford Howell Toy

... tell to the eye the indisputable truth as words cannot easily tell it to the ear. In this way caricature is one of the most powerful agents in public discussion. But, like speech or writing, it may be merely blackguard. The incisive wit, the rich humor, the withering satire of speech, gain all their point and effect from the truth. They have no power when they are seen ...
— Ars Recte Vivende - Being Essays Contributed to "The Easy Chair" • George William Curtis

... still crossed, but as he talked he had turned a very little and now the muzzle of the weapon was at a level—trained fairly upon Radford's breast. And then came Ferguson's voice again, quiet, cold, incisive. ...
— The Two-Gun Man • Charles Alden Seltzer

... said, "that when I was a boy at Eton, my excellent but very bluff and rough old tutor called upon us, and was so much taken up with being hearty, that he knocked over the coal-scuttle, and didn't let anyone get a word in; and when he went off in a sort of whirlwind, my old aunt, who was an incisive lady, said in a meditative tone: 'How strange it is that the only thing that the Eton masters seem able to teach their boys is the only thing ...
— Father Payne • Arthur Christopher Benson

... Each word was incisive, and seemed to cut slightly like falling steel from those soft, warm lips. A sudden desire rushed through me to teach her—at any rate, to exert myself to the utmost to teach her—that her life was valuable to her for other things than the capacity it gave to work. ...
— To-morrow? • Victoria Cross

... that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone," ever preached such a sermon as Burns in his Address to the unco Guid? and in his epistle of advice to a young friend, what wisdom! what incisive aphorisms! In passages like these scattered throughout his writings, and in some single poems, he has passed beyond all bonds of place and nationality, and spoken home to the ...
— Robert Burns • Principal Shairp

... assistant-principal may be called to consult with the trustees any day and Kathryn has twice refused a college professorship) since these family adjustments, I repeat, Mrs. Dickett's tongue has grown steadily more incisive and her attempts at scaling the fortress of Mr. ...
— The Strange Cases of Dr. Stanchon • Josephine Daskam Bacon

... especially occupies the public mind, those known to be interested in it are compelled to listen to many weary platitudes. Lady Byron's remarks, however, caught my ear and arrested my attention by their peculiar incisive quality, their originality, and the evidence they gave that she was as well informed on all our matters as the best American statesman could be. I had no wearisome course to go over with her as to the difference ...
— Lady Byron Vindicated • Harriet Beecher Stowe

... shortness of tail (18 mm.), narrowness across zygomata (16 mm.), and grayish pelage. In the long braincase, heavy rostrum, greater condylobasilar length, greater lambdoidal breadth, long rostrum, and longer incisive foramina, it agrees closely with specimens of S. c. saturatus, to which subspecies we refer ...
— Comments on the Taxonomy and Geographic Distribution of North American Microtines • E. Raymond Hall

... Trescorre had aged in the intervening years. His delicate features had withered like a woman's, and the fine irony of his smile had taken an edge of cruelty. His face suggested a worn engraving, the lines of which have been deepened by a too-incisive instrument. ...
— The Valley of Decision • Edith Wharton

... incisive questions of McNally, Porter had said nothing, but had stared straight out of the window. For the past ten minutes he had been waiting for Thompson to run down. It was ...
— The Short Line War • Merwin-Webster

... voices in arousing among the German Liberals the hope of similar liberty, while in France itself they helped to make known to French culture the deeper currents of German thought and literature. In particular their brilliant wit and incisive sarcasm set the tone for the feuilleton literature of all Mid-Europe. By their very isolation they were enabled to regard men and affairs with a certain detachment, and both wrote with an iridescent insolence which can only be described ...
— The Menorah Journal, Volume 1, 1915 • Various

... men who were very far from identifying themselves with the Evangelical school. Thus Paley, in his seventh charge,[682] comments upon this point. And Bishop Horsley, in his first Charge to the Diocese of St. David's in 1709, stigmatises the unchristian method of preaching in that dignified but incisive language of which he was ...
— The English Church in the Eighteenth Century • Charles J. Abbey and John H. Overton

... contribution of the gorgeous East the French observers, a little jealous perhaps, were severe. One of them says: "They rely on the sun to make it sparkle," and, when the fog is too thick, on gas. The curiosity about it, in the eyes of this incisive Gaul, was "not the divinity, but the worshipers." All day long a crowd filed solemnly by it under the supervision of a detachment of police, each pilgrim bestowing upon the fetish, "an egg-shaped lump of glass," ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. XVII, No. 99, March, 1876 • Various

... Lechlade railway station to meet them. “You are now going to be introduced to my fellow partner,” Rossetti said. At that time I only knew of the famous firm by name, and I asked Rossetti for an explanation, which he gave in his usual incisive way. ...
— Old Familiar Faces • Theodore Watts-Dunton

... moment conversing with still another young lady, who had more years than the last-named-short, compact figure, round girlish face, good, strong, dark eyes, modest in bearing, self-possessed in manner, sensible-who made ready and incisive comments, and seemed to have thought deeply on a large range of topics, but had a sort of downright practicality and cool independence, with all her femininity of bearing, that rather, puzzled her interlocutor. It occurred to Mr. King ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... heard an order from a man's lips so incisive, so truly commanding, so fearful. The American turned pale and in the twinkling of an eye smothered the flame. The beautiful Canadian closed her eyes. But the captain, as if nothing had occurred, continued to converse with ...
— Atlantis • Gerhart Hauptmann

... stated with any vehemence, that moment it is certain that the speaker has antagonists in his eye. There is a story of Professor Blackie at Edinburgh making a tirade against the stuffiness of the old English universities to Jowett, the incisive Master of Balliol. At the end, he said generously, "I hope you people at Oxford do not think that we are your enemies up here?" "No," said Jowett drily; "to tell the truth, we don't think about you at all!" The man who is ...
— Escape and Other Essays • Arthur Christopher Benson

... sharp glance, as incisive as any that ever flashed up and down the lines of a business ledger, gleamed from under ...
— The Treasure of Heaven - A Romance of Riches • Marie Corelli

... the refined life she did? Then he chanced upon Kipling's poems, and was swept away by the lilt and swing and glamour with which familiar things had been invested. He was amazed at the man's sympathy with life and at his incisive psychology. Psychology was a new word in Martin's vocabulary. He had bought a dictionary, which deed had decreased his supply of money and brought nearer the day on which he must sail in search of more. Also, it incensed Mr. ...
— Martin Eden • Jack London

... while the Premier on the Blue Bench would be answering the interpellations of the Opposition in sharp incisive tones, Rafael's brain would begin to doze, reduced to jelly, as it were, by the incessant hammering of words, words, words! Before his closed eyes a dark veil would begin to unroll as if the moist, ...
— The Torrent - Entre Naranjos • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... The windows had been smashed by shrapnel, and bits of glass and things crunched under foot. The room was full of noises—the crackle of the telephones, the crooning of the woman, the croak of the wounded old man, the clear and incisive tones of the general and his brigade-major, the rattle of not too distant rifles, the booming of guns and occasionally the terrific, overwhelming crash of a shell bursting in ...
— Adventures of a Despatch Rider • W. H. L. Watson

... soul was not of the kind which seeks its outlet in tears and wailing; it had turned and struck inward, and now his deliberate ferocity was icy and devilish. Only a glint in his eyes told of exultation, and his words were sharp and incisive; one could well imagine one heard the click of his teeth as they bit off the consonants: every letter was clear-cut, every syllable startling ...
— Hopalong Cassidy's Rustler Round-Up - Bar-20 • Clarence Edward Mulford

... those who know no other English. Out in a village, where English is never spoken, it sounds curious suddenly to hear from the cricket field, "How's that?" pronounced sharply and clearly; and then the prompt and equally incisive reply, "Not out." Wonderful to say, the decisions of the umpires are accepted with tolerable readiness, except when they are flagrantly contrary to fact, as they sometimes are. A few of the politically disaffected students ...
— India and the Indians • Edward F. Elwin

... amuse, they entertain, they call a check to the feverishness of modern life; but they are rarely stimulating or suggestive. They are better adapted, it must be owned, to please the many than the critical few, who demand more incisive treatment and a deeper consideration of the problems of life. And it is very fortunate that a writer who can reach the great public and entertain it can also elevate and refine its tastes, set before it high ideas, instruct it agreeably, ...
— Washington Irving • Charles Dudley Warner

... horses' feet. He took them, with a look of astonishment and a "Thank ye, lady!" and instantly buried a very grimy face in the bunch of perfume. The girl stepped into the carriage, the door shut with the incisive bang peculiar to well-made carriages of this sort, and in a few moments the coachman was speeding the horses rapidly up one of ...
— In His Steps • Charles M. Sheldon

... House of Eld is incisive writ out of true experience—phantasy there becomes solemn, if not, for the ...
— Robert Louis Stevenson - a Record, an Estimate, and a Memorial • Alexander H. Japp

... reader's interest. The Novel, which demands sentiment, style, and imagery, is the greatest creation of modern days; it is the successor of stage comedy grown obsolete with its restrictions. Facts and ideas are all within the province of fiction. The intellect of an incisive moralist, like La Bruyere, the power of treating character as Moliere could treat it, the grand machinery of a Shakespeare, together with the portrayal of the most subtle shades of passion (the one treasury left untouched by our predecessors)—for ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... Fabre never ceased to multiply his pin-pricks in "the vast and luminous balloon of transformism (evolution), in order to empty it and expose it in all its inanity." (9/12.) By no means the least original feature of his work is this passionate and incisive argument, in which, with a remarkable power of dialectic, and at times in a tone of lively banter, he endeavoured to remove "this comfortable pillow from those who have not the courage to inquire into its fundamental nature." He attacked these "adventurous syntheses, ...
— Fabre, Poet of Science • Dr. G.V. (C.V.) Legros

... of the strongest works of fiction of the present decade. The author is a philosopher and a philanthropist. Her clear, incisive reasoning, her large sympathies, combined with rare power of description, enable her to give the world a story which will hold in its thrall even the most shallow novel-reader who can ...
— Education and the Higher Life • J. L. Spalding

... tell you," said Augustus Bartlett, briskly, "what I'd do, if I were you." Augustus Bartlett, who occupied an intensely subordinate position in the firm of Kahn, Morris and Brown, the Wall Street brokers, always affected a brisk, incisive style of speech, as befitted a man in close touch with the great ones of Finance. "I'd sink a couple of hundred thousand in some good, safe bond-issue—we've just put one out which you would do well to consider—and play about with the rest. When I say play about, ...
— The Adventures of Sally • P. G. Wodehouse

... stealing glances at myself, I became conscious that my little blond man was studying me. Other men had looked at me, but never with such a cold, calculating gaze—and when he spoke to me, I nearly jumped out of my shoes—his voice was crisp, incisive. ...
— Contrary Mary • Temple Bailey

... his life, and the life in the great outer world, in which she was girlishly and eagerly interested. She asked him many questions about it—direct and incisive questions which showed that she had already formed decided opinions and views about it. Yet it was plain to be seen that she did not regard it as anything she might ever share herself. Hers was the dispassionate interest with which she might have listened to a tale of the land of ...
— Kilmeny of the Orchard • Lucy Maud Montgomery

... attitude,—that is the subject. The execution is simply superb. Every line is strong and effective: the modelling, the poise of the figure and the breadth of the shadows in dry point, are masterly. The Salon articles, five in number, are from the pen of M. Ph. Burty, the most radical, incisive and original writer on the staff—champion of the Impressionists, bitter enemy of the Academics and warm admirer of any fresh, sincere and individual talent. In his short review of the work of American ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. 26, October, 1880 • Various

... came into the man's incisive stare. "Do you really think it worth while for me to ...
— V. V.'s Eyes • Henry Sydnor Harrison

... of retranslating his Greek Testament, Jose often read to Carmen portions from the various books of the Bible, or told her the old sacred stories that children so love to hear. But Carmen's incisive thought cut deep into them, and Jose generally found himself hanging upon the naive interpretations of this young girl. When, after reading aloud the two opposing accounts of the Creation, as given in the first and second chapters of Genesis, ...
— Carmen Ariza • Charles Francis Stocking

... aside to inspect a motor that lay dismounted on a wooden stand, as if there were nothing further to discuss. Indeed, though his speech was rapid and incisive, and his every movement full of an allure that spoke of splendidly poised muscles, he was in face and manner alike the most singularly immobile man I had ever met. He gave the impression of employing neither words nor actions except in ...
— Master Tales of Mystery, Volume 3 • Collected and Arranged by Francis J. Reynolds

... has too much sense to write for your voluntary schools. Or it would be too clever and incisive for you. Ah! I see it was so by your face! What did he send you? Have you ...
— The Long Vacation • Charlotte M. Yonge

... the room. His eyes are big, very full and very keen. As you enter he says curtly, "Take a seat." He waits, looking down, for you to state your business, then suddenly fixes you with a piercing glance, and goes to the heart of the subject by one incisive sentence, which leaves no more to be said. This description is a general type of several interviews with him. On this occasion the general inquired concerning the facts, looking keenly, searchingly, and ...
— The Gatlings at Santiago • John H. Parker

... be hereinafter described, is not the sole surviving relic of the Good Duke's rule. Turn where you please on this island domain, memories of that charming and incisive personality will meet your eye and ear; memories in stone-schools, convents, decayed castles and bathing chalets; memories in the spoken word—proverbs attributed to him, legends and traditions of his sagacity that still linger among the populace. IN THE DAYS OF ...
— South Wind • Norman Douglas

... to realise how it stirs the blood of good men here. And not merely were there this evening a fire, a keenness, a power of stirring a multitude to the depth of their nature, which are rare indeed, but an incisive severity of denunciation which few had expected from that calm, cautious man. And if the preacher was at white-heat, so was the congregation long before he was done. Several times there would have been loud applause, had it ...
— The Scottish Reformation - Its Epochs, Episodes, Leaders, and Distinctive Characteristics • Alexander F. Mitchell

... sometimes with no expression at all. But there existed this reason and this it was and this alone which had caused him to appear upon her threshold and it had also been the power which had prevented his disengaging himself with more incisive finality when he found himself ridiculously clasped about the knees as one who played the part of an ...
— The Head of the House of Coombe • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... to let you preach to my congregation too, if you'll write this sermon. I've talked to you before about reporting your sermons in Saturday Afternoon. They would be a feature; and if we could open with this one, and have a good 'incisive' editorial on it, disputing some of your positions, and treating certain others with a little satire, at the same time maintaining a very respectful attitude towards you on the whole, and calling attention to the fact that there was a strong and increasing ...
— The Minister's Charge • William D. Howells

... complexion without a scrap of color in it, and her eyes were of too light a blue to redeem the general insipidity of her appearance; but when she spoke that insipidity vanished, for her lips were very firm, and were apt to utter incisive words, and at such moments her pale blue eyes would flash with a light fire which was full of sarcasm, and might ...
— A Bunch of Cherries - A Story of Cherry Court School • L. T. Meade

... fashion, satire is perennial as an attribute in literature, and we have every reason to cherish it and welcome it as warmly as of old. The novels of Thackeray, as I have already said, contain some of the most delicately incisive shafts of satire that have been barbed by any writer of the present century. "George Eliot", also, though in a less degree, has shown herself a satirist of much power and pungency, while others of our latter-day novelists manifest themselves as possessed of a faculty of satire ...
— English Satires • Various

... sex the years had seemed to have dried out of her personality, made a much better witness than her husband. She was acid and incisive, but her very forbidding aspect hinted of the "good woman" who never made mistakes. She described the stranger who had knocked at her door with a good ...
— Tangled Trails - A Western Detective Story • William MacLeod Raine

... the 49 etchings in which he has registered the aspect of contemporary London and New York are among the most brilliant and incisive of Mr Pennell's ...
— Law and Laughter • George Alexander Morton

... evening was brought about only by the return of Morrell from his engagement. Keith had utterly forgotten his fatigue, and was tingling with the enthusiasm to which his nature always rose under stimulus. The Englishman, very self-contained, clean-cut, incisive, brought a new atmosphere. He was cordial and polite, but not expansive. Keith came down from the clouds. He remembered, with compunction, Nan sitting in the armchair, the lateness of the hour, his ...
— The Gray Dawn • Stewart Edward White

... that his colleagues in the Senate, especially the younger members, are somewhat in fear of the incisive tongue, for he wields it frequently and contemptuously. When after his election, Mr. Harding went South with Senator Frelinghuysen, Senator Davis Elkins, and Senator Hale, the older Senators, not, perhaps, without a tinge of disappointment ...
— The Mirrors of Washington • Anonymous

... this?" a chill, incisive voice demanded. Barnabas turned, and lowering the cane, stood looking curiously at the speaker. A tall, slender man he was, with a face that might have been any age,—a mask-like face, smooth and long, and devoid ...
— The Amateur Gentleman • Jeffery Farnol et al

... but impotent darling!" came Belle's clear, incisive thought, bubbling with unrestrained merriment. "For our Doctor Garlock, the Prime Exponent and First Disciple of Truth, what an act! Esthetically, he'd like to father her a child, it says here ...
— The Galaxy Primes • Edward Elmer Smith

... and promising of University scholars, and all those who had assisted to fit him for his career in the Church, had expected great things of him. Some said he would be a Bishop before he was thirty; others considered that he would probably content himself with being the most intellectual and incisive preacher of his time. But he turned out to be neither one nor the other. A certain Henry Arthur Brent, his fellow student at College and five years his senior, had, with apparent ease, outstripped him in the race for honour, though lacking in all ...
— God's Good Man • Marie Corelli

... he said, in slow, incisive accents which carried far, "that a set of peculiar circumstances has led you Steynholme folk to suspect me of being responsible, in some way, for the death of the lady whose body was found in the river near my house. Now, I want to tell you that I am ...
— The Postmaster's Daughter • Louis Tracy

... compose, Jimmy found that to his future father-in-law comparatively easy. There was not much feeling in it perhaps—even Vera, who read it with partial eyes, could not help noting the fact—but, after all, it was in a sense a matter of business; and so she was able to find consolation in its clear, incisive phrasing. She was glad when it was finished, more glad still when they had strolled down to the pillar box outside the gates, and dropped the envelope in it. Their relations were on a definite footing ...
— People of Position • Stanley Portal Hyatt

... The incisive tone, low as it was, penetrated the man's muddled brain. His blustering assurance collapsed visibly, increasing fourfold his ludicrous aspect. He staggered backward, muttering incoherent words that might ...
— Captain Desmond, V.C. • Maud Diver

... turned to face the rushing tide of steel, the regiment of Bougainville whirled on their flank and then Bougainville was almost at his side. He saw fire leap from the little man's eye. He saw him shout commands, rapid incisive, and correct and he saw clearly that if this were Napoleon's day that marshal's baton in the knapsack would indeed become ...
— The Forest of Swords - A Story of Paris and the Marne • Joseph A. Altsheler

... afternoon, as Lucius Brady was beaming on him through his spectacles, and indulging in an incisive criticism on the champagne at Government House, Stingaree quietly garroted him. A gag was in all readiness, likewise strips of coarse sheeting torn up for the purpose in the night. Black in the face, but with breath still in his body, the criminologist was carefully gagged and ...
— Stingaree • E. W. (Ernest William) Hornung

... Volunteer Aid Detachment Nurses claimed representation. So did the munitions workers of Godbury. The Countess of Laleham, the wife of the Lord Lieutenant of the County, a most imposing and masterful woman, signified (in genteel though incisive language) her intention to take a leading part in the proceedings and to bring along her husband, apparently as an unofficial ornament. This, of course, upset our plans, which had all to be ...
— The Red Planet • William J. Locke

... essential king," but his kingship rests upon his carrying out the kingliest of mottoes—"Ich dien." Browning all his life had a hearty contempt for the foppery of "Art for Art," and he never conveyed it with more incisive brilliance than in the sketch of Bordello's "opposite," ...
— Robert Browning • C. H. Herford

... his long beautiful groundstrokes, forehand, or backhand, his incisive crisp volleys and fine, generalship based on young experience, is a notable ...
— The Art of Lawn Tennis • William T. Tilden, 2D

... be ceaseless, incisive and merciless competition in securing and holding circulations, as well as in the outward statements made of individual circulations to those who purchase advertising space. In this, as in all other forms of enterprise, there ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 795, March 28, 1891 • Various

... then, with quick deeds, incisive words, he separated the immediate combatants, and ordered the ...
— Peace on Earth, Good-will to Dogs • Eleanor Hallowell Abbott

... heed the foreman's scoffing. Instead, he began in a low incisive voice the narration of his experiences of the previous night, beginning with the bear hunt and ending with his finding his way out of ...
— The Pony Rider Boys in Montana • Frank Gee Patchin

... and a little of the reserve of the savage. His silence was always eloquent, and in it was neither stupidity nor vacuity. With friends he was witty, affable, generous, lovable. In business negotiation he was rapid, direct, incisive; or smooth, plausible and convincing—all depending upon the man with whom he was dealing. He often did to others what they were trying to do to him, and he did it first. He had the splendid ability to say "No" when he should, a thing many good ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Volume 11 (of 14) - Little Journeys to the Homes of Great Businessmen • Elbert Hubbard

... incisive, authoritative, sometimes quaint, never obscure, except when he is handling nebulous subjects. His paragraphs are full of brittle sentences that break apart and are independent units, like the fragments of a coral colony. His imagery is frequently daring, leaping from the ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... to listen very attentively to a theme which has so much to be said in its favour that it is a pity to complicate its advocacy by the introduction of an extraneous and most difficult question. So it was, however; with pale, earnest face, and accents more incisive than before, Praxagora said if Bible and religion stood in the way of Woman's Rights, then Bible and religion must go. That was the gist of her remarks. I need not follow her in detail, because the supplementary matter sounded more bitterly still; ...
— Mystic London: - or, Phases of occult life in the metropolis • Charles Maurice Davies

... sharply. She was more incisive than her sister. Both were below the medium height, and stout, but Sophia was firm where Amanda was flabby. Amanda wore a baggy old muslin (it was a hot day), and Sophia was uncompromisingly hooked up in a starched and boned cambric over ...
— The Wind in the Rose-bush and Other Stories of the Supernatural • Mary Eleanor Wilkins Freeman

... was impossible for Cameron to remember that he was dealing with a mere servant of the Markovians. The Id's words were so incisive and his manner so commanding that it seemed he must be speaking in ...
— Cubs of the Wolf • Raymond F. Jones

... is easy,"—says one of the keenest and most incisive of theologians,—"for any one in the cloisters of the schools to indulge himself in idle speculations on the merit of works to justify men; but when he comes into the presence of God, he must bid farewell to these amusements, for there ...
— Sermons to the Natural Man • William G.T. Shedd

... interrupted. He asked sharp, incisive questions and got busy. Presently he reached for a 'phone, got in touch with a sergeant at the police desk in the upper corridor, and sent an attendant with Johnnie ...
— The Big-Town Round-Up • William MacLeod Raine

... Abraham Lincoln as the Republican candidate for United States Senator to succeed Senator Douglas in the National Legislature. On June 16th—after such nomination—Mr. Lincoln made to the Convention a speech—in which, with great and incisive power, he assailed Mr. Douglas's position as well as that of the whole Democratic Pro-Slavery Party, and announced in compact and cogent phrase, from his own point of view, the attitude, upon the Slavery question, of ...
— The Great Conspiracy, Complete • John Alexander Logan



Words linked to "Incisive" :   keen, incisiveness, penetrating, perceptive, incision, penetrative, acute, discriminating, sharp, incise, piercing



Copyright © 2021 Dictonary.net