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Improvise   Listen
verb
Improvise  v. t.  (past & past part. improvised; pres. part. improvising)  
1.
To compose, recite, or sing extemporaneously, especially in verse; to extemporize; also, to play upon an instrument, or to act, extemporaneously.
2.
To bring about, arrange, do, or make, immediately or on short notice, without previous preparation and with no known precedent as a guide. "Charles attempted to improvise a peace."
3.
To invent, or provide, offhand, or on the spur of the moment; as, he improvised a hammer out of a stone.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Improvise" Quotes from Famous Books



... at his watch. The afternoon had sped with magical rapidity. He reflected that not only must he dine, but he must think over and rehearse the evening's performance with Prepimpin's part cut out. He dared not improvise before the public. He ...
— The Mountebank • William J. Locke

... he whispered, and they continued to improvise. After some five minutes of hopeless floundering, the prompter got them back on the track again, and the act proceeded, with the audience happily ...
— When Patty Went to College • Jean Webster

... yourself that children are the foremost, the most charming fibsters, and at the same time the sincerest people on earth. And it's remarkable, that both they and the others—that is, both prostitutes and children—lie only to us—men—and grown-ups. Among themselves they don't lie—they only inspiredly improvise. But they lie to us because we ourselves demand this of them, because we clamber into their souls, altogether foreign to us, with our stupid tactics and questionings, because they regard us in secret as great fools and senseless dissemblers. But if you like, I shall right now count off on ...
— Yama (The Pit) • Alexandra Kuprin

... Or, improvise a syringe by sliding a piece of glass rod (to serve as a piston) into the lumen of a slightly shorter length of glass tubing and secure in position by a band of rubber tubing. Sterilise by boiling. Withdraw the rod a few millimetres and deposit the ...
— The Elements of Bacteriological Technique • John William Henry Eyre

... bleeding at so fearful a rate that he found himself compelled to pause long enough to improvise a tourniquet by knotting his handkerchief above the wound, tying it as tightly as he could with the left hand aided by his teeth. He stooped and felt on the ground in the darkness and rain, for a stick, by means of which to tighten it still more; for the bleeding, though considerably ...
— Elsie's Womanhood • Martha Finley

... in the late "eighties," Lady Constance Leslie's two elder daughters, now Mrs. Crawshay and Lady Hope, developed a singular gift. They could improvise blank verse indefinitely, and with their father, Sir John Leslie, they acted little mock Shakespearean dramas in their ordinary clothes, and without any scenery or accessories. Every word was impromptu, and ...
— The Days Before Yesterday • Lord Frederick Hamilton

... piano, and began to improvise something so yearning and melancholy that Anna was not sorry when her uncle came back and mentioned the tune the old ...
— The Long Vacation • Charlotte M. Yonge

... discussion, and querying and exaggerating, agreeing and controverting, till the dishes she was washing would clash and clang excitedly in the general badinage. Loaded with a pyramid of glistening cups and saucers, she would improvise a gallant line of march from the kitchen table to the pantry, heading an imaginary procession, and whistling a fife-tune that would stir your blood. Then she would trippingly return, rippling her rosy fingers ...
— Complete Works of James Whitcomb Riley • James Whitcomb Riley

... wisdom, wizard, witch, wit, unwitting, to wit, outwit, twit, witticism, witness, evidence, providence, invidious, advice, vision, visit, vista, visage, visualize, envisage, invisible, vis-a-vis, visor, revise, supervise, improvise, proviso, provision, view, review, survey, vie, envy, clairvoyance. Perhaps the last six should be disregarded as too exceptional in form to be clearly recognized. And certainly some words, as prudence from providentia, are ...
— The Century Vocabulary Builder • Creever & Bachelor

... you know that he is very far gone indeed on the downward road. If he can possibly coax the change out of you when the waiter puts it down he will do so, for he cannot resist the gleam of the coins, and he will improvise the most courageous lies with an ease which inspires awe. He thanks you for nothing; he hovers between cringing familiarity and patronage; and, when you gladly part with him, he probably solaces himself by muttering curses on your meanness or your insolence. ...
— The Ethics of Drink and Other Social Questions - Joints In Our Social Armour • James Runciman

... among his hearers, a bright violet or an audacious scarlet gown annoyed his taste; if the reflection of a ruby or a diamond vexed his eye, he would choose that instant to improvise a rustic idyl or to intone a ...
— Delsarte System of Oratory • Various

... make Paris the most beautiful capital of the world: I wish that in ten years it should number two millions of inhabitants." "But," replied his Minister of the Interior, "one cannot improvise population; ... as it is, Paris would scarcely support one million"; and he instanced the want of good drinking water. "What are your plans for giving water to Paris?" Chaptal gave two alternatives—artesian wells or the bringing of water from the River Ourcq ...
— The Life of Napoleon I (Volumes, 1 and 2) • John Holland Rose

... a glass of wine added; this making a ragout with mushrooms. The countless receipts one sees in large cook-books for ragouts and fricassees are merely variations in the flavoring of simple stews; and, after a little experimenting, any one can improvise her own, remembering that the strongly-flavored vegetables (as carrots) belong especially to dark meats, and the more delicate ones to light. Fresh pork is sometimes used in a white fricassee, ...
— The Easiest Way in Housekeeping and Cooking - Adapted to Domestic Use or Study in Classes • Helen Campbell

... Should anyone desire to survey life from the altitude of an R.T.O. (Railway Transport, not Really Tantalising Officer, as supposed by some) it might be arranged for him, in the interests of realism, to improvise information as to trains for the ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 156, Jan. 8, 1919 • Various

... then with the philosophers have come the inventors, who between them are the glory of mankind. Unamuno despises inventors, but in this case it is his misfortune. It is far easier for a nation which is destitute of a tradition of culture to improvise an histologist or a physicist, than a philosopher or ...
— Youth and Egolatry • Pio Baroja

... pressed hard and even angrily for an immediate assault on the whole Prussian line. Not they. It was on paper that the assault should be at daybreak to-morrow. Such leaders as they were cannot IMPROVISE. ...
— White Lies • Charles Reade

... scout must know: The fireman's lift. How to drag an insensible man with ropes. How to improvise a stretcher. How to fling a life-line. The position of main arteries. How to stop bleeding from vein or artery, internal or external. How to improvise splints and to diagnose and bind fractured limb. The Schafer ...
— Outdoor Sports and Games • Claude H. Miller

... extraordinary interest in her household arrangements: complimented her on the ingenuity with which she had utilized every inch of her small quarters, asked how her servant managed about afternoons out, learned that one may improvise delicious dinners in a chafing-dish, and uttered thoughtful generalizations on the burden of a ...
— House of Mirth • Edith Wharton

... boxes in which their provisions have been carried. Such a packing box is easily made into a cupboard, and it is not difficult to improvise shelves, hinges, or even a rough ...
— The Boy Mechanic: Volume 1 - 700 Things For Boys To Do • Popular Mechanics

... her ladyship, smiling, "that about describes it. And now I think it is about bed-time. Jim, my dear," she continued, as she took her bed-room candle, "as you have thought fit to improvise a ball, you had better take care that the young ladies have partners by asking three or four of the officers from Rockcliffe, if they will ...
— Belles and Ringers • Hawley Smart

... had that humble dwelling seen so abundant a meal as that which Bibi had managed to improvise for their young guest, and when it was over the honest Canadian produced the promised rifle and accoutrements, and his wife and Amoahmeh did their best to add to them such trifles as might be useful ...
— The King's Warrant - A Story of Old and New France • Alfred H. Engelbach

... to show it to her. What could be more meagre? One could write a hundred better couplets "standing on one leg," as the saying is. He was trying to improvise just one for the occasion, when he became aware that the blue sky over his head was dark with the shades of night, and lighted with stars. A brook rippled near with a soothing monotony. The evening wind sighed through the trees, and wafted the fragrance ...
— The Brownies and Other Tales • Juliana Horatia Ewing

... newspaper, in competition, no correct solution was received, but an ingenious and neatly executed attempt by a man lying in a London infirmary was accompanied by the following note: "Having no compasses here, I was compelled to improvise a pair with the aid of a small penknife, a bit of firewood from a bundle, a piece of tin from a toy engine, a tin tack, and two portions of a hairpin, for points. They are a fairly serviceable pair of compasses, and I shall keep them as ...
— Amusements in Mathematics • Henry Ernest Dudeney

... intimate part in the wars of Charles XII. of Sweden and Peter the Great of Russia. Here Bach's principal rival was a French virtuoso, Marchand, who, an exile from Paris, had delighted the king by the lightness and brilliancy of his execution. They were both to improvise on the same theme. Marchand heard Bach's performance, and signalized his own inferiority by declining to play, and secretly leaving the city of Dresden. Augustus sent Bach a hundred louis d'or, but this splendid douceur never reached him, as it was appropriated ...
— The Great German Composers • George T. Ferris

... France, was once complimented thus: "It is marvelous, Mr. President, how you deliver long improvised speeches about which you have not had time to reflect." His reply was: "You are not paying me a compliment; it is criminal in a statesman to improvise speeches on public affairs. Those speeches I have been fifty years preparing." Daniel Webster's notable reply to Hayne was the result of years of study on the problem of State Rights. Professor Mowry once told the following ...
— Hidden Treasures - Why Some Succeed While Others Fail • Harry A. Lewis

... to place his country at the height of other civilized nations, has known how to improvise, in less than three months, an astronomical commission, and send it to Japan to observe the transit of Venus, will he permit, I ask, the greatest discovery ever made in American archaeology, to remain lost and unknown to the scientific men, to the artists, to the travellers, ...
— The Mayas, the Sources of Their History / Dr. Le Plongeon in Yucatan, His Account of Discoveries • Stephen Salisbury, Jr.

... day and went to Pisa, where I stopped two days. There I made the acquaintance of an Englishman, of whom I bought a travelling carriage. He took me to see Corilla, the celebrated poetess. She received me with great politeness, and was kind enough to improvise on several subjects which I suggested. I was enchanted, not so much with her grace and beauty, as by her wit and perfect elocution. How sweet a language sounds when it is spoken well and the expressions are well chosen. ...
— The Memoires of Casanova, Complete • Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

... yacht Fanny, after an absence of ten days. We had a visit from H.M.S. Scout about this time, and one day sat down sixteen to dinner in the mission-house, some of the officers having come up to spend the day. It is difficult to improvise a dinner in a country where no joints of meat are to be had, unless you kill an ox for the purpose. Sheep there are none. A capon or goose, or a sucking pig, are the only big dishes, and not always to be had. However, we did very well, and our visitors were delighted with Sarawak, ...
— Sketches of Our Life at Sarawak • Harriette McDougall

... which are thought to have been composed about 1000 B.C. In these we find the minstrel everywhere a central figure, an honored guest, ready at call to entertain the company with some ballad of the ancient times, or to improvise a new one appropriate to the case in hand. The heroes themselves were not loth to take part in these exercises. Ulysses, the Odyssey tells us, occasionally took the lyre in his own hand and sang a rhapsody of his own adventures. ...
— A Popular History of the Art of Music - From the Earliest Times Until the Present • W. S. B. Mathews

... coating of glue on the inner side. Though the material for these barrels exists at the South in luxuriant abundance, they are all procured from the North, and the closing of the Southern ports has now entirely cut off the supply; for while the turpentine farmer may improvise coopers, he can by no process give the oak timber the seasoning which is needed to render the barrel spirit-tight. Hence it is certain that a large portion of the last crop of turpentine must have gone to waste. When it is remembered that the one State of North Carolina exports ...
— Continental Monthly, Vol. I. February, 1862, No. II. - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... How to use the stomach bath by three different methods. How to improvise the Turkish Bath in your own home, without apparatus. How to use the wet sheet pack. How ...
— The Royal Road to Health • Chas. A. Tyrrell

... dreamer; somnambulist; rhapsodist &c (fanatic) 504; castle-buildier, fanciful projector. V. imagine, fancy, conceive; idealize, realize; dream, dream of, dream up; give to airy nothing a local habitation and a name [Midsummer Night's Dream]. create, originate, devise, invent, coin, fabricate; improvise, strike out something new. set one's wits to work; strain one's invention, crack one's invention; rack one's brains, ransack one's brains, cudgel one's brains; excogitate^; brainstorm. give play, give the reins, give a loose to the imagination, give fancy; indulge in reverie. visualize, envision, ...
— Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases: Body • Roget

... Goddard, or anybody else you ever listened to. I write merely to disabuse your mind of the common impression which we are all apt to form of these singular geniuses; and very strongly recommend you not only to hear him play, but privately test him (as I have done) in any way you like. Improvise to him as difficult or elaborate or out-of-the-way piece as you please, and he will instantly reproduce it. Now, this is no common gift; and therefore you and I, and all who know any thing of music, should use our best efforts to let the public know, that, so far from there being any thing ...
— Music and Some Highly Musical People • James M. Trotter

... say,—if I have courage? You shall soon see. And you shall see, too, what a lawyer-like defence I am able to improvise. I wager that if I put the case before them, they will give the ...
— Debts of Honor • Maurus Jokai

... be taken back to barracks, even for the time being, while it was equally apparent that no tents were going to be set up for us. Also it was quite possible that we should be exposed to another fearful storm, because the season was advancing. Consequently it was just as well that we should improvise some kind of shelter over our heads. The issue was where to discover the materials, since the authorities were not disposed to extend us any ...
— Sixteen Months in Four German Prisons - Wesel, Sennelager, Klingelputz, Ruhleben • Henry Charles Mahoney

... this story, so I am not going to pretend to repeat the things they said, once they were released from dumb amazement. I should be compelled to improvise and substitute—which would remove much of the flavor. Let bare ...
— Flying U Ranch • B. M. Bower

... aspirations. Like most of the Continental nations, we also have the external forms of the English Constitution, without having its internal essence, which constitutes the real value of its political institutions,—viz., Self-government. It is true that the political wisdom of nations does not improvise itself, nor reveal itself all at once in its fulness, as Minerva of old sprang from the head of Jupiter, clad in complete armour, but that it develops itself during their historic progress amidst vicissitude, and by turning ...
— The Contemporary Review, Volume 36, September 1879 • Various

... found, but tenors are rare birds and we were unable to get one. To use the dancer he had engaged du Locle had Gallet and Guiraud improvise a short act, Le Kobold, which met with great success. The dancer was exquisite. Then du Locle lost interest in Le Timbre d'Argent and then came the ...
— Musical Memories • Camille Saint-Saens

... use of, and a 1-pounder gun, which the enemy had posted but 100 yards off, was silenced after the ninth round. What a curious instance of our Western ways this incident affords; the Chinese firing upon our own people with the latest artillery made by ourselves, while they are left to improvise a gun from a relic found in an old ...
— Our Sailors - Gallant Deeds of the British Navy during Victoria's Reign • W.H.G. Kingston

... good holes in parts of the trench, where you probably go down 2,000 feet if you step off the footboards, and the rest of the stuff we might have contrived to improvise. But for the moment we had somehow run clean out ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 150, March 15, 1916 • Various

... it was utterly useless to think of scudding before the gale; our only hope of living through what was impending depended upon our ability to keep the boat riding bows-on to the sea, and to do this it became necessary for us to improvise a sea anchor again. This was easily done by lashing together six of our eight oars in a bundle, three of the blades at one end and three at the other, with the boat anchor lashed amidships to sink the oars somewhat in the water and give them a grip of it. A span, made by ...
— A Pirate of the Caribbees • Harry Collingwood

... and whose critical and rhetorical labours marked an epoch in the history of scholarship, was by temperament a poet, and a poet of the people. Nothing was easier for him than to throw aside his professor's mantle, and to improvise 'Ballate' for the girls to sing as they danced their 'Carola' upon the Piazza di Santa Trinita in summer evenings. The peculiarity of this lyric is that it starts with a couplet, which also serves as refrain, supplying the rhyme to each successive stanza. The stanza ...
— Sketches and Studies in Italy and Greece, Second Series • John Addington Symonds

... he called "the war of America the Unready." His first message to Congress was a long and exhaustive paper, dealing with many matters of importance. But almost one-fifth of it was devoted to the army and the navy. "It is not possible," he said, "to improvise a navy after war breaks out. The ships must be built and the men trained long in advance." He urged that Congress forthwith provide for several additional battleships and heavy armored cruisers, ...
— Theodore Roosevelt and His Times - A Chronicle of the Progressive Movement; Volume 47 in The - Chronicles Of America Series • Harold Howland

... battlefield. Against these natural limits to mobility are the compensating advantages of the power of infantry to move into and over almost any ground by day or by night, and the rapidity with which trained infantrymen can find or improvise cover. ...
— Lectures on Land Warfare; A tactical Manual for the Use of Infantry Officers • Anonymous

... of comparative leisure before the enemy trenches. But for mechanical transport there is no peace, save such as comes when back axles break, and the big land ship is dragged into the bush to be repaired. Hot and sweating men striving to renew some part or improvise, by bullock hide "reims," a temporary road repair that will bring them limping back to the advance base. Here the company workshop waits to repair these derelicts of the road. Burning with malaria, when the hot sun draws the lurking fever from their bones, tortured with dysentery, they've ...
— Sketches of the East Africa Campaign • Robert Valentine Dolbey

... a desire to see Toni. Uncle Caragol would improvise something to eat while the captain was telling his mate all about his adventure at the bar. Besides, it seemed to him a fitting finale to his escapade to offer to any enemies that might be following him a favorable occasion for attacking ...
— Mare Nostrum (Our Sea) - A Novel • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... French steam-ship for Bordeaux, to make the "grand tour" of Europe. His violin made him the most popular person on the ship. He had a facile talent and a good memory, which enabled him to play almost any kind of music; and when he could not remember he could improvise. The second officer, a short, stout man, with a pointed black beard, and a secret passion for the fine arts, conceived a great fancy for the young American. When they reached Bordeaux he took Richard to his favourite theatre and introduced him to ...
— The Unknown Quantity - A Book of Romance and Some Half-Told Tales • Henry van Dyke

... Street, Edinburgh (now the Northern Club), listening to the performance of a passing piper. There was another episode which he recalled with humorous satisfaction. Fired by his father's tales of the jungle, Yule (then about six years old) proceeded to improvise an elephant pit in the back garden, only too successfully, for soon, with mingled terror and delight, he saw his uncle John[9] fall headlong into the snare. He lost his mother before he was eight, and almost his only remembrance ...
— The Travels of Marco Polo Volume 1 • Marco Polo and Rustichello of Pisa

... punsters, the jesters, preferred to drink their port out of tumblers. After dinner Hook gave one of his songs which satirized successively, and successfully, each person present. He was then challenged to improvise on any given subject, and by way of one as far distant from poetry as could be, cocoa-nut oil was fixed upon. Theodore accepted the challenge; and after a moment's consideration began his lay with a description of the Mauritius, which he knew so well, the negroes dancing round the cocoa-nut ...
— The Wits and Beaux of Society - Volume 2 • Grace & Philip Wharton

... satisfaction, he offers you a "glass of wine," (in a tin cup). You take the bottle also, and pass it around. He makes absurd speeches at which he laughs with boisterous glee, and at which you laugh too, and all laugh. He sings absurd medleys for which you improvise absurd choruses which make things go along as pleasantly as possible. Meanwhile the bottle is returned empty. He takes it, insists upon re-filling your "glass" from it, and tips it up over your cup. Then with a comical leer at you at the idea of attempting to pour wine from an empty ...
— Our campaign around Gettysburg • John Lockwood

... persevere. Nor did the taste for these trifles long endure. A good ballade is almost as rare as a good sonnet, but a middling ballade is almost as easily written as the majority of sonnets. Either form readily becomes mechanical, cheap and facile. I have heard Mr. George Meredith improvise a sonnet, a Petrarchian sonnet, obedient to the rules, without pen and paper. He spoke 'and the numbers came'; he sonneted as easily as a living poet, in his Eton days, improvised Latin elegiacs and ...
— Ballads in Blue China and Verses and Translations • Andrew Lang

... itself, does not contain above seventy stock verses, but these perennial lines are a nucleus, round which the men improvise the topics of the day, giving, I know not for what reason, the preference to such as ...
— Christie Johnstone • Charles Reade

... fingers; so eloquent of speech that those who listened to his words were fain to answer "Yes" or "No" as he thought fit. This child of grace and persuasion was a wonderful musician. The Duke of Milan sent for him to play upon his lute and improvise Italian canzoni. The lute he carried was of silver, fashioned like a horse's head, and tuned according to acoustic laws discovered by himself. Of the songs he sang to its accompaniment none have been preserved. Only one sonnet remains to show of what sort was the poetry of Lionardo, prized so ...
— Renaissance in Italy Vol. 3 - The Fine Arts • John Addington Symonds

... with cut tissue-paper, or sketch his likeness, or crust him over with alum crystals, or stick him over with little rosettes of red and white wafers; but none of these being applicable to his present case, she sits gazing in resigned imbecility, till finally she desperately resolves to improvise him some gruel, and, after a laborious turn in the kitchen,—after burning her dress and blacking her fingers,—succeeds only in bringing him ...
— Household Papers and Stories • Harriet Beecher Stowe

... exclusively critical. M. Blanc, therefore, has given us the spectacle of a vivid imagination ready to confront an impossibility; he has believed in the divination of genius; but he must have perceived that science does not improvise itself, and that, be one's name Adolphe Boyer, Louis Blanc, or J. J. Rousseau, provided there is nothing in experience, there is nothing in ...
— The Philosophy of Misery • Joseph-Pierre Proudhon

... Trevi, listening to a man singing to a guitar—not songs like those which I had so often heard, but about things around him, of what we saw and heard, and we ourselves were in the song. My mother told me he was an improvisatore; and Federigo, our artist lodger, told me I should also improvise, for I was really a poet. And I tried it forthwith—singing about the foodshop over the way, with its attractively set out window and the haggling customers. I gained much applause; and from this time forth I turned ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol. I • Various

... reached a climax in the middle of the seventeenth century. Then it declined for lack of competent actors. It was the realism of everyday life. It tended always back again to the mountebanks, jugglers, rope dancers, etc.[2141] The lazzi were "business" which gave the actors time to improvise. In the sixteenth century Italian comedians began to play at Paris in Italian. The Italian actresses undressed on the stage much and often, so that "Italian comedy" came to mean vulgar and licentious comedy. The Parlement ...
— Folkways - A Study of the Sociological Importance of Usages, Manners, Customs, Mores, and Morals • William Graham Sumner

... which can make no allowance for change of circumstances, and we think we have a tolerably clear notion of the causes of General McClellan's disasters. He can compose a good campaign beforehand, but he cannot improvise one out of the events of the moment, as is the wont of great generals. Occasion seldom offers her forelock twice to the grasp of the same man, and yet General McClellan, by the admission of the Rebels themselves, had Richmond at his mercy ...
— The Writings of James Russell Lowell in Prose and Poetry, Volume V - Political Essays • James Russell Lowell

... palace. There was already disorganization everywhere. The planetary government was in process of destroying all the machinery by which Kandar had been governed, as if to make the Mekinese improvise a government anew. They would make many blunders, of course, which would be resented by their new subjects. There would be much fumbling, which would keep the victims of their conquest from regarding ...
— Talents, Incorporated • William Fitzgerald Jenkins

... problem which the revolutionists have and will eternally have to resolve. It is the rock of Sisyphus that will always fall back upon them. To exist a single instant, they are and always will be by fatality reduced to improvise a despotism without other reason of existence than necessity, and which, consequently, is violent and blind as Necessity. We escape from the harmonious monarchy of Reason, only to fall under the ...
— Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry • Albert Pike

... everything yet, since in that case I shall probably have lost the best part of it." Maggie went, she went—she felt herself going; she reminded herself of an actress who had been studying a part and rehearsing it, but who suddenly, on the stage, before the footlights, had begun to improvise, to speak lines not in the text. It was this very sense of the stage and the footlights that kept her up, made her rise higher: just as it was the sense of action that logically involved some platform—action ...
— The Golden Bowl • Henry James

... came the desperate attempt of a party of young clubmen from New York, who, inspired by patriotic and adventurous imaginations, slipped off in half a dozen motor-cars to Beacon Hill, and set to work with remarkable vigour to improvise a fort about the Doan swivel gun that had been placed there. They found it still in the hands of the disgusted gunners, who had been ordered to cease fire at the capitulation, and it was easy to infect these men with their own spirit. They declared ...
— The War in the Air • Herbert George Wells

... the clerk of the weather will be polite enough to give moon and stars and soft southern breezes. Then cover the surface of the roof with rugs or else stretch a matting over the tin. Improvise couches upon boxes covered with rugs, or bring up a couple of cots ...
— Social Life - or, The Manners and Customs of Polite Society • Maud C. Cooke

... modern society, but outlawed by its ideals. For the civilian population there exists no ideal code of conduct in war, such as the soldier still possesses and chivalry once prescribed. The civilians are without standards, except those that the best of them manage to improvise. The only standards they possess make war an accursed thing. Yet though the war may be a necessary one, no moral training has prepared them for it. Only their higher selves have a code and patterns, and when ...
— Public Opinion • Walter Lippmann

... successfully lowered, it only knocked lumps off the island, and finally it had to be let go, as the weavers could not pull it back. It splashed into the water, and was at once whirled out of sight. Some of the party on the bank began hastily to improvise a rope of cravats and the tags of the ropes still left, but the ...
— The Little Minister • J.M. Barrie

... pity!" After a moment he murmured, "I improvise a good deal." The instrument, perhaps for the first time in its life, began to vibrate and ring to something besides the claptrap music of the day. Once he had found a means of occupying himself, Pope surrendered to his impulse and in ...
— The Auction Block • Rex Beach

... 'Amphitrite's' a dead duck." The "Lachesis" quivered as the port turrets belched flame. "That leaves nineteen torpedoes," he said. "In Cth we're safe enough but we're helpless without a probe. Yet we can only get into attack position from Cth. That leaves us only one thing to do—improvise a probe." ...
— A Question of Courage • Jesse Franklin Bone

... modestly. "But if I, who never before strung two rhymes together, can improvise so readily in the style of the present day, why should not a practical rhymester like yourself dash off at a sitting a volume or so in the same style; disguising completely the verbal elegances borrowed, adding ...
— Kenelm Chillingly, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... played the organ every morning at the six o'clock mass in the Minorite church. For some years before and during this period he was busy trying his hand at musical composition, but nothing which he composed during his youth amounts to much. He could improvise in a marvelous manner and he attracted much attention by the exercise of this talent, becoming famous in this connection long before he was ...
— Beethoven • George Alexander Fischer

... now. But the command of the sea is, after all, like military predominance on land, to be insured only by superiority of equipment in the hands of a certain type of man, a type of man that it becomes more and more impossible to improvise, that a country must live for through many years, and that no country on earth at present can be said to be doing its ...
— Anticipations - Of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress upon - Human life and Thought • Herbert George Wells

... Madonna to be a hand's breadth high, of live ivory, and imagine some rosy flecks here and there on her. Imagine her robed in the garments that Godiva wore, that is, nothing but her hair of flowing sunbeams, and so on, and so on." Frederick began to improvise poetry. ...
— Atlantis • Gerhart Hauptmann

... like rattling thunder, now like the gentle breathings of the flute, rolled this sweet and picturesque language of Italy from her lips—like music sounded those full, artistic rhymes, of which but few of the hearers had the least suspicion that they came from Tasso. To improvise in the Italian language is an easy and a grateful task! What wonder, then, that Corilla acquitted herself so charmingly? The audience paid no attention to the thoughts expressed; they asked not after the quintessence; they were satisfied ...
— The Daughter of an Empress • Louise Muhlbach

... music-lovers, I have had no quarrel. Because, I think, you let me alone. When you feel in the mood, when the moon is on the river, and the warm breeze gently sways the curtains by the open window, you will sit down and improvise, and I will lie in my deep chair, and smoke and dream. You cease, and say "Do you like it?" and I ...
— An Ocean Tramp • William McFee

... scenes before my eyes and such sounds in my ears, as I lie lazily in the boat, is mingled the song of my gondolier who sings to the music of his oars. It is not quite as romantic as his brother of the Lido might improvise, but my Yankee "Giuseppe" has the advantage of earnestness and energy, and gives a graphic description of the terrors of the past week and of noble deeds of self-sacrifice and devotion, occasionally pointing out a balcony from which some California ...
— Selected Stories • Bret Harte

... fights and riots. When a man was at the end of his arguments, he knocked down his opponent. The authorities had a good deal of trouble to keep order. Augustin, who was an intrepid logician, must have longed to take his share in these rows. But one cannot exactly improvise a faith between to-day and to-morrow. While he awaited the enlightenment of the truth, he studied the ...
— Saint Augustin • Louis Bertrand

... knots securely, yet so as to cause him the least suffering, and then proceeded to improvise a gag. At this point his calmness disappeared, and for a short time he looked both ...
— My Sword's My Fortune - A Story of Old France • Herbert Hayens

... of the Sonata-Form is the second part which is known as the Development Section; for, as we shall soon explain, the structure as a whole is tripartite. In this portion of the movement the composer has an opportunity to improvise, as it were, with his material, using one theme or both as already presented. Dry and labored development sections may, of course, be found in certain Sonatas and Symphonies, but in the great works of ...
— Music: An Art and a Language • Walter Raymond Spalding

... "in her chief happiness, her hour of darkness and solitude and music"—of a wild Gaelic lament, with its insistent falling cadences. A story concerning his poetic precocity has been circulated, but is not worth repeating. Most children love jingling rhymes, and one need not be a born genius to improvise a rhyming ...
— Life of Robert Browning • William Sharp

... independent. He was good looking, possessed an irresistible charm of manner, and was the hero of more amorous successes than he could well remember. His accomplishments were extraordinary for their number and variety. He had a beautiful untrained tenor voice; he could improvise, with a startling brilliance, rapidly and loudly, on the piano. He was a good amateur medium and telepathist, and had a considerable first-hand knowledge of the next world. He could write rhymed verses with an extraordinary rapidity. For painting symbolical pictures he had a dashing ...
— Crome Yellow • Aldous Huxley

... wish you to talk. I want to improvise to-night. The murmur of your conversation will ...
— Flames • Robert Smythe Hichens

... that the Kazi of Kazis passed by the smith's house and heard him improvise these lines; so he sent for him and as soon as he saw him said to him, "O blacksmith, who is she on whom thou callest so instantly and eloquently and with whose love thy heart is full filled?" The smith sprang to his feet and kissing the Judge's hand, answered, ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 8 • Richard F. Burton

... have immortal youth without the troublesome necessity of periodically dying and rising again; on that stage of the world where we mortals, untrained amateurs, improvise the drama of our lives, you have always been behind the scenes, inspiring and stage-managing more history and more poetry than has ever been written; without you Clio would never have built herself a treasure-house or, if she had made one, her sisters would have ...
— Castellinaria - and Other Sicilian Diversions • Henry Festing Jones

... and wagon-trains should always have the right of way, and the troops should improvise roads to one side, unless forced to use a bridge in common, and all trains should have escorts to protect them, and to assist them in bad places. To this end there is nothing like actual experience, only, unless the officers in command ...
— The Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman, Complete • William T. Sherman

... of suicides who know they have botched up life for good. The Fury of cocksure men who realize they have been outsmarted by fate, the enemy, and themselves, and know that they will never be able to improvise a defense when arraigned before the high court of history—and whose unadmitted hope is that there will be no high court of history left to arraign them. More cobalt bombs were dropped during the Fury than in all the ...
— The Moon is Green • Fritz Reuter Leiber

... comment. The waiter poured out a glass and retired. The experimenter had tasted elderberry once, but he knew no more of wine. The draught had relish fiery new, and it seemed to warm him everywhere at once. His mind grew exquisitely bright, and his thoughts were astonishingly vivid. He began to improvise verses, and they came with an ease which was quite startling. They seemed to unroll themselves before him, to reveal themselves line by line as if they had been in existence long ago, and some spell had suddenly ...
— Despair's Last Journey • David Christie Murray

... boisterous refrain after each stanza, and supplement the last with a mock-solemn "Requiescat in pace, Amen." The phrase suggests new merriment to Brander, who calls for a fugue on the "Amen," and the roisterers improvise one on the theme of the rat song, which calls out hearty commendation from Mephistopheles, and a reward in the shape of the song of the flea—a delightful piece of grotesquerie with its accompaniment suggestive of the skipping of ...
— A Book of Operas - Their Histories, Their Plots, and Their Music • Henry Edward Krehbiel

... by the fact that such consciousness had never ceased to exist. This was no new nation struggling for its birth, but an Old nation, as old as any of those who had assumed the responsibility of planning her future. The Belgian statesmen of 1830 had nothing to improvise. They had merely to pick up the threads broken through the vicissitudes of European struggle. Their new Constitution was based on the old Joyous Entry of Brabant, which Joseph II had vainly attempted to abolish, and whose memory forty years of French and Dutch centralization ...
— Belgium - From the Roman Invasion to the Present Day • Emile Cammaerts

... and below the city, it may have seemed to him that it would delay our progress; but as a large number of empty coal barges were lying at the town, it took our company of mechanics, under Captain Lane of the Eleventh Ohio, but a little while to improvise a good floating bridge, and part of the command passed through the town and camped beyond it. [Footnote: Official Records, vol. li. pt. i. p. 425.] One day was now given to the establishment of a depot of supplies at Charleston and to the organization ...
— Military Reminiscences of the Civil War V1 • Jacob Dolson Cox

... have been in the case of European troops, and the Nawab and his soldiers alike would have scouted the idea of obtaining supplies otherwise than from the country traversed, but weapons for the men and transport for the guns, and ammunition for both, were necessaries difficult to improvise on the spur of the moment. The Habshiabadis took the field at last, in a state that would have made a European commander tear his hair, and Gerrard hustled them on, blooding them by a smart little engagement with a force sent by Sher Singh's ...
— The Path to Honour • Sydney C. Grier

... balks and cheeses, constituting a load for one wagon. By uniting two such sections together, we could make a bridge of eighteen hundred feet, enough for any river we had to traverse; but habitually the leading brigade would, out of the abundant timber, improvise a bridge before the pontoon-train could come up, unless in the cases of rivers of considerable magnitude, such as the Ocmulgee, ...
— Memoirs of Three Civil War Generals, Complete • U. S. Grant, W. T. Sherman, P. H. Sheridan

... as long as we did would have been comparatively easy if our population could have been left at work to turn out the stuff and services, the provision of which are implied by financing; but for us to have been able to do it and at the same time to improvise an army which is now consistently and regularly beating the Germans is an achievement which will inevitably raise the world's opinion of our economic strength, on which financial ...
— War-Time Financial Problems • Hartley Withers

... Mihul said. "They just might! You're fast. You've been taught to improvise. And there's something eating you. You're edgy ...
— Legacy • James H Schmitz

... the winter. Mr. Welland's sensitive domesticity shrank from the discomforts of the slovenly southern hotel, and at immense expense, and in face of almost insuperable difficulties, Mrs. Welland was obliged, year after year, to improvise an establishment partly made up of discontented New York servants and partly drawn from the local ...
— The Age of Innocence • Edith Wharton

... extraordinary had taken place: the German's face glowed with a kind of warmth and contentment, and was so smiling and radiant that I hardly recognised it. I could scarcely believe that he had been able to improvise this face, which was sensitive and trustful, out of the ...
— The New Book Of Martyrs • Georges Duhamel

... waterways of the South were beginning to fall under the command of the Northern flotillas. Such a success needed, of course, the adoption of a decided policy from the outset; it needed great administrative ability to improvise a navy where hardly any existed, and where the conditions of its employment were in many respects novel; and it needed resourceful watching to meet the surprises of fresh naval invention by which the South, poor as were its possibilities for ship-building, ...
— Abraham Lincoln • Lord Charnwood

... if we undertake the job ourselves, on the tools made for us by skilled labour; and third, on the shops to supply us with the materials we may need. Not once in a lifetime are we thrown entirely on our own resources. Then we improvise ...
— The Forest • Stewart Edward White

... at the king with astonishment. "I have not, sire," replied he; "but I will improvise one. I am too well acquainted with affairs to feel any embarrassment. I have only one question to ask; ...
— The Vicomte de Bragelonne - Or Ten Years Later being the completion of "The Three - Musketeers" And "Twenty Years After" • Alexandre Dumas

... every regard to comfort as well as to appearance. In the old days it was Jan's room, and Lionel scarcely remembered to have been inside it since; but it looked very superior now to what it used to look then. Lady Verner had never troubled herself to improvise superfluous decorations for Jan. Lionel's chief attention was riveted on the bed, an Arabian, handsomely carved, mahogany bed, with white muslin hangings, lined with pink, matching with the window-curtains. The hangings were new; but ...
— Verner's Pride • Mrs. Henry Wood

... I could improvise with the means at hand, I occupied seven days—the first three of which were darkened by one of the most furious storms I ever saw. The vapor which supplied me with warmth saturated my clothing with its condensations. I was enveloped in a perpetual steam-bath. At first this was ...
— Thirty-Seven Days of Peril - from Scribner's Monthly Vol III Nov. 1871 • Truman Everts

... inkstones in the house, the fresh ink was prepared in these. Each member of the family then wrote poems. The adults composed verses, according to their ability, in praise of the Star-deities; and the children either wrote dictation or tried to improvise. Little folk too young to use the writing-brush without help had their small hands guided, by parent or elder sister or elder brother, so as to shape on a tanzaku the character of some single word or phrase relating to the festival,—such as "Amanogawa," or "Tanabata," or "Kasasagi no Hashi" ...
— The Romance of the Milky Way - And Other Studies & Stories • Lafcadio Hearn

... our bed-room window, at midnight, we would gaze on the silvery moon in the heavens, listening to the rippling notes of the water-spirits that to our fancy inhabited the sparkling stream that ran near the house. How beautifully would she improvise at times—for improvisations in truth were they, while she was quite unconscious of her gift. She never wrote a line of poetry, but when in such moods, every word she uttered was true, pure poetry. She had a most ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol. XXXII No. 2. February 1848 • Various

... General Bourcier, knew much more about remounts and organisation than he did about war, in which he had rarely been involved. He did his utmost to fulfil the difficult task which the Emperor had given him; but as he could not improvise horses or equipment, and as he would not send out detachments until they were fully organised, departures were not very frequent. I grumbled, but no colonel could return to his unit without the permission of the Emperor, who to conserve his resources, had forbidden the employment ...
— The Memoirs of General the Baron de Marbot, Translated by - Oliver C. Colt • Baron de Marbot

... the meeting. Two important ends are at once gained—the time of a speech is saved, and the members are in possession beforehand of the precise arguments to be used. The debate is in this way advanced an important step without any speaking; opponents can prepare for, instead of having to improvise their reply, and every one is at the outset a good way towards a ...
— Practical Essays • Alexander Bain

... at varying distances are the batteries. The gunners affect orchards and copses as affording good cover for their guns, and if none are to be found they improvise them. Hop-poles trailed with hops or cut saplings will do very well. Usually there is a delectable garden, which is the peculiar pride of the men. Turf emplacements are constructed for the six guns, and turfed dug-outs house the telephone-operator and the gunners. The battery ...
— Leaves from a Field Note-Book • J. H. Morgan

... threatened to be his undoing. For the young enthusiast was no sooner seated at the organ to conduct the church music than he forgot that the choir and congregation were depending on him and would begin to improvise at such length that the singing had to stop altogether, while the people listened in mute admiration. Of course there were many disputes between the new organist and the elders of the church, but they overlooked his ...
— The World's Great Men of Music - Story-Lives of Master Musicians • Harriette Brower

... besides their insufficiency, were placed too far from the palace to be occupied by even a portion of the Emperor's service. Consequently there was great embarrassment in the city, and much difficulty was experienced in quartering the Emperor's horses; since to improvise stables in a few days, almost in a moment, was impossible, and to build carriage-houses in the midst of courts would have had a ludicrous effect. But fortunately this difficult situation was ended by one of the quartermasters ...
— The Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte • Bourrienne, Constant, and Stewarton

... three or four refused, some of the others were lukewarm, and all were slow. Even Massachusetts, usually the foremost, failed to get all her men into the field till the season was nearly ended. Having no military establishment, the colonies were forced to improvise a new army for every campaign. Each of them watched its neighbors, or, jealous lest it should do more than its just share, waited for them to begin. Each popular assembly acted under the eye of a frugal constituency, who, having ...
— Montcalm and Wolfe • Francis Parkman

... but he had trained himself to improvise, singing out of his heart for the joy of the music. He told of the land of Elis, beloved of Jupiter, in which they were gathered that day, of the great bare mountain slopes, of the swift shadows of the clouds, of the winding blue river, of the keen air of the uplands, of the chill of ...
— The Last Galley Impressions and Tales - Impressions and Tales • Arthur Conan Doyle

... many children have not commenced to learn their ABC's; he was a virtuoso before the time when most boys can be trusted with a blunt knife. Kissed and fondled by great beauties, from the age of five, it is small wonder that Mozart began to improvise upon the oldest theme in the world precociously. His first recorded love affair is found in his letters at the age of thirteen. He loved with the same radiant enthusiasm that he gave to his music, and while some of his flirtations were of the utmost frivolity, ...
— The Love Affairs of Great Musicians, Volume 2 • Rupert Hughes

... and every one is taking the situation very philosophically. Stevens is in charge of the scientific staff and is now the senior officer ashore. Joyce is in charge of the equipment and has undertaken to improvise clothes out of what canvas can be found here. Wild is working with Joyce. He is a cheerful, willing soul. Nothing ever worries or upsets him, and he is ever singing or making some joke or performing some amusing prank. Richards has taken over the keeping ...
— South! • Sir Ernest Shackleton

... in daydreams, can be detected also in many sleep dreams. There are dreams in {503} which we do big things—tell excruciatingly funny jokes, which turn out when recalled next day to be utterly flat; or improvise the most beautiful music, which we never can recall with any precision, but which probably amounted to nothing; or play the best sort of baseball. The gliding or flying dream, which many people have had, reminds one of the numerous toys and sports in which ...
— Psychology - A Study Of Mental Life • Robert S. Woodworth

... convey to the water, where I floated them, lashing them together with vines. Just before sunset my raft was complete and freighted with my outer clothing, boots and pistol. Having shipped the last article, I returned into the brake, seeking something from which to improvise a paddle. While peering about I heard a sharp metallic click—the cocking of a ...
— The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce • Ambrose Bierce

... description of the state of things in the Confederate internment camp at Andersonville during the American Civil War, which, after all, did not happen so very long ago. "Over 30,000 prisoners were cooped up in a narrow space; there was no shelter from the sun or cold but what the men could improvise for themselves; every possible disease was rampant; the prisoners were largely naked; the dead were pitched into a ditch and covered with quicklime; the smell of the dreadful stockade extended for two miles.... The state of affairs was known, or might have been known, at Richmond, for Colonel ...
— The Better Germany in War Time - Being some Facts towards Fellowship • Harold Picton

... enjoyed their company. It amused Guy to see some of them actually looking serious, as they led some fair creature on their arm through the moving circle of the dance; or bent suspiciously over the chair of some golden-haired beauty on the deck. Guy tried to improvise a consistent sequel to these little love-signs, but it grew ridiculous naturally enough, he gathered all these interesting little circumstances within the limits of "a plain gold ring," but these are "deuced" narrow limits for two ...
— Honor Edgeworth • Vera

... one must be transported into another, put himself in the place of another, take his mask and play his part. Hence the liveliest of diversions is the comedy in which one is an actor. It is that of children who, as authors, actors and audience, improvise and perform small scenes. It is that of a people whose political regime excludes exacting manly tasks (soucis virile) and who sport with life just like children. At Venice, in the eighteenth century, the carnival ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 1 (of 6) - The Ancient Regime • Hippolyte A. Taine

... for this purpose made a vigorous effort to undo, as it were, the whole work of his reign, to suspend the operation of his whole political system. The Emperor and conqueror, who had been warring all his lifetime, had attempted, as the last act of his reign, to improvise a peace. But it was not so easy to arrange a pacification of Europe as dramatically as he desired, in order that he might gather his robes about him, and allow the curtain to fall upon his eventful history in a grand hush of decorum and quiet. ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... opine that it is all your fault, dearest, and that I have behaved admirably. Between you I shall stand exonerated. And now, since it is too cold for walking, since it is late, since it is far to Lyvern and farther to London, I must improvise some accommodation ...
— An Unsocial Socialist • George Bernard Shaw

... the spot and with a catching and clamorous refrain. If these verses win favor, says Lyngbye, they are repeated from year to year, with slight additions or corrections, and become a permanent ballad. Bearing in mind the extraordinary readiness to improvise shown even in these days by peasants in every part of Europe, we thus gain some definite notion about the spontaneous and communal elements which went to the making of the best type of primitive verse; for these Faroe islanders were ...
— Library Of The World's Best Literature, Ancient And Modern, Vol 3 • Various

... old, his father, taking with him his family, emigrated to the United States, and became a planter in Virginia. The elder Mr. Hughes and his children seem to have inherited the Welsh musical gift, for they were all accomplished musicians. While a mere child, David could improvise tunes in a remarkable manner, and when he grew up this talent attracted the notice of Herr Hast, an eminent German pianist in America, who procured for him the professorship of music in the College of Bardstown, Kentucky. Mr. Hughes entered ...
— Heroes of the Telegraph • J. Munro

... which has delayed me overlong, was but a moment in that day of exercise and agitation. To fit out a schooner for sea, and improvise a marriage between dawn and dusk, involves heroic effort. All day Jim and I ran, and tramped, and laughed, and came near crying, and fell in sudden anxious consultations, and were sped (with a prepared sarcasm on our lips) to some fallacious milliner, and made dashes to the schooner and John ...
— The Wrecker • Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne

... claim being put forward that the compositions being published under his name had really been written for him by his father, since it was evident from the face of them that no boy of his age could have composed so well. To counteract these charges poems were brought to him upon which he had to improvise and fit the music to the words in the presence of the audience. In 1769 he went to Italy, where, being now thirteen years of age and correspondingly mature as compared with his early appearances, he made a most astonishing ...
— The Masters and their Music - A series of illustrative programs with biographical, - esthetical, and critical annotations • W. S. B. Mathews

... servants run away and leave their mistress when she is expecting guests, it is well to be able to improvise a dish from such materials as may be at hand. Nothing is better than a cod mayonnaise. A cod boiled in the morning is a friend in the afternoon. When it is cold remove the skin and bones. For sauce put some ...
— Manners and Social Usages • Mrs. John M. E. W. Sherwood

... to his interrogations with a distraught air. He could come back again; just now they were taken up with the announcement that another hospital train was on the way. The great battle was still going on near Paris. They had to improvise lodgings for the new consignment of mutilated humanity. In order to pass away the time until his return, Desnoyers went back to the garden near the grotto. He was planning to return to Pau that night; there was ...
— The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... when she had to sing from herself. To Brandon this seemed the most amazing of her powers. In Italy the power of improvisation is not uncommon, and Englishmen generally imagine that this is on account of some peculiar quality of the Italian language. This is not the case. One can improvise in any language; and Brandon found that Beatrice could ...
— Cord and Creese • James de Mille

... 'Twas the king: and each his breath drew in Till you might have heard a falling pin. Some little excuse, at first, he made, While over the lute his fingers strayed:— "You know my way,—as the fancies come, I improvise."—There was ink on his thumb. That morning, alone, good hours he spent In writing despatches ...
— Atlantic Monthly Vol. 6, No. 33, July, 1860 • Various

... his wife at the age of fifty. But he had an only child, a girl who was called "Little Golden Daughter." She had a face of rare beauty and was the jewel of his love. She had been versed in the lore of books from her youth up, and could write, improvise poems and compose essays. She was also experienced in needlework, a skilled dancer and singer, and could play the flute and zither. The old beggar-king above all else wanted her to have a scholar for a husband. Yet because he was a beggar-king the ...
— The Chinese Fairy Book • Various

... long to improvise bandages from some of her own garments, which she tore into strips, and bound up the wound so that it stopped bleeding ...
— Ted Strong in Montana - With Lariat and Spur • Edward C. Taylor

... mean about the ammunition, but about the guns. We'll hope for the ammunition. You fishermen get to work to improvise tackle out of anything you can get hold of. Will ...
— The Runaway Skyscraper • Murray Leinster

... never been arranged for the harp," said Aurelia. "But if Mrs. Easely can remember some of the lines, and will be good enough to repeat them, I will improvise ...
— Hermione and Her Little Group of Serious Thinkers • Don Marquis

... must improvise, using it as a theme. When all is said and done, you know far more than Giotto about Saint Peter. Holy blue! if you bring that back to Paris as a veritable likeness of the Chief Apostle you will be placed on the Index Expurgatorius. Moreover, it ...
— A Son of the Immortals • Louis Tracy

... perceive the difference between good and bad. She used to make Jean-Christophe play through strange programmes, in which dull rhapsodies stood side by side with masterpieces. But her greatest pleasure was to make him improvise, and she used to provide ...
— Jean-Christophe, Vol. I • Romain Rolland

... plebeos,[30] a gravibus juramentis, tum blande consulendo, tum dure corripiendo, compescuit. Quoniam abhominabilis erat eis[31] quisque jurans. Audiens autem rex quendam magnum dominum, sibi camerarium, ex abrupto et improvise graviter jurare, graviter increpavit eum, dicens: Prohdolor! vos dominus familiae multae dum juramenta sic editis contra Dei mandatum, pessimum exhibitis[32] exemplum servis et subditis vestris. ipsos ...
— Henry the Sixth - A Reprint of John Blacman's Memoir with Translation and Notes • John Blacman

... fortune was various. Once, though I felt it to be a kind of imposture, I got a speech by heart, and doubtless it might have been a very pretty one, only I forgot every syllable at the moment of need, and had to improvise another as well as I could. I found it a better method to prearrange a few points in my mind, and trust to the spur of the occasion, and the kind aid of Providence, for enabling me to bring them to bear. The presence of any considerable proportion ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 12, August, 1863, No. 70 - A Magazine of Literature, Art, and Politics • Various

... it was decided that the only way was for one of our party to be lowered over and let down by the rest. As I was much the lightest one, and as the supply of material that we had with us out of which to improvise a rope was very limited, I was the one selected to go down and put the snares in position. It was decided that we would not disturb the eaglets to-day, but would leave them alone for the present, for fear ...
— Winter Adventures of Three Boys • Egerton R. Young

... from Roulers, which is about twelve miles distant from Ypres, on December 8, 1914, from the vicinity of Ypres, while their own forces had been concentrated upon Dixmude, twelve miles to the north. This town had suffered severely before, but the allied forces using what shelter they could improvise, were doing considerable damage from this point. Therefore the Germans ...
— The Story of the Great War, Volume III (of 12) - The War Begins, Invasion of Belgium, Battle of the Marne • Francis J. Reynolds, Allen L. Churchill, and Francis Trevelyan

... secession?— They took four years to do it in, although they had an army and navy provided to their hand, and were receiving recruits in hundreds from the masses of incoming emigrants, up to the very end of the struggle; while, the Southerners had to improvise everything, and their forces dwindled down day ...
— She and I, Volume 2 - A Love Story. A Life History. • John Conroy Hutcheson

... entreaties and finally was dragged almost by force to the pianoforte by the ladies. Angrily he tears the second violin part of one of the Pleyel quartets from the music-stand where it still lay open, throws it upon the rack of the pianoforte, and begins to improvise. We had never heard him extemporize more brilliantly, with more originality or more grandly than on ...
— Beethoven: the Man and the Artist - As Revealed in his own Words • Ludwig van Beethoven

... inexhaustible beer; where they sing songs of eight hundred million verses, and gash the tips of each other's noses with huge swords. Envious Death snatched him from his parents when they were no longer of an age to improvise a successor. The unfortunate old millionnaires tenderly collected his effects, to sell them. During this operation, so trying to their souls (for there was a great deal of brand-new linen that could not be found), Nicholas ...
— The Man With The Broken Ear • Edmond About

... we are never to fret, never to grumble, never to scold, and yet it being our duty in some way to make known and get rectified the faults of others, it remains to ask how; and on this head we will improvise a ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 88, February, 1865 • Various

... little Serb carts we had avoided so anxiously. A few planks nailed together and bound around with an insecure rail, four wheels slipped on to the axles with no pins to hold them, a Turkish driver dangling his legs—such was our chariot. Some hay was produced to improvise a seat; we bought some apples on tick, as the vendor said he had no change for our one shilling ...
— The Luck of Thirteen - Wanderings and Flight through Montenegro and Serbia • Jan Gordon



Words linked to "Improvise" :   grapple, improvisation, extemporize, cope, deal, execute, improvize, perform, extemporise, get by, do, make do



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