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Triviality   Listen
noun
Triviality  n.  (pl. trivialities)  
1.
The quality or state of being trivial; trivialness.
2.
That which is trivial; a trifle. "The philosophy of our times does not expend itself in furious discussions on mere scholastic trivialities."






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Triviality" Quotes from Famous Books



... His one desire was to become the father of a man like himself, and it held him with a grip he only partially understood, for it was the first great desire, the first great passion of his life. Falling in love was a mere physical triviality, like warm sun or cool water, beside this divine hope of immortality: "I continue." He gave candles to Santa Deodata, for he was always religious at a crisis, and sometimes he went to her himself and ...
— Where Angels Fear to Tread • E. M. Forster

... enough to arouse the most violent scenes. Hitherto they had been restrained by the presence of others, but now it was the same whether they were alone or not. Very soon, as far as brutality of expression or the triviality of the question was concerned, he was as ...
— Absalom's Hair • Bjornstjerne Bjornson

... a strong streak of triviality in them, which you don't see in cats. They won't have fine enough characters to concentrate on the things of most weight. They will talk and think far more of trifles than of what is important. Even when they are reasonably civilized, this will be so. Great ...
— This Simian World • Clarence Day Jr.

... little island home has its history. The land is small, but the changes among the inhabitants, and the achievements of its heroes, have redeemed it from triviality, and made it among nations great and important. The deeds Englishmen have done, the afflictions they have suffered, the victories they have won, and the results that they have brought about, conspire to make every county famous for something. ...
— Grace Darling - Heroine of the Farne Islands • Eva Hope

... simultaneous impulses, which scatter their seeds over the entire territory.—On the one hand, at then end of July, 1791, all moderate men, the friends of law and order, who still hold the clubs in check, all constitutionalists, or Feuillants, withdraw from them and leave them to exaggeration or the triviality of proposing motions; the political tone immediately falls to that of the tavern and guard-house, so that wherever one or the other is found, there is a political club. On the other hand, a convocation of the electoral ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 3 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 2 (of 3) • Hippolyte A. Taine

... uncommon sight to see a clever man sit mum, abashed by the chatter of a cheery shallow-pate, who is happily unconscious of the oppressive triviality of his own conversation. Norburn's eager flow of words froze at the contact of Dick's small-talk, and he was a discontented auditor of ball-room and club gossip. It amazed him that a man should know, ...
— Half a Hero - A Novel • Anthony Hope

... reflections which he ought to have offered upon her altar. That is what struck me as odd; not his neglecting to remember her in a moment of danger, since then we often forget everything except some triviality of the hour. But, of course, this is all nonsense, which I oughtn't to write here even, as most people have their own ways of being fond of each other. Also, it is ...
— Stella Fregelius • H. Rider Haggard

... scholars' gowns, and close the doors of our studies, and affect to despise this rude voice; but we cannot shut it out. It comes to us from wherever men are at work, from wherever they are truly living, and accuses us of unfaithfulness, of triviality, of mere stage-play; and none of us can escape conviction except he prove himself worthy of his time—a time in which the great masters have brought literature back to life, and filled its ebbing veins with the red tides of reality. We cannot all equal them; we need not copy them; but ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... a truism to say that we ought to look at life in the light of eternity. Only then does the true significance of the meanest action in life appear. Life is redeemed from triviality and vulgarity. So far from worldly possessions losing their value, and ordinary occupations appearing insignificant, their importance is realised as never before. If man does not live for ever, his character and actions seem of comparative unimportance. If he does live for ever, it ...
— Letters to His Friends • Forbes Robinson

... after effect of a good dinner, that dwindling away of pleasant emotions; perhaps it was the very triviality of the offense for which he was thus suddenly arraigned; at any rate, he lost his temper, and he was rather formidable when ...
— The Place of Honeymoons • Harold MacGrath

... at once that thought took hold of me with an overwhelming power—I saw the truth as I had never seen it before in my life. I saw how we live in society; and how social convention and triviality have us in such a grasp that it never even dawns upon us that the laws it dictates are not eternal and necessary! "You must be dignified, and calm, and commonplace," ...
— The Journal of Arthur Stirling - "The Valley of the Shadow" • Upton Sinclair

... the Jews—at any rate as it is set forth in their own sacred Books—is pre-eminently the history of a race singled out by an overruling Power for the education of conscience. To this bear witness the laws of the Two Tables, and most of those other laws, purely ceremonial, whose apparent triviality in some particulars is at any rate a mode of symbolizing what was the main object of the Lawgiver—keeping the heart and conscience pure. To this bear witness the indignant denunciations of their prophets, as well as the impassioned pleadings ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science Volume 15, No. 89, May, 1875 • Various

... was so full of goodness and hospitable feeling, that it kindled animation in the most cheerless or torpid of invalids. I cannot imagine that any memorabilia occurred during the visit; but I will use the time that would else be lost upon the settling of that point, in putting down any triviality that occurs to my recollection. Both Lamb and myself had a furious love for nonsense, headlong nonsense. Excepting Professor Wilson, I have known nobody who had the same passion to the same extent. And things of that nature better illustrate the realities of Lamb's social ...
— Biographical Essays • Thomas de Quincey

... also because he was a man whose glowing hatred of all injustice and sympathy for all suffering never evaporated in empty words. His fine literary perception enabled him to detect the genuine excellence which underlay the superficial triviality of Crabbe's verses. He discovered the genius where men like North and Shelburne might excusably see nothing but the mendicant versifier; and a benevolence still rarer than his critical ability forbade ...
— Hours in a Library - New Edition, with Additions. Vol. II (of 3) • Leslie Stephen

... temperament, the occupation, and the other conditions, of the individual. Pedagogics as a science can only go over its general principles, and these can be named briefly. It we attempt to speak of details, we fall easily into triviality. So very important to the whole life of man is the proper care of his physical nature during the first stages of its development, that the science of Pedagogics must not omit to consider the different systems which different people, according to their time, ...
— Pedagogics as a System • Karl Rosenkranz

... touches and ennobles, convinces, accuses the reader. Through no art beside the art of words can the kindness of a man's affections be expressed. In the cuts you shall find faithfully parodied the quaintness and the power, the triviality and the surprising freshness of the author's fancy; there you shall find him out-stripped in ready symbolism and the art of bringing things essentially invisible before the eyes: but to feel the contact of essential goodness, to be made in love with piety, the ...
— Lay Morals • Robert Louis Stevenson

... of a perfect face, a low and modulated voice and a mind that never mistook flippancy and triviality for wit, he met her everywhere on common ground, and she wondered why she had not seen the attractions of this grave, quiet young man long before! Surely such a conquest—and she was not certain yet that it was achieved—was worth ...
— Before the Dawn - A Story of the Fall of Richmond • Joseph Alexander Altsheler

... chapters descriptive of the youthful character and career of Henry the Fifth; we end with six chapters devoted to the facts of his reign. Through all this, it appears to us, we are conducted at a pace of singular equality, not to be lightened by the triviality of minor incidents, nor greatly delayed by the most important occurrences. Nearly all the figures of the picture are in the foreground, and few are more prominent than the least significant accessory of the landscape; and, for once, it is scarcely possible ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 103, May, 1866 • Various

... Commission was founded by a spiritist, partly with a view to investigate mediums; and one of the five colleagues who declined my invitation is widely quoted as an effective critic of our evidence. So runs the world away! I should not indulge in the personality and triviality of such anecdotes, were it not that they paint the temper of our time, a temper which, thanks to Frederic Myers more than to any one, will certainly be impossible after this generation. Myers was, I think, decidedly exclusive and ...
— Memories and Studies • William James

... strength in the transit. I mastered the rising hysteria, lifted up my head, and took a firm stand on the stool. Helen Burns asked some slight question about her work of Miss Smith, was chidden for the triviality of the inquiry, returned to her place, and smiled at me as she again went by. What a smile! I remember it now, and I know that it was the effluence of fine intellect, of true courage; it lit up her marked lineaments, her thin face, her sunken grey eye, like a reflection from the aspect ...
— Jane Eyre - an Autobiography • Charlotte Bronte

... only signify something of which an image can be formed in the mind". There is perhaps no word in the whole compass of English, so seldom used with any tolerable correctness; in none is the distance so immense between the frequent sublimity of the word in its proper use, and the triviality of it in its ...
— English Past and Present • Richard Chenevix Trench

... footman who opened the door of the Duke of Burghley's house. Fairfield, at the man's look of astonishment, remembered that he was unshaven, and that his clothes had been thrown on haphazard. It was a queer thought to intrude at such a time. But he was usually a scrupulously dressed man, and the triviality ...
— The Grell Mystery • Frank Froest

... utter triviality of the pretext were left doubtful in the debate, if its towering absurdity were not plainly apparent, if its simple wickedness did not already stand before us, we should find all these characteristics ...
— The Duel Between France and Germany • Charles Sumner

... accuracy of his diagnosis, or deny that more than anything else the disease of Western civilisation is a general lack of directing ideals other than those which are included in the gospel of commercialism. It may surely be further admitted that even intellectual activity has too much of triviality about it to-day; that if people despise the schoolmen, it is rather owing to their virtues than their defects, because impressionism has taken the place of thought, and brilliancy that of labour. On the other hand, Acton's dream of ethical agreement, apart from religion, seems further ...
— The History of Freedom • John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton

... so in England, a surfeit of materialism had produced a lack of high spiritual purpose in the nation at large; there was much confusion of ideas and ideals; and also much triviality, which was especially offensive when it masqueraded under some high-sounding name. An unhealthy sentimentality—the antithesis of morality—has gone hand in hand with a peculiarly sordid and repulsive materialism. The result was a soil in which various ...
— Towards The Goal • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... even after he had turned the key in his own door to find the light still blazing, betraying the fact of Helen's wakeful presence. He dallied over the triviality of ...
— Broken to the Plow • Charles Caldwell Dobie

... he suddenly said, cutting across some little triviality of hers with which she was striving to cover his silence—"sorry you did not have even one of the roses I walked ten miles ...
— Mrs. Day's Daughters • Mary E. Mann

... reminiscent appearances of the introductory horn-call, a long-sustained dominant note introduces the second theme which seems a bit cloying, to be sure, but is just suited to the melting tone-color of the clarinet. The closing theme borders on triviality; the Exposition ends, however, with some exceedingly brilliant improvisations on the rhythmic figure of the main theme. The following Development is rather flimsy and we need expend upon it no critical powder. ...
— Music: An Art and a Language • Walter Raymond Spalding

... as could the women. With the former everything was of the antiquated and rough-hewn and ill-fitting and unsuitable and badly-adapted and inferior kind; their heads were full of nothing but discord and triviality and confusion and slovenliness of thought. In brief, they displayed everywhere the male bent, the rude, ponderous nature which is incapable either of managing a household or of jumping to a conclusion, ...
— Dead Souls • Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol

... College of Winchester at Oxenford", marks a very decided epoch in the development of English architecture. His works, in an architectural style found nowhere but in England, are the outcome of a mind free from triviality, and full of common sense. His buildings are admirably suited to their purpose, and at first sight they appear to be so simple in design that it has been suggested that Wykeham cared more for the constructive than the artistic side of building. It is true that he considered ...
— Winchester • Sidney Heath

... the lovely entourage of this notorious place and the triviality and vulgar nature of its commerce. The one long, winding street may be described as a vast bazaar, more suited to Chaucer's Canterbury Pilgrims than to holders of railway tickets and contemporaries of ...
— In the Heart of the Vosges - And Other Sketches by a "Devious Traveller" • Matilda Betham-Edwards

... in a way, illustrated by the most violent symptoms of disease. They frequently represent the efforts of the organism to free itself from disorders and injuries. This is by no means equivalent merely to the triviality, si vis pacem para bellum, but it is the wide generalization of which that special case is a particular. Conflict itself is the resolution of the tension between the contraries. That it eventuates in peace is only a single, specially obvious and evident, expression ...
— Introduction to the Science of Sociology • Robert E. Park

... animal scenting freedom. The sentences she dropped were shallow, impatient, even stupid. And yet there was Rufus Cosgrave with his hungry eyes fixed on her, trapped by the nameless force that lay behind her triviality, ...
— The Dark House • I. A. R. Wylie

... thunderbolt, by the height of the Waterworks Tower on Campden Hill. I don't know whether Londoners generally realise how high it looks when one comes out, in this way, almost immediately under it. For the second it seemed to me that at the foot of it even human war was a triviality. For the second I felt as if I had been drunk with some trivial orgie, and that I had been sobered by the shock of that shadow. A moment afterwards, I realised that under it was going on something more enduring than stone, ...
— The Napoleon of Notting Hill • Gilbert K. Chesterton

... left me, I lay back in my chair and asked myself what had happened to me?—that Maurice and all that lot seemed such miles and miles away from me—as miles and miles as they would have seemed in their triviality, when we used to discuss important questions ...
— Man and Maid • Elinor Glyn

... thing was unspeakably painful. He was willing enough to meet McVay in a grim interchange over his strange combination of facility and crime, of doom and triviality. But when it became any question of playing upon Cecilia's unconsciousness of the situation, he writhed. Yet, a little discernment would have shown him how natural, how encouraging from his own point of view her unconsciousness was. To fall in love thoroughly is sufficiently disconcerting. Which ...
— The Burglar and the Blizzard • Alice Duer Miller

... that in the shifting architectural life of New York the actual original scenes of the incidents had been demolished and built upon by new apartment-houses, or new railroad stations, or new factories seventy-five stories high, was an unobstructing triviality. Accounts of his manner of conducting himself in European courts to which he had supposedly been bidden, of his immense popularity in glittering circles, of his finely democratic bearing when confronted by emperors surrounded by their guilty splendors, were the joy ...
— T. Tembarom • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... insignificant alterations, for printing on the title page in brazen effrontery "newly translated into German," and for berating Bode for his failure after cursing him with condescension. Passages are cited to demonstrate the comparative triviality of Benzler's work. Abrief comparison of the two translations shows that Benzler often translates more correctly than his predecessor, but still more often makes meaningless alterations in word-order, or in trifling words where ...
— Laurence Sterne in Germany • Harvey Waterman Thayer

... glow of visitors or birthday celebration, she would be persuaded to recall some of those old songs and simple apologues, with such charm that even her husband, to whom verse was naturally an incomprehensible triviality, was visibly softened, and perhaps, deep in the sadness of his silent nature, moved to a passing realisation of a certain something kind and musical in life which he ...
— Young Lives • Richard Le Gallienne

... director and the authors, by the stupidity of the actors who had to be told every little intonation and gesture again and again. The agitation, the labor seemed grotesquely out of proportion to the triviality of the matter at issue. At the first night she sat in a box from which Spenser, in a high fever and twitching with nervousness, watched the play, gliding out just before the lights were turned up for the intermission. The play went better than she had expected, and the enthusiasm ...
— Susan Lenox: Her Fall and Rise • David Graham Phillips

... is evident. In repudiating this Rousseau was certainly right.[350] Both the assailants and the defenders of the stage, however, commit the double error, first of supposing that the drama is always the same thing, from the Agamemnon down to the last triviality of a London theatre, and next of pitching the discussion in too high a key, as if the effect or object of a stage play in the modern era, where grave sentiment clothes itself in other forms, were substantially anything ...
— Rousseau - Volumes I. and II. • John Morley

... the study of the languages, and with the very best interpreters. They have been carefully translated, written, and rewritten, to obtain their true spirit and meaning, expunging passages, where it was necessary to avoid tediousness of narration, triviality of circumstance, tautologies, gross incongruities, and vulgarities; but adding no incident and drawing no conclusion, which the verbal narration did not imperatively require or sanction. It was impossible to mistake the import of terms and phrases where the means ...
— The Myth of Hiawatha, and Other Oral Legends, Mythologic and Allegoric, of the North American Indians • Henry R. Schoolcraft

... to rise, I have attempted to rise too: but through the greater part of this work I have been anxious, to use his own expression, to creep along the ground. No doubt there is danger in all this, the danger of triviality, pertness, and occasional vulgarity. Gifford's own work was attacked on its first appearance by a reviewer of the day precisely on those grounds: and though he seems to have made a vehement reply ...
— The Satires, Epistles, and Art of Poetry • Horace

... With indignation he flew to his intrepid pen, and dealt as trenchantly with Ward as Ward himself had dealt trenchantly with the reformers and all others whom he found planted in his dialectic way. Mr. Gladstone held the book up to stringent reproof for its capricious injustice; for the triviality of its investigations of fact; for the savageness of its censures; for the wild and wanton opinions broached in its pages; for the infatuation of mind manifested in some of its arguments; and for the lamentable circumstance that it exhibited a far greater debt in mental culture to Mr. John ...
— The Life of William Ewart Gladstone, Vol. 1 (of 3) - 1809-1859 • John Morley

... thinness of the American social environment and the consequent provincialism of Hawthorne's books. The "American Note Books," in particular, seem to Mr. James a chronicle of small beer, and he marvels at the triviality of an existence which could reduce the diarist to recording an impression that "the aromatic odor of peat smoke in the sunny autumnal air is very pleasant." This peat-smoke entry has become proverbial, and is mentioned ...
— Four Americans - Roosevelt, Hawthorne, Emerson, Whitman • Henry A. Beers

... of art is a lottery. The town that had welcomed her so wildly now went Elssler-mad. The gossamer floatings of this French danseuse possessed everyone. People courted trash and trumpery. Greatness gave way to triviality. This pitiful condition preyed upon her. The flame of genius never for a moment became less dim, but her eyes grew larger, brighter, more melancholy. Sometimes she would fall into a painful reverie and I knew ...
— The Strollers • Frederic S. Isham

... vein of the extremest circumstantiality. With deliberate malice I loaded a prolix narrative with every triviality that a fairly retentive memory could rake out of the half-forgotten past. I cudgelled my brains for irrelevant incidents. I described with the minutest accuracy things that had not the faintest significance. I drew a vivid picture of the carriage inside and out; I painted a lifelike portrait of the ...
— The Mystery of 31 New Inn • R. Austin Freeman

... scarcely a single proof had been discovered of treasonable practice, and that the loyalty of the mass of the people was itself a sufficient guarantee against the impulses of the evil-minded. [299] Such was the impression of triviality and imposture produced at the Diet by this report, that the representatives of several States proposed that the Commission should forthwith be dissolved as useless and unnecessary. This, however, could not be tolerated by Metternich ...
— History of Modern Europe 1792-1878 • C. A. Fyffe

... hesitation, perhaps even with relief, at the first call of the larger life, the larger loyalty. Two tears stole out on to her lashes, and slipped down her check. Mere concessions to overwrought feeling, and she knew it; knew, in the depths of her, that she was no triviality, but a woman into whose hands power had been given; the power of things primeval that ...
— The Great Amulet • Maud Diver

... became an important element in the world of New York. I very soon came to the conclusion that the professional, paid mediums were, in many cases, the worst kind of impostors, and, in all cases, so far as any intellectual evidence was concerned, of an absurd triviality. Even in the private circles, where no trace of fraud could be suspected, the good faith of all entering them being assured, I found sometimes such extraordinary credulity that the subject would have been offensive to ...
— The Autobiography of a Journalist, Volume I • Stillman, William James

... sounds at the beginning of this scale are especially fitted to express uncontrollable joy and delight, gayety, triviality, rapid movement, brightness, delicacy, and physical littleness; the sounds at the end are peculiarly adapted to express horror, solemnity, awe, deep grief, slowness of motion, darkness, and extreme or oppressive greatness of size. The scale runs, then, from the little to the large, from the ...
— A Study of Poetry • Bliss Perry

... that America will start at a disadvantage when she starts upon the mission of salvage and reconciliation which is, I believe, her proper role in this world conflict. One would have to be blind and deaf on this side to be ignorant of European persuasion of America's triviality. I would not like to be an American travelling in Europe now, and those I meet here and there have some of the air of men who at any moment may be dunned for a debt. They explode without provocation ...
— War and the Future • H. G. Wells

... are lost in the crowd. In politics it is almost a triviality to say that public opinion rules the world. The only power deserving the name is that of masses, and of governments, while they make themselves the organ of the tendencies and instincts of masses. This is as true in the moral and social relations of private life as in public transactions. Those ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol III, Issue VI, June, 1863 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... the ignominy of a nativity or color, or delusion of hell or the necessity of hell—and no man thenceforward shall be degraded for ignorance or weakness or sin. The greatest poet hardly knows pettiness or triviality. If he breathes into anything that was before thought small, it dilates with the grandeur and life of the universe. He is a seer—he is individual—he is complete in himself—the others are as good as he, only he sees it, and they do not. He is not one of the chorus—he does not stop for ...
— Complete Prose Works - Specimen Days and Collect, November Boughs and Goodbye My Fancy • Walt Whitman

... the exhibition of it was repressed on principle,—a man of high character and probity, greatly esteemed by his associates. He endeavored to bring up his children in sound religious principles, and to leave no room in their lives for triviality. One of the two weekly half-holidays was required for the catechism, and the only relaxation from the three church services on Sunday was the reading of "Pilgrim's Progress." This cold and severe discipline at home would have been intolerable but for the more lovingly demonstrative ...
— Washington Irving • Charles Dudley Warner

... alertness, they are not open to new ideas, they never say an interesting or a suggestive thing; their presence is a load on the spirits of a lively party, their very facial expression is a rebuke to all light-mindedness and triviality. Sometimes these people are silent, and then to be in their presence is like being in a thick mist; there is no outlook, no enlivening prospect. Sometimes they are talkers; and I am not sure that that is not even worse, because they generally discourse on their own subjects with profound and serious ...
— From a College Window • Arthur Christopher Benson

... to the quick of his vanity with the realization of his apprehended foolishness. Literature will have failed humanity if it is so blinded by the monstrous agony in Flanders as to miss the essential triviality at the head of the present war. Not the slaughter of ten million men can make the quality of the German Kaiser other than ...
— New York Times Current History: The European War, Vol 2, No. 1, April, 1915 - April-September, 1915 • Various

... than life, and they are often very valuable people, will say, "Are we not, then, to be allowed to dub your book trivial, if we think so?" Of course they must have that license, but they must make good the plea of triviality, not in the facts but in the exposition. There no man has a right to be trivial, or empty, or commonplace. Whatever is recorded must ...
— The Adventure of Living • John St. Loe Strachey

... science. Most of his writings, which are very voluminous, are naturally of a technical character and therefore do not properly belong to literature; but his Occasional Reflections on Several Subjects (1665), a strange mixture of triviality and seriousness, was germinal in this sense that it led to two celebrated jeux d'esprit, namely, Butler's Occasional Reflection on Dr. Charlton's feeling a Dog's Pulse at Gresham College and Swift's Pious ...
— The Glories of Ireland • Edited by Joseph Dunn and P.J. Lennox

... fate of the soul; and literature is only redeemed from an utter triviality, surpassing that of naughts and crosses, by the fact that it describes not the world around us or the things on the retina of the eye or the enormous irrelevancy of encyclopaedias, but some condition to ...
— Appreciations and Criticisms of the Works of Charles Dickens • G. K. Chesterton

... cleanness of spirit hardly to be looked for in such a primeval daughter of Eve. Her imagination and her reading had saved the girl's sweet modesty. A certain detachment made it possible for her to ignore the squalor of the actual and see it only as a surface triviality, to let her mind dwell in inner concepts of goodness and beauty while bestiality crossed ...
— Man Size • William MacLeod Raine

... been said of the folly and triviality of all messages coming, or purporting to come, from the Unseen. I think here, as elsewhere, like clings to like, and we get very much what we deserve; or rather, to put it in a more philosophical and Emersonian way, we receive what belongs ...
— Seen and Unseen • E. Katharine Bates

... issues were both in "The Usefulness of the Stage to the Happiness of Mankind, to Government and to Religion" (1698) and, much later, In "The Stage Defended" (1726). But, Vanbrugh is casual, Dennis is slow witted, and it is only by comparison with the triviality of D'Urfey or the contemptuous disingenuity of Congreve's "Amendments of Mr. Collier's False and Imperfect Citations" ...
— Essays on the Stage • Thomas D'Urfey and Bossuet

... Her smile was somewhat wistful. "Nothing but silly imaginings." She laughed and when she spoke again her voice was as light as if her world held only triviality and laughter. "Yet there be important things to decide. What shall ...
— The Lighted Match • Charles Neville Buck

... Puritanism, which means in our day a moral and almost temperamental attitude, meant in that day a singularly arrogant logical attitude, we shall comprehend a little more the grain of good that lay in the vulgarity and triviality of the Restoration. The Restoration, of which Charles II. was a pre-eminent type, was in part a revolt of all the chaotic and unclassed parts of human nature, the parts that are left over, and will always be left over, by every rationalistic system of life. This does ...
— Varied Types • G. K. Chesterton

... recurring climaxes of ever-increasing intensity. He frankly imitated none of these things, but they must, consciously or unconsciously, have heightened the nobility of the great choral fugues that relieve the triviality of so ...
— Haydn • John F. Runciman

... shared in the life not merely of this religion or of that, Pagan or Christian, but in the life of the winds and rains. Such churches as this, anything but swept and garnished, correspond in a way to Browning's poetry; there is the high solemnity brought home to you, not disturbed, by the very triviality of the details; mysteries and wonders overarching the real living life of ex-votos and pictures of runaway horses and houses on fire; the life worn like the porphyry discs of the pavement, precious bits trodden into the bricks, the life of the present filched out of the past, like the columns ...
— The Spirit of Rome • Vernon Lee

... examination of The Vikings, the first point which demands notice is that Ibsen has gained a surprising mastery over the arts of theatrical writing since we met with him last. There is nothing of the lyrical triviality of the verse in The Feast at Solhoug about the trenchant prose of The Vikings, and the crepuscular dimness of Lady Inger is exchanged for a perfect lucidity and directness. Whatever we may think about the theatrical propriety of the conductor of the vikings, there ...
— Henrik Ibsen • Edmund Gosse

... place to place around the world as we had done before, Satan showing me a hundred wonders, most of them reflecting in some way the weakness and triviality of our race. He did this now every few days—not out of malice—I am sure of that—it only seemed to amuse and interest him, just as a naturalist might be amused and interested by a ...
— The Mysterious Stranger and Other Stories • Mark Twain

... by the kindness of his friends. Of all the virtues this is perhaps the one which in our hurried age tends most to disappear. It is left for the occupation of idle hours, and the smallest piece of triviality which can be tortured into the name of business, is allowed to crowd away those constantly repeated attentions which might add a true grace and refinement to the lives of those who gave and of those who received them. It is often said that friendships are formed only in youth. Is not this partly ...
— The Eve of the French Revolution • Edward J. Lowell

... rending of the veil, do not touch on this incident at all. The whole representation, it is argued, lacks the sobriety which is characteristic of the authentic miracles of the Gospels and broadly separates them from the ecclesiastical miracles, about which there is generally an air of triviality ...
— The Trial and Death of Jesus Christ - A Devotional History of our Lord's Passion • James Stalker

... from an automobile, provided it was not a luxurious one. Once, when his grandmother at great difficulty had procured for him a clerkship, he confiscated the nickel-plated faucets out of the wash room, barely escaping prosecution. Only the utter triviality of his thievery and the fight in Mrs. Schum saved him from the law. She was as indomitable in her protection of him as the granite flesh ...
— Star-Dust • Fannie Hurst

... world are sons of a King, and look forward to a royal inheritance, but in the meantime they have, as it were, to keep a little huckster's shop in a back alley. But if we adequately realised the promise of our inheritance, the meanness of our surroundings and the triviality of our occupations would not make us mean or trivial, but our souls would be 'like stars' and 'dwell apart' while we travelled 'on life's common way in cheerful godliness,' and did small duties in such a manner as to ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... written down makes a neat pendant to the renaissance art of Aachen. People who begin to collect have lost the first fury of creation. The change that came over plastic art in France towards the end of the twelfth century is reflected in the accomplished triviality of Chretien de Troyes. The eleventh century had produced the Chanson de Roland, a poem as grand and simple as a Romanesque church. Chretien de Troyes melted down the massive conceptions of his betters ...
— Art • Clive Bell

... is a revelation of the beauty of the English language, and it profoundly influenced Ruskin and other prose writers of the Victorian Age. It has two chief faults,—diffuseness, which continually leads De Quincey away from his object, and triviality, which often makes him halt in the midst of a marvelous paragraph to make some light jest or witticism that has some humor but no mirth in it. Notwithstanding these faults, De Quincey's prose is still among the few supreme examples of style in our language. Though he was profoundly influenced by ...
— English Literature - Its History and Its Significance for the Life of the English Speaking World • William J. Long

... together, John Morrison and his mother, with the curtains drawn, and the clear fire glowing on the red bricks of the fireplace. The old lady, after her custom, was prone to silence. Since Hilda's death she had said little, sparing the occasion the triviality of useless words. That afternoon she had ridden with her son to the funeral, holding him up with her strength, fortifying him with her courage. But now that his wife was gone for ever, and the pleasant house was overcast with its haunting emptiness, it seemed that ...
— The Second Class Passenger • Perceval Gibbon

... It could not well have been more ill-timed and useless. But his gallant work of the coming night and morrow, when Hooker left him almost alone to resist the fierce assaults of our victorious and elated foe, was ample compensation for his subordinate share in the triviality and fatal issue of Saturday's manoeuvring. Nor can blame fall upon him in as full measure as upon Hooker; although he seems illy to have construed what was transpiring in his front, and what he reported may have seriously misled ...
— The Campaign of Chancellorsville • Theodore A. Dodge

... the quaint old French and Spanish city, with its motley population, were carefully jotted down in her note-book. These first descriptions she afterwards rewrote, discarding weakening detail, elaborating the occasional triviality which seemed to reflect the true local tint—a nice distinction, involving conscientious hard work. How she longed for ...
— Solomon Crow's Christmas Pockets and Other Tales • Ruth McEnery Stuart

... reproach! Still Amy is engaged. To whom at the particular moment I cannot say, but I fancy to an early one who has lately become a widower. After more exact knowledge I do not care to enquire; for to confess ignorance on the subject, implying that one has treated as a triviality and has forgotten the most important detail of a matter that to her is of vital importance, is to hurt her feelings; while to angle for information is but to entangle oneself. To speak of Him as "Tom," when Tom has belonged for weeks to the dead and buried past, to hastily correct ...
— Paul Kelver • Jerome Klapka, AKA Jerome K. Jerome

... atmosphere of solemnity, if not gloom, about national thought, in which no fairy mythology can flourish. It is no longer questions of material ease and gain that are of the chief concern; and consequently the fairies and their doings, from their own triviality, fall far into the background, and their place is occupied by a countless horde of remorseless schemers, who are never ceasing in their efforts to drag both body and ...
— Elizabethan Demonology • Thomas Alfred Spalding

... frameworks, all duty, all social mores. That was the essence of E science, that any requirement outside of his own making didn't exist. It had to be that way. That kind of mind could not tolerate barriers, but spent itself constantly in destroying them. Erect barriers of triviality, and it would waste its substance upon trivial matters. The only answer was to remove all possible barriers for the E, lest immersion in something trivial prevent that mind from seeking out a barrier to knowledge, a ...
— Eight Keys to Eden • Mark Irvin Clifton

... through the cool air; and then, as old fellows do, we bantered each other about our ages, each claiming to be older than the other, and the kind, sweet young girl sat listening with that tolerance of youth for the triviality of age which is so charming. When he could do no more, he said he was sorry, and wished me luck, and drove on; and I being by this time tired with my three miles' tramp, took advantage of a wayside farmhouse, the first in all the distance, and went in and asked ...
— Seven English Cities • W. D. Howells

... bear is an amiable and affable beast in comparison of him. I am placed between our host and his nephew. The latter comes in for a good deal of my conversation, as most of my remarks have to be taken up and rebellowed by him with a loud emphasis, that contrasts absurdly with their triviality; and even then they mostly miscarry, and ...
— Nancy - A Novel • Rhoda Broughton

... literature is to be found among the earliest productions. There we see earnestness of purpose combined with heavenly aspiration and deep searching after truth. Subsequent to this we see the light vanishing and earnestness giving place to triviality of thought, to the ravings of superstition, to the inanities of ceremonialism and to the laws of social and religious bondage. All this progress downward is in direct ratio to our ...
— India's Problem Krishna or Christ • John P. Jones

... language sounds to me like a hysterical outcry from a person whose family is already tottering. It is at least certain that a great many of these cornerstones of society are tottering, and why? Because there dwell in them triviality and vacuity, which prepare the way of the devil. Who can think that intellectual divergence, disagreement upon great public questions, would disrupt a family worth holding together? On the contrary, nothing save a ...
— The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume V • Ida Husted Harper

... a soul of his own which for sheer simplicity is something staggering. Vernede with an Oriental and inscrutable placidity varied every now and then with dazzling agility and Meredithian humour. Waldo d'Avigdor who masks with complete fashionable triviality a Hebraic immutability of passion tried in a more ironical and bitter service than his Father Jacob. Lawrence and Maurice Solomon, who show another side of the same people, the love of home, the love of children, the meek and malicious humour, the tranquil ...
— Gilbert Keith Chesterton • Maisie Ward

... a little more uneasy than usual. In the beginning of dinner, the party being small and the room still, these motes from the mass of a magistrate's mind fell too noticeably. She wondered how a man like Mr. Casaubon would support such triviality. His manners, she thought, were very dignified; the set of his iron-gray hair and his deep eye-sockets made him resemble the portrait of Locke. He had the spare form and the pale complexion which became a student; as different as possible from the blooming Englishman of the red-whiskered ...
— Middlemarch • George Eliot

... unblurred by the expediencies, compromise and experimental contacts of life, Neville was stabbed by a sharp pang of fear and hope for them. Fear lest on some fleeting impulse they might founder into the sentimental triviality of short-lived contacts, or into the tedium of bonds which must out-live desire; hope that, by some fortunate chance, they might each achieve, as she had achieved, some relation which should be both durable and to be endured. As to ...
— Dangerous Ages • Rose Macaulay

... appalling to the inexperienced. This, it appears, is the language of the dead; its purport is taken down progressively by one of the experts, writing, I was told, 'as fast as a telegraph operator'; and the communications are at last made public. They are of the baldest triviality; a schooner is, perhaps, announced, some idle gossip reported of a neighbour, or if the spirit shall have been called to consultation on a case of sickness, a remedy may be suggested. One of these, immersion in scalding water, not long ago proved ...
— In the South Seas • Robert Louis Stevenson

... note upon Brant was strangely out of proportion to its triviality. But then it was Susy's very triviality—so expressive of her characteristic irresponsibility—which had always affected him at such moments. Again, as at Robles, he felt it react against his own ethics. ...
— Clarence • Bret Harte

... given special privileges in the West Indies, had more than doubled their imports from the mother country; the amount rising from L379,411 to L829,088. These sums are not to be regarded in their own triviality, but as harbingers of a development, which it was hoped would fill the void in the British imperial system caused by the loss of the former colonies. The West Indies showed a more gradual increase, though still satisfactory; ...
— Sea Power in its Relations to the War of 1812 - Volume 1 • Alfred Thayer Mahan

... it's jist naething, jist a—a triviality, like; but Ah see there's a great crood frae the Oa, the day, an' jist as many Murphys an' Connors; an' Ah heerd a lot o' wild talk aboot Fenians, an' the like. They would be sayin' Pat Murphy was a Fenian; an' ...
— The Silver Maple • Marian Keith

... soil, a deep and noble culture can grow forth. His own experiences lead him most frequently to the consideration of these problems; and it is especially in the tempestuous period of youth that every personal event shines with a double gleam, both as the exemplification of a triviality and, at the same time, of an eternally surprising problem, deserving of explanation. At this age, which, as it were, sees his experiences encircled with metaphysical rainbows, man is, in the highest degree, in need of a guiding hand, because he has suddenly and almost instinctively convinced himself ...
— On the Future of our Educational Institutions • Friedrich Nietzsche

... may safely be assumed that at no previous period has the public been more buzzed round by triviality and common-place; but we hold firm, at the same time, that at none other has there been a greater or a grander body of genius, or so honorable a display of well cultivated taste and talent. Certainly the public do not seem to know this: certainly the critics deny it, or ...
— The Germ - Thoughts towards Nature in Poetry, Literature and Art • Various

... seem to be the exhibition of fanciful power by the artist; not beauty or truth in the literal sense at all, but inventive affluence of unreal yet absurdly comic forms, with just a flavour of the terrible added, to give a grim dignity, and save from the triviality of caricature."[38] With the exception of The Heretic's Tragedy, Caliban upon Setebos is probably the finest piece of grotesque art in the language. Browning's Caliban, unlike Shakespeare's, has no active part to play: if he has ever seen Stephano and Trinculo, ...
— An Introduction to the Study of Browning • Arthur Symons

... for imitation. There was, indeed, no lack of literature on all subjects; Kant speaks sarcastically of "the deluge of books with which our part of the world is inundated every year." But the fatal defects of the poetry then produced was triviality and the "wateriness" of its style. Yet it was during the years that Goethe spent in Leipzig that there appeared a succession of works which mark a new departure in German literature. In 1766 Herder, who was subsequently to exercise such a profound influence ...
— The Youth of Goethe • Peter Hume Brown

... of Lyrical Ballads, whose first beginnings have here been traced, was published in the autumn of 1798, by Mr. Cottle, at Bristol. This volume contained several poems—which have been justly blamed for triviality,—as The Thorn, Goody Blake, The Idiot Boy; several in which, as in Simon Lee, triviality is mingled with much real pathos; and some, as Expostulation and Reply and The Tables Turned, which are of the very essence of Wordsworth's nature. It is hardly ...
— Wordsworth • F. W. H. Myers

... wheat that makes your bread. That's a man of a coarser physical fiber than yours, who is strengthened by the effort, and not exhausted as you would be. Why shouldn't the world be so organized that somebody of coarser moral texture than yours should do battle with the forces of materialism and tragic triviality that—" ...
— The Squirrel-Cage • Dorothy Canfield

... have recognized in my uncle the man who was the leader of all the fops of London. In the presence of this old friend and of the tragedy which girt him round, the veil of triviality and affectation had been rent, and I felt all my gratitude towards him deepening for the first time into affection whilst I watched his pale, anxious face, and the eager hops which shone in his eyes as he awaited his friend's ...
— Rodney Stone • Arthur Conan Doyle

... the triviality of this amusement that to find at last that he had taken it in the ...
— Tono Bungay • H. G. Wells

... despatch perhaps fifty pages long; laid before him for comment and signature by Idiaquez or Moura, would be sometimes covered with a few awkward sentences, which it was almost impossible to read, and which, when deciphered, were apt to reveal suggestions of astounding triviality. ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... tired of politics the Yellow Editors turn to popular philosophy or cheap theology for the solace of their public. To men and women excited by the details of the last murder they discourse of the existence of God in short, crisp sentences,—and I know not which is worse, the triviality of the discourse or its inappositeness. They preface one of their most impassioned exhortations with the words: "If you read this, you will probably think you have wasted time." Though this might with propriety ...
— American Sketches - 1908 • Charles Whibley

... not please everybody at St. Petersburg. You will easily see the reason why this incomparable man in such companies, where people talk of fashion, of clothes, of frippery, and all other sorts of triviality, neither gives pleasure to others nor finds pleasure himself." And the friendly Swede rises to the height of generalisation in the quaint maxim, Where an empty head shines, there a thoroughly cultivated man ...
— Diderot and the Encyclopaedists - Volume II. • John Morley

... they were too dumb, and every approach to close connection was blocked by their clumsy contempt of other people. They wanted genuine intimacy, but they could not get even normally near to anyone, because they scorned to take the first steps, they scorned the triviality which ...
— Sons and Lovers • David Herbert Lawrence

... utterly vain; I suppose the prospect of pennilessness is itself a hindrance; the fear haunts me. With such terrible real things pressing upon me, my imagination can shape nothing substantial. When I have laboured out a story, I suddenly see it in a light of such contemptible triviality that to work at it is an ...
— New Grub Street • George Gissing

... efficiency. Nor is self-discussion the only exhibit of restlessness the American woman gives. To an unaccustomed observer she seems always to be running about on the face of things with no other purpose than to put in her time. He points to the triviality of the things in which she can immerse herself—her fantastic and ever-changing raiment, the welter of lectures and other culture schemes which she supports, the eagerness with which she transports herself to the ends of the earth—as marks of a spirit ...
— The Business of Being a Woman • Ida M. Tarbell

... sense of right and wrong in man. He did not summon the poor to rise against "the idle rich," but he summoned the idle rich, the well-to-do, the gentry of independent means, the comfortable annuitants, the sportsmen, the writers and dramatists of pleasure, the artists of triviality, the pretty rhymers, and the people who are too busy for thought, to rise against themselves. It was a much harder summons to obey, and generally they answered with a shrug and a mutter of "madness," "mere asceticism," or "a ...
— Essays in Rebellion • Henry W. Nevinson

... do not say you are wrong. I will consider your suggestion. Certainly it would be the straightest course. But first a complete explanation is due to the Queen. She must know all,—and if her interest can be awakened by such a triviality as her son's love- affair—" and he smiled somewhat bitterly,—"perhaps she may agree to your plan as the best way out of the difficulty. In any case"—here he extended his hand which the Professor deferentially ...
— Temporal Power • Marie Corelli

... growing impatient of this curtly condescending tone. It was the ponderosity of officialdom, he felt, grown playful, in the face of a passing triviality. ...
— Phantom Wires - A Novel • Arthur Stringer

... ponders, and smiles a very little—almost within himself: "Tiens, I'll tell you; I noticed—it isn't very important, this," he insists, as though suddenly embarrassed by the triviality of this parenthesis—"but I noticed (you notice it in a glance when you're noticing something else) that it was cleaner in our ...
— Under Fire - The Story of a Squad • Henri Barbusse

... that I am a most ordinary official, a cardplayer, and have no partiality for ideas of any sort. I am a worthy representative of the rotten world from which you have run away because you were revolted with its triviality and emptiness. Recognise it and be just: don't be indignant with me, but with yourself, as it is your mistake, ...
— The Lady with the Dog and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... impulses are seldom without some kind of imperfect issue I contrived, a year or two later, to work myself up into the wished-for state.... She was a woman in society, and with all the awe of that institution that Paulina lacked. Our relation was consequently one of those unavowed affairs in which triviality is the only alternative to tragedy. Luckily we had, on both sides, risked only as much as prudent people stake in a drawingroom game; and when the match was over I take it that we came ...
— The Long Run - 1916 • Edith Wharton

... the objects—or no-objects—I came for," he said, with dreary triviality, "and I must hurry away to other fields of activity." He kept his eyes on her face, which he saw full of a passionate intensity, working ...
— Indian Summer • William D. Howells

... heard of outside the theater in which grim circumstance stages it for a single playing—unless, indeed, the curtain rings down on a tragedy that brings the actors before their district judge for trial. And, as so frequently is the case, the beginning was casual to the point of triviality. ...
— Flying U Ranch • B. M. Bower

... subdivision of labor carried out as never before. The movement is irresistible; it brings with it exactness, exhaustive knowledge, a narrow but complete self-satisfaction, with such accompanying faults as pedantry, triviality, and the kind of partial blindness which belong to intellectual myopia. The specialist is idealized almost into sublimity in Browning's "Burial of the Grammarian." We never need fear that he will undervalue himself. To be ...
— The Poet at the Breakfast Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

... a long dissertation on the primal sin; the gist of which was that though the woman had never been warned not to eat of the Forbidden Fruit, she had to bear the brunt of the punishment. Then—though one is almost ashamed to chronicle such a triviality—he waxed very wroth because the serpent was spoken of as being cursed above all "cattle." Who ever heard of snakes being called cattle? He was condemned to go on his belly. How did he go before? Did he go ...
— Mystic London: - or, Phases of occult life in the metropolis • Charles Maurice Davies

... at all seemed the one consummation to be desired; but that is not the normal attitude of normal people. Such would still fain believe that the grave is not the end, but many of them are in a state of bewilderment and insecurity. On the one hand men have never grown reconciled to the heart-breaking triviality of death, never accepted this dispensation without a question, a hope, or, failing hope, a sense of rebellion; on the other, we have to recognise that we live in an age when multitudes have ceased to accept religious beliefs ...
— Problems of Immanence - Studies Critical and Constructive • J. Warschauer

... and naming it among the birds not heard in the interior of the State, when he might be supposed to have observed it, in summer, near Mount Wachusett, where its wail adds so much, by day or night, to the wildness of the scenery. Yet by the triviality of these our criticisms one may measure the astonishing excellence ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 89, March, 1865 • Various

... against taste and morals, which are bad enough in a private citizen, are infinitely worse if made into instruments for debauching the community through a newspaper. Mendacity, slander, sensationalism, inanity, vapid triviality, all are potent factors for the debauchery of the public mind and conscience. The excuse advanced for vicious writing, that the public demands it and that the demand must be supplied, can no more be admitted ...
— African and European Addresses • Theodore Roosevelt

... are clear enough, and we all know that the secret of breakdown and wreck is seldom so much an insufficient knowledge of the route, as imperfect discipline of the will. The truism, however, and the commonplace may be stated in a form so fresh, pungent, and free from triviality, as to have all the force of new discovery. Hence the need for a caution, that few maxims are to be taken without qualification. They seek sharpness of impression by excluding one side of the matter and exaggerating another, and most aphorisms ...
— Studies in Literature • John Morley

... making a good deal of fuss about your being a young lady, now I think of it. Peter especially has been rather a nuisance about it, breaking into my most precious moments of triviality with the sweetly solemn thought that our little girl has grown to be ...
— Turn About Eleanor • Ethel M. Kelley

... own atom of the universe it is given the generic name of Love and its existence is that which the boldest need not defy, the most profound need not attempt to explain with clarity, the most brilliantly sophistical to argue away. Its forms of beauty, triviality, magnificence, imbecility, loveliness, stupidity, holiness, purity and bestiality neither detract from nor add to its unalterable power. As the earth revolves upon its axis and reveals night and day, Spring, Summer and Winter, so it reveals this ceaselessly working Force. Men who ...
— The Head of the House of Coombe • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... a gentleman. What his intent was, who can be so bold as to say? What part of his purpose was, we know. He would excoriate a false and flippant chivalry. Contemporaneous chivalry he knew well; for he had been a common soldier, wounded and distressed. He had seen what a poor triviality that once noble thing had grown to be. Institutions become effete. Age is apt to sap the strength of movements as of men. Feudalism and the Crusades had commissioned the knight-errant; and now, when law began to hold sword for itself, the self-constituted legal force—knight-errantry—was no longer ...
— A Hero and Some Other Folks • William A. Quayle

... All the vigour of the morning seemed to have gone out of his blood; he felt lonely and apprehensive and puzzled. He wished he had Dickson beside him, for that little man's cheerful voice and complacent triviality would be a comfort.... Also, he was abominably cold. He put on his waterproof, and turned his attention to the fire. It needed re-kindling, and he hunted in his pockets for paper, finding only the ...
— Huntingtower • John Buchan

... parfaite, et une depense toute royale, a pu reussir a m'ennuyer', shows how little he had realised the fatiguing effect of theatrical splendour too persistently displayed. St. Evremond finds juster cause for his bored state of mind in the triviality of the subject-matter of operas, and his words are worth quoting at some length: 'La langueur ordinaire ou je tombe aux operas, vient de ce que je n'en ai jamais vu qui ne m'ait paru meprisable dans la disposition ...
— The Opera - A Sketch of the Development of Opera. With full Descriptions - of all Works in the Modern Repertory • R.A. Streatfeild

... archaisms, which he much affected (he gives, therefore, no quotations from post-Augustan writers). His style shows the defects of an age in which men had ceased to feel the full meaning of the words they used, and strove to hide the triviality of a subject under obscure phrases and florid expression. Yet, on the whole, he is a very interesting writer, and the last that can in any way be ...
— Helps to Latin Translation at Sight • Edmund Luce

... unimportant, and others again were beyond all controversy inferior to the established text of the passages; and it seemed not a little difficult to reconcile the critical acumen and poetical insight of many of the corrections with the feebleness and prosaic triviality ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 6, Issue 35, September, 1860 • Various

... harlequin's cap, as he himself styles it,[211] he does not succeed,—with the few exceptions just referred to,—in convincing us very deeply of the reality of his feelings. They are either trivially or extravagantly stated. Sometimes this sense of triviality is caused by the poet's excessive fondness for all sorts of diminutive expressions, giving an artificial effect, an effect of "Taendelei" ...
— Types of Weltschmerz in German Poetry • Wilhelm Alfred Braun

... she was not, and Mr. Alwynn and Charles departed together, Charles ruefully remembering that he had still to ask advice on a subject the triviality of which would ...
— The Danvers Jewels, and Sir Charles Danvers • Mary Cholmondeley

... Scotland taken by two young barristers, one of whom rescues a pretty girl from drowning, falls in love with her, and is rewarded for his heroism by seeing her married to his friend. The idea of the book is not bad, but the treatment is very unsatisfactory, and combines the triviality of the tourist with the dulness ...
— Reviews • Oscar Wilde

... strength in its refinement which comes from its expression in the exquisitely carven marble. When this is grayed with age it is indeed of the effect of old silver work; but the plateresque in Valladolid does not suggest fragility or triviality; its grace is perhaps rather feminine than masculine; but at the worst it is only the ultimation of the decorative genius of the Gothic. It is, at any rate, the finest surprise which the local architecture has to offer and it leaves one wishing for more rather than less ...
— Familiar Spanish Travels • W. D. Howells

... intellectually; it is studious, empirical, inventive, sympathetic. Its wisdom consists in a certain contrite openness of mind; it flounders, but at least in floundering it has gained a sense of possible depths in all directions. Under these circumstances, some triviality and great confusion in its positive achievements are not unpromising things, nor even unamiable. These are the Wanderjahre of faith; it looks smilingly at every new face, which might perhaps be ...
— Winds Of Doctrine - Studies in Contemporary Opinion • George Santayana

... Introductory Chapter it was observed that the phenomena which apparently point to some unaccountable supernormal faculty of acquiring knowledge are 'trivial.' These anecdotes illustrate the triviality; but the facts certainly left a number of people, wholly unfamiliar with such experiments, under the impression that Miss Angus's glass ball was like Prince Ali's magical telescope in the 'Arabian Nights.'[19] These ...
— The Making of Religion • Andrew Lang

... the name of rubbish, pray let us know what it is. But Boston crowds to hear disquisitions which from men in a different social position would be voted a bore, and sits reverently and patiently to catch his feeble and to many, scarce audible utterances. Is not this the worship of triviality and trash! How different would have been the action of John Hancock, of Samuel Adams, of Fisher Ames, or of Wendell Phillips. The atmosphere of European courts is debilitating to American Republicanism, unless it be a profound sentiment of the heart. When ...
— Buchanan's Journal of Man, June 1887 - Volume 1, Number 5 • Various

... Christina, the insipid Brunswick specimen, backed by Seckendorf and Vienna, proves on consideration the desirable to Friedrich Wilhelm in this matter. But his Son's notions, who as yet knows her only by rumor, do not go that way. Insipidity, triviality; the fear of "CAGOTAGE" and frightful fellows in black supremely unconscious what blockheads they are, haunts him a good deal. And as for any money coming,—her sublime Aunt the Kaiserinn never ...
— History of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. IX. (of XXI.) • Thomas Carlyle

... "if men are punished for imprudence and triviality, this poor king deserves punishment. But it seems to me that that which he is just now ...
— Twenty Years After • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... The scanty, slashed, ridiculous garments of the nobles and the wealthy betray an absurd poverty of taste and weakness of intellect.[49] One of the most striking characteristics of these small minds is their triviality; they are incapable of attention; they retain nothing. No one who reads the writings of the period can fail to be struck by ...
— The Life of Joan of Arc, Vol. 1 and 2 (of 2) • Anatole France

... through many troubled centuries to the days when the foundations of our constitution were laid; or far away over boundless seas and deserts, to dusky nations living under strange stars, worshipping strange gods, and writing strange characters from right to left. The odd triviality of the last detail, its unworthiness of the sentiment of the passage, leaves the reader checked, what sets out as a fine stroke of imagination dwindles down to a sort of literary conceit. And this puerile twist, by the way, is all the poorer, when it is considered ...
— Critical Miscellanies, Volume I (of 3) - Essay 4: Macaulay • John Morley

... as a sufficient cause for all the majesty and glory of physical nature, then there is no crime or violence, however abominable in its circumstances and however cruel in its execution, which cannot be justified by success, and no triviality, no absurdity of Fashion which deserves a censure: more—there is no act of disinterested love and tenderness, no deed of self-sacrifice and mercy, no aspiration after beauty and excellence, for which a single reason ...
— In His Image • William Jennings Bryan

... liked to dance with Missy because she was such a good dancer, and Jim kept wanting to cut in to get an extra dance with her himself. Somehow even the sting of the visiting girl's laugh and of Raymond's defection seemed to have subsided into triviality. And when Raymond came up to ask for a dance she experienced a new and pleasurable thrill in telling him she was already engaged. That thrill disturbed her a little. Was it possible that she was vindictive, wicked? But when she saw Jim approaching while Raymond was receiving his conge, she thrilled ...
— Missy • Dana Gatlin

... Saint-Simon was happily delivered of a child. God did us the grace to give us a son. He bore, as I had, the name of Vidame of Chartres. I do not know why people have the fancy for these odd names, but they seduce in all nations, and they who feel the triviality of them, imitate them. It is true that the titles of Count and Marquis have fallen into the dust because of the quantity of people without wealth, and even without land, who usurp them; and that they have become so worthless, that people of quality who are Marquises or Counts (if they will ...
— The Memoirs of Louis XIV., His Court and The Regency, Complete • Duc de Saint-Simon

... The triviality of what they were saying to each other struck Greif all at once, as compared with the horror of what they had left behind them at Greifenstein. It was but the third day since that fearful catastrophe had darkened his life, and he was exchanging remarks about the clothes ...
— Greifenstein • F. Marion Crawford

... border on the limits of incoherency and triviality, but it possesses considerable zest. ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book I • Cao Xueqin

... (though of this I won't be sure) more closely restricted by the accidents of circumstance and individual character; (2) as I have hinted, the Beach of Falesa has faults of construction, one of which is serious, if not vital, while The Isle of Voices, though beautifully composed, is tied down by the triviality of its subject. But The Bottle Imp is perfectly constructed: the last page ends the tale, and the tale is told with a light grace, sportive within restraint, that takes nothing from the seriousness of the subject. Some may think this extravagant praise for a little ...
— Adventures in Criticism • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... empty of the angels, you will never catch sight of a feather of their wings on the Sunday. And if we do not recognise their presence in the midst of all the prose, and the commonplace, and the vulgarity, and the triviality, and the monotony, the dust of the small duties, we shall go up to the summit of Sinai itself and see nothing there but cold grey stone and everlasting snows. 'Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him.' ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers • Alexander Maclaren

... logic-arrows, how they glanced futile from obdurate thick-skinned Facts; Facts to be wrestled down only by the real vigour of Roman thews!—As for me, I honour, in these loud-babbling days, all the Silent rather. A grand Silence that of Romans;—nay the grandest of all, is it not that of the gods! Even Triviality, Imbecility, that can sit silent, how respectable is it in comparison! The 'talent of silence' is our fundamental one. Great honour to him whose Epic is a melodious hexameter Iliad; not a jingling Sham-Iliad, nothing true in it but the hexameters and forms merely. But still greater honour, ...
— Past and Present - Thomas Carlyle's Collected Works, Vol. XIII. • Thomas Carlyle

... reflection, and his own ambition was that of being worthy to be honored as a philosophical poet. His theory that the poet's function is limited to an exact representation of the real and the natural, a heresy which his own best poems triumphantly refute, often led him to triviality and meanness in the choice both of subjects and diction, and marred the beauty of many otherwise fine poems. A fascinating airiness and delicacy of conception prevail in these poems, and the tender sweetness of ...
— Handbook of Universal Literature - From The Best and Latest Authorities • Anne C. Lynch Botta

... two, the exploit of the American strategist is much the most brilliant and memorable; his preparations and blunders were conducted on a vaster scale, and, Varus-like, scorning the triviality of a bloodless disgrace, he left sixteen thousand dead, wounded, and missing behind ...
— Border and Bastille • George A. Lawrence

... strange to ill report, and he is so accustomed to hear himself praised that insult is more than he can bear. If, however, I seem to be anxious to rebut charges which are merely frivolous and foolish, the blame must be laid at the door of those, to whom such accusations, in spite of their triviality, can only bring disgrace. I am not to blame. Ridiculous as these charges may be, their refutation cannot ...
— The Apologia and Florida of Apuleius of Madaura • Lucius Apuleius

... diction he surpasses anything of which Dryden was capable. The flaws in his style are mainly due to carelessness in the rimes and some questionable coining of words. He also occasionally lapses into the vulgarity and triviality which marred certain of his ...
— Keats: Poems Published in 1820 • John Keats



Words linked to "Triviality" :   frippery, object, bagatelle, frivolity, trifle, detail, trivial, technicality, slightness, fluff



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