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Absurd   Listen
adjective
Absurd  adj.  Contrary to reason or propriety; obviously and flatly opposed to manifest truth; inconsistent with the plain dictates of common sense; logically contradictory; nonsensical; ridiculous; as, an absurd person, an absurd opinion; an absurd dream. "This proffer is absurd and reasonless." "'This phrase absurd to call a villain great."
Synonyms: Foolish; irrational; ridiculous; preposterous; inconsistent; incongruous. Absurd, Irrational, Foolish, Preposterous. Of these terms, irrational is the weakest, denoting that which is plainly inconsistent with the dictates of sound reason; as, an irrational course of life. Foolish rises higher, and implies either a perversion of that faculty, or an absolute weakness or fatuity of mind; as, foolish enterprises. Absurd rises still higher, denoting that which is plainly opposed to received notions of propriety and truth; as, an absurd man, project, opinion, story, argument, etc. Preposterous rises still higher, and supposes an absolute inversion in the order of things; or, in plain terms, a "putting of the cart before the horse;" as, a preposterous suggestion, preposterous conduct, a preposterous regulation or law.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Absurd" Quotes from Famous Books



... said coldly. "But please remember that I hold you responsible, Bertram. Whether it's a dog, or a parrot, or—or a monkey, I shall expect you to keep Spunk down-stairs. This adopting into the family an unknown boy seems to me very absurd from beginning to end. But if you and William will have it so, of course I've nothing to say. Fortunately my rooms are at the TOP of the house," he finished, as he turned and left ...
— Miss Billy • Eleanor H. Porter

... Here are developed fully the stories of hells, angels, and all supernatural paraphernalia, together with theism, idolatry, and the completed monastic system; magic, fable, absurd calculations in regard to ...
— The Religions of India - Handbooks On The History Of Religions, Volume 1, Edited By Morris Jastrow • Edward Washburn Hopkins

... afraid something would happen to you," he growled, "and I wanted to stop you. I never saw a person climb in such an utterly absurd way." ...
— A Chosen Few - Short Stories • Frank R. Stockton

... seem the aggressor. It was as if they were very sorry for me, and ready to put themselves wholly at my service, if I would only refrain from reducing them to a state of disability by being so exquisitely absurd. Certainly this evidently amiable race had a very embarrassing ...
— To Whom This May Come - 1898 • Edward Bellamy

... be divided into parts; nor that any thing is all in this place, and all in another place at the same time; nor that two, or more things can be in one, and the same place at once: for none of these things ever have, or can be incident to Sense; but are absurd speeches, taken upon credit (without any signification at all,) from deceived Philosophers, and deceived, or ...
— Leviathan • Thomas Hobbes

... lord," replied Raoul, with unruffled composure, "I should, indeed, regard it as a great happiness, for this circumstance would prevent all kinds of evil remarks; not alone about yourself, but also about those illustrious persons whom your devotion is compromising in so absurd ...
— Ten Years Later - Chapters 1-104 • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... All the efforts between Moses and David are without regular form—a mass of rearranged tradition, both fabulous and corrupt; long after the times of David the pages of writers regarded authentic, are loaded with absurd ...
— The Christian Foundation, February, 1880

... 'Yes,' he thought, 'that's all it's worth, her love, indeed....' His head dropped. 'Absurd I was, to be sure,' he thought again. 'A fine idea to read her poetry. A girl like that! Why, she's a fool! Why, she's good for nothing but to lie on the stove and eat pancakes. Why, she's a post, a perfect post; an ...
— A Desperate Character and Other Stories • Ivan Turgenev

... man said: "Almo is not necessarily or even probably deranged. On the face of what you tell me the most unfavorable conjecture I could form would be that he has resolved to commit suicide. You will say that the idea is absurd, that suicide is easy and that the means are always at ...
— The Unwilling Vestal • Edward Lucas White

... to myself," continued Zene, ignoring this absurd supposition, "'now, if they puts the horses in their stable, they means to keep the wagon too, and make way with me so no one will ever know it. But,' I s'ze, 'if they tries to lead the horses off somewhere for to hide 'em, then that's all they want, and they'll ...
— Old Caravan Days • Mary Hartwell Catherwood

... around us in which the grossest sensuality and intemperance were the rule; and not as now, when the ignorant, the wicked, and the wretched are the inexcusably vicious exceptions—a state of society in which the professional bully was rampant, and when deadly duels were daily fought for the most absurd and disgraceful causes. All this the newsman has ceased to tell us of. This state of society has discontinued in England for ever; and when we remember the undoubted truth, that the change could never ...
— Speeches: Literary and Social • Charles Dickens

... of his own folly pierced him deeply, and he was long before he could be reconciled to himself. "The rest of my time," said he, "has been lost, by the crime or folly of my ancestors, and the absurd institutions of my country; I remember it with disgust, yet without remorse: but the months that have passed, since new light darted into my soul, since I formed a scheme of reasonable felicity, have been squandered by my own fault. I have ...
— Dr. Johnson's Works: Life, Poems, and Tales, Volume 1 - The Works Of Samuel Johnson, Ll.D., In Nine Volumes • Samuel Johnson

... inflicted the severest punishment upon him for doing it? It is absurd! That was the third and last offence. The captain put an end to these tricks by his well-timed energy, and I am sure he had no part or lot in them. Do you think he got some one to write the letter ...
— Dikes and Ditches - Young America in Holland and Belguim • Oliver Optic

... had completed this strange tale Dorothy nearly laughed, because it was all so absurd; but the Wizard tapped his forehead significantly, to indicate that he thought the poor man was crazy. So they politely bade him good day, and went back to the outer cavern to resume ...
— Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz • L. Frank Baum.

... abundance, and never a great poet of ours but could write feelingly of them! On the occasion of that hue and cry in which I was to lose both my head and my laurels it happened that I lost neither. All the absurd accusations which were used to incite the mob against me have since then been miserably annihilated, even without my condescending to refute them. Time justified me, and the various German States have even, as I must most gratefully acknowledge, done me good service ...
— Atta Troll • Heinrich Heine

... had, her "'89," and declaring that he for his part would willingly lend a hand to chop off the heads of the king and the royal family. He was an unhappy, underfed, unemployed young man, who took a hard, grim view of everything and was operatic only quite in spite of himself. This made it very absurd of me to have looked at him simply as a graceful ornament to the prospect, an harmonious little figure in the middle distance. "Damn the prospect, damn the middle distance!" would have been all his philosophy. Yet but for the accident of my having gossipped with him I should have made ...
— Italian Hours • Henry James

... prescribed a condition which she had no power or authority to impose—that Texas should not annex herself to any other power—but this could not detract in any degree from the recognition which Mexico then made of her actual independence. Upon this plain statement of facts, it is absurd for Mexico to allege as a pretext for commencing hostilities against the United States that Texas is still a ...
— State of the Union Addresses of James Polk • James Polk

... Rachel had been brought up otherwise. And as a direct result of Louis' irresponsible suggestion she had a vision of the house with county-court bailiffs lodged in the kitchen.... She had only to say—"Yes, let's go," and they would be off on the absurd and wicked expedition. ...
— The Price of Love • Arnold Bennett

... itself into the non-intelligent pradhana. If, again, it were said that the pradhana is denoted by the word 'own,' because belonging to the Self (as being the Self's own), there would remain the same absurd statement as to an intelligent entity being resolved into a non-intelligent one. Moreover another scriptural passage (viz. 'embraced by the intelligent—praj/n/a—Self he knows nothing that is without, nothing ...
— The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Sankaracarya - Sacred Books of the East, Volume 1 • George Thibaut

... I observed the movement, he whispered that he was going to make a note of the sermon; but instead of that, as I sat next him, I could not help seeing that he was making a caricature of the preacher, giving to the respectable, pious, elderly gentleman, the air and aspect of a most absurd old hypocrite. And yet, upon his return, he talked to my aunt about the sermon with a degree of modest, serious discrimination that tempted me to believe he had really attended to and profited ...
— The Tenant of Wildfell Hall • Anne Bronte

... also the best of our noblemen," continued Maria; "and I never heard of anything so absurd as what they did to him. It made me blush when Don — told me." Don Tomas, I ...
— John Bull on the Guadalquivir from Tales from all Countries • Anthony Trollope

... national character, or to a studied and well "got up" affectation. In all probability both influences were at work; while a third, not less powerful, assisted them—this was the gross ignorance and shameless falsehood of many of the Irish leaders of the expedition, whose boastful and absurd histories ended by disgusting every one. To listen to them, Ireland was not only unanimous in her desire for separation, but England was perfectly powerless to prevent it, and the only difficulty was, to determine ...
— Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Vol. 2, No. 8, January, 1851 • Various

... a pompous ass, auctioneer, and mayor, sit at their wine, expecting a third guest. Mr. Sapsea reads his absurd epitaph for his late wife, who is buried in a "Monument," a vault of some sort in the Cathedral churchyard. To them enter Durdles, a man never sober, yet trusted with the key of the crypt, "as contractor for rough repairs." In the crypt "he habitually sleeps off the fumes of liquor." Of course ...
— The Puzzle of Dickens's Last Plot • Andrew Lang

... them. Our present system may succeed in a country whose action is circumscribed by the nature of its soil, like England; but the law of primogeniture applied to the transmission of land is absolutely necessary; when that law is suppressed the system of legislative representation becomes absurd. England owes her existence to the quasi-feudal law which entails landed property and family mansions on the eldest son. Russia is based on the feudal right of autocracy. Consequently those two nations are to-day on ...
— The Village Rector • Honore de Balzac

... absurd Chetwynd Lyle woman came to me this evening and asked me if I really thought it would be proper to take her 'girls' there," and Lady Fulkeward laughed shrilly. "Girls indeed! I should say those two long, ugly women could go anywhere with safety. 'Do you consider the Princess ...
— Ziska - The Problem of a Wicked Soul • Marie Corelli

... wealthy, but that was because they were more fully alive. It was unfair to blame them for missing marriage certificates. True, his father had never committed a theft, but there was no necessity for a man to steal if he had an income of six thousand crowns and could please himself. The act would be absurd or ...
— Married • August Strindberg

... at the chance of our separation. Unfortunately for me, it turned out as we had anticipated. My mother was anything but gracious to my grandmother, notwithstanding the obligations she was under to her, and very soon took an opportunity of quarrelling with her. The cause of the quarrel was very absurd, and proved that it was predetermined on the part of my mother. My grandmother had some curious old carved furniture, which my mother coveted, and requested my grandmother to let her have it. This my grandmother would not consent to, and my mother took offence at her refusal. I and my brother ...
— Valerie • Frederick Marryat

... feet, and my first idea, an absurd one enough, was that a rattlesnake was hurrying through ...
— The Ink-Stain, Complete • Rene Bazin

... musicians had caught that unaccentuated and sensuous swing of the melody which the soft, tropical atmosphere rendered still more languorous. With Mrs. Falchion's hand upon my arm, I felt a sense of capitulation to the music and to her, uncanny in its suddenness. At this distance of time it seems to me absurd. I had once experienced something of the same feeling with the hand of a young medical student, who, skilled in thought-reading, discovered the number of a bank-note that was in ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... they went; matches flared, illuminating for a second faces without the ghost of an expression and the flat glaze of white shirt-fronts; the hum of many conversations animated with the ardour of feasting sounded to me absurd and infinitely remote. ...
— Lord Jim • Joseph Conrad

... companies of minstrels, jugglers, and jesters, who went about the country, and acted secular pieces composed of comic stories, jokes, and dialogues, interspersed with dancing and tumbling. The whole performance was very absurd and often indecent, and the clergy did their utmost to suppress ...
— Old English Sports • Peter Hampson Ditchfield

... "Don't be absurd!" she said, in rather an off-hand manner. "Our hats have nothing whatever to do with politics. Here are two long pins, but if you prefer an elastic you can stitch one on," and without deigning to argue further she ...
— The New Girl at St. Chad's - A Story of School Life • Angela Brazil

... age—almost grown up! She could look back, across the eons which separated her from seven-years-old, and dimly re-vision, as a stranger, the little girl who cried her first day in the Primary Grade. How absurd seemed that bashful, timid, ignorant little silly! She knew nothing at all. She still thought there was a Santa Claus!—would you believe that? And, even at eight, she had lingering fancies of fairies dancing on the flower-beds ...
— Missy • Dana Gatlin

... although he did not rely on wit, or humour, or sarcasm in addressing a jury, he could use them to effect in cross-examination. "You were born and bred in Manchester, I perceive," he said to a witness. "Yes."—"I knew it," said Erskine carelessly, "from the absurd tie of your neckcloth." The witness' presence of mind was gone, and he was made to unsay the greatest part of his evidence in chief. Another witness confounding 'thick' whalebone with 'long' whalebone, and unable to distinguish the difference after counsel's explanation, ...
— Law and Laughter • George Alexander Morton

... it now. Of course it was wildly impossible, absurd; but beyond all question he heard the voice of a girl come whistling down the wind. He could almost catch the words. For a little moment he lingered still. Then he turned and fought his way into the ...
— Riders of the Silences • Max Brand

... Never! But that first day, when you gave me tea in that peach-coloured muslin gown thing, you looked—you did indeed, dear—such an absurd little mite. And I didn't know what ...
— Soldiers Three • Rudyard Kipling

... an old lady! In the end Rachel provided another clean serviette, and the meal commenced. But Mrs. Maldon had not been able to "settle down" in an instant. The wise, pitying creatures in their twenties considered that it was absurd for her to worry herself about such a trifle. But was it a trifle? It was rather a denial of natural laws, a sinister miracle. Serviette-rings cannot walk, nor fly, nor be annihilated. And further, she had used that serviette-ring ...
— The Price of Love • Arnold Bennett

... absurd, of course. She would understand that the bill for services rendered would eventually come to him. He was relieved when that conclusion came to him. No, she was not seeking to make a mystery out of the matter. Still, the question recurred: Why had she ...
— Children of the Desert • Louis Dodge

... that his mother-in-law drank, or that the horse drank wherefore, then, the reference to the intoxicating bowl? It does seem to me that if Mr. Bloke had let the intoxicating bowl alone himself, he never would have got into so much trouble about this exasperating imaginary accident. I have read this. absurd item over and over again, with all its insinuating plausibility, until my head swims; but I can make neither head nor tail of it. There certainly seems to have been an accident of some kind or other, but it is impossible ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... which made a deep impression on the minds of the Greeks, have been ascribed to a mere spirit of ostentation on the part of Xerxes; the vain-glorious monarch wished, it is supposed, to parade his power, and made a useless bridge and an absurd cutting merely for the purpose of exhibiting to the world the grandeur of his ideas and the extent of his resources. But there is no necessity for travelling beyond the line of ordinary human motive in order to discover a reason for the works in question. ...
— The Seven Great Monarchies Of The Ancient Eastern World, Vol 5. (of 7): Persia • George Rawlinson

... if the foot, ordain'd the dust to tread, Or hand, to toil, aspired to be the head 260 What if the head, the eye, or ear repined To serve mere engines to the ruling mind? Just as absurd for any part to claim To be another, in this general frame; Just as absurd, to mourn the tasks or pains, The great directing Mind ...
— The Poetical Works Of Alexander Pope, Vol. 1 • Alexander Pope et al

... truth was that, on the morning when the princess had walked through the streets before making holiday on the river Gilguerillo had seen her from his window, and had straightway fallen in love with her. Of course he felt quite hopeless. It was absurd to imagine that the apothecary's nephew could ever marry the king's daughter; so he did his best to forget her, and study harder than before, till the royal proclamation suddenly filled him with hope. When he was free he no longer spent the precious moments ...
— The Orange Fairy Book • Various

... he, "this is too beastly absurd, y'know. It's a bore. Why, if I don't find some place or other very ...
— Shorty McCabe • Sewell Ford

... head. He looked exceedingly disturbed and annoyed, and the man now sitting by his side suddenly regretted that he had said anything about that absurd advertisement. ...
— From Out the Vasty Deep • Mrs. Belloc Lowndes

... had settled in his own mind just what lay before them, and nothing short of the Lost City of the Aztecs would come anywhere near satisfying that exalted ideal. And, taking all points into full consideration, was there anything so very absurd in his method of reasoning, or of ...
— The Lost City • Joseph E. Badger, Jr.

... minutes longer to chew one's dinner is worth a whole box of pills, and no one need expect good digestion who neglects thorough chewing and salivation of the food. This may, with advantage, be increased to an extent which most people would think quite absurd. It has been proved that when all food is chewed until completely reduced to a liquid, its nutritive qualities are so increased that about half as much will suffice. This is of immense importance in all cases of weak digestion, or indeed whenever an absence of ...
— Papers on Health • John Kirk

... the Man of Smart; talked a great deal about Blood and Wounds; spoke of themselves as Poor Sinners; and described their own condition as Sinnership and Sinnerlikeness. To the orthodox Churchman this language seemed absurd. He did not know what it meant; he did not find it in the Bible; and, therefore, he concluded that the Brethren's doctrine ...
— History of the Moravian Church • J. E. Hutton

... little recklessly and at random. "Life would not be such a disheartening affair as it is. Unfortunately the majority of people are neither one nor the other, and have little inclination for either crime or virtue. It would be almost as absurd to condemn them as to admire them. They are like tracts of shifting sand, in which nothing good or bad can take root. To me they are more despairing to contemplate than the darkest depth of evil; out of that may come such hope as comes of redemption and ...
— Wisdom, Wit, and Pathos of Ouida - Selected from the Works of Ouida • Ouida

... "Do you know, you absurd prince, that when you played the Czardas the other night I seemed to see a vision of a Hungarian prairie, covered with fighting centaurs and satyrs! I longed to be a vivandiere among all those fauns. You were there—in ...
— Visionaries • James Huneker

... "Besides, it would be absurd! You forget I have seen a good deal of Mr. Raeburn lately—while I have been with the Winterbournes. He has entirely given up all thought of me. Even my vanity could see that plainly enough. His best friends expect him to marry a bright, fascinating little creature of whom I saw a good deal ...
— Marcella • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... Ludwig, with increasing indignation, for the first time apprised of the fact thus made known to him. Unobservant of such things generally, it had never occurred to him to reflect on what had long been patent to the jealous eyes of Cypriano. Besides, the thing seemed so absurd, even preposterous—a red-skinned savage presuming to look upon his sister in the light of a sweetheart, daring to love her—that the son of the Prussian naturalist, with all the prejudices of race, could not be otherwise than ...
— Gaspar the Gaucho - A Story of the Gran Chaco • Mayne Reid

... been only Lena to speed her drearily on her way. Ray McCrea had, of course, taken it for granted that he would be informed of the hour of her departure, but if she had allowed him to come she might have committed herself in some absurd way—said something she could not have ...
— The Precipice • Elia Wilkinson Peattie

... through the ranges to the south, and the interminable creeks and gullies which they got into and had to retrace their steps from. This was a small matter of exploration, and might at the present day appear absurd; but then there were doubts where the Angas was, and whether the Onkaparinga in Mount Barker District was not the Angas, and when beyond the hills they did not know whether Mount Barker was not Mount Lofty, and ...
— Explorations in Australia • John Forrest

... referred it all to a telegram. This is not the first time in history that wars have been waged on trifles; but since the Lord of Frauenstein challenged the free city of Frankfort because a young lady of the city refused to dance with his uncle, nothing has passed more absurd than this challenge sent by France to Germany because the King of Prussia refused to see the French Ambassador a second time on the same matter, and then let the refusal be reported by telegraph. Here is the folly exposed by Shakespeare, when Hamlet touches a madness greater ...
— The Duel Between France and Germany • Charles Sumner

... passion and the depths he sounded, in his absurd despair when discarded, had been matters of almost public gossip; he was accounted a somewhat scandalous and unbalanced but picturesque figure; and for the lady whose light hand had wrought such havoc upon him to be seen dancing with him was sufficiently ...
— The Flirt • Booth Tarkington

... An absurd and amusing thing happened. After the impulse to try to invent a plant-setting machine came to him, he went every evening to conceal himself in the fence corner and watch the French family at their labors. ...
— Poor White • Sherwood Anderson

... This officer was, as I before observed, a man who had no friends, and was therefore entirely dependent on the captain for his promotion, and was afraid to act contrary to his lordship's orders, however absurd. I told him, that whatever might me the captain's orders, I would not go ...
— Frank Mildmay • Captain Frederick Marryat

... roused her. Her ponderous visitor had made a discovery which had yet been made by no other human being. Her own absurd romance, her ancient illusion, had taught her to know when love lay behind another woman's face. And after her fashion, Maitresse Aimable loved Jean Touzel as it is given to ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... at all, except to an occasional shrug of the shoulder from Anna's lieutenant, or a gay laugh from little Fanny. And, forsooth, because I was civil to him, and talked to him, and excused his awkwardness, why Edgar saw fit, in his wisdom, to be jealous of him. Was there ever any thing more absurd? Yes, since time out of mind have men, the wisest and the best of them, been just so absurd; and unto all eternity will they, the wisest and best of them, be ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXII No. 6 June 1848 • Various

... that rose beyond the opening of the tunnel which she had just passed through, she heard footsteps advancing along the riverside path, and guessed that Algitha and Ernest had come to fetch her, or to join in any absurd project that she might have in view. Although Algitha was two-and-twenty, and Hadria only a year younger, they were still guilty at times of wild escapades, with the connivance of their brothers. Walks or rides at sunrise were ordinary occurrences ...
— The Daughters of Danaus • Mona Caird

... immoral as it is ridiculous, and as corrupting as it is contemptible. It is not quite their fault. The public has always, and in every age, been badly brought up. They are continually asking Art to be popular, to please their want of taste, to flatter their absurd vanity, to tell them what they have been told before, to show them what they ought to be tired of seeing, to amuse them when they feel heavy after eating too much, and to distract their thoughts when they are wearied of their own stupidity. Now ...
— The Soul of Man • Oscar Wilde

... require any thinking to be aware of that. It's downright stupid;—two cousins with nothing a year between them, when no doubt each of them might do very well. They're well-born, and well-looking, and clever, and all that. It's absurd, and I don't suppose it ...
— The Vicar of Bullhampton • Anthony Trollope

... blessing upon the softening influence and Christian sentiments it breathes, it will be made the harbinger of a better and brighter day for the happiness and the harmony of the human family. The facilities for international intercourse which we now possess, while they rapidly tend to remove those absurd jealousies which have so long existed between the nations of the earth, are daily increasing the power of public opinion in the world at large, which is so well described by one of our leading statesmen in ...
— Sunny Memories Of Foreign Lands, Volume 1 (of 2) • Harriet Elizabeth (Beecher) Stowe

... the unwritten law of social nature, to the great and pregnant principle of political necessity. All government supposes subjects; all authority implies obedience: to suppose in one the right to command what another has the right to refuse, is absurd and contradictory; a state, so constituted, must rest for ever in motionless equipoise, with equal attractions of contrary tendency, with equal weights of power ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson, Vol. 6 - Reviews, Political Tracts, and Lives of Eminent Persons • Samuel Johnson

... at him with a little smile. "Do you think I'm afraid of you?" she asked as if it were too absurd to be thought of. She unhitched and mounted her pony but ...
— A Man for the Ages - A Story of the Builders of Democracy • Irving Bacheller

... Dewlap. Youth, with its ingenuous belief that love dwells in external circumstances, was protesting against the bland assumption of age that love creates its own peculiar circumstances out of itself. It was absurd, she knew, to imagine that her father's affection for her mother would alter because she haggled over the price of peas; yet the emotion with which she endowed Oliver Treadwell was so delicate and elusive that she felt that the sight of a soiled skirt and a perspiring face would ...
— Virginia • Ellen Glasgow

... of the two hundred and fifty successors of St. Peter, was no more. During the short interval between his reign and that of his disciple Ganganelli, the chief seat in the Church of Rome was filled by Rezzonico, who took the name of Clement the Thirteenth. This absurd priest determined to try what the weight of his authority could effect in favour of the orthodox Maria Theresa against a heretic king. At the high mass on Christmas-day, a sword with a rich belt and scabbard, a hat of crimson velvet lined with ermine, and ...
— Critical and Historical Essays Volume 2 • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... property of giving off light from itself. The name which was given it means light-bearer. It was at first thought to be the source of all power, to heal all diseases, and to turn the common minerals into gold. Although we have long ago learned that these ideas are absurd, yet we have also learned that its real value to man is far greater than was ...
— Checking the Waste - A Study in Conservation • Mary Huston Gregory

... beard. That razor was the worst of its species, and my eyes were running all the time with the pain of the operation. Then I took off the postman's coat and cap, and buried them below some bushes. I was now a clean-shaven German pedestrian with a green cape and hat, and an absurd walking-stick with an iron-shod end—the sort of person who roams in thousands over the Fatherland in summer, but is a rarish ...
— Greenmantle • John Buchan

... to do with you. I am only laughing with myself at the remembrance of a story which has just been told me. The most amusing story in the world. I don't know if it is because I am interested in the matter, but I never heard anything so absurd as the trick that has just been played by a son to his father to get ...
— The Impostures of Scapin • Moliere

... kind of duck that would undoubtedly have astonished him, and which would have slightly bothered the punt gun for an elevation: this is the tree duck, which flies about and perches in the branches of the lofty trees like any nightingale. This has an absurd effect, as a duck looks entirely out of place in such a situation. I have seen a whole cluster of them sitting on one branch, and when I first observed them I killed three at one shot to make it ...
— Eight Years' Wandering in Ceylon • Samuel White Baker

... you, Mrs. Wykoff." And a smile flitted over the girl's sweet, sad face; a smile that was meant to say—"How absurd to think of such a thing!" She was there to work, not to be treated as an invalid. Stooping over the garment, she went on with her sewing. Mrs. Wykoff looked at her very earnestly, and saw that her lips were growing colorless; that she ...
— All's for the Best • T. S. Arthur

... Kate's hair rise, and she bit her finger-tip. "Am I dreaming?" she asked herself, as she listened to the mother talking to the air, only to be answered by rappings from the table and thumpings from the chairs. "How absurd, how childish ...
— The Tyranny of the Dark • Hamlin Garland

... is at our very doors!" cried Mother Meraut. "It is absurd, that rumor. Chicken hearts! They listen to nothing but their fears. As for me, I will not believe it until I must. I will trust in the Army as I do in my God and the ...
— The French Twins • Lucy Fitch Perkins

... improbable, for these chronologies are really no more reasonable than the monkish fancies used in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries to explain these civilizations. We find the hagiologists very absurd, but the condition of mind which made them possible is closely akin to that which moves some men in our time to deny or limit the past, and reject the results of any investigation which tend to enlarge it. Rational ...
— Ancient America, in Notes on American Archaeology • John D. Baldwin

... it were a sentient being, possessing magical and mysterious powers. In the same manner, the rites and celebrations of ancient times are not necessarily all to be considered as idolatry, and denounced as inexcusably wicked and absurd. Our fathers set up an image in honor of liberty, to strengthen the influence of the love of liberty on the popular mind. It is possible that AEneas looked upon the subject in the same light, in erecting a public ...
— Romulus, Makers of History • Jacob Abbott

... at a round trot. Colonel Philibert, impatient to reach Beaumanoir, spurred on for a while, hardly noticing the absurd figure of his guide, whose legs stuck out like a pair of compasses beneath his tattered gown, his shaking head threatening dislodgment to hat and wig, while his elbows churned at every jolt, making play with the shuffling gait of his ...
— The Golden Dog - Le Chien d'Or • William Kirby

... she yet ruled her Self. She was not one to slip about in the saddle, or let go the reins for a kick and a plunge or two. There was the thing that should be, and the thing that should not be; the thing that was reasonable, and the thing that was absurd. Add to all this, that she believed she saw in Mr. Wardour's behavior to his cousin, in the careful gentleness evident through all the severity of the schoolmaster, the presence of a deeper feeling, that might one day blossom to the bliss of her friend—and we need not wonder if Mary's heart remained ...
— Mary Marston • George MacDonald

... father. All this was ill-judged on behalf of Mr. Jones. Peter, the old butler, who had lived in the family, was in the room. Peter, of course, was a Roman Catholic, and, though he was as true as steel, it could not but be felt that in this absurd contest he was on the side of the ...
— The Landleaguers • Anthony Trollope

... and justice. More than the preceding virtues temperance suggests the idea of harmony. Some light is thrown upon the nature of this virtue by the popular description of a man as 'master of himself'—which has an absurd sound, because the master is also the servant. The expression really means that the better principle in a man masters the worse. There are in cities whole classes—women, slaves and the like—who correspond to the worse, and a few only to the better; and in our State the former ...
— The Republic • Plato

... Dr. Callandar, the Montreal specialist, is in the throes of a nervous breakdown. This seems to me to be distinctly overdoing it. It is the doctor's love-story (a story so complicated that I cannot attempt a precis) which is the designedly central but actually subordinate theme. I have the absurd idea that this might really have begun life as a pathological thesis and suffered conversion into a novel. The author has no conscience in the matter of the employment of the much-abused device of coincidence. And I don't think the story ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 156, Feb. 26, 1919 • Various

... passions of this Latin offshoot were strong, if their minds were dull and lethargic, and when aroused were capable of the most despicable, as well as the most grandly heroic deeds. And in the present instance, when the fleeting sense of the absurd passed, Jose knew that he was facing a crisis. Something told him that resistance now would be useless. True, Rosendo might have opposed arrest with violence, and perhaps have escaped. But that would have accomplished nothing for Carmen, the pivot upon which events were turning. Jose had reasoned ...
— Carmen Ariza • Charles Francis Stocking

... on religion, I have read Blair, Porteous, Tillotson, Hooker,—all very tiresome. I detest books about religion, but I adore and love my God, apart from the blasphemous notions of sectarians, and without believing in their absurd and damnable heresies, mysteries, etc." At twenty-one, when he had passed through the double influence exercised by Pagan classical literature and German philosophies, and was in a transition state, he wrote ...
— My Recollections of Lord Byron • Teresa Guiccioli

... those early Indian thinkers necessarily involves very great differences in conditions of thought. And we should not be surprised if amidst much in their writings that stirs our sympathy, there is also a great deal which is to us incongruous and absurd. Therefore, it may be well before quoting these writings to note one or two points marking an almost incommensurable difference between their mode and ours of regarding ...
— Pantheism, Its Story and Significance - Religions Ancient And Modern • J. Allanson Picton

... thought, and try to prove the truth or falsity of this definite idea. Since a term—a word, phrase, or other combination of words not a complete sentence—suggests many ideas, but never stands for one particular idea, it is absurd as a subject to be argued. A debatable subject is always a proposition, a statement in which something is affirmed or denied. It would be impossible to uphold or attack the mere term, "government railroad supervision," for this expression carries with it no specific thought. ...
— Practical Argumentation • George K. Pattee

... peeping through the railing half an hour earlier than usual. All would have a fill of delicacies. Lovaina with the Dummy drove down to the Annexe for me. Vava was making queer signs to her which either were unintelligible or which she thought absurd. She waved her long forefinger before him, which meant: "Don't talk foolishness. I ...
— Mystic Isles of the South Seas. • Frederick O'Brien

... absurd claim made by some Shint[o]ists that the Japanese possessed an original native alphabet called the Shingi (god-letters) before the entrance of the Chinese or Buddhist learning in Japan, is refuted by Aston, Japanese Grammar, p. 1; T.A.S.J., Vol. III., Appendix, p. 77. Mr. Satow shows ...
— The Religions of Japan - From the Dawn of History to the Era of Meiji • William Elliot Griffis

... he expounds the nature of Sattwa which the commentator takes to mean buddhi or knowledge. He begins with the statement that Sattwasya asrayah nasti. This does not mean that the knowledge has no refuge, for that would be absurd, but it means that the asraya of the knowledge, i.e., that in which the knowledge dwells, viz., the body, does not exist, the true doctrine being that the body has no real existence but that it exists like to its image in a ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 - Books 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 • Unknown

... He felt absurd and helpless. He could not deny that, yet how could she sit there, cool and faintly smiling, and not know that as she sat there so she sat enshrined in his heart. She was his saint, to kneel and pray ...
— A Poor Wise Man • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... ye make the sons of the bride-chamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come; and when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, then will they fast in those days." Fasting is an expression of sorrow. How absurd then would it be for Jesus' followers to fast while the heavenly Bridegroom was with them! They might express their distress thus when he should be taken away. Thus Jesus declared that fasting, like all religious rites, may be quite fitting if it is a true ...
— The Gospel of Luke, An Exposition • Charles R. Erdman

... irregular, a share of belles lettres and of method, which has infused more or less of the humanities into scholasticism. The science of the Jewish doctor, of the sofer or scribe, was purely barbarous, unmitigatedly absurd, and denuded of all moral element.[1] To crown the evil, it filled with ridiculous pride those who had wearied themselves in acquiring it. The Jewish scribe, proud of the pretended knowledge which had cost him so much trouble, had the same contempt for Greek culture which ...
— The Life of Jesus • Ernest Renan

... Orestes, and were silence enjoined by law, that might prove no mean cloak of our ignorance; but if Bacchus is really [Greek omitted] (A LOOSER of everything), and chiefly takes off all restraints and bridles from the tongue, and gives the voice the greatest freedom, I think it is foolish and absurd to deprive that time in which we are usually most talkative of the most useful and profitable discourse; and in our schools to dispute of the offices of company, in what consists the excellence of a guest, how mirth, feasting, and wine are to be used and yet ...
— Essays and Miscellanies - The Complete Works Volume 3 • Plutarch

... little whisky, without beating or wanting to beat anybody, and without coming to such a terrible end. The argument against the use of anything from its abuse has always struck me as one of the feeblest of arguments. And just see how particularly absurd it is in the present case. The effect of duties on foreign imports, even such moderate and carefully devised duties as those to which I have referred, would, we are told, be ruinous to British trade. It would ...
— Constructive Imperialism • Viscount Milner

... stunned and irritated me. "How infinitely absurd!" I said. "Do they dream of sinking ...
— Wilson's Tales of the Borders and of Scotland, Volume 2 - Historical, Traditional, and Imaginative • Alexander Leighton

... absurd asking me to behave myself," he answered, looking round in astonishment at the pretty little girl who had ventured to address him, "quite absurd. I must rattle my chains, and groan through keyholes, and walk about at night, ...
— Humorous Ghost Stories • Dorothy Scarborough

... "It's quite absurd!" she objected. "Of course they're ripe! We had the most beautiful grapes at breakfast at Leo Cairngorm's the other day, so of course they must have them here. Brook! Do tell the ...
— Adam Johnstone's Son • F. Marion Crawford

... Cider-land and the Whigs of the capital. Herefordshire and Worcestershire were in a flame. The city of London, though not so directly interested, was, if possible, still more excited. The debates on this question irreparably damaged the Government. Dashwood's financial statement had been confused and absurd beyond belief, and had been received by the House with roars of laughter. He had sense enough to be conscious of his unfitness for the high situation which he held, and exclaimed in a comical fit of despair, "What shall I do? The boys will point at me in the street and ...
— Critical and Historical Essays Volume 1 • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... to the absolute and indispensable necessity of gold and silver, as the foundation of our circulation, I yet think nothing more absurd and preposterous, than unnatural and strained efforts to import specie. There is but so much specie in the world, and its amount cannot be greatly or suddenly increased. Indeed, there are reasons for supposing ...
— The Great Speeches and Orations of Daniel Webster • Daniel Webster

... Blood's Depot—what a truculent sound to that!—if you haven't forgotten the plumed dare-devil cavalier who once made a dash to steal the king's regalia from the Tower. Again—Loon Lake. Can you imagine two more lonesome wailing words to make a picture with? But—Cohocton. How oddly right my absurd instinct had been about that—and, shall we ever forget the unearthly beauty of the evening which brought us at dark to the quaint little operatic-looking village, deep and snug among the solemn, ...
— October Vagabonds • Richard Le Gallienne

... indeed, to observe the seriousness of her manner, feeling persuaded that there was some sort of affinity between Madame's sentiments and his own. In fact, every one at court, of any perception at all, knew perfectly well the capricious fancy and absurd despotism of the princess's singular character. Madame had been flattered beyond all bounds by the king's attention; she had made herself talked about; she had inspired the queen with that mortal jealousy which is the stinging scorpion at the heel of every woman's happiness; ...
— Louise de la Valliere • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... understand the world or himself. His vanity was ridiculous, his self-importance was against knowledge or wisdom; and Heaven had given him a small brain, a big and noble heart, a pedigree back to Rollo, and the absurd pride of a little lord in a little land. Angele knew all this; but realised also that he had offered her all he was able ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... voice came perceptibly nearer, and seemed to almost hiss in her ear—unconsciously she felt the antagonism. "That's absurd," she said, with sudden animation; "why, these people are nobody, the mother used to wash for me a few years ago. They are the very commonest sort—the father was only a section man. The doctor enjoys her cute speeches, that's all, but there's absolutely nothing ...
— Purple Springs • Nellie L. McClung

... many things appear of a nature, either so monstrous as to shock humanity, or so absurd as to excite derision; yet they have some redeeming qualities which must elicit commendation. And while we view with satisfaction those bright spots, shining more brilliantly from the gloom which surrounds them, their want of learning ...
— Chronicles of Border Warfare • Alexander Scott Withers

... absurd child you are!' said Ethelberta. 'I knew him once, and he is interesting; a few little things like that make ...
— The Hand of Ethelberta • Thomas Hardy

... torn with dissensions as to Sunday trains. Some of the Dutch clergy are even more absurd than our own on that point. A certain Van der Lingen, at Stellenbosch, calls Europe 'one vast Sodom', and so forth. There is altogether a nice kettle of religious hatred brewing here. The English Bishop of Capetown appoints ...
— Letters from the Cape • Lady Duff Gordon

... Absurd—isn't it?—that one should have to cloak one's interest in a stranger's soul under such a convention as the offer of a paper. Why couldn't I have said to him straight out, "Look here, what's the matter ...
— The Tale Of Mr. Peter Brown - Chelsea Justice - From "The New Decameron", Volume III. • V. Sackville West

... marriage,—the usual run of marriages,—from a woman's point of view, as a very hateful thing. What did she require, then, of her sex? To live and die old maids, whilst men became regenerated? It was too absurd. There were a good many curious things said, and it was certainly true, that since she had gone upon the stage her toilette and equipage were unrivalled. Berenice looked into the eyes of the women whom she met day by day, and ...
— Berenice • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... communication with them as an indignity and disgrace offered to ourselves. This is considering the difference not in the individual, but in the very species; a height of insolence impious in a Christian society, and most absurd and ridiculous in a ...
— Miscellanies, Volume 2 (from Works, Volume 12) • Henry Fielding

... firm in this decision,—however absurd or obscure their conclusions,—and Jackson, after his first flash of indignation, felt a certain relief in their departure. But strangely enough, while he had hesitated about keeping the property when they were violently in favor of ...
— Openings in the Old Trail • Bret Harte

... identical book-keeper in the same position as if he had not moved since you saw him yesterday. As he informs you, that the coach is up the yard, and will be brought round in about a quarter of an hour, you leave your bag, and repair to 'The Tap'—not with any absurd idea of warming yourself, because you feel such a result to be utterly hopeless, but for the purpose of procuring some hot brandy-and-water, which you do,—when the kettle boils! an event which occurs exactly two minutes and a half before the time fixed for the starting ...
— Sketches by Boz - illustrative of everyday life and every-day people • Charles Dickens

... they have not, and are constantly ready to attribute to me such bad ones as cannot enter into the heart of man: in this case they find it easy to set me in opposition to nature, and to make of me such a monster as cannot in reality exist. Nothing absurd appears to them incredible, the moment it has a tendency to blacken me, and nothing in the least extraordinary seems to them possible, if it tends to do ...
— The Confessions of J. J. Rousseau, Complete • Jean Jacques Rousseau

... again to their endless task of grooming the waxed floor, Dennison, the manager of Jed The Red, sitting in that same chair which Morehouse had occupied, cuddling one knee in his hands, fairly basked in that same smile. The purring perfection of Hogarty's discourse was enticing. The absurd simplicity of his plan, which he admitted must, after all, be credited to the astuteness of Dennison himself, was more than alluring. But that smile was the ...
— Once to Every Man • Larry Evans

... trusted to the ground as it looked from his side of the field, when, in reality, it presented few difficulties from yours. Some experience in the world has led me to believe that if a salesman has come to the opinion, even in the most absurd manner, that he can sell a certain man goods, he can do it, almost beyond the chance of a doubt. I once knew a successful solicitor who seemed to do all his work at his desk. He would sit ...
— The Golden Censer - The duties of to-day, the hopes of the future • John McGovern

... lying and deceiving me, what's at the bottom of it?" was the thought that gnawed at his mind. The public announcement of the marriage seemed to him absurd. "It's true that with such a wonder-worker anything may come to pass; he lives to do harm. But what if he's afraid himself, since the insult of Sunday, and afraid as he's never been before? And so he's in a hurry to declare that he'll announce it himself, from fear ...
— The Possessed - or, The Devils • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... returning a doubtful Answer to Adams Enquiries, was not only proper for the Moral Reason which the Poet assigns, but because it would have been highly absurd to have given the Sanction of an Archangel to any particular System of Philosophy. The chief Points in the Ptolemaick and Copernican Hypothesis are described with great Conciseness and Perspicuity, and at the same time dressed in very pleasing ...
— The Spectator, Volume 2. • Addison and Steele

... bonnet, and dragged off her loud shawl, saluting me, as she did so, with an overdone obeisance, she said, "This San Fanfrisko"—why would she, how could she, always twist the decent name of the metropolis of the Pacific into such an absurd shape?—"was a norrid 'ole; she happealed to the gentleman,"—meaning me,—"didn't 'e find it a norrid 'ole, habsolutely hawful?" And then she went clattering among tinware and crockery, and snubbed the gentlemanly boy in a sort of ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 2, Issue 11, September, 1858 • Various

... appearance, upon the efficiency of the instrument? The idea that the varnish of a Violin has some influence upon its tone has often been ridiculed, and we can quite understand that it must appear absurd to those who have not viewed the question in all its bearings. Much misconception has arisen from pushing this theory about the varnish either too far or not far enough. What seems sometimes to be implied by enthusiasts is, that the form of the instrument is of little importance provided ...
— The Violin - Its Famous Makers and Their Imitators • George Hart

... all it is absurd to suppose that a body can create, for no body acts except by touching or moving; and thus it requires in its action some pre-existing thing, which can be touched or moved, which is contrary to the ...
— Summa Theologica, Part I (Prima Pars) - From the Complete American Edition • Thomas Aquinas

... return for a moment to my excellent academician friend, M. Dupaty, whose acquaintance I had made in the most absurd fashion. In the palmy days of the warlike enthusiasm of the Citizen Guard the worthy Dupaty was a captain in the 1st battalion of the 2nd Legion, commanded by Commandant Talabot. One evening, when he was on guard at the Palais Royal, he had been reciting some verses in my father's drawing-room, ...
— Memoirs • Prince De Joinville

... not easily give up her old habits when they were comparatively rich. And now, as she ran the long, glistening needle in and out amongst the worsted threads, her husband sat back in his chair and said it was absurd; but all the same, as he watched her with half-closed eyes, he thought what a good woman she was, and how happy it made him to think that she was not in the slightest degree spoiled by prosperity, while he fervently prayed that ...
— Son Philip • George Manville Fenn

... apprehend, who will not cordially concur with me in the principle of K Hs that we must find the meaning of the poems in the poems themselves, instead of accepting the interpretation of them given by we know not whom, and to follow which would reduce many of them to absurd enigmas. ...
— The Shih King • James Legge

... the fact that at this time President Wilson was trying to impress upon Germany the seriousness of her continued disregard of American and neutral lives on the high seas, the whole thing would have been too absurd to notice. But Germany wanted to create the impression among her people that President Wilson was not speaking for America, and that the Ambassador ...
— Germany, The Next Republic? • Carl W. Ackerman

... never be written, unless to schoolboys and men at college; and not often to them if they be any way tender hearted. This at least should be a rule through the letter-writing world: that no angry letter be posted till four-and-twenty hours shall have elapsed since it was written. We all know how absurd is that other rule, that of saying the alphabet when you are angry. Trash! Sit down and write your letter; write it with all the venom in your power; spit out your spleen at the fullest; 'twill do you good; you think you have been injured; say all that you can say with all your poisoned ...
— The Bertrams • Anthony Trollope

... and Calvinism, and thus endeavors to unite both schemes. With the Calvinist, he professes to believe that a certain number, determined upon in the divine councils, will be infallibly saved; and with the Arminian, he joins in rejecting the doctrine of reprobation, as absurd and impious;—admits that Christ, in a certain sense, died for all, and supposes that such a portion of grace is allotted to every man, as renders it his own fault if he does ...
— The Book of Religions • John Hayward

... long as possible; and try upon him the effect of kindness and mild persuasion. He had one very annoying habit, and that was he would very seldom give a satisfactory answer if suddenly asked a direct question, and often his reply would be very absurd, sometimes bordering on downright impudence. The master noticed one afternoon, after calling the boys from their play at recess, that Ned had not entered the school-room with the others. Stepping to the door, he found ...
— The Path of Duty, and Other Stories • H. S. Caswell

... should be carried. It is a liberal construction of the powers granted in the Constitution by this term to include in it all the powers that were granted in the Confederation by terms which specifically defined and, as was supposed, extended their limits. It would be absurd to say that by omitting from the Constitution any portion of the phraseology which was deemed important in the Confederation the import of that term was enlarged, and with it the powers of the Constitution, in a proportional degree, beyond what they were in the Confederation. The ...
— A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents - Section 1 (of 3) of Volume 2: James Monroe • James D. Richardson

... Talleyrand and the five oyster-shells, and there was his utterly absurd account of Napoleon's second visit to Ajaccio. Then there was that most circumstantial romance (which he never ventured upon until his second bottle had been uncorked) of the Emperor's escape from St. Helena—how he lived for a whole year in Philadelphia, while Count Herbert de Bertrand, ...
— The Green Flag • Arthur Conan Doyle

... stimulate, his mind; and I've commandeered the Euclid. A great writer, Sally! He's not juicy, and he don't palpitate, but he's an angel for style. 'Therefore the triangle DBC is equal to the triangle ABC—pause and count three—'the less to the greater'—pause—'which is absurd.' Neat and demure: and you're constantly coming on little things like that. 'Two straight lines cannot enclose a space'—so broad and convincing, when once pointed out!—and why is it not in The Soldiers' ...
— Foe-Farrell • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... rotational energy. It can be shown, too, that to keep the total spin right, the energy of the earth would have to gain more than the moon would have lost by revolving in a smaller orbit. Thus we find that the total quantity of energy in the system would be increased. This would lead to the absurd result that the action of the tides manufactured energy in our system. Of course, such a doctrine cannot be true; it would amount to a perpetual motion! We might as well try to get a steam-engine which would produce enough heat by friction not only to supply its own boilers, but ...
— Time and Tide - A Romance of the Moon • Robert S. (Robert Stawell) Ball

... man here who would not think it absurd to wrestle with you, but let some one call here the old woman, my nurse, Elli, and let Thor wrestle with her, if he will. She has cast to the ground many a man who seemed to me to be as ...
— Folk-Lore and Legends; Scandinavian • Various

... What is your influence upon young men? Do you not think it would be better for you to exercise a little self-denial! People wondered why George Briggs, Governor of Massachusetts, wore a cravat but no collar. "Oh," they said, "it is an absurd eccentricity." This was the history of the cravat without any collar: For many years before he had been talking with an inebriate, trying to persuade him to give up the habit of drinking and he said ...
— New Tabernacle Sermons • Thomas De Witt Talmage

... Inconsistent and absurd, this effort is tyrannical also. The responsibility for the recent Slave Act, and for slavery everywhere within the jurisdiction of Congress, necessarily involves the right to discuss them. To separate these is impossible. Like the twenty-fifth rule of the House ...
— American Eloquence, Volume II. (of 4) - Studies In American Political History (1896) • Various

... because the fierce winters murder the bob white, wholesale, they should not have a chance to recover themselves! Could human beings possibly assume a more absurd attitude? ...
— Our Vanishing Wild Life - Its Extermination and Preservation • William T. Hornaday

... an animated one, and Mr. Ayrton had hoped to derive a good deal of pleasure from describing it to his daughter; but when he had listened to her, and watched her for a few minutes, he came to the conclusion that it would be absurd for him to make an effort to compete with her. What was his wretched little story of Parliamentary squalor compared with these psychological subtleties which had interested his ...
— Phyllis of Philistia • Frank Frankfort Moore

... pictures, he wanted the things which they portrayed. So Hal came face to face with one of the difficulties of mine-operators. They gathered a population of humble serfs, selected from twenty or thirty races of hereditary bondsmen; but owing to the absurd American custom of having public-schools, the children of this population learned to speak English, and even to read it. So they became too good for their lot in life; and then a wandering agitator would get in, and all of a sudden there would be ...
— King Coal - A Novel • Upton Sinclair

... swear that he thought himself in danger from another, might obtain a writ of law-burrows, as it is called; by which the latter was bound, under the penalty of imprisonment and outlawry, to find security for his good behavior. Lauderdale entertained the absurd notion of making the king sue out writs of law-burrows against his subjects. On this pretence, the refusers of the bonds were summoned to appear before the council, and were required to bind themselves, under the penalty of two years' rent, neither to frequent conventicles themselves, nor allow their ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.I., Part F. - From Charles II. to James II. • David Hume

... ancestors; they may have possessed some species of protection from the rain on which they prided themselves as much as we do on our Umbrellas, and regarded the new-fangled invention (as they no doubt termed it) as something exceedingly absurd, coxcombical, and unnecessary; while we, who are in possession of so many life-comforts of which those of the good old times were supremely ignorant—among these we give the Umbrella brevet rank—can afford to smile at such ebullitions as we have come across in those books ...
— Umbrellas and their History • William Sangster

... easy to foresee," said the doctor, "that any regulation which neglected human nature was bound to fail. Man, that absurd and passionate animal, cannot thrive under an intelligent system. To be acceptable to the majority a law must be unjust. The French demobilization system is inane, and that is why it ...
— General Bramble • Andre Maurois

... what she was about, they would have denounced her conduct as contemptible and herself as immoral, even brazen. But in their innocence they accused only their sophisticated and superbly masculine selves and regarded her as the soul of innocence. This was the more absurd in them because she obviously excelled in the feminine art of inviting display of charm. To glance at her was to realize at once the beauty of her figure, the exceeding grace of her long back and waist. A keen observer would have seen the mockery lurking in her light-brown eyes, and ...
— The Conflict • David Graham Phillips

... true," nodded the professor, "it is all a delusion. Such a place as this Silver Palace is an absurd impossibility. The illness through which you have passed has affected your mind, and you dreamed ...
— Frank Merriwell Down South • Burt L. Standish



Words linked to "Absurd" :   preposterous, nonsensical, the absurd, illogical, laughable, theater of the absurd, ludicrous, foolish, unlogical



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