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verb
Improve  v. t.  (past & past part. improved; pres. part. improving)  
1.
To make better; to increase the value or good qualities of; to ameliorate by care or cultivation; as, to improve land. "I love not to improve the honor of the living by impairing that of the dead."
2.
To use or employ to good purpose; to make productive; to turn to profitable account; to utilize; as, to improve one's time; to improve his means. "We shall especially honor God by improving diligently the talents which God hath committed to us." "A hint that I do not remember to have seen opened and improved." "The court seldom fails to improve the opportunity." "How doth the little busy bee Improve each shining hour." "Those moments were diligently improved." "True policy, as well as good faith, in my opinion, binds us to improve the occasion."
3.
To advance or increase by use; to augment or add to; said with reference to what is bad. (R.) "We all have, I fear,... not a little improved the wretched inheritance of our ancestors."
Synonyms: To better; meliorate; ameliorate; advance; heighten; mend; correct; rectify; amend; reform.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Improve" Quotes from Famous Books



... desire to descend into this pit, but dared not venture for fear of the foul and deadly air that might have to be encountered below. Such things as matches, of course, we had not, nor any fire whatever. I therefore delayed the experiment for several days, with the expectation that the air would improve considerably in that time. Then, by bracing my hands and feet against the sides, I descended slowly, and found the air good enough to breathe freely, which emboldened me to go to the bottom. There was just light ...
— St. Nicholas Magazine for Boys and Girls, Vol. 5, January 1878, No. 3 • Various

... would not laugh. She had become so much interested in Wonota by this time that she wished her to improve her opportunities and learn the ways—the better ...
— Ruth Fielding in the Great Northwest - Or, The Indian Girl Star of the Movies • Alice B. Emerson

... there appeared the adorable Venus, Who said, "To be sure there's no likeness between us; Yet to show a celestial to kindness so prone is, Your looks shall soon rival the handsome Adonis." Liston woke in a fright, and cried, "Heaven preserve me! If my face you improve, ...
— The Jest Book - The Choicest Anecdotes and Sayings • Mark Lemon

... considerations applied. As we were already well down the forward slopes of the ridge on his front, it was for the time being inadvisable to make any serious advance. Pending developments elsewhere all that was necessary or indeed desirable was to carry on local operations to improve our positions and to keep ...
— World's War Events, Vol. II • Various

... and it is, if you kept your two questions properly tabulated. You see I am straining for mental stuff. I want to improve the old condition of forgetfulness. That was what knocked friend Virgil, or was it Cicero? I loved the stories and forgot the period. But I am finished for this evening, dear, and you know we have some initiation ...
— Jane Allen: Junior • Edith Bancroft

... the shape of a beau: That grandson of Atlas came down from above To bless all the regions of pleasure and love; To lead the fair nymph thro' the various maze, Bright beauty to marshal, his glory and praise; To govern, improve, and adorn the gay scene, By the Graces instructed, and Cyprian queen: As when in a garden delightful and gay, Where Flora is wont all her charms to display, The sweet hyacinthus with pleasure we view, Contend with narcissus in delicate hue; The gard'ner, industrious, trims ...
— The Wits and Beaux of Society - Volume 1 • Grace Wharton and Philip Wharton

... the puny race of mankind that was destined to follow them. I am a tall man and gifted with a considerable length of understanding but the strides I was obliged to take—sometimes almost bounds—if calculated to improve my muscles, were certainly very trying to my wind. However all things have an end, and so had that long flight of steps, and at the summit I had leisure to recover my breath and enjoy the magnificent ...
— Three Months of My Life • J. F. Foster

... with a sense of security and for ensuring them in the enjoyment of what they possess, and always do what is agreeable to them. The king, O Bharata, should always act in such a way towards the Vaisyas that their productive powers may be enhanced. The Vaisyas increase the strength of a kingdom, improve its agriculture, and develop its trade. A wise king, therefore, should always gratify them. Acting with heedfulness and leniency, he should levy mild imposts upon them. It is always easy to behave with goodness towards the Vaisyas. There is nothing productive ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 - Books 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 • Unknown

... established themselves in 1868. They did not go there merely as ascetics fleeing from the world, but also as philanthropists, prepared to sacrifice their lives for the good of humanity. Their mission was to drain and to cultivate this most unhealthy part of the Double, and to improve the condition of the peasants who eked out a miserable existence there. With what success the monks have applied themselves to their task of changing the climate by drainage, and assisting the peasants in their struggle, is proved ...
— Two Summers in Guyenne • Edward Harrison Barker

... the only safe mode of spending their time on earth was reading such blessed works as that which he had just published, and going daily to prayer-meetings. When, however, a Sunday or two before, he had the assurance to preach a funeral sermon, to "improve the death"—such being his impressive phrase—of a Miss Snooks, (who had kept a circulating library in the neighborhood, but had not been a member of his congregation;) and who, having been to the theatre on the Thursday ...
— Ten Thousand a-Year. Volume 1. • Samuel Warren

... on Grand River above Moab. Photograph by R. G. Leonard. His experience on this river ran through a period of some 20 years from about 1892. He died in the autumn of 1913. Every year he built one or more boats trying to improve on each. The Stone model (see cut, page 129) was the final outcome. The usual high-water mark at Bright Angel Trail is 45 feet higher than the usual low-water mark. Stanton measured the greatest declivity in Cataract Canyon and found ...
— The Romance of the Colorado River • Frederick S. Dellenbaugh

... that the exercise of hunting in moderation was very good for the Emperor's health; for I never saw him in better condition than during the very time the English journals took pleasure in describing him as ill, and perhaps by these false statements were contributing to still further improve his health. ...
— The Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte • Bourrienne, Constant, and Stewarton

... subject, let us add (and our young readers will come to know it if they are spared to see many years) that civilization alone will never improve the heart. Let history speak, and it will tell you that deeds of darkest hue have been perpetrated in so-called civilized though pagan lands. Civilization is like the polish that beautifies inferior furniture, which water will wash off ...
— The Dog Crusoe and His Master - A Story of Adventure in the Western Prairies • Robert Michael Ballantyne

... is attended in another by a correspondent evil, that often exceeds the advantage gained. That we have made vast improvements in art and science, and in every department of human affairs, no one will deny; consequently, it is assumed we must correspondingly improve in a bee-hive; forgetting that nature has fixed limits to the instinct of the bee, beyond which ...
— Mysteries of Bee-keeping Explained • M. Quinby

... 1. Said when the correct response is too complicated to enunciate, or the speaker has not thought it out. Often prefaces a longer answer, or indicates a general reluctance to get into a long discussion. "Don't you think that we could improve LISP performance by using a hybrid reference-count transaction garbage collector, if the cache is big enough and there are some extra cache bits for the microcode to use?" "Well, mumble ... I'll have to think about it." 2. [MIT] ...
— The Jargon File, Version 4.0.0

... mournfully into the Past. It comes not back again. Wisely improve the Present. It is thine. Go forth to meet the shadowy Future, without fear, ...
— Book of Wise Sayings - Selected Largely from Eastern Sources • W. A. Clouston

... social and juridical discriminations contained in our codes will not be eliminated in a radical manner and the condition of woman will not improve while man alone legislates and controls all the spheres of public life, dictating to woman what she must do and what she must not do; and woman will be incompetent to take care of her own interests and shape ...
— The Woman and the Right to Vote • Rafael Palma

... 1877) a resolution, which put on record my opinions, and stated that the House regretted the failure of the policy of the Government either to improve the position of Christian subjects of the Porte or to avert war. It also regretted their unwillingness to co-operate with any other ...
— The Life of the Rt. Hon. Sir Charles W. Dilke V1 • Stephen Gwynn

... once badly overgrazed can be restored to their former value but slowly or not at all. The obvious and certain remedy is for the Government to hold and control the public range until it can pass into the hands of settlers who will make their homes upon it. As methods of agriculture improve and new dry-land crops are introduced, vast areas once considered unavailable for cultivation are being made into prosperous homes; and this-movement has ...
— The Fight For Conservation • Gifford Pinchot

... spurn Hymen's gentle powers, We, who improve his golden hours, By sweet experience know That marriage, rightly understood, Gives to the tender and the good ...
— Elsie's Motherhood • Martha Finley

... such private persons as should emigrate at their own expense, they were allowed as much land as they could properly improve, upon ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 11 • Various

... we travelled for some leagues on the sea-shore, crossing occasionally a narrow inlet or firth. The country at last began to improve, and in the neighbourhood of Santillana was both beautiful and fertile. About a league before we reached the country of Gil Blas, we passed through an extensive wood, in which were rocks and precipices; ...
— The Bible in Spain • George Borrow

... always by individualistic principles, and not to serve the good of all, but by each person for his own, or her own, ends. How can order come out of such a way of life? Do you think you are going to improve things in the old selfish ways. I tell you the result can be nothing but a further failure of vision. The mountain heights become obscured by the mists going up from the damp valleys, and the ...
— Women's Wild Oats - Essays on the Re-fixing of Moral Standards • C. Gasquoine Hartley

... point of view of one who has been blind from early infancy, whose fingers are his eyes, and whose mental vision enables him to see many things not revealed by physical sight. A blind man once said, when asked if he would not be glad to have his eyesight, "to improve the organs I have, would be as good as to give me that which is wanting in me." This sentence sums up the whole aim of blind education. Dr. Eichholtz, a noted educator of the blind, says: "Education of the blind absolutely fails in its object, in so far as it fails to develop the ...
— Five Lectures on Blindness • Kate M. Foley

... solid slate which it is difficult to split into laminae, and it is not until a depth of at least fifteen feet is reached that we find a material that is fit to be exploited. All the best beds of slate, in fact, improve in quality in proportion as they lie deeper under the surface, near to which they have little value. Without entering into details as to the exploitation of this product, let us say that the blocks have to be divided in the quarry, since, in the open air, they rapidly lose the property of ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 1157, March 5, 1898 • Various

... sportsman is always a cheerful loser, a quiet winner, with a very frank appreciation of the admirable traits in others, which he seeks to emulate, and his own shortcomings, which he tries to improve. ...
— Etiquette • Emily Post

... public enterprises (a thing to be hereafter studied), we, the ungracious offspring of her youth, come from our North and West and censure and criticise and carp. I have seldom conversed with any fellow-visitor in Rome who could not improve her in some phase or other, who could not usefully advise her, who, at the best, did not patronize her. I offer myself as almost the sole example of a stranger who was contented with her as she is, or as she ...
— Roman Holidays and Others • W. D. Howells

... been influenced by that of governments, and that some, once the most cultivated, have sunk into barbarism, while others, formerly the rudest, have attained the highest point of civilisation, we shall see no reason to doubt that if we pursue steadily the proper measures, we shall in time so far improve the character of our Indian subjects as to enable them to govern ...
— India, Old and New • Sir Valentine Chirol

... there on Main Street! They got the feed store all fixed up, and a new sign on it, black and gold. That'll improve the appearance of ...
— Main Street • Sinclair Lewis

... improve your game and avoid embarrassing her by dumb bids and play. If she enjoys art and finds an art exhibit worth while, do not be the dumb male and say that this means nothing to you; let her teach you what ...
— The Good Housekeeping Marriage Book • Various

... men commenced to improve in looks and health. Uncle Kit had them to exercise some every day, and in a short time we were on the road for the Pacific Coast. We had no trouble until we crossed the Main Divide of the Rocky Mountains. It was on a stream called the "Blue," ...
— Chief of Scouts • W.F. Drannan

... studied it enough; let me turn to my communion with God; to the calm, dear recollections of my family and my true friends. I will read my Bible oftener than I have done, I will again write down my thoughts, will try to raise and improve them, and taste the pleasure of a sorrow at least innocent; a thousand fold to be preferred to vulgar and ...
— My Ten Years' Imprisonment • Silvio Pellico

... shall indeed owe you much if you can remove that reluctance on the part of my betrothed bride, which alone clouds my happiness, and which would at once put an end to my suit, did I not ascribe it to an imperfect knowledge of myself, which I shall devote my life to improve into confidence ...
— My Novel, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... but I think no division or brigade. The determination seems to be to hold Richmond as long as possible. I have a force sufficient to leave enough to hold our lines (all that is necessary of them), and move out with plenty to whip his whole army. But the roads are entirely impassable. Until they improve, I shall content myself with watching Lee, and be prepared to pitch into him if he attempts to evacuate the place. I may bring Sheridan over—think I will —and break up the Danville and Southside Railroads. These are the last avenues ...
— The Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman, Complete • William T. Sherman

... embarked in. The extent of his natural endowments might have served, with a less eager character, as an excuse for long periods of indolence, broken only by fits of casual exertion: with him it was but a new incitement to improve and develop them. The Ideal Man that lay within him, the image of himself as he should be, was formed upon a strict and curious standard; and to reach this constantly approached and constantly receding emblem of perfection, was the unwearied effort of his life. This crowning ...
— The Life of Friedrich Schiller - Comprehending an Examination of His Works • Thomas Carlyle

... connected the western part of the State with the Tidewater. The proceeds of bond issues floated to promote internal improvements in the State had not been used to effect commercial ties between the two sections of the State, nor had any considerable portion thereof been used to improve the western districts. On the other hand, the interest of the people at the foot hills of the Piedmont had become more definitely aligned with those of the other eastern sections of the State. The chief grievance ...
— The Journal of Negro History, Volume 6, 1921 • Various

... elderly professors to improve their skill in the peace and war of love. But they drove ...
— Vikram and the Vampire • Sir Richard F. Burton

... they must also sound forth their ignorance, or there would have been none in improving them. If the Britons were that wretched people they are represented by the Romans, they could not be worth conquering: no man subdues a people to improve them, but to profit by them. Though the Romans at that time were in their meridian of splendor, they pursued Britain a whole century before they reduced it; which indicates that they considered it as a valuable prize. Though the Britons were not masters of science, like the Romans; ...
— An History of Birmingham (1783) • William Hutton

... redness of the nose, and pimples in various places, is the common result of too much rich food, not to speak of alcoholic drink, which is always most injurious to the face skin. The use of corsets is another fertile source of this trouble, and many in their desire to improve their figure ruin their faces. Plain, easily digested food is to be taken. Tea must only be used at most twice in the day, and should be exceedingly weak. Half-a-teacupful of hot water should be taken before every meal, and everything possible done to promote digestion. ...
— Papers on Health • John Kirk

... Juan bade his valet pack his things According to direction, then received A lecture and some money: for four springs He was to travel; and though Inez grieved (As every kind of parting has its stings), She hoped he would improve—perhaps believed: A letter, too, she gave (he never read it) Of good advice—and two ...
— The Works of Lord Byron, Volume 6 • Lord Byron

... shooting in Sweden, became painful; the treatment adopted by the doctor, bleeding and iodine, seems to have made him worse. At the beginning of July, 1860, he returned on leave to Berlin; there he was laid up for ten days; his wife was summoned and under her care he began to improve. August he spent at Wiesbaden and Nauheim, taking the waters, the greater part of the autumn in Berlin; in October he had to go Warsaw officially to receive and accompany the Czar, who came to Breslau for an interview with ...
— Bismarck and the Foundation of the German Empire • James Wycliffe Headlam

... good," I said, smiling; "but there are exceptions which prove the rule, and I hope you will find that even I will improve upon acquaintance." ...
— That Mother-in-Law of Mine • Anonymous

... He will have them labour. He will make them try their strength, and use their strength, and improve their strength of soul and body. By making them labour, Christ teaches His people industry, order, self-command, self-denial, patience, courage, endurance, foresight, thoughtfulness, earnestness. ...
— True Words for Brave Men • Charles Kingsley

... as a profession; personality is everything. You must be perfect or peculiar. The latter alternative is the greater help. If Arlt would grow a head of hair, or wear a dinner napkin instead of a necktie, it would improve his chances wonderfully." ...
— The Dominant Strain • Anna Chapin Ray

... Bible." He might say, "Study yourself!" The preacher says, "Look to Jesus." He might say, "Look within!" The preacher says, "Repent and pray." I would say, "After an inventory of your inner possessions, clean up the house and go to work to improve it in ...
— The New Avatar and The Destiny of the Soul - The Findings of Natural Science Reduced to Practical Studies - in Psychology • Jirah D. Buck

... the dullness of Dilke's paper; but when the Athenaeum was enlarged in 1835 from sixteen to twenty-four pages Dilke's triumph was evident. The Literary Gazette was compelled to reduce its price to fourpence in its effort to regain the lost subscriptions. Dilke labored earnestly to improve his paper and when, in 1846, he felt that it was established on a firm basis, he made Thomas Kibble Hervey editor and devoted his own time to furthering his journalistic enterprises. However, he continued to contribute ...
— Early Reviews of English Poets • John Louis Haney

... every evening should write down what they had seen and heard, and done and thought and felt during the day, at least as much as they could remember, that was of any consequence. He said, that by doing this carefully, they would improve the memory, and also learn to express their thoughts well, either ...
— Charley's Museum - A Story for Young People • Unknown

... do all that you wished me; I would try hard to improve myself; I would work so hard and work so well that no one would even guess, ever so faintly, that I belonged to a different class. I would be the most devoted of daughters to you; I would live ...
— A Mad Love • Bertha M. Clay

... grass, and under foot slimy sticks and roots spread over a black swamp. For a few steps one would balance one's self, and then down one would go, knee deep in the mire. Always hoping that the road would improve, we persevered for nearly half a mile. But it only got worse, and reluctantly we had to turn back to our starting-point. Then Shabahgeezhik took a run further up the hill to look for another road. In a few minutes he shouted for us to follow, and the track ...
— Missionary Work Among The Ojebway Indians • Edward Francis Wilson

... Bunkum, when he opens Oxford to Jew and Gentile, and offers to make Rothschild Chancellor instead of Lord Derby, and tells them old dons, the heads of colleges, as polite as a stage-driver, that he does it out of pure regard to them, and only to improve the University, don't expect them to believe it; for he gives them a sly wink when he says so, as much as to say, how are you off for Hebrew, my old septuagenarians? Droll boy is Rothey, for though he comes from the land of Ham, he don't eat pork. But it pleases the sarcumsised Jew, and ...
— Nature and Human Nature • Thomas Chandler Haliburton

... which had begun to improve with the advent of their prosperity, now enabled her to sit up nearly the whole day, and to render much aid in the household affairs, and especially in the manufacturing of the candy. The good fortune that ...
— Poor and Proud - or The Fortunes of Katy Redburn • Oliver Optic

... everything to others,—and to reserve nothing for myself, but the inward conscience that I had omitted no pains to discover, to animate, to discipline, to direct the abilities of the country for its service, and to place them in the best light to improve their age, or to adorn it. This conscience I have. I have never suppressed any man, never checked him for a moment in his course, by any jealousy, or by any policy. I was always ready, to the height of my means, (and they wore always infinitely ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. V. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... of Dan, and a glance forward revealed to him the desperate situation of his party. The slave-master, nearly exhausted by the shock of the collision, and his exertions in hauling himself up to the deck of the Isabel, had failed to improve the first moment that ushered him into the presence of his astonished chattels; and the loss of that opportunity was the ruin of his expectations. Dan instantly raised his rifle; but the old feeling of awe and reverence ...
— Watch and Wait - or The Young Fugitives • Oliver Optic

... Colline's produced a reaction in favor of Carolus. The philosopher wished to improve the effect of his ...
— Bohemians of the Latin Quarter • Henry Murger

... how he feels; what he loves; what he hopes for; what he is trying to do; what he means to be;—these are quite as essential elements in his well-being as what he has to eat and wear. True benevolence therefore must include these things in its efforts. Benevolence must aim to improve the man together with his condition or its gifts ...
— Practical Ethics • William DeWitt Hyde

... delighted with this letter. They had been living in continual fear of dispossession since the first attack on the Breckenridge farm in '69. Now they felt that they would be free to follow the peaceful pursuits of their calling and began to improve their possessions, believing that, after all, the right would prevail. None were more pleased at this turn of affairs than the widow Harding and Enoch. Bryce, it must be confessed, felt a little disappointed that he had seen no active service; ...
— With Ethan Allen at Ticonderoga • W. Bert Foster

... to induce early ripening is supposed to have been invented by Col. BUCHATT, of Metz, in 1745. He claimed for it that it would also greatly improve the quality of the fruit, as well as hasten maturity. That it accomplishes the latter, cannot be denied; it also seems to increase the size of the berries, but I hardly think the fruit can compare in flavor with a well developed bunch, ripened in the natural way. As it ...
— The Cultivation of The Native Grape, and Manufacture of American Wines • George Husmann

... Quixote, "that it has been the constant practice of knights-errant in former ages to make their squires governors of the islands or kingdoms they conquered. Now I am not only resolved to keep up that laudable custom, but even to improve it, and outdo my predecessors in generosity; for whereas sometimes, or rather most commonly, other knights delayed rewarding their squires till they were grown old, and worn out with services, bad days, worse ...
— The Children's Hour, v 5. Stories From Seven Old Favorites • Eva March Tappan

... development of the property as a heavy carrier of anthracite coal. On the financial side during this period the credit of the House of Morgan, intelligent administration, and modern methods did much to improve the reputation of the Erie and enable it to ...
— The Railroad Builders - A Chronicle of the Welding of the States, Volume 38 in The - Chronicles of America Series • John Moody

... the new road to Antrim, and found them to the summits to consist of exceeding good loam, and such as would improve into good meadow. It is all thrown to the little adjoining farms, with very little or any rent paid for it. They make no other use of it than turning their cows on. Pity they do not improve; a work more profitable than any they could undertake. All the way to Antrim lands ...
— A Tour in Ireland - 1776-1779 • Arthur Young

... Jenkins, "make you navigate. Make you navigate under orders and under fear of punishment. You're the worst-hammered man in this crowd; but hammering doesn't improve you. You'll be keelhauled, or triced up by the thumbs, or spread-eagled over a boiler—but you'll navigate. ...
— The Wreck of the Titan - or, Futility • Morgan Robertson

... the undertaker, Henry, but I fancy a doctor could improve you. What do you reckon is ...
— Hobson's Choice • Harold Brighouse

... tell us in his preface what moved him to that act. "Colonel Money," he says, in the quiet third person of a self-respecting Norfolk gentleman, "does not mean to assign any other reason for serving the armies of France than that he loves his profession and went there merely to improve himself in it." ...
— On Something • H. Belloc

... said that the Studebaker was a rotten old car. Its steering-gear was pretty dicky, and the bad surface and continual hairpin bends of the road didn't improve it. Soon we came into snow lying fairly deep, frozen hard and rutted by the big transport-wagons. We bumped and bounced horribly, and were shaken about like peas in a bladder. I began to be acutely anxious about the old boneshaker, ...
— Greenmantle • John Buchan

... Lord; the rights of the Church remaining intact, and saving the pension to St. Peter and the most Holy Roman Church of one penny a-year for each house. And, shouldst thou be so fortunate as to accomplish what thou hast planned, strive to improve the Irish nation, by good morals; and act in such a manner by thyself, as well as by those whom thou shalt employ, and whom thou shalt first have proved to be trustworthy by reason of their fidelity, their opinions and ...
— Pope Adrian IV - An Historical Sketch • Richard Raby

... the line were now busy constructing new battery positions, while fresh O.P.'s were also erected, and it was thought that these preparations were preparatory to making an attack to enable us to improve our position by the capture of Pilkem Ridge, but, although the work was ...
— Three years in France with the Guns: - Being Episodes in the life of a Field Battery • C. A. Rose

... his surplus to improve and extend his original farm. But farms were now practically unsalable, and Hampden and Arabella were glad to let their cousin Ed—Ed Warfield—stay on, rent free, because with him there they were certain that the place would be well kept up. Hampden, poor ...
— The Cost • David Graham Phillips

... to improve the site worthy of the seat of gigantic legislation have hitherto failed. The sword and the malaria have attacked it. Every year sees the President driven from his Mansion by pestilential vapors, and the sanitary condition of the city is extraordinarily ...
— Campaigns of a Non-Combatant, - and His Romaunt Abroad During the War • George Alfred Townsend

... Clarendon, and other authors of celebrity, he read with attention. The knowledge which he thus picked up during his leisure hours gave him a great advantage over the other clerks, and caused his employers to respect him far more than any other in their establishment. So eager was he to improve the time that he determined to see how much he could read during the unemployed time of night and morning, and his success was ...
— Clotelle - The Colored Heroine • William Wells Brown

... Quixote "thou needest have no fear; I shall only be complying with an ancient and honorable custom of knights-errant, and, indeed, I purpose to improve on their practice, for, instead of waiting, as they often did, until thou art worn out in my service, I shall seek the first occasion to bestow on thee this gift; and it may be that before a week has passed thou wilt be crowned king of ...
— Children's Literature - A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes • Charles Madison Curry

... evenings under Rodney's instruction he devoted an hour and sometimes two to the task of making up the deficiencies in his early education. These were extensive, but Mike was naturally a smart boy, and after a while began to improve rapidly. ...
— Cast Upon the Breakers • Horatio Alger

... can! I can see it now as it would be if you had your way—spick and span in odious, glaring freshness, insulting the gray old ocean. The only respectable buildings in America are those which the owner is too poor to improve." ...
— Flint - His Faults, His Friendships and His Fortunes • Maud Wilder Goodwin

... uninteresting, ignoble, relentlessly domineering, is not to be expressed. Their best weapons in such cases, if they knew it, are gentleness, patience, persuasion, and the skilful use of every means to improve and uplift their unequal companions to their own level. The Persian poet expressed a rich truth when he wrote, "Gentleness is the sail on the table of morals." It is a tragedy that the good wife of a bad husband is so identified with him, that the penalties of his offences fall on her head, often ...
— The Friendships of Women • William Rounseville Alger

... but he made no remark, while Bigot said something in his ear which did not improve his humour, for he replied curtly, and turned to his secretary. "We must have two gentlemen more," ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... antagonists's fire in this fashion, he blushed—for he could blush distinctly now—and his mother looked upon him with pleasure, thought the reference to Midas and roosters was of course jargon to her. "Did you ever see anybody improve the way that child has!" she exclaimed. "I declare, Bibbs, sometimes lately you look ...
— The Turmoil - A Novel • Booth Tarkington

... celestial, or medico, magnetico, musico, electrical bed, which I have, with so much study and at so vast an expense, constructed, not alone to insure the removal of barrenness, when conception is at all in the nature of things possible, but likewise to improve, exalt, and invigorate the bodily, and through them, the mental faculties of the human species. This bed, whose seemingly magical influences are now celebrated from pole to pole and from the rising to the setting sun! is indeed an unique in science! and unquestionably the first and the ...
— Aphrodisiacs and Anti-aphrodisiacs: Three Essays on the Powers of Reproduction • John Davenport

... tired with travel, and the long night watches did not improve tempers already overstrained with the expectation of a crisis too long dragged out. Rain fell during the night, and continued gently in a misty drizzle after day broke. It was a situation and an atmosphere ripe for tragedy, ...
— Wyoming, a Story of the Outdoor West • William MacLeod Raine

... opportunity to give as my opinion that the most practical measure England could take to benefit Ireland would be to drain the large bogs and so improve fuel. In some places the bogs are likely to be exhausted, but in others there is plenty of turf (turf, O Saxon, is not the grass on which you play cricket or croquet, but is the Hibernian for peat). Indeed, there is ample for all the needs of Ireland for ...
— The Reminiscences of an Irish Land Agent • S.M. Hussey

... contemplation of what they will term our crudities, and which we now call progress. Science is ever on the march and what is new to-day will be old to-morrow. We cannot go back, we must go forward, and although we can never reach finality in aught, we can improve on the past to enrich the future. If this volume creates an interest and arouses an enthusiasm in the ordinary men and women into whose hands it may come, and stimulates them to a study of the great events making for ...
— Marvels of Modern Science • Paul Severing

... our bantering very good-naturedly, and managed in the course of the day to bring down a couple of birds. "You see, I improve by practice," he observed; "and one of these days I ...
— On the Banks of the Amazon • W.H.G. Kingston

... before the authorities of this den. Half a dozen coarse and filthy uniformed men, and some of them evidently sufferers in the tumult of the night, for their heads were bound up and their arms bandaged—a matter which, if it did not improve their appearance, gave me every reason to expect increased brutishness in their tempers—formed the tribunal. The hall in which they had established their court had once been the kitchen of the convent; and, though all signs of hospitality had vanished, its rude and wild ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXLII. Vol. LV. April, 1844 • Various

... tell you, for I would not have you believe that we wantonly intruded upon your slumbers." And thereupon William related that he was a citizen of Bensonville who had met a former visitor there and they had come here to talk over mutual acquaintances and improve their minds by discreet discourse. "But, sir," he said, in concluding, "pardon my natural curiosity concerning yourself. Who are you and ...
— The Strange Adventures of Mr. Middleton • Wardon Allan Curtis

... had certainly been so placed that those who were behind it found great difficulty in getting out; there was but a narrow gangway, which one person could stop. This was a bad arrangement, and one which Bertie thought it might be well to improve. ...
— Barchester Towers • Anthony Trollope

... had been partially alleviated when it was shared with her brother, and she had come to regard her over-anxious parent with a hardness which Goethe describes as having something dreadful (fuerchterliches) in it. The arrival of Goethe could not improve the existing relations in the household. As in the time before his going to Leipzig, Cornelia drew to him as the only member of the family who sympathetically understood her, and she remained as obdurate as ever in her sullen attitude towards her father. Between Goethe himself and his father ...
— The Youth of Goethe • Peter Hume Brown

... in their next conversation I know not. One would be tempted to think by the issue, that Mr. Lovelace was ungenerous enough to seek the occasion given,* and to improve it. Yet he thought fit to put the question too:—But, she says, it was not till, by some means or other (she knew not how) he had wrought her up to such a pitch of displeasure with him, that it was impossible for her to recover herself at the instant. Nevertheless he re-urged his question, ...
— Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9) • Samuel Richardson

... crossed the Alleghanies, it never occurred to question the competence of the Federal Government to meet all their wants. That the Government at Washington should construct and maintain highways, improve and facilitate the navigation of inland waterways, seemed a most reasonable expectation. What else was government for? But these proposed activities did not seem so obviously legitimate to Presidents of the Virginia Dynasty; not so readily could ...
— Jefferson and his Colleagues - A Chronicle of the Virginia Dynasty, Volume 15 In The - Chronicles Of America Series • Allen Johnson

... source of energy and to have the capacity of doing work, the first thing to do, from the engineer's point of view, is to analyse the generator with a view to discovering how best to conserve it, to improve it, and bring it to the level of maximum productivity. Human beings are very complicated energy-producing batteries differing widely in quality and magnitude of productive power. Experience has shown that these batteries are, first of all, chemical batteries producing a mysterious ...
— Manhood of Humanity. • Alfred Korzybski

... when Frank and his sister were alone for a few moments she said, "I am going to do you a good turn to-day, Sir Mahomet, and have a headache," and, laughing a little, "if you are wise you will improve your opportunities and persuade your 'Sweet Alice' to go after pond lilies and leave me here. I noticed a most charming spot for a tete-a-tete on one side of that pond the other day, and I guess you can find it if you try. It's a mossy bank under a big tree, and out of sight of ...
— Uncle Terry - A Story of the Maine Coast • Charles Clark Munn

... terrible. But even that sentence, which was a good deal more cheerful than what he actually felt, didn't do anything to improve his mood. All of the evidence, after all, had been practically living on the tip of his nose for nearly twenty-four hours, and not only had he done nothing about it, but he hadn't ...
— Supermind • Gordon Randall Garrett

... Republic, I deeply regret to say, do not seem to promise even the foundations of such a peace. We have waited many months, months full of peril and anxiety, for the conditions there to improve, and they have not improved. They have grown worse, rather. The territory in some sort controlled by the provisional authorities at Mexico City has grown smaller, not larger. The prospect of the pacification of the country, even by arms, has seemed to grow more and more remote; and its ...
— President Wilson's Addresses • Woodrow Wilson

... full of that childlike fun which is characteristic of the author. I have marked the errors in these exercises, and have given them back to the children to rewrite. Sometimes the second papers show careful correction-and sometimes the mistakes are partially neglected. Very often the child wishes to improve on the first composition, and so adds new blunders as ...
— Birds and Bees, Sharp Eyes and, Other Papers • John Burroughs

... this situation that the Dominion Government organised and despatched the North West Mounted Police to Western Canada. Immediately upon the advent of this famous corps matters began to improve. The open ravages of the whiskey runners ceased and these daring outlaws were forced to carry on their fiendish business by midnight marches and through the secret trails and coulees of the foothills. The profits of the trade, however, were still great enough to ...
— Corporal Cameron • Ralph Connor

... and Henry was in French. Rollo had studied French a great deal by the help of books when he was at home, and he had taken so much pains to improve by practice since he had been in France and Switzerland that he could now get along in a short ...
— Rollo in Switzerland • Jacob Abbott

... Governor of Sarawak, 24th September 1841, he set himself actively to work to reform abuses, to improve the cultivation of the country, and to secure peace and happiness to the people. Having arranged the internal affairs of his government, he went back to Singapore for the purpose of asking the aid of some ship-of-war to put down ...
— Our Sailors - Gallant Deeds of the British Navy during Victoria's Reign • W.H.G. Kingston

... and baked, far exceeds sculpture in permanence. It may be said that if a mistake is made it is not easy to remedy it; it is but a poor argument to try to prove that a work be the nobler because oversights are irremediable; I should rather say that it will be more difficult to improve the mind of the master who makes such mistakes than to repair ...
— The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci, Complete • Leonardo Da Vinci

... that institution, and he was occupied in making certain regulations which should relieve them of the more sordid cares of life; the condition of the aged teachers and educators of the young had also attracted his observation, and he had endeavored to improve it. ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... impressed by his lively wit as by the loftiness of his thought. It would be possible, too, to extract, for young persons, without modification, admirable passages of incomparable force. But those who have brought out expurgated editions of him, or who have thought to improve him by trying to rewrite him in modern French, have been fools for their pains, and their insulting attempts have had, and always will have, the success ...
— Gargantua and Pantagruel, Complete. • Francois Rabelais

... were, however, in his book some excellent flashes of fancy and youth; besides, the public then had grown tired of interminable adventures and novels in fifty volumes. So Henry Murger's first work, "La Vie de Boheme," was very popular; but it did not swell his purse or improve his wardrobe. He was introduced to me, and I shall never forget the low bow he made me. I was afraid for one moment that his bald head would fall between his legs. This precocious baldness gave to his delicate and sad face ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 14, No. 83, September, 1864 • Various

... shapely white neck, and he had never lived among celebrated reformers. She wanted, just now, to have a cell in a settlement-house, like a nun without the bother of a black robe, and be kind, and read Bernard Shaw, and enormously improve a horde of ...
— Main Street • Sinclair Lewis

... report showed the King to be progressive in his tendencies; as the result of several trips to Europe, he has introduced railways, telegraph and modern business appliances, and is making a great effort to beautify the city and to improve sanitary conditions, having employed French engineers ...
— Travels in the Far East • Ellen Mary Hayes Peck

... of the centuries—we are not sure which—the Raturan savages made some advances into their swampy grounds and began to improve them. This region lay very remote from the Mountain-men's villages, but, as it approached the mountain base in a round-about manner, and as the mountain-tops could be distinctly seen from the region, ...
— The Madman and the Pirate • R.M. Ballantyne

... will improve you so much as playing with good players; never refuse, therefore, when any one offers you odds, to accept them: you cannot expect a proficient to feel much interest in playing with you upon even ...
— The Blue Book of Chess - Teaching the Rudiments of the Game, and Giving an Analysis - of All the Recognized Openings • Howard Staunton and "Modern Authorities"

... future life he unfortunately thinks little, and of Christ, the world's Redeemer, he seldom or never hears. The Roman Catholic chaplain mumbles a few Latin prayers to them at times, but as the knowledge of these resos does not seem to improve the priest's life, the men prefer to ...
— Through Five Republics on Horseback • G. Whitfield Ray

... nature does not introduce into vegetables, the natural food of all animal life,—directly of herbivorous, indirectly of carnivorous animals,—are to be regarded with suspicion. Arsenic-eating may seem to improve the condition of horses for a time,—and even of human beings, if Tschudi's stories can be trusted,—but it soon appears that its alien qualities are at war with the animal organization. So of copper, antimony, and other non-alimentary simple ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... Things are so far advanced, that we must proceed; and I hope you will lay it to Heart, that it will be becoming in me to appear still your Lover, but not in you to be still my Mistress. Gaiety in the Matrimonial Life is graceful in one Sex, but exceptionable in the other. As you improve these little Hints, you will ascertain the Happiness or Uneasiness of, Madam, Your most obedient, Most humble ...
— The Spectator, Volume 2. • Addison and Steele

... The properties of the great universal institution, as well as those of the Chapters, were sold at public auction, and the confiscation, although not immediate, was in course of being accomplished. The state of things did not improve on the advent to power of Messrs. Nicotera and Depretis, the former a radical of the most extreme views, and the latter, very little, if at all, better. These revolutionists having gained the object of their ambition, might have been inclined to halt in their mad career; but, their party driving ...
— Pius IX. And His Time • The Rev. AEneas MacDonell

... young woman with such effrontery that the blush of shame again mounted to her forehead, the Roman drew from the casket a rich necklace of chased gold. He went closer to the lamp-light in order to improve its glitter in the eyes of the woman whom he wished to tempt. Then, simulating an ironical reverence, he stooped and placed the necklace at the feet of the Gaul. Rising, he questioned ...
— The Brass Bell - or, The Chariot of Death • Eugene Sue

... to injure the deserved repute of the almost father of Hebrew literature in this country. He will not surely, regret that a spirit which has done so much to promote, should develop itself in new and felicitous attempts to improve the field that he so arduously ...
— Ups and Downs in the Life of a Distressed Gentleman • William L. Stone

... for salvation. These are mostly compiled by women, our thoughtful mothers, wives and sweethearts who have saved the twin Basic Rabbits for us. If it weren't for these Fanny Farmers, the making of a real aboriginal Welsh Rabbit would be a lost art—lost in sporting male attempts to improve upon the original. ...
— The Complete Book of Cheese • Robert Carlton Brown

... to writing. The proficiency of their pupils was estimated principally by the number of technical verses which they retained in their memory: a circumstance that shows this discipline rather calculated to preserve with accuracy a few plain maxims of traditionary science than to improve and extend it. And this is not the sole circumstance which leads us to believe that among them learning had advanced no further ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. VII. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... and its perfection in the beginning, render cultivation and improvement not only unnecessary, but impossible. As it is with the individual, so it is with the race. One generation of the irrational tribes does not improve upon the preceding or educate its successor. The web which you watched the spider weaving in your open window last summer, carefully measuring off each radius of her wheel and each circular mesh by one of her legs, was just such a web as the spider wove of old when she was pronounced ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 31, May, 1860 • Various

... "You are improve," she continued politely. "The American mens no grow old like the Spanish—or like the women that have ten children and get so stout and have ...
— The Bell in the Fog and Other Stories • Gertrude Atherton

... woman demeaned by dropping her ballot into the box? Does the act injure her? "Oh, no; it is not the act—it is the scenes that she would have to meet. Go to the polls, and see what voting means." Yes; go and see what bachelor voting means. It is exactly the thing that we want to improve. Did you ever see a crowd of men, the rudest in the world, who, when a lady walked among them, did not open spontaneously and let her pass through as if she was an angel? It is asked sometimes, "Would ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume II • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... and, to tell you my mind, He has not left a better or wiser behind. His pencil was striking, resistless, and grand; His manners were gentle, complying, and bland; Still born to improve us in every part— His pencil oar faces, his manners our heart. To coxcombs averse, yet most civilly steering, When they judged without skill he was still hard of hearing; When they talked of their Raphaels, ...
— English Poets of the Eighteenth Century • Selected and Edited with an Introduction by Ernest Bernbaum

... the habit of drinking. In his dark eyes there was the old fire still, but dimmed and polluted. His hair and beard, formerly so luxuriant, and black as the raven's wing, hung down grey and disordered over his face and chin, and the proud smile which used so to improve his features had given way to an expression of contemptuous ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... reduced greatly the hereditary occupation of pilotage, and emigration goes on; the only town is Hugh Town (with two hotels, banks, pier, &c.), on St. Mary's; there are some interesting ecclesiastical ruins, &c.; since 1834 much has been done to improve the condition of the islanders by the then proprietor Mr. A. J. Smith, and his nephew, T. A. Darien ...
— The Nuttall Encyclopaedia - Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge • Edited by Rev. James Wood

... display of superiority. 'Of course, anyone leading a useful life, such as yours,' I overheard her saying to him this morning, 'don't naturally get much time for reading. I've nothing else to do, you see, 'cept to improve myself.' ...
— They and I • Jerome K. Jerome

... all, in preference to the combined and established wit of the world. I say established; for it is with literature as with law or empire—an established name is an estate in tenure, or a throne in possession. Besides, one might suppose that books, like their authors, improve by travel—their having crossed the sea is, with us, so great a distinction. Our antiquaries abandon time for distance; our very fops glance from the binding to the bottom of the title-page, where the mystic characters which spell London, Paris, or Genoa, ...
— Edgar Allan Poe's Complete Poetical Works • Edgar Allan Poe



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