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Perfection   /pərfˈɛkʃən/   Listen
Perfection

noun
1.
The state of being without a flaw or defect.  Synonyms: flawlessness, ne plus ultra.
2.
An ideal instance; a perfect embodiment of a concept.  Synonyms: beau ideal, idol, paragon.
3.
The act of making something perfect.



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"Perfection" Quotes from Famous Books



... presently, his mind taken up entirely with the ceremony that was before him, a mystical rapture seized him. His spirit seemed to free itself from the bonds of the flesh and he seemed to be living a new life. He aspired to perfection with all the passion that was in him. He wanted to surrender himself entirely to the service of God, and he made up his mind definitely that he would be ordained. When the great day arrived, his soul deeply moved by all the preparation, by the books he had studied and above all by the overwhelming ...
— Of Human Bondage • W. Somerset Maugham

... far-away roar of railroad trains. It was nearly midsummer. The year was almost at its height, but had not passed it. Growth and bloom was still in the ascendant, and had not yet attained that maturity of perfection beyond which is the slope ...
— The Portion of Labor • Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

... was still only a dear friend to whom she owed an immense debt of gratitude for saving her life and her honour. Never had a ball seemed so enjoyable—not even her first. Never had she had a partner who suited her so well. Certainly he danced to perfection, but she knew that if he had been the worst dancer in the room she still would have preferred him to all others. And never had she hated the ending of an entertainment so much. But Dermot walked beside her dandy to the gate of her hotel, calmly displacing Charlesworth, ...
— The Elephant God • Gordon Casserly

... any but those who know—not Florence, but—rural Tuscany well, to appreciate the really wonderful accuracy and picturesque perfection of the above scene from a Tuscan afternoon. But I think many others will feel the lines to be good. In the concluding stanzas, in which the writer draws her moral, there are weak lines. But in the first eleven, ...
— What I Remember, Volume 2 • Thomas Adolphus Trollope

... days of stage-coaching we must travel a little beyond the era of the Georges, even of the last of them; for at the time when the railway came the coaching traffic of this country had reached a pitch of perfection which was unknown at any previous period in its history, and for smartness and efficiency and for the vast extent of its operations it was an institution of which the English people had ...
— Fragments of Two Centuries - Glimpses of Country Life when George III. was King • Alfred Kingston

... fully up to the mark in point of poetic merit. Where it has not been possible to get the two desirable things together, as it has not always, we have been more solicitous for the sentiment that would benefit than for mere prettiness or perfection of form. Helpfulness has been the test oftener than a high literary standard. The labored workmanship of the vessel has not weighed so much with us as its perfect fitness to convey the water of life wherewith the thirsty soul of man has ...
— Poems with Power to Strengthen the Soul • Various

... strife. The best apprenticeships, whether ecclesiastical or religious, or civil or military, or political or artistic, are never the most calm. Whether we study the lives of saints or the lives of those distinguished in any walk of human endeavour where perfection, in some degree or other, has been at least the goal, we always find that the first years of the pursuit have been one bitter history of temptations, doubts, despondencies, struggles, and agonising inconsistencies of volition. ...
— Robert Orange - Being a Continuation of the History of Robert Orange • John Oliver Hobbes

... together with its furniture, was, I believe, intended to be a reproduction of an ancient Roman villa, and had something about it repellent to my rustic and insular ideas. In the contemplation of its perfection I experienced a curious mental sensation, which I can only compare to the physical oppression produced on some persons by the heavy and cloying perfume of a bouquet of gardenias or other too ...
— The Lost Stradivarius • John Meade Falkner

... influence upon their morals, is at least disinterested; and their expressions of adoration and reverence, whether by words or actions, arise only from a humble sense of their own inferiority, and the ineffable excellence of divine perfection. ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 13 • Robert Kerr

... suit of blue serge, a panama hat, and patent-leather shoes which hurt his feet. Moreover, he carried a new walking stick with a great gold head and there was a huge pearl scarf-pin in his necktie Besides all this, his hair and beard had been trimmed to perfection by a Holland House barber. Every morning his wife was obliged to run a flatiron over his trousers to perpetuate the crease. Altogether Anderson was a revelation not only to his family and to the town at large, but to himself ...
— The Daughter of Anderson Crow • George Barr McCutcheon

... the Shakespeare garden were in the perfection of bloom. In the fragrance of the summer air mingled the pungent odors of thyme and marjoram, ...
— The Girl Scouts in Beechwood Forest • Margaret Vandercook

... wife regarded each other in melancholy amazement. Such an evidence of wanton levity and of unworthiness of motive, in one who was intrusted with the gift of earthly government, pained their simple and upright minds; while old Mark, of still more decided and exaggerated ideas of spiritual perfection, distinctly groaned aloud The stranger took a sensible pleasure in this testimony of their abhorrence of so gross and so unworthy a venality, though he saw no occasion to heighten its effect by further speech. ...
— The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish • James Fenimore Cooper

... suffers everywhere from a lack of balance. It is an almost inevitable defect, arising from its very grandeur. A mediocre work may quite easily be perfect of its kind; but it is rarely that a work lofty aim attains perfection. A landscape of little dells and smiling meadows is brought more readily into pleasing harmony than a landscape of dazzling Alps, torrents, glaciers, and tempests; for the heights may sometimes overwhelm ...
— Musicians of To-Day • Romain Rolland

... sweep, and he breaks his heart and his back too in a fruitless vocation. He picks up experience in time; but he is pretty sure to find a better trade before he has learned to cultivate that of a crossing-sweeper to perfection.—Many of these occasional hands are Hindoos, Lascars, or Orientals of some sort, whose dark skins, contrasted with their white and scarlet drapery, render them conspicuous objects in a crowd; and from this cause they ...
— Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 437 - Volume 17, New Series, May 15, 1852 • Various

... Paul's Churchyard would be Harris's (late Newbery's); that in Skinner Street (No. 41) was, of course, Godwin's, where Mrs. Leicester's School was published and sold. This pleasant art of advertising one's wares in one's own children's books was brought to perfection by Newbery, and by Harris, his successor, whose tiny histories are full of reminders of the merits of the corner of St. Paul's Churchyard. By making Mr. Barton hesitate between the two shops and then go to Mrs. Godwin's, Lamb (for here it was probably he ...
— Books for Children - The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Vol. 3 • Charles and Mary Lamb

... connected that you cannot have one without the other—you must pay the price of the other for the one. All I can say is that such another live piece of English criticism of English literature as this I do not know anywhere. What is alive is very seldom perfect: to get perfection you must go to epitaphs. But, once more, though I could pick plenty of small holes in the details of the actual critical dicta, I know no picture of the division of literature here concerned from which a fairly intelligent person will derive a better impression ...
— Henry Esmond; The English Humourists; The Four Georges • William Makepeace Thackeray

... general. The influence which that man, brought up in coast towns, acquired in a short time over the plainsmen of the Republic can be ascribed only to a genius for treachery of so effective a kind that it must have appeared to those violent men but little removed from a state of utter savagery, as the perfection of sagacity and virtue. The popular lore of all nations testifies that duplicity and cunning, together with bodily strength, were looked upon, even more than courage, as heroic virtues by primitive mankind. To overcome your adversary was the great affair ...
— Nostromo: A Tale of the Seaboard • Joseph Conrad

... wild boy, who is mentioned in Lord Monboddo's Origin of Language,[11] had all his senses in remarkable perfection. He lived at a farm house within half a mile of us in Hertfordshire for some years, and we had frequent opportunities of trying experiments upon him. He could articulate imperfectly a few words, in particular, King George, ...
— Practical Education, Volume I • Maria Edgeworth

... a professor of zoology on one day, and of chemistry on the next, and do good work in both. As in a concert all are musicians —one plays one instrument, and one another, but none all in perfection. ...
— Louis Agassiz as a Teacher • Lane Cooper

... honour lay in me, From me by strong assault it is bereft. My honey lost, and I, a drone-like bee, Have no perfection of my summer left, But robb'd and ransack'd by injurious theft: In thy weak hive a wandering wasp hath crept, And suck'd the honey which thy chaste ...
— The Rape of Lucrece • William Shakespeare [Clark edition]

... mathematician, and in 1690 he was able to give a satisfactory explanation of the reflection and refraction of light, on the hypothesis that light was due to wave motion in the Aether. It was not, however, till the advent of Thomas Young, that the undulatory or wave theory reached its perfection, and finally overthrew its competitor the corpuscular theory. Young made himself thoroughly acquainted with wave motion of all kinds, and applied his knowledge and experience to the phenomena of light, and from the analogies so obtained, he gradually built up the undulatory theory, and ...
— Aether and Gravitation • William George Hooper

... Isabelle played the part almost as well as Jacqueline? Up to the last moment I was afraid that something would go wrong. When one gets into a streak of ill-luck—but all went off to perfection, thank heaven!" ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... Katy's hand convulsively and walked away, turning her head now and then for another glance at Amy and the doves; while Ned and Katy silently crossed to the landing and got into a gondola. It was the perfection of a Venice evening, with silver waves lapsing and lulling under a rose and opal sky; and the sense that it was their last row on those enchanted waters made every moment ...
— What Katy Did Next • Susan Coolidge

... advance to different developments of organic living forms in every single branch of life, except in the greatest art of all. The Middle Ages had inherited a direct succession of harmonious forms, one rising out of another until the perfection was attained. Then came the Black Death, and the no less fatal scourges of Commercialism and Bureaucracy. Men's thoughts apparently became so riveted upon the grave that they must go back to the art of the dead Romans and the formalism of classical examples to keep ...
— The Story of Rouen • Sir Theodore Andrea Cook

... in the river, at one haul of our seyne. The country people brought us for sale a root called Ningin,[165] of which we bought a handful for a small piece of copper an inch and half long. Our men got some of this, but not so good, this not being the season when it is ripe; for, when in full perfection, it is as tender and ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume IX. • Robert Kerr

... shade is of the utmost consequence; as on this, in an eminent degree, depends the perfection of the work. The shades must be so chosen, as to blend into each other, or all harmony of coloring will be destroyed. The canvas must be more distinct in tent stitch than in cross stitch, or rather more strongly contrasted, especially in the dark shades of flowers: without ...
— The Ladies' Work-Table Book • Anonymous

... to Harper's Ferry, a friend met Brown in Kansas [in June, 1858], and learned that during the previous month he had brought almost all of his plans to perfection; and that the day and hour were fixed to strike the blow. One year before, a convention had met, on the 8th of May, 1858, at Chatham, Canada. At this convention a provisional constitution and ordinances were drafted and adopted, with the following officers: Commander-in-Chief, ...
— History of the Negro Race in America from 1619 to 1880. Vol. 2 (of 2) - Negroes as Slaves, as Soldiers, and as Citizens • George Washington Williams

... The wondrous perfection of mathematical research is shown by the fact that we can now add up, as it were, all these momentary effects through years and centuries, with a view of determining the combined result at any one ...
— The Reminiscences of an Astronomer • Simon Newcomb

... hand with which she pointed now here, now there, again seemed to him fairly instinct with life; and he, who deemed perfection of form of so much value, found it difficult to avert his eyes from her marvellous symmetry. And her whole figure! What lines, what genuine aristocratic elegance, and warm, ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... not right, though. He took his palette and began to work. As he corrected the leg he looked continually at the figure of John in the background, which his visitors had not even noticed, but which he knew was beyond perfection. When he had finished the leg he wanted to touch that figure, but he felt too much excited for it. He was equally unable to work when he was cold and when he was too much affected and saw everything ...
— Anna Karenina • Leo Tolstoy

... more common is the perfection to which the drama has been carried in this tongue. It is to "Cinna," "Phedre," the "Misanthrope" that it owes its vogue, and not to the ...
— Voltaire's Philosophical Dictionary • Voltaire

... had come as near to perfection as is possible in this world would have found his perfect mate, what Paul calls ...
— The Orchard of Tears • Sax Rohmer

... the matter but little thought," he said at length. "They are but the accidents of my great work. It is unfortunate that they are as they are, but without them I could have never reached the perfection that I am sure we are to find here," and he tapped lovingly upon the heavy glass cover of the vat before which he stood. "And this is but the beginning. There can be no more mistakes now, though I doubt ...
— The Monster Men • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... nutmeg was found growing on the islands of Sadung and Sumpudin in abundance and perfection, proving that by cultivation it might be brought into the market as cheap, and probably as good, as those produced in the Moluccas. We have various specimens of ores and stones, which, on being tested, may prove valuable commodities. Among these is decomposed ...
— The Expedition to Borneo of H.M.S. Dido - For the Suppression of Piracy • Henry Keppel

... in her thirtieth year. She had once been described, by one who saw below the surface, as a perfectly beautiful woman in an absolutely plain shell; and no man had as yet looked beneath the shell, and seen the woman in her perfection. She would have made earth heaven for a blind lover who, not having eyes for the plainness of her face or the massiveness of her figure, might have drawn nearer, and apprehended the wonder of her as a woman, experiencing the wealth of tenderness of which she was capable, the blessed comfort ...
— The Rosary • Florence L. Barclay

... was abstracted and thoughtful all that day, and performed no miracles except certain provisions for Winch, and the miracle of completing his day's work with punctual perfection in spite of all the bee-swarm of thoughts that hummed through his mind. And the extraordinary abstraction and meekness of his manner was remarked by several people, and made a matter for jesting. For the most part he ...
— The Country of the Blind, And Other Stories • H. G. Wells

... principles of Stoicism to their own legal studies is almost certain. The combination of legal training and Stoic influence (whether direct or unconscious) seems to have been capable of bringing the Roman aristocratic character to a high pitch of perfection; and it will be pleasant to take this friend of Cicero, whose public career we can clearly trace, and one or two of whose letters we still possess, as our example of a really well spent life in an age when time and talent were constantly ...
— Social life at Rome in the Age of Cicero • W. Warde Fowler

... a pathos for us in the display of perfection. Such subtle contrast with our individual poverty ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... the most unconcerned manner possible Philip walked straight up to the cottage door and knocked. The boy was playing his part to perfection, all of them saw, and Jim in particular seemed ...
— The Chums of Scranton High Out for the Pennant • Donald Ferguson

... is the sublime gospel of American freedom. It is our faith that national greatness has its only enduring foundation in the intelligence and integrity of the whole people. It is our faith that our institutions approach perfection only when every child can be educated and elevated to the station of a free and intelligent citizen, and we mourn for each one who goes astray as a loss to the country that cannot be repaired.... From this fundamental truth that the end ...
— The Story of Wellesley • Florence Converse

... the bird on the quivering bough, the mellow sunshine streaming through the lattice of green leaves, the tinkle of the woodland stream, spoke in every tone; and more than this, the hearth-glow in whose light the patient hands had worked, the breath of the soul bending itself in passionate prayer for perfection, these, too, seemed to have wrought their blessed influence on the willing strings until the tone was laden with spiritual harmony. One might indeed have sung of this little red violin—that looked to Lyddy, in the sunset glow, as if it were veneered with rubies—all that Shelley sang of ...
— The Village Watch-Tower • (AKA Kate Douglas Riggs) Kate Douglas Wiggin

... from the brain to the back of the eyeball, and there spreads out. 6. Between the mind of man and the outer world are interposed the nerves of the human body. 7. All forms of the lever and all the principal kinds of hinges are found in the body. 8. By perfection is meant the full and harmonious development of all the faculties. 9. Ugh! I look forward with dread to to-morrow. 10. From the Mount of Olives, the Dead Sea, dark and misty and solemn, is seen. 11. ...
— Higher Lessons in English • Alonzo Reed and Brainerd Kellogg

... simple children of nature, but are the excrescences of overwrought refinement, and though their baneful influence has indeed penetrated to the country and corrupted man there, the source and fountainhead was amongst crowded houses, where nature is scarcely known. I am not one of those who look for perfection amongst the rural population of any country; perfection is not to be found amongst the children of the fall, wherever their abodes may happen to be; but, until the heart discredits the existence of ...
— The Bible in Spain • George Borrow

... stuff, in the finest series of colors, garnished with superb lace. Her cap was of Alencon lace, knotted with a ribbon of green and gold. Figure to yourself, in this gallant deshabille, a charming Princess, who has all the wit, perfection of manner—and is still only thirty-seven, with a beauty that was once so brilliant! Round the celestial bed were courtiers, doctors, almoners, mostly in devotional postures; the three young Princes; and a Dame d'Atours, who seemed ...
— History of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. XIII. (of XXI.) • Thomas Carlyle

... the reign of Louis XIV of France, who founded the national ballet academy at Paris in 1661, and often played prominent parts himself. Under this influence great performers began to appear, artists whose work, by grace of beauty alone, attested that perfection in ballet ...
— The Art of Stage Dancing - The Story of a Beautiful and Profitable Profession • Ned Wayburn

... 65 per cent. of the dry weight of the bones of all animals, and it is all derived from the soil through the medium of plants. As plants are intended as food for animals, nature has provided that they shall not attain their perfection without taking up a supply of phosphate of lime as well as of the other earthy matters; consequently, there are many soils which will not produce good crops, simply because they are deficient in phosphate of lime. It is one of the most important ingredients of manures, and ...
— The Elements of Agriculture - A Book for Young Farmers, with Questions Prepared for the Use of Schools • George E. Waring

... fence seven feet high to prevent being the least incommoded from people in the fields; hot loaves and butter every day, milk directly from the cows, coffee, tea, and all manner of liquors in the greatest perfection; also a handsome long room, from whence is the most copious prospects and airy situation of any now in vogue. I humbly hope the continuance of my friends' favours, as I make it my chief study to have the best accommodations, and am, ladies and gentlemen, your obliged ...
— Inns and Taverns of Old London • Henry C. Shelley

... that men who at first will not allow the verdict of perfection they pronounce upon their sweethearts or wives to be disturbed by God's own testimony to the contrary, will, once suspecting their purity, morally hang them upon evidence they would be ashamed to admit ...
— A Pair of Blue Eyes • Thomas Hardy

... of the noblest kind, which can be no otherwise defined than leaving every one at liberty to attach as much excellence to it as he can conceive, and then suppose Barry to have reached that point of perfection. ...
— The Mirror of Taste, and Dramatic Censor, Vol. I, No. 4, April 1810 • Various

... that, In so far as man's happiness is something created, existing in him, we must needs say that it is an operation. For happiness is man's supreme perfection. Now each thing is perfect in so far as it is actual; since potentiality without act is imperfect. Consequently happiness must consist in man's last act. But it is evident that operation is the ...
— Summa Theologica, Part I-II (Pars Prima Secundae) - From the Complete American Edition • Saint Thomas Aquinas

... so to maturity, in grace the true development is perpetually backward toward the cradle: we must become and continue as little children, not losing, but rather gaining, childlikeness of spirit. The disciple's maturest manhood is only the perfection of his childhood. George Muller was never so really, truly, fully a little child in all his relations to his Father, as when in the ninety-third year of ...
— George Muller of Bristol - His Witness to a Prayer-Hearing God • Arthur T. Pierson

... tenderness one can feel, it is also certain that admirable firmness of workmanship confronts one, that the whole is very strong and very great. Pierre gradually yielded to such sovereign masterliness, such virile elegance, such a vision of supreme beauty set in supreme perfection. But if the "Dispute on the Sacrament" and the so-called "School of Athens," both prior to the paintings of the Sixtine Chapel, seemed to him to be Raffaelle's masterpieces, he felt that in the "Burning of the Borgo," and particularly in the "Expulsion of Heliodorus from ...
— The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete - Lourdes, Rome and Paris • Emile Zola

... she remained in her chosen life, and what advance she had made in the way of perfection, the Hermit now felt that it behoved him to exhort her again to return to the convent; and more than once he resolved to speak with her, but his heart hung back. At length he bethought him that by failing in this duty he imperilled his own soul, and thereupon, on the next feast-day, ...
— The Hermit and the Wild Woman and Other Stories • Edith Wharton

... to trust to that, Sophia. God's law requires perfection; and nothing less than perfection will be received as payment of its demand. If you owe a hundred dollars, and your creditor will not hold you quit for anything less than the whole sum, it is of no consequence whether you offer ...
— The Wide, Wide World • Elizabeth Wetherell

... beauty was at its fullest perfection, she heard all the flowers about her bending and whispering with rustling and murmuring, saying, "Who will be chosen? ...
— Bimbi • Louise de la Ramee

... in their efforts to convert the boy, he received, to his surprise, abuse and ridicule. "Visions and manifestations from God," said they, "are of the past, and all such things ceased with the apostles of old; the canon of scripture is full; religion has reached its perfection in plan, and, unlike all other systems contrived or accepted by human kind, is incapable of development or growth. It is true God lives, but He cares not for His children of modern times as He did for those of ancient days; He has shut Himself away ...
— The Story of "Mormonism" • James E. Talmage

... old-fashioned cheval glass that had been brought up by Dinah and Seth to help her in dressing for the dance and which had not been removed. Every picture in every mirror is the work of an artist—the man who makes a mirror is an artist; according to the perfection of his work is the perfection of the picture. The old cheval glass was as truthful in its way as Gainsborough, but Gainsborough had never such ...
— The Ghost Girl • H. De Vere Stacpoole

... and most of his officers belonged to our society. Shall I mention it to my shame? I profited quickly by my instructor's tuition. I acquired an amazing facility in sleight of hand tricks, and learned in perfection to sauter le coup; with the help of a pair of long ruffles, I shuffled so adroitly as to defy the quickest observer, and I ruined several fair players. My unrivalled skill so quickened the progress of my fortunes, that I ...
— Manon Lescaut • Abbe Prevost

... it was dangerous!" said Gatton grimly. "But I am pleased to say the plan worked to perfection. Your own inquiries have been highly satisfactory and you have also 'drawn the cat'! Now just to show you how dramatic your discoveries really were I will explain my second and more important reason ...
— The Green Eyes of Bast • Sax Rohmer

... milling industry in this city has been so intimately connected with the growth and prosperity of the city itself, that the steps by which the art of milling has reached its present high state of perfection are worthy of note, especially as Minneapolis may rightly claim the honor of having brought the improvements, which have within the last decade so thoroughly revolutionized the art of making flour, first ...
— Scientific American Supplement No. 275 • Various

... his religion—and required of him the sacrifice of all that might keep him below his highest level of power for work. His father early warned him to have a care for his health, "for," said he, "in your profession, if once you were to fall ill you would be a ruined man." To one so intent on perfection and so keenly alive to imperfection such advice must have been nearly superfluous, for the artist could not but observe the effect upon his work of any depression of his bodily well-being. He was, besides, too thrifty in all respects to think of lapsing into bodily neglect or ...
— Popular Science Monthly Volume 86

... fish, excellently well dressed, and ordered all manner of ways;" and the whole feast of 1445 dishes, of the placing of which we have a numbered scheme (a folio plate), and catalogues corresponding. Could this provoking volume present its viands to some of our other senses in equal perfection with that in which "the first course of hot meat served up to their majesties' table" meets the eye, it were more reasonable to detain the reader over this part of the work; but, at the late hour of the morning ...
— Coronation Anecdotes • Giles Gossip

... is faith, and the manifestation of faith is practical righteousness. 'Show Me thy faith by thy works' is Christ's teaching quite as much as it is the teaching of His sturdy servant James. And so, dear friends, we are going the shortest way to enrich lives with all the beauties of possible human perfection when we say, 'Begin at the beginning. The longest way round is the shortest way home; trust Him with all your hearts first, and that will effloresce into "whatsoever things are lovely and whatever things are of good report."' ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - St. John Chapters I to XIV • Alexander Maclaren

... perfect. But three lines form, by their junction, the TRIANGLE, or the first figure regularly perfect; and this is why it has served and still serves to characterize The Eternal; Who, infinitely perfect in His nature, is, as Universal Creator, the first Being, and consequently the first Perfection. ...
— Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry • Albert Pike

... that your example is held out to shame us. I know that we are supposed a dull, sluggish race, rendered passive by finding our situation tolerable, and prevented by a mediocrity of freedom from ever attaining to its full perfection. Your leaders in France began by affecting to admire, almost to adore, the British Constitution; but as they advanced, they came to look upon it with a sovereign contempt. The friends of your National ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. III. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... conceptions of Brahma, and the benevolent attributes of Vishnu, their dismal dreams and apprehensions, which embody themselves in the horrid worship of Siva, and in invocations to propitiate the destroyer; so the followers of Buddha, unsatisfied with the vain pretensions of unattainable perfection, struck down by this internal consciousness of sin and insufficiency, and seeing around them, instead of the reign of universal happiness and the apotheosis of intellect and wisdom, nothing but the ravages of crime and the sufferings produced ...
— My First Voyage to Southern Seas • W.H.G. Kingston

... comprehend—the extreme difficulty of solving which caused Dualism and Asceticism on the one hand, and neglect of all bodily discipline on the other. Mind and matter must be antagonistic, the work of different beings: man must get rid of his material part to arrive at his true end and perfection. ...
— Life of John Coleridge Patteson • Charlotte M. Yonge

... Balthazar Castilio, lib. 4. de aulico. Laurentius, cap. 10, de melan. Aeneas Sylvius his Lucretia, and every poet almost, which have most accurately described a perfect beauty, an absolute feature, and that through every member, both in men and women. Each part must concur to the perfection of it; for as Seneca saith, Ep. 33. lib. 4. Non est formosa mulier cujus crus laudatur et brachium, sed illa cujus simul universa facies admirationem singulis partibus dedit; "she is no fair woman, whose arm, thigh, &c. are commended, except the face and all the other parts be correspondent." ...
— The Anatomy of Melancholy • Democritus Junior

... full-gushing melody of Spenser's "Faery Queen."—Yet, within his own sphere, Pope was, as Scott calls him, a "Deacon of his craft;" he aimed at, and secured, correctness and elegance; his part is not the highest, but in it he approaches absolute perfection; and with all his monotony of manner and versification, he is one of the most interesting of writers, and many find a greater luxury in reading his pages than those of any other poet. He is the facile princeps of those poetical writers who have written for, ...
— Poetical Works of Pope, Vol. II • Alexander Pope

... she looked upon these as natural creditors to whom it was her duty to make restitution. He knew also that Mlle. Moriaz could all the better satisfy her charitable inclinations, as her mother had left her an income of one hundred thousand livres. He learned that she danced to perfection, that she drew like an angel, and that she read Italian and spoke English. This last seemed of mediocre importance to Count Abel. St. Paul said: "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal." ...
— Samuel Brohl & Company • Victor Cherbuliez

... nor whether Lepos dances well or not; but we debate on what is more to our purpose, and what it is pernicious not to know—whether men are made happier by riches or by virtue; or what leads us into intimacies, interest or moral rectitude; and what is the nature of good, and what its perfection. Meanwhile, my neighbor Cervius prates away old stories relative to the subject. For, if any one ignorantly commends the troublesome riches of Aurelius, he thus begins: "On a time a country-mouse is reported to have received a city-mouse ...
— The Works of Horace • Horace

... first remark, chosen with some purpose, I knew quite well; and I observed that I hoped I was not too late for their full perfection, if too late to ...
— Lady Baltimore • Owen Wister

... the bottom of her heart, and with an air, as if disappointed that she answered not, And can such perfection end thus! —And art thou really and indeed flown from thine ...
— Clarissa Harlowe, Volume 9 (of 9) - The History Of A Young Lady • Samuel Richardson

... reply. "Oh! tol, lol!" And that in anything but a melodious voice. "Oh! tol, lol!" What a bathos! The beautiful Maria, whom in my imagination I had clothed with all the attributes of sentiment and delicacy, whom I had conjured up as a beau ideal of perfection, replies in a hoarse voice with, "Oh! tol, lol!" Down she went, like the English funds in a panic—down she went to the zero of a Doll Tearsheet, and down I went again into the cabin. Surely this is a ...
— Olla Podrida • Frederick Marryat (AKA Captain Marryat)

... bewailing the maiden, or grieving over her early death. She was but sleeping—I could fancy: I watched one I loved in her slumbers. My heart beat high! Ay, child, and the work I did was pure joy, such joy as only the gods on Olympus know at their golden board. Every feature, every line was of such perfection as only the artist's soul can conceive of, nay, even dream of. The ecstasy remained, but my unrest gave way to an indescribable and wordless bliss. I drew with the red chalk, and mixed the colors with the grinder, and all the while I could not feel the painful sense of painting ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... disagreeable to him to find fault with any of us, that he would now and then allow evils to exist, which a little more firmness and decision might have prevented; but, had it not been for this, he would have been quite perfect, and perfection is a thing not to be ...
— Frank Fairlegh - Scenes From The Life Of A Private Pupil • Frank E. Smedley

... as if to say You could scarcely expect such general perfection anywhere else than in Holland. "But you will have all the more to tell Jenny ...
— Hans Brinker - or The Silver Skates • Mary Mapes Dodge

... bushy hair of the same hue, and long beard, that grew far up on his cheeks, he was a very formidable, fierce-looking fellow; and when he spoke, his loud, deep voice made everything ring again. He affected great dignity, and filled his role to perfection. ...
— Captain Fracasse • Theophile Gautier

... he did, he might have known or invented Egyptian traditions before he went there. The late date of the Phaedrus will have to be established by other arguments than these: the maturity of the thought, the perfection of the style, the insight, the relation to the other Platonic Dialogues, seem to contradict the notion that it could have been the work of a youth of twenty or twenty-three years of age. The cosmological notion ...
— Phaedrus • Plato

... their movements,—chopping, pounding, rasping, hammering. And, after all, what do they build? In the forest we do everything so quietly. A tree would be ashamed of itself that could not get its growth without making such a noise and dust and fuss. Our life is the perfection of good manners. For my part, I feel degraded at the mere presence of these human beings; but, alas! I am old; a hollow place at my heart warns me of the progress of decay, and probably it will be seized upon ...
— Queer Little Folks • Harriet Beecher Stowe

... a form so commanding that a king might exult at the prospect of his crown descending on such a head; of a perfection of strength and masculine excellence that will almost justify the dangerous exultation of health and vigor; of a reason that is riper than his years; of a virtue of proof; of all qualities that we respect, ...
— The Headsman - The Abbaye des Vignerons • James Fenimore Cooper

... GOD—'I said ye are gods,'—that he would have them partakers of his own blessedness in kind—be as himself;—suppose his grand idea could not be contented with creatures perfect ONLY by his gift, so far as that should reach, and having no willing causal share in the perfection, that is, partaking not at all of God's individuality and free-will and choice of good; then suppose that suffering were the only way through which the individual could be set, in separate and self-individuality, so far apart from God, that ...
— Thomas Wingfold, Curate • George MacDonald

... naught, and one of the robbers was already glad to creep from without its reach, just as his companion succeeded in breaking the finely-tempered blade with his gun barrel, leaving the Turk comparatively at his mercy; and again he bade him surrender the horse, the animal trained to the nicest point of perfection, still remaining quiet close to the spot where the encounter had taken place. The clashing of the weapons had startled him, and he breathed quick, and his ears showed that the nervous energy of his frame was aroused, but a spear point thrust into his very flanks ...
— The Circassian Slave; or, The Sultan's Favorite - A Story of Constantinople and the Caucasus • Lieutenant Maturin Murray

... check to the gayety of the evening. Frank Miller, bold and bad as he was looked crestfallen and uneasy. Some who appeared to be more careful of the manners of society than its morals, said that I was very rude. Others said that I was too prudish, and would be an old maid, that I was looking for perfection in young men, and would not find it. That young men sow their wild oats, and that I was more nice than wise, and that I would frighten the gentlemen away from me. I told them if the young men were so easily ...
— Trial and Triumph • Frances Ellen Watkins Harper

... the honors of the landscape, was trying to sum up within himself his impressions of the ceremony which had just taken place. Upon the whole he thought, as did his step-daughter, that it had come off very well, although it was not quite perfection. Perfection would have been to find in Julia a plain and unaffected woman, who would have simply thrown herself in her step-father's arms and laughed with him at her spoilt child's escapade; but he had never expected Julia's manners to be quite ...
— Led Astray and The Sphinx - Two Novellas In One Volume • Octave Feuillet

... Still, I say, I did admire you, still I wish'd and pray'd for you; 'twas all I cou'd or durst: But, as my Esteem for your Lordship daily increased with my Judgment, so nothing cou'd bring it to a more absolute height and perfection, than to observe in these troublesome times, this Age of Lying, Peaching, and Swearing with what noble Prudence, what steadiness of Mind, what Loyalty and Conduct you have evaded the Snare, that 'twas to be ...
— The Works of Aphra Behn, Vol. II • Aphra Behn

... her contributions to the household had already been taken across the Volga, the process having occupied a full week. She herself shone with the charm of a rose grown to perfection; in her face a new emotion was visible which found expression now in a musing smile, now in a stray tear. Her face was shadowed with the consciousness of a new life, of a far stretching future ...
— The Precipice • Ivan Goncharov

... joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. 14. And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares, and riches, and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. 15. But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.' ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... dress to the occasion, the article to the place, the furniture to the background. And yet to combine many periods in one and commit no anachronism, to put something French, something Spanish, something Italian, and something English into an American house and have the result the perfection of American taste—is a feat of legerdemain that has been ...
— Etiquette • Emily Post

... who, as they thus see themselves twice over, impress the picture more enduringly in their memories. He could guess, too, the stolen kiss snatched as they separated from each other's loved society. The luxury, the studied elegance, eloquent of the perfection of indolence, of ease; the extreme care shown, either to spare the loved object every annoyance, or to occasion her a delightful surprise; that strength and power of love multiplied by the strength and power of royalty itself, seemed like a death-blow to Raoul. If there be ...
— The Vicomte de Bragelonne - Or Ten Years Later being the completion of "The Three - Musketeers" And "Twenty Years After" • Alexandre Dumas

... peaceful, no peace so idyllic as that which is to be found on a Western ranch on a fine summer evening. Life at such a time and in such a place is at its smoothest, its almost Utopian perfection. The whole atmosphere is laden with a sense of good-fellowship between men and between beasts. The day's work is over, and men idle and smoke, awaiting the pleasures of an ample fare with appetites healthily sharp-set, and lounge contentedly, contemplating their coming evening's ...
— The One-Way Trail - A story of the cattle country • Ridgwell Cullum

... technique in pen-and-ink. Equally happy is the sketch which depicts "'Chacun' with his 'Chacune'" at the Moulin de la Galette (page 13), in which the pose of the figures and the expression upon their faces exhibit, if one may put it so, the very perfection of naturalness. For a study of expression, again, it would be difficult, or indeed impossible, to better the further of the two figures in the drawing of "Le 'Igh Kick," made one night at the Moulin Rouge. As to pose, could ...
— Frank Reynolds, R.I. • A.E. Johnson

... Ashton, after a moment's pause, "to add anything to these expressive and solemn Bible words. They convey in the most forcible way what seems to me the highest good for which we can aim in this life,—the perfection of Christian character. ...
— Miss Ashton's New Pupil - A School Girl's Story • Mrs. S. S. Robbins

... his attention to the issue of small books, such as the British Classics, which he began to print in 1803. His books are chiefly notable for the printing of the woodcuts, which by the process known as overlaying, he brought to great perfection. His relations with the publishers were, however, none of the best. They accused him of piracy, and considered it to be against the best interests of the trade to issue small and cheap books. The productions of the elder Whittingham's press have, moreover, ...
— A Short History of English Printing, 1476-1898 • Henry R. Plomer

... and his numbers he could learn of no body; for he first possessed those talents in perfection in our tongue. And they, who have best succeeded in them since his time, have been indebted to his example; and the more they have been able to imitate him, ...
— The Works of John Dryden, Vol. II • Edited by Walter Scott

... therefore, who frequent the Agora are not here on practical business, unless they have official duties at the government offices.[*] But in no city of any age has the gracious art of doing nothing been brought to such perfection. The Athenians are an intensely gregarious people. Everybody knows everybody else. Says an orator, "It is impossible for a man to be either a rascal or an honest man in this city without your all knowing it." Few men walk long alone; if they do keep their ...
— A Day In Old Athens • William Stearns Davis

... well, is't not? Is that well managed or not? Is the "thin Blue line" well disciplined or not? Have you such absolute perfection of "alltogetherishness" on your lyric stage as the Force voluntarily maintains—in its own interests, and obedient to its ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 101. Sep. 12, 1891 • Various

... in some degree with my father's new design. There was something large and fine in the business of wheat-growing, and to have a plague of insects arise just as our harvesting machinery was reaching such perfection that we could handle our entire crop without hired help, was a tragic, abominable injustice. I could not blame him for his ...
— A Son of the Middle Border • Hamlin Garland

... The scale, instead of being divided into inches in the usual way, is shortened in the proportion of about 0.04 of an inch for every inch. The object of shortening the scale is to avoid the necessity of applying a correction for difference of capacity between the cistern and the tube. The perfection with which this is done may be judged of from the fact, that of the first twelve barometers tested at the Liverpool Observatory with an apparatus exactly similar to that used at Kew (whence these instruments ...
— Barometer and Weather Guide • Robert Fitzroy

... say this about them. Of all the cadet units trained here at the Academy in the last twenty years, these three lads are just about perfection. Just the material you'll need ...
— The Space Pioneers • Carey Rockwell

... he was reading to me the rare and beautiful "Espousals" of Coventry Patmore. Have you seen "The Angel in the House" yet? It takes a truly married husband and wife to appreciate its exquisite meaning and perfection; but with your miraculous power of sympathy and apprehension, I think you will enjoy ...
— Memories of Hawthorne • Rose Hawthorne Lathrop

... stop it appeared to be to extirpate the perpetrators; and to that end a fifth part of the population were constantly in arms. The musket became more familiar to their hands than the plow and spade; and their marksmanship was near perfection. They gradually developed a system of tactics of their own, foreign to the manuals. The first thing you were aware of in the provincial soldier was the puff of smoke from the muzzle of his weapon; almost simultaneously came the thud of his bullet ...
— The History of the United States from 1492 to 1910, Volume 1 • Julian Hawthorne

... birch-knoll his permanent headquarters. Thorpe was at first a little suspicious of his new companion, but the man appeared scrupulously honest, was never intrusive, and even seemed genuinely desirous of teaching the white little tricks of the woods brought to their perfection by the Indian alone. He ended by liking him. The two rarely spoke. They merely sat near each other, and smoked. One evening ...
— The Blazed Trail • Stewart Edward White

... writings have been altogether along the smaller lines of composition, and he has won an enviable place as a fervent worker in diamonds. None of his gems are paste, and a few have a perfection, a solidity, and a fire that fit them for a place in that coronet one might fancy made up of the richest of the jewels of the world's music-makers, and fashioned for the very brows of ...
— Contemporary American Composers • Rupert Hughes

... the opinion that all the rest of the profession is in league against them; and by this supposition, as well as by many other circumstances, an atmosphere is created which is wholly antagonistic to the attainment of artistic perfection. All honour is due to the purely artistic singers who have reached their position without intrigue, and whose influence on their colleagues is the best stimulus to wholesome endeavour. It is beyond question that the greater the proportion of ...
— The Opera - A Sketch of the Development of Opera. With full Descriptions - of all Works in the Modern Repertory • R.A. Streatfeild

... this place furnished us with turtle in the greatest plenty and perfection. The green turtle is generally esteemed, by the greatest part of those who are acquainted with its taste, to be the most delicious of all eatables; and that it is a most wholesome food we are amply convinced by our own experience. For we fed on it for near four months, and ...
— Anson's Voyage Round the World - The Text Reduced • Richard Walter



Words linked to "Perfection" :   idol, fare-thee-well, culture, refinement, ideal, polish, state, intactness, flawlessness, gold standard, perfect, dream, imperfection, improvement, imperfect, cultivation, finish, perfectionist



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