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Train of thought   /treɪn əv θɔt/   Listen
Train of thought

noun
1.
The connections that link the various parts of an event or argument together.  Synonym: thread.  "He lost the thread of his argument"






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Train of thought" Quotes from Famous Books



... chiefly, or entirely, the force evolved in the processes of chemical composition and decomposition which constitute the body of nutrition: the force so liberated becomes a fund upon which every muscular and every nervous action, as of a train of thought, is a draft. It is in this sense only that, according to the best lights of science, volition is an originating cause. Volition, therefore, does not answer to the idea of a First Cause; since Force must, in every instance, be assumed as prior to it; and there is ...
— A Candid Examination of Theism • George John Romanes

... was more or less correct. Indeed, the man's fearless disregard of hampering customs had pleased her, but she recognized that some restraints are needful. Her companion followed the same train of thought. ...
— Vane of the Timberlands • Harold Bindloss

... endeavoured to put in its true light a species of reasoning, which, while it assumes the air and form of that inductive train of thought employed by men of science for the investigation of nature, is only fit to mislead the unwary, and, when closely examined, will appear to be inconsequential or unfounded. How mortifying then to find, that one may be employed almost a lifetime in generalising ...
— Theory of the Earth, Volume 1 (of 4) • James Hutton

... the saucy eyes studied intently the fair girlish face of Maggie Miller, then slowly closed, while a train of thought something like the following passed through the young man's mind: "A woman, and yet a perfect child—innocent and unsuspecting as little Rose herself. In one respect they are alike, knowing no evil and expecting none; and if I, Henry ...
— Maggie Miller • Mary J. Holmes

... exaggerate the effect that this discovery produced on Leonard's train of thought. Some one belonging to his own humble race had, then, preceded him in his struggling flight towards the loftier regions of Intelligence and Desire. It was like the mariner amidst unknown seas, who finds carved upon some desert ...
— My Novel, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... ranging the wide field of possibilities. He tells us what a phrase means in certain authors of whom Hamilton is not thinking, or in reference to certain matters which Hamilton is not discussing; but he hardly ever attempts to trace the history of Hamilton's own view, or the train of thought by which it suggested itself to his mind. And the result of this is, that Mr. Mill's interpretations are generally in the potential mood. He wastes a good deal of conjecture in discovering what Hamilton might have meant, when a little attention in the right quarter would have shown ...
— The Philosophy of the Conditioned • H. L. Mansel

... power and in being invisible. From dreams and other subjective experiences he derives the idea of a double, from death that of a ghost. Hence the ceremonies round the grave, and the attention paid to the double of the dead man, which subsequently developes into ancestor worship. The same train of thought gives a double to objects other than human beings. Hence Animism, Totemism, and their numerous subsidiary developments. Spencer insists, not only that "all religions have a natural genesis," but also that "behind supernatural beings of all orders" ...
— Theism or Atheism - The Great Alternative • Chapman Cohen

... to work. Sonia's questions had once again started a train of thought which ever since the trial had been running through my brain with maddening persistence. If I had not killed Marks, who had? How often had I asked myself that during the past three years, and how often had ...
— A Rogue by Compulsion • Victor Bridges

... father, with the neighbors generally, attended. How differently the gospel message affects different persons! Some are softened, others are hardened, by it. Some are stirred up to certain duties, while, under the same sermon, others are incited to an entirely different train of thought and course of action. The effect on Tom of the sermons of the preacher was to incite his feelings to revolt against his lot in life, and arouse him to the necessity of a purpose in living. He did not look forward so much to the world ...
— The Cabin on the Prairie • C. H. (Charles Henry) Pearson

... sat down on the stool next to McLeod and said something loud enough and foul enough to break the zoologist's train of thought. ...
— A World by the Tale • Gordon Randall Garrett

... not a pleasant train of thought when you are standing alone in the bleakness and sadness and growing chill of the dying day, with tremendous nature piled all about you, and watching your two companions as they disappear along a lonely road. But the mood was upon him ...
— Tom Slade at Temple Camp • Percy K. Fitzhugh

... both silent for a while, regarding each other disinterestedly; they appeared to be following a train of thought which led no whither; presently ...
— A Comedy of Masks - A Novel • Ernest Dowson and Arthur Moore

... not to be a verbal manipulation of phrases whose coming together is not inquired into, it must be a connected train of thought. But such a connection of thoughts cannot be conceived or understood without reference to the purpose of a reasoner, who selects what he requires from the totality of 'truths.' If, then, 'Logic' has merely to contemplate this eternal and immutable system of truth in its integrity, ...
— Pragmatism • D.L. Murray

... to her feet and looked him full in the face. She seemed to be following out her own train of thought rather than taking note of ...
— The Yellow Crayon • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... train of thought continued, "while this brain can think, this heart can feel, this arm retain its strength, Isabella of Buchan needs no other guardian but her son. It is as if years had left their impress on my heart, as if I had grown in very truth to ...
— The Days of Bruce Vol 1 - A Story from Scottish History • Grace Aguilar

... put to Auntie Yvette, but, dearly as she would have liked to talk about her charge's romantic trouble, her tongue was tied and she dreaded to let slip any information that might possibly lead to a train of thought connecting Lucille, Dam, and the old half-forgotten scandal of the outcast from Monksmead and Sandhurst. If her beloved nephew foolishly chose to hide his head in shame when there was no shame, it was not for those who loved him best to say anything ...
— Snake and Sword - A Novel • Percival Christopher Wren

... will, and when they will. And so, too, we cannot always succeed in completely considering some personal matter at the precise time at which we have determined beforehand to consider it, and just when we set ourselves to do so. For the peculiar train of thought which is favorable to it may suddenly become active without any special call being made upon it, and we may then follow it up with keen interest. In this way reflection, too, chooses ...
— Counsels and Maxims - From The Essays Of Arthur Schopenhauer • Arthur Schopenhauer

... letting his train of thought come to the surface, "this ought to rouse your ambition. You could get anywhere you liked. To win her, I should think you'd exert yourself at the factory as you did at home when you were going through ...
— The Second Generation • David Graham Phillips

... was gone, the sultan fell into a reverie on the advantages and disadvantages of his bear learning to read. When he went to bed, the same train of thought kept him awake; and after a sleepless night, he sent early in the morning for the patriarch. The venerable Mar Yusef lost no time in obeying the summons. Taking his patriarchal staff in his hand, ...
— Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 449 - Volume 18, New Series, August 7, 1852 • Various

... never share the company of the young King of Babylon. All who moved within the royal enclosures, whether as courtiers, under-officers, or domestics, had to be those of discerning minds and intelligence. What exact train of thought occupied the monarch's mind at this time we may better judge, perhaps, from the sequel. He rose from his reclining posture and lightly touched a shining key, which instantly answered in a remote part ...
— The Young Captives - A Story of Judah and Babylon • Erasmus W. Jones

... With an instinctive jealousy she saw that her words had started a train of thought in which she had no part. She felt herself ignored, abandoned; and all her passions rushed to the defence ...
— The Valley of Decision • Edith Wharton

... from a newsboy on the street, and glanced at it idly, as he strolled along. His eye lighted on the column devoted to shipping news, and, almost unconsciously, he saw among the "arrivals," the Turtle, of an Italian line. At once a train of thought was ...
— Larry Dexter's Great Search - or, The Hunt for the Missing Millionaire • Howard R. Garis

... that had escaped her, the warning words which she had spoken at that past time. Necessarily incapable of understanding this, Francis looked at her in perplexity. She went on in the same dull vacant tone, steadily following out her own train of thought, with her heedless eyes on his face, and her wandering mind ...
— The Haunted Hotel - A Mystery of Modern Venice • Wilkie Collins

... Letty, just one word, and not keeping her five minutes away from that desk, where she would certainly grow humped or crooked,' could interfere with her work! She was one of those stolid persons who are the bane of authors, who think nothing of the lost idea, and the unravelling of the web, when a train of thought is broken by the 'only one word,' 'only a moment,' which scatters thoughts to the wind,—thoughts that can no more be gathered home than the thistledown that is scattered ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 89, March, 1865 • Various

... be the owls, sir, a bird very frequent in this locality. They make a sort of harsh, hooting howl, sir. I have sometimes wondered," said Webster, pursuing a not uninteresting train of thought, "whether that might be the ...
— The Girl on the Boat • Pelham Grenville Wodehouse

... and produces the least pleasure. Its peculiar and unvaried construction must inevitably inflict upon it something of pedantry and monotony, and although some powerful minds have used it as a form for condensing and elaborating a particular train of thought—an Iliad in a nutshell—yet the vast majority of sonneteers employ it as an economical expedient, by which one idea can be expanded into fourteen lines—fourteen lines into one page—and, as we see, fifty-four pages ...
— Famous Reviews • Editor: R. Brimley Johnson

... [The train of thought, as said by Li Ch'uan, appears to be this: Secure against a combination of his enemies, "he can afford to reject entangling alliances and simply pursue his own secret designs, his prestige enable him to ...
— The Art of War • Sun Tzu

... chanced to speak with consideration of these gifts of Stanislao's with a certain clever man, a great hater and contemner of Kanakas. "Well! what were they!" he cried. "A pack of old men's beards. Trash!" And the same gentleman, some half an hour later, being upon a different train of thought, dwelt at length on the esteem in which the Marquesans held that sort of property, how they preferred it to all others except land, and what fancy prices it would fetch. Using his own figures, I computed ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 18 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... thoughts. Men like Gabriel Strood always come back to the Alps. They sleep too restlessly at nights, they needs must come. And yet this man had stayed away. There must have been some great impediment. He fell into another train of thought. Sylvia was eighteen, nearly nineteen. Had Gabriel Strood married just after that last season when he climbed from the Brenva Glacier to the Calotte. The story was still not unraveled, and while he perplexed his fancies over the unraveling, the door opened, and a tall, ...
— Running Water • A. E. W. Mason

... dispute now litigated, and that, if such a rule be not discovered, it is only that the necessary patience, knowledge, or acumen is not forthcoming to detect it. Yet the moment the judgment has been rendered and reported, we slide unconsciously or unavowedly into a new language and a new train of thought. We now admit that the new decision has modified the law. The rules applicable have, to use the very inaccurate expression sometimes employed, become more elastic. In fact they have been changed. A clear addition has been made to the precedents, ...
— Ancient Law - Its Connection to the History of Early Society • Sir Henry James Sumner Maine

... what it was in our conversation, however," observed Hamlet, somewhat impatient over the delay caused by the narration of this tale, "that suggested this train of thought to you." ...
— The Pursuit of the House-Boat • John Kendrick Bangs

... abstract myself from the notion that I was come to admire as thousands had done before, and from the recollection of the unclassical comforts of the excellent inn in the Piazza di Spagna. An English letter, or newspaper, is an excellent preparative for this purpose; and when once absorbed in the train of thought which it creates, the sudden transition to the mighty scenes before you, produces by contrast the effect ...
— Itinerary of Provence and the Rhone - Made During the Year 1819 • John Hughes

... his feet disturbed his train of thought. What could it be? He looked down to discover, and in the dim and uncertain light saw a small object moving about on the floor. Again it came near: first a gentle mewing, then a low purring sound was heard; and next, something, which he knew at once was a kitten, ...
— Watch—Work—Wait - Or, The Orphan's Victory • Sarah A. Myers

... guess. It is a shocking habit,—destructive to the logical faculty. What seems strange to you is only so because you do not follow my train of thought or observe the small facts upon which large inferences may depend. For example, I began by stating that your brother was careless. When you observe the lower part of that watch-case you notice that it is ...
— The Sign of the Four • Arthur Conan Doyle

... impossible to write then as I was writing now. Now, I was absolutely my own master, and disposed of my time exactly as I pleased, and days passed constantly which were wholly spent in the preparation of a manuscript and when my train of thought was never interrupted. If all my days were given to monotonous business work, how then, and when, would the writing be accomplished? My evenings and nights would be my own—or Lucia's; and this line of reflection finished in an ironical laugh. I walked to and fro, one word hammering persistently ...
— To-morrow? • Victoria Cross

... do protest to you——" she began, with a pale distressed look that vouched for her earnestness; but the Knight had his face in the tankard, and set it down only to pursue his own train of thought. ...
— London Pride - Or When the World Was Younger • M. E. Braddon

... know, further, that considerably distant objects seem much smaller, and hence I must assume that the horse, which in spite of its imaginary distance appears to retain its natural size, is really larger than it is. The train of thought is as follows: "I see the horse indistinctly. It seems to be far away. It is, in spite of its distance, of great size. How enormous it must be when it is close to me!'' Of course these inferences are neither slow ...
— Robin Hood • J. Walker McSpadden

... the Editor, pursuing his train of thought, "we have to consider the personalities of the conspirators. You'll find, Stuart, if you go into newspaper work, that one of the first things to do in any big story, is to estimate, as closely as you can, the character of the men or women who are acting in it. Newspaper ...
— Plotting in Pirate Seas • Francis Rolt-Wheeler

... regarded only as ruses, to afford opportunity for thorough search to the police, and thus the sooner to impress them with the conviction to which G——, in fact, did finally arrive—the conviction that the letter was not upon the premises. I felt, also, that the whole train of thought, which I was at some pains in detailing to you just now, concerning the invariable principle of policial action in searches for articles concealed, I felt that this whole train of thought would necessarily pass through the mind of the minister. It would imperatively ...
— The Short-story • William Patterson Atkinson

... before there was any chance of Indians, and no particular lookout to be kept, so he put the horse ahead rapidly while he might, and suddenly he found himself singing softly as he galloped. How the words had come to him he did not know, for no conscious train of thought had brought them; but they surely fitted to the situation, and a pleasant sense of companionship, of safety, warmed him as the swing of an old hymn carried his ...
— Short Stories for English Courses • Various (Rosa M. R. Mikels ed.)

... quite delight in following their arguments. These "Dialogues" remind me of a fugue in musical composition; only melody is wanting to make the resemblance perfect, for here, as in the "Well-tempered Harpsichord," one train of thought is taken up, viewed from every side and in every light—that is to say, pursued through every possible key only to return and end at the ...
— The Story of a Summer - Or, Journal Leaves from Chappaqua • Cecilia Cleveland

... into this train of thought? But never mind, I have drifted into it—and I will follow it out—it takes me to your father's side again! O Magne, how I loved him! how I shall always love him!" She burst into tears—the girl's heart beat against hers. The softened colours ...
— Captain Mansana and Mother's Hands • Bjoernstjerne Bjoernson

... be attributed to subconscious memory, for when our mind is centered on a certain train of thought these thoughts are apt to filter through into the conscious state in sleep. The subconscious memory cannot be truthfully called a dream, for it is only a memory of something we have previously perceived ...
— The Secret of Dreams • Yacki Raizizun

... By reaction I mean an activity of the intellectual faculties, which shows itself in consequent reasoning and observation, and originates action and conduct according to a principle. Thus, the act of thinking presents two sides for contemplation,—that of external causality, in which the train of thought may be considered as the result of outward impressions, of accidental combinations, of fancy, or the associations of the memory,—and on the other hand, that of internal causality, or of the energy of the will on the mind itself. ...
— Literary Remains (1) • Coleridge

... Dale stared at the instrument for a moment, as though it were some singular and uninvited intruder who had broken in without warrant upon his train of thought; and then, leaning forward over the table, he lifted the receiver ...
— The Further Adventures of Jimmie Dale • Frank L. Packard

... been thinking of his mother and her picture in the drawing-room downstairs. The train of thought suggested to him to inquire if he had ever seen his mother; for he could not remember whether they had told him yes or no, the river running very fast and confusing ...
— Ten Boys from Dickens • Kate Dickinson Sweetser

... point. The Countess was convinced that her husband was realizing his fortune, and that somewhere or other there would be a little bunch of notes representing the amount; they had been deposited with a notary, or perhaps at the bank, or in some safe hiding-place. Following out her train of thought, it was evident that M. de Restaud must of necessity have some kind of document in his possession by which any remaining property could be recovered and handed over ...
— Gobseck • Honore de Balzac

... latter days they had become a very silent couple; they said scarcely a word to each other that night, but each followed a private train of thought. In the small hours, as Elizabeth lay awake, Denton started up beside her suddenly—he had been lying as still ...
— Tales of Space and Time • Herbert George Wells

... abide the notion of Branch Churches or Free (sect) Churches, and unless my whole train of thought alters, I will resist the temptation as coming from the devil. Where I am I am doing God's work, and when the Church is ripe for more, the Head of the Church will put the means our way. You seem to fancy that ...
— Alton Locke, Tailor And Poet • Rev. Charles Kingsley et al

... correct in the course of a careful revision. There will be some half-formed thought which will need elaboration, or some word which was not quite the right one, but which you let pass lest you lose your train of thought; and there is almost sure to be some wordiness which will ...
— Short Story Writing - A Practical Treatise on the Art of The Short Story • Charles Raymond Barrett

... can," agreed Sam. After a moment he went on, pursuing his train of thought aloud, as ...
— The Silent Places • Stewart Edward White

... father either, for that matter, only his was in a different way. Mother will have gotten to little Jemmie now, and they'll be so happy together,—and perhaps Franky too. Oh!" said she, recovering herself from her train of thought, "never say aught lightly of the wife's lot whose husband is ...
— The Grey Woman and other Tales • Mrs. (Elizabeth) Gaskell

... into this train of thought by an article in the North China Daily News of 10th July 1874, in which the writer speaks of China as "a luxuriant mental oasis amidst the sterility of Eastern Asia," and "possessing a literature ...
— Chinese Sketches • Herbert A. Giles

... The train of thought in the above essay, which Dr. Berillon has published in the September number of his Revue de l'Hypnotisme, inspired the contents of a lecture presented at the Scientific Congress at Nancy (August, 1886), out of which arose a discussion in which ...
— Buchanan's Journal of Man, June 1887 - Volume 1, Number 5 • Various

... suggested to Sir William Hamilton by a train of thought which has little natural tendency to suggest them, viz., by the distinction upon which he so much insists, between the logic of comprehension and the logic of extension, and by his anxiety to explain why the former had been exclusively cultivated ...
— Review of the Work of Mr John Stuart Mill Entitled, 'Examination of Sir William Hamilton's Philosophy.' • George Grote

... A train of thought which begins with the concrete not unfrequently finds itself finishing, almost against its will, in abstractions. This is the point to which the performance of Cherubino's part by Pauline Lucca at the Scala twenty years ago has led me—that I have to settle with myself what I mean ...
— Sketches and Studies in Italy and Greece • John Addington Symonds

... him what he contemplated bridging. Both were at that moment busy with the same train of thought. They knew ...
— The Plant Hunters - Adventures Among the Himalaya Mountains • Mayne Reid

... go, down—down—downy!" the children used to sing when playing see-saw with a broad plank on the fence; and they understood, what their elders sometimes forget—that the rebound of extreme height is descent. One more illustration, before this train of thought necessarily ceases. ...
— Shoulder-Straps - A Novel of New York and the Army, 1862 • Henry Morford

... ago—Burbank, at the time governor, was with me, and we were going over the main points for his annual message. One of my suggestions—my orders to all my agents, high and low, have always been sugar-coated as "suggestions"—started a new train of thought in him, and he took pen and paper to fix it before it had a chance to escape. As he wrote, my glance wandered along the shelves of the book-cases. It paused on the farthest and lowest shelf. I rose and went there, and found my old school-books, those I used when I was in Public School ...
— The Plum Tree • David Graham Phillips

... Rorie, and the beginning of our meal, did not detach him from his train of thought beyond a moment. He condescended, indeed, to ask me some questions as to my success at college, but I thought it was with half his mind; and even in his extempore grace, which was, as usual, long and wandering, I could find the trace of his preoccupation, praying, as he did, that God would 'remember ...
— The Merry Men - and Other Tales and Fables • Robert Louis Stevenson

... when the emotions of the moment have passed, one can return to the former train of thought, forcing oneself to ...
— Poise: How to Attain It • D. Starke

... the faint odor of gasolene in the coupe on the way from his brother's funeral, and this incited a train of thought which continued till he reached the vicinity of his home. His route was by a street parallel to that on which the New House fronted, and in his preoccupation he walked a block farther than he intended, so that, having crossed ...
— The Turmoil - A Novel • Booth Tarkington

... and reappeared in an exquisite tea-gown, which made her friend's frock, though new and handsome, look something less than suitable to the occasion. Alma, glancing about the room, spoke as if in pursuance of a train of thought. ...
— The Whirlpool • George Gissing

... business in the following chapters to consider whether the unconsciousness, or quasi-unconsciousness, with which we perform certain acquired actions, would seem to throw any light upon Embryology and inherited instincts, and otherwise to follow the train of thought which the class of actions above-mentioned would suggest; more especially in so far as they appear to bear upon the origin of species and the continuation of life by successive generations, whether in the ...
— Life and Habit • Samuel Butler

... my notes on the case—on his condition." "But his name?" she came out with, "so that you can send your bill; you put that down?" "His name?" repeated the Doctor slowly, a slight frown of annoyance coming over his face as his train of thought was by then definitely derailed. "His ...
— Some Personal Recollections of Dr. Janeway • James Bayard Clark

... yourself to the public; but," he added, "after reading your life, I found myself in possession of renewed strength, and awakened energies and aspirations, and I said to myself, 'Why can't I go ahead and make money, as Barnum did? He commenced without money and succeeded; why may not I?' In this train of thought," he continued, "I went to a newspaper office and advertised for a partner with money to join me in establishing a cotton-mill. I had no applications, and, remembering your experiences when you had money and wanted a partner, I spent half a crown in a similar ...
— A Unique Story of a Marvellous Career. Life of Hon. Phineas T. • Joel Benton

... out here?" he asked in a tone of irritation. His question was merely the result of his own train of thought. He had not been speaking of any one ...
— The Hound From The North • Ridgwell Cullum

... My waking train of thought ended in a stupor in which I do not think I lost for a moment the dull consciousness of pain. I was aroused by a step upon the gravel-path, and, starting up, saw the woman who served Mrs. Yocomb in the ...
— A Day Of Fate • E. P. Roe

... own abolition movement gained the ascendency. It became apparent to various thinkers that the humanitarian view of the question was not its be-all and end-all; that some facts and considerations per contra had to be taken into account; and that what one train of thought and feeling denounced as a mere self-condemned wrong might, according to another, be even regarded as a higher right. Still, this "new light" upon slavery was received more or less fully by only a ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 100, February, 1866 • Various

... have taken as my text seem to me to suggest a train of thought having an immediate bearing on this subject. St Paul has been speaking of himself in the passage from which the text is taken. He has been commending himself—a task which is never congenial to him. But his opponents in the Corinthian ...
— Religion and Theology: A Sermon for the Times • John Tulloch

... in unexpected places, were diamond-shaped red things that I am credibly informed are called medallions. The general effect of it may be briefly characterised as grateful to the eye and dangerous to the heart, and to a rational train of thought quite fatal. ...
— The Eagle's Shadow • James Branch Cabell

... and far more irritating ones to interfere with the peaceful passage of the night. There were sounds that were unaccountable; there was the memory of the wayside tombstone and the train of thought that it engendered. Added to the hell-hot, baking stuffiness that radiated from the walls, there came the squeaking of a punka rope pulled out of time—the piece of piping in the mud-brick wall through which the rope passed had become clogged and rusted, and the villager ...
— Rung Ho! • Talbot Mundy

... its train of thought. There was only one possible end for us if Holgate was to secure himself; and he was capable of any infamy. As I looked at his broad back and bull neck I felt rage and hatred gather in me and surge together. ...
— Hurricane Island • H. B. Marriott Watson

... when, as usually happens, the restricted series of intellectual actions to be gone through, does not suffice to carry it off; there result discharges along other channels besides the one prescribed: there are aroused various ideas foreign to the train of thought to be pursued; and these tend to exclude from consciousness ...
— Essays on Education and Kindred Subjects - Everyman's Library • Herbert Spencer

... act and process of becoming; undergoing marked changes, passing through divers stages, animated by mixed and various motives and impulses, passion alternating with passion, purpose with purpose, train of thought with train of thought; so that they often end greatly modified from what they were at the beginning; the same, and yet another. Thus they have to our minds a past and a future as well as a present; and even in what we see of them at any given moment there is involved ...
— Shakespeare: His Life, Art, And Characters, Volume I. • H. N. Hudson

... expressive looks and gestures of Mr Baptist, otherwise Giovanni Baptista Cavalletto, vividly before him, Clennam entered on a weary day. It was in vain that he tried to control his attention by directing it to any business occupation or train of thought; it rode at anchor by the haunting topic, and would hold to no other idea. As though a criminal should be chained in a stationary boat on a deep clear river, condemned, whatever countless leagues of water flowed past him, always to see the body of the ...
— Little Dorrit • Charles Dickens

... finding that this was the case; and asked her several questions, and gave much advice about her health. I fixed my eyes upon them both, and a train of thought was started in my mind, which engrossed me completely, while they went on conversing in a low tone. There we were, sitting quietly together, with smiles on our lips, and the whole appearance of peace, harmony, and comfort, around us. If any one could ...
— Ellen Middleton—A Tale • Georgiana Fullerton

... ever was any individuality it will remain. I don't believe it is necessary for development that the individual must always force itself upon us. We naturally fall into the habits and frequently the train of thought of those we love and I like the expression "we" rather than "I." I never feel that my interests and actions can be independent of the dear ones with whom I am surrounded. Even the one who seems to be most absorbed may, in reality, possess the strongest soul. This standing ...
— The Life and Work of Susan B. Anthony (Volume 1 of 2) • Ida Husted Harper

... train of thought is eminently applicable to the admission of the name into the system of Masonry. With us, the name of God, however expressed, is a symbol of DIVINE TRUTH, which it should be the incessant labor of a Mason ...
— The Symbolism of Freemasonry • Albert G. Mackey

... go," the two old comrades said to each other, gradually coming to feel the impression of that twilight, which seemed colder than elsewhere; but before moving off, Hemerlingue, pursuing his train of thought, pointed to the monument winged at the four corners by the draperies and the outstretched hands of ...
— The Nabob • Alphonse Daudet

... immortality or eternity, but as 'chained to Time,' and incapable of departing from Time. As long as Time lives and operates, Urania must do the same. The dead have escaped from the dominion of Time: this Urania, cannot do. There is a somewhat similar train of thought in Prometheus Unbound,—where Prometheus the Titan, after enduring the torture of the ...
— Adonais • Shelley

... Seigneur live?" he asked presently, and inconsequently as it seemed, but following out a train of thought of his own which ...
— A Maid of the Silver Sea • John Oxenham

... acquaintance with men of his spiritual flavor and the school of Christian thought which they represent. Christian literature, to be accepted and approved by the evangelical leaders of our times, must follow very closely the same train of thought, a kind of "party line" from which it is scarcely safe to depart. A half-century of this in America has made us smug and content. We imitate each other with slavish devotion and our most strenuous efforts are put forth to try to say the same ...
— The Pursuit of God • A. W. Tozer

... as if he had fallen into a train of thought, and Stephen looked with affectionate awe at a master whose mind, he believed, could swallow up at one meal all that his ...
— A Pair of Blue Eyes • Thomas Hardy

... funebre, invited Byron "to religious meditation," the mental picture of the "spectre huntsman" pursuing his eternal vengeance on "the inexorable dame"—"that fatal she," who had mocked his woes—must have set in motion another train of thought. Such lines as these would "speak comfortably" ...
— The Works of Lord Byron, Volume 6 • Lord Byron

... A new train of thought was presently in motion in the mind of the girl: The beautiful cup was stolen! it was not where it ought to be! it was not at home! it was a captive, a slave! She lowered the book, half closed, with a finger between the leaves, and stood thinking. She did not for a moment believe ...
— The Elect Lady • George MacDonald

... conscious of nodding, and waking up with a start, endeavoured to pursue my train of thought. The fire was comfortable, and my cigar was still alight; only a few moments more, and then bed. The resolution was scarcely formed before my head dropped again and ...
— The Argosy - Vol. 51, No. 3, March, 1891 • Various

... fasted. He answered, that fasting gave him great light in the things of God; which answer gave birth to the following train of thought in the mind of his auditor:-'Well, if fasting will give light inwardly and spiritually, I need it as much as any body,-and I'll fast too. If Mr. Pierson needs to fast two nights and three days, then I, who need light ...
— The Narrative of Sojourner Truth • Sojourner Truth

... images with which love and his new-fledged hope seemed conspiring for a while to amuse his willing mind. At length, however, a quickened pace, a firmer tread, and a prouder bearing, showed that a different and less peaceful train of thought was ...
— The Rangers - [Subtitle: The Tory's Daughter] • D. P. Thompson

... Baudelaire was infallibly right. He wrote neither verse nor prose with ease, but he would not permit himself to write either without inspiration. His work is without abundance, but it is without waste. It is made out of his whole intellect and all his nerves. Every poem is a train of thought and every essay is the record of sensation. This 'romantic' had something classic in his moderation, a moderation which becomes at times as terrifying as Poe's logic. To 'cultivate one's hysteria' so calmly, ...
— Figures of Several Centuries • Arthur Symons

... to his subject, hoping to sow a good seed in Belllounds's mind, he saw that he was wasting his earnestness. Belllounds did not keep to the train of thought. His mind wandered, and now he ...
— The Mysterious Rider • Zane Grey

... are strangely dualistic, and it not unfrequently happens that while one is consciously intent upon a certain train of thought, some secret cunning current of association sets in vibration the coil of ideas locked in the chambers of memory, and long forgotten images leap forth, startling in their ...
— At the Mercy of Tiberius • August Evans Wilson

... between the apparent openness that must rule one's conduct among men, and the real secrecy that may coexist with it, even when one is most exposed to the gaze of others, excites in his mind a whole train of thought based on the falsity of appearances. If a man can be outwardly open and inwardly reserved in a good sense, he can be so in a bad sense; so, too, he may have the external air of great excellence and purity, while internally he is foul and unfaithful. This ...
— A Study Of Hawthorne • George Parsons Lathrop

... the air, eyebrows arched in airy disdain, she stood preoccupied with some little inward train of thought that alternately made grave and gay the upcurled corners of ...
— The Firing Line • Robert W. Chambers

... train of thought pursued by Elinor, during this morning stroll, we shall not attempt to follow; but that she was fully aware of the importance of the decision was evident, by the unusual absence of manner, which seemed to have struck even her four-footed friend Bruno. She had, indeed, made an important discovery ...
— Elinor Wyllys - Vol. I • Susan Fenimore Cooper

... can conscientiously answer, "Yes, a decidedly good Pantomime." If pressed farther by those who "want to know" as to whether it's the best Pantomime he ever saw, the First Commissioner answers, "No, it is not Beauty and the Best," and he is of opinion that he must travel, in a train of thought on the line of Memory, back to the PAYNES and the VOKESES in the primest of their prime, if he would recall two or three of the very best, mind you, the very best, Pantomimes ever seen in the Tame West. For real good rollicking ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 100., Jan. 10, 1891 • Various

... heir of England," was committed into custody by the Lord Chief Justice, for disturbing the court in which he sat as judge, and who afterwards, when king, so nobly commended that officer's conduct. Shakspeare has a similar train of thought with ...
— Coronation Anecdotes • Giles Gossip

... of the following production is briefly this:—A lady, fond of blank verse, demanded a poem of that kind from the author, and gave him the SOFA for a subject. He obeyed, and having much leisure, connected another subject with it; and, pursuing the train of thought to which his situation and turn of mind led him, brought forth, at length, instead of the trifle which he at first intended, ...
— The Task and Other Poems • William Cowper

... least tranquilly, while thus employed; and maturity glides into age, and age drops into the grave, scarcely conscious of the gradations of each, owing to the mind having been filled with a continuous train of thought, engendered by study. ...
— The Idler in France • Marguerite Gardiner

... include all the attributes of the cell as physically expressed, and without them he would not be man. The differences between no two terms in a series can be total. If the successive steps in a train of thought must be related, so that no two notions will be wholly distinct from each other, these notions will constitute a series, each term of which will, in a measure, determine the next, so soon as the law of the series is discovered; and if this train of thought ...
— The Philosophy of Evolution - and The Metaphysical Basis of Science • Stephen H. Carpenter

... Irving had formed a habit of jotting down in black and white her own ideas regarding any book, painting, concert, conversation or sermon, which interested her, and epitomising the train of thought ...
— An Ambitious Man • Ella Wheeler Wilcox

... the train of thought that led Forsythe at last to write to Rosa that he was coming, throwing Rosa into a panic of joy and alarm. For Rosa's father had been most explicit about her ever going out with Forsythe again. It had been the most relentless command he had ever laid upon her, ...
— A Voice in the Wilderness • Grace Livingston Hill

... dumb companion partially called off his thoughts from the painful theme with which they had been exclusively occupied, and the effect was most beneficial. The first violent burst of feeling was past, and a calmer train of thought succeeded; he for the first time remembered the boy had forgiven him, and that was a great consolation to him; he recalled, too, his own words, pledging to Gustavus his friendship, and in this pleasing hope of the future he saw much to redeem what he regretted of the past. Still, however, the ...
— Handy Andy, Vol. 2 - A Tale of Irish Life • Samuel Lover

... white tower shooting out from among the trees, and beneath that tower this ill-fated family were watching and waiting, waiting and watching—and for what? That was still the question which stood like an impassable barrier at the end of every train of thought. ...
— The Mystery of Cloomber • Arthur Conan Doyle

... treatment, resorts at once to the public library, searches catalogues, questions the librarian, and surrounds himself with books and periodicals which may throw light upon it. He is soon master of facts and reasonings which enable him to start upon a train of thought that bears fruit in an essay or discourse. In fact, it may be laid down as an axiom, that nearly every new book that is written is indebted to the library for most of its ideas, its facts, or its illustrations, so ...
— A Book for All Readers • Ainsworth Rand Spofford

... as though suddenly recollecting an interrupted train of thought, broke out: "Say, mister, did yer see them two go by on bicycles ...
— Mad Shepherds - and Other Human Studies • L. P. Jacks

... Fontaine applauded in the dialogue of Plato, namely vivacity, fidelity of tone, and accuracy in the opposition of opinions. It has always been a favourite with those writers who have something to censure or to impart, but who love to stand outside the pulpit, and to encourage others to pursue a train of thought which the author does not seem to do more than indicate. The dialogue is so spontaneous a mode of expressing and noting down the undulations of human thought that it almost escapes analysis. All that is recorded, in any literature, of what pretend to be the actual words spoken ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 3 - "Destructors" to "Diameter" • Various

... the officer had aroused a new train of thought in the miner's mind, he fancied the lawyer whom Bill had consulted should be informed of what ...
— Down the Slope • James Otis

... the red son of the woods was wrapped in slumber. He had placed under his head a many-hued homespun shirt which the young preacher had given him; but while asleep his head had rolled off this improvised pillow, and the bright garment lay free, attracting the eye. Certainly it had led to the train of thought which had found lodgment ...
— The Spirit of the Border - A Romance of the Early Settlers in the Ohio Valley • Zane Grey

... whom these observations were addressed, who appeared of a taciturn and thoughtful cast, merely echoed the inquiry; Mr. Roker, shaking off the poetical and gloomy train of thought into which he had been betrayed, descended to the common business of life, and resumed ...
— The Pickwick Papers • Charles Dickens

... paused, as if what the Earl last said had excited some painful but interesting train of thought; and, as she still remained ...
— Kenilworth • Sir Walter Scott

... go off. As for asking for a book and reading it in cold blood right in the middle of such a place, it will always be beyond me. I have never found a book I could do it with yet. However I struggle to follow the train of thought in it, it's a fuse. I find myself breaking out, when I see all these far-away-looking people coming up in rows to their faraway books. "A library," I say to myself, "is a huge barbaric, mediaeval institution, where behind stone ...
— The Lost Art of Reading • Gerald Stanley Lee

... Divine. When we examine the most minute organisms, we find clear evidence in their voluntary powers of motion that these creatures possess a will, and that such Will must be conveyed by a nervous system of an infinitesimally minute description. When we follow out such a train of thought, and contrast the myriads of suns and planets at one extreme, with the myriads of minute organised atoms at the other, we cannot but feel inexpressible wonder at the ...
— James Nasmyth's Autobiography • James Nasmyth

... Robin could hear Beryl's contemptuous: "Why they haven't a chance in the world." Well, anyway, someone could make the Mills so nice that the girls would want to work in them. "I wish I were big!" cried Robin with such passion that Mrs. Lynch, not knowing her train of thought, had a sudden qualm at taking a sensitive little thing like Miss Robin to poor old ...
— Red-Robin • Jane Abbott

... each generation by the continual correlation of certain groups of brain cells. It has become not only unnecessary for him to think, but almost impossible, so deeply these well-worn paths of thought have become. His intellectual processes are automatic—his train of thought can never get ...
— Are You A Bromide? • Gelett Burgess

... closed Durtal put some more coke in the grate and resumed a comfortless train of thought aggravated by this too pertinent discussion with his friend. For some months Durtal had been trying to reassemble the fragments of a shattered literary theory which had once seemed inexpugnable, and Des Hermies's opinions troubled him, in ...
— La-bas • J. K. Huysmans

... themselves in words as he prowled one night in March, chill and melancholy, across a rushy meadow under an overcast sky. The death squeal of some little beast caught suddenly in a distant copse had set loose this train of thought. "Life struggling under a birth curse?" he thought. "How nearly I come back at times to the Christian theology!... And then, Redemption by the ...
— Mr. Britling Sees It Through • H. G. Wells

... rarely, and in one individual alone out of many thousands, though all may have been exposed, as far as we can judge, to nearly the same conditions. As the most strongly marked variations graduate insensibly into the most trifling, we are led by the same train of thought to attribute each slight variation much more to innate differences of constitution, however caused, than to the definite action of ...
— The Variation of Animals and Plants Under Domestication, Volume II (of 2) • Charles Darwin

... up, wondering what had led her upon this train of thought, why she had pursued it, and what reason she had for the pain it gave her. A step rustled among the distant last-year's leaves; there in the shadowy wood, where she did not dream of concealing her ...
— Atlantic Monthly Volume 7, No. 39, January, 1861 • Various

... the Mean could be taken by storm, but Confucius taught him better [6]. And in fine, it is only the sage who can fully exemplify the Mean [7]. All these citations do not throw any light on the ideas presented in the first chapter. On the contrary, they interrupt the train of thought. Instead of showing us how virtue, or the path of duty is in accordance with our Heaven-given nature, they lead us to think of it as a mean between two extremes. Each extreme may be a violation of the law of our nature, but that is not made to appear. Confucius's sayings would be in place in illustrating ...
— THE CHINESE CLASSICS (PROLEGOMENA) • James Legge

... Beauty's eye Ne'er beam'd upon a lovelier sky; Imagination instant brought, And dash'd amidst the train of thought, Tints of the bow. The boatman stript; Glee at the helm exulting tript, And way'd her flower-encircled wand, "Away, away, to Fairy Land." Light dipt the oars; but who can name The various objects dear to fame, That changing, doubting, wild, and strong, Demand the noblest powers of song? Then, ...
— The Banks of Wye • Robert Bloomfield

... the Imp, breaking in upon a somewhat unpleasant train of thought conjured up by this intelligence, "will you come an' be 'Little-John under the merry ...
— My Lady Caprice • Jeffrey Farnol

... himself, it could do him no good, but a great deal of harm. It would make him discontented and unhappy." These words sank deep into my heart, stirred up sentiments within that lay slumbering, and called into existence an entirely new train of thought. It was a new and special revelation, explaining dark and mysterious things, with which my youthful understanding had struggled, but struggled in vain. I now understood what had been to me a most perplexing ...
— The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass - An American Slave • Frederick Douglass

... Rameau, and the Germans, Froberger, C.P.E. Bach and others, we find the beginnings of that higher order of programme music which deals directly with the emotions; and not only that, but which aims at causing the hearer to go beyond the actual sounds heard, in pursuance of a train of thought primarily suggested ...
— Critical & Historical Essays - Lectures delivered at Columbia University • Edward MacDowell

... now appeared to take a new turn. She became languid and inert, and would sit for hours silent, and almost in a state of lethargy. If roused from this stupor, it seemed as if her mind would make some attempts to follow up a train of thought, but would soon become confused. She would regard every one that approached her with an anxious and inquiring eye, that seemed continually to disappoint itself. Sometimes, as her lover sat holding her hand, she would ...
— Bracebridge Hall, or The Humorists • Washington Irving

... no means as purely selfish as his immediate train of thought might imply; nor were they by any means confined to the probable cost in dollars and cents of his associate's death. Hammon and he had been friends for many years; they shared a mutual respect and affection, and, although Merkle was ...
— The Auction Block • Rex Beach

... love,—the justice,—the purity; and these are ideas taken from what we find in some imperfect degree in ourselves. To those who believe that man was made "in the image of God," and that the Word, being God, became also man, the train of thought here indicated will come home with ...
— Thoughts on a Revelation • Samuel John Jerram

... windows when I awoke, my body aching from its unnatural position. For the instant I imagined some unusual sound had aroused me, yet all was quiet, the only noise the twittering of birds from without. I closed my eyes again, but a ceaseless train of thought kept me wide awake, and, finally, I got upon my feet and looked out into the dawn, determining to explore our strange surroundings before any others were astir. With loaded revolver in my pocket, I slipped ...
— Gordon Craig - Soldier of Fortune • Randall Parrish

... But, dismissing a train of thought which would soon lead us very far from the range of subjects which the Theatre of the Greeks introduces to our notice, we propose to offer some speculations of our own on Greek tragedy and poetry ...
— English Critical Essays - Nineteenth Century • Various

... He pursued the train of thought no farther. His brain was tired and his head ached with the strain of the last five days. His last hope of escape had only resulted in his finding a forgotten mirror, and his despair shut out any other consideration. He had not ...
— The Harbor of Doubt • Frank Williams

... was death in the man he looked at. Only the night before that black-faced man had killed another with his hands, and it had not hurt his sleep. And in his own heart Jim was aware of a sneaking guilt, of a train of thought that merited ...
— Brown Wolf and Other Jack London Stories - Chosen and Edited By Franklin K. Mathiews • Jack London

... the very inside one, you'd be as puzzled as a pig in a labyrinth, and not know how to get back to where you started from." And I remember Clement—who generally disputed a point, if possible—said, "How do you know she wouldn't get back, if you let her work out each train of thought in peace? The curt, clean-cut French style may suit some people, whose brains won't stretch far without getting tired; but others may have more sympathy with a Semitic ...
— Six to Sixteen - A Story for Girls • Juliana Horatia Ewing

... I. iv. 14, for a parallel to the train of thought on the part of Aristodemus "the little," and of Euthydemus; and for Socrates' {daimonion}, see above; Grote, "Plato," ...
— The Memorabilia - Recollections of Socrates • Xenophon

... thought to be only by impressing these images upon the imagination, that he can operate upon our souls. Hence, we may account for the strange manner in which our minds are led off from the contemplation of divine things, by a singular train of thought, introduced to the mind by the impression of some sensible object upon the imagination. This object brings some other one like it to our recollection, and that again brings another, until we wander entirely from the ...
— A Practical Directory for Young Christian Females - Being a Series of Letters from a Brother to a Younger Sister • Harvey Newcomb

... heard that he was extremely ill, indeed, that his life was despaired of; and I may mention that at this period all my mind's operations were dilatory; there were no sudden emotions; passion seemed exhausted; and when once any new train of thought had been suggested, it gradually incorporated itself with those which had preceded it, until it finally became sole and predominant, just as certain plants of the tropical islands wind about and blend with and finally take the place of those ...
— The Complete Works of Whittier - The Standard Library Edition with a linked Index • John Greenleaf Whittier

... doing something else—that my poor brain cells, which really needed recuperation more than any other part of my body, that these brain cells were still at work, that I was all the time carrying on a more or less strenuous train of thought as exhaustive as tho I were seated in my study chair, or standing before my class in the recitation room. More than one lecture, or address, have I worked out while walking ...
— On the Firing Line in Education • Adoniram Judson Ladd

... uncle dreamily, as if the word had started a new train of thought, "education is good so long as you know to whom and for what purpose you give it. But with the lower orders of men, the base and more sordid spirits, I have grave doubts as to its results. Well, good-by, Eustace, I may not see you again. You are a true Borlsover, with all the Borlsover ...
— Famous Modern Ghost Stories • Various

... but one, as it afterward resulted, of great importance to her, started in her a new train of thought, and excited emotions which she could not control. She read in a morning paper that a Mr. Koppermann had arrived at one of the hotels, and she announced her determination to call upon him, in order, as she said, to ascertain ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 358, November 11, 1882 • Various

... frequently his custom—in common with men whose past is more than their future promises to be—the captain had lapsed into a train of thought which took him far away from present surroundings. He was roused by Mrs. Hunter's preparations for departure, and looking suddenly at Mara, saw that her eyes were filled with tears. He was at her side instantly, and, taking her hand, asked gently, "What ...
— The Earth Trembled • E.P. Roe

... kitchen stove, rocking to and fro, and gazing abstractedly before her. Her mood was a reminiscent one and I knew if I gave her time enough she would launch forth into one of the interesting narratives of which she possessed a goodly store. To have interrupted her train of thought by even a whisper would have been fatal; silence and patience must be my watch-words. Presently she turned to ...
— The Alchemist's Secret • Isabel Cecilia Williams

... a short time for reflection, for I was much overpowered with Mr. Trevannion's kindness, and the happy prospects before me. I walked out in the country for some distance, deep in my own reflections, and I must say that Miss Trevannion was too often interfering with my train of thought. ...
— The Privateer's-Man - One hundred Years Ago • Frederick Marryat

... studying the schedule, and said nothing. After a while he began talking again, in a slow manner, as if the words came lagging behind a labored train of thought. ...
— Aladdin & Co. - A Romance of Yankee Magic • Herbert Quick

... to dance with Miss Maxwell, Paula continued her train of thought to herself. Dick was not suffering so much after all. And she might have expected it. He was the cool-head, the philosopher. He would take her loss with the same equanimity as he would take the loss of Mountain Lad, as he had taken the death of Jeremy Braxton and the flooding of the Harvest ...
— The Little Lady of the Big House • Jack London

... that I quote too many minds and am hobbled by it. I delight just now in the companionship of men through their books. I am devoted to knowing the facts of the lives of other humans and the train of thought which their experiences have started. To lead them is like talking to them. I suspect, even dread, the "original thinker" who knows little of the experiments and failures of the thinkers of other places and times. To me such a stand denies that promising thing, the evolution of human ...
— An American Idyll - The Life of Carleton H. Parker • Cornelia Stratton Parker



Words linked to "Train of thought" :   mentation, thinking, intellection, thread, thought, cerebration, thought process



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