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Sham   Listen
verb
Sham  v. t.  (past & past part. shammed; pres. part. shamming)  
1.
To trick; to cheat; to deceive or delude with false pretenses. "Fooled and shammed into a conviction."
2.
To obtrude by fraud or imposition. (R.) "We must have a care that we do not... sham fallacies upon the world for current reason."
3.
To assume the manner and character of; to imitate; to ape; to feign.
To sham Abram or To sham Abraham, to feign sickness; to malinger. Hence a malingerer is called, in sailors' cant, Sham Abram, or Sham Abraham.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Sham" Quotes from Famous Books



... generals now conceived a plan to make a feint, or a sham attack, on the English forts where they were strongest, on the Orleans side of the river. The English on the left side would cross to help their countrymen, and then the French would take the forts beyond the bridge. Thus they would have a free ...
— The Junior Classics • Various

... to be made on Long Island. When the Shinnecock Hills are reached, two days will be spent in scouting and reconnoitring, with skirmishes and sham ...
— The Great Round World and What Is Going On In It, Vol. 1, No. 40, August 12, 1897 - A Weekly Magazine for Boys and Girls • Various

... pilgrims are to offer up for "the extirpation of erroneous doctrines," it will cost them very little effort, for sinners who are washed clean with such delightful celerity are not likely to be in love with "erroneous doctrines" that declare the Pope's dispensing power a sham, and sternly tell men that the consequences of action, whether good or bad, are inevitable. We very much doubt, however, if "erroneous doctrines" will disappear through the prayers of the pilgrims or the curses of the Pope. Scepticism will probably gain by ...
— Flowers of Freethought - (First Series) • George W. Foote

... sometimes tried to speak above my breath, when, being about to leave the car, I have made a virtue of offering my place to the prettiest young woman standing, but I have found it impossible; the genius loci, whatever it was, suppressed me, and I have gasped out my sham politeness as in a courteous nightmare. The silencing influence is quite successfully resisted by none but the tipsy people who occasionally ride out with us, and call up a smile, sad as a gleam of winter sunshine, to our faces by their artless ...
— Suburban Sketches • W.D. Howells

... yes, stolen! Those diamonds, those stones torn from the crown—it was you who did it, and I allowed my faithful Greb to be suspected and dismissed. The theft being known, it was necessary to find a sham culprit to prevent the real one ever being discovered. For this has been my one, my constant preoccupation: to uphold the King, to keep him untouched; to accept everything for that purpose, even the shame which in the eyes ...
— Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern — Volume 11 • Various

... one capable of distinguishing the difference, the evidence of mind and taste, instead of mere money, is seen on every side. Simplicity and beauty are united as far as possible. Everything is the best of its kind and devoid of veneer and sham. There is no lavish and vulgar profusion, and there is a harmony of color and decoration that makes every room a picture in itself. Moreover, the house does not grow suddenly shabby after you leave those parts which are seen by visitors. It ...
— A Face Illumined • E. P. Roe

... the Turk's Head Tavern was not serene. Carlyle was genuine (though that is not quite the first adjective we should choose to describe him), but of serenity he allowed cooks and cocks and every modern and every ancient sham to deprive him. Serenity is a product, no doubt, of two very different things, namely, vision and digestion. Not the eye only, but the courses of the blood must be clear, if we would find serenity. Our word "serene" contains a picture. Its image is of the calm ...
— On Being Human • Woodrow Wilson

... of irreligious mania? I assure you it exists very violently, especially in men who like showing up magicians in India. But here the skeptic had the temptation of showing up a much more tremendous sham ...
— The Man Who Knew Too Much • G.K. Chesterton

... very home life itself can be a teacher of dishonesty. Is it largely a matter of sham and pretense for the sake of social glory? Does it prefer a cheap veneer to a slowly acquired genuine article? Is the front appearance that of a dandy while the backyard looks like a slattern? Is the home striving ...
— Religious Education in the Family • Henry F. Cope

... rich," she thought, "and they say that wealth can buy all the best things upon this earth. But, after all, there are few real things that it can purchase. It can buy flattery, and simulated love, and sham devotion, but it cannot buy one genuine heart-throb, one thrill of true feeling. All the wealth of this world cannot buy peace for Henry Dunbar, or forgetfulness. So long as I live he shall be made ...
— Henry Dunbar - A Novel • M. E. Braddon

... to Swann what she really thought of his abode on the Quai d'Orleans; he having ventured the criticism that her friend had indulged, not in the Louis XVI style, for, he went on, although that was not, of course, done, still it might be made charming, but in the 'Sham-Antique.' ...
— Swann's Way - (vol. 1 of Remembrance of Things Past) • Marcel Proust

... felicitous in his phrases, the permanent presiding officer. One thing was immediately and specially manifest: an overflowing heartiness and deep feeling pervaded the whole house. No need of a claque, no room for sham demonstration here! The galleries were as watchful and earnest as the platform. There was something genuine, elemental, uncontrollable in the moods and manifestations of the vast audience. Seats and standing-room ...
— Abraham Lincoln, A History, Volume 2 • John George Nicolay and John Hay

... fought a sham battle on horseback. They only wore the breech-cloths. They fired off their rifles in all directions, and sent the bullets whistling past the spectators in such close proximity as to create most unpleasant feelings. I was heartily glad when they defiled past singly ...
— The Treaties of Canada with The Indians of Manitoba - and the North-West Territories • Alexander Morris

... under the shock and shame of her mother's guilt and her own solitude, Domini was unable to share her father's intensely egoistic view of the religion of the culprit. She could not be persuaded that the faith in which she had been brought up was proved to be a sham because one of its professors, whom she had above all others loved and trusted, had broken away from its teachings and defied her own belief. She would not secede with her father; but remained in the Church of the mother she was never to see again, and this in spite of extraordinary and dogged ...
— The Garden Of Allah • Robert Hichens

... revolving obsequiously round his unextinguishable gift of noble and lofty expression. My Intended, my station, my career, my ideas—these were the subjects for the occasional utterances of elevated sentiments. The shade of the original Kurtz frequented the bedside of the hollow sham, whose fate it was to be buried presently in the mold of primeval earth. But both the diabolic love and the unearthly hate of the mysteries it had penetrated fought for the possession of that soul satiated with primitive emotions, avid of lying fame, of sham distinction, of all ...
— Heart of Darkness • Joseph Conrad

... into two bands for a sham battle, and all hid behind trees. Balls of clay were pressed on the ends of the slender sticks and thrown, as you would ...
— Two Indian Children of Long Ago • Frances Taylor

... she raised her eyes again as she asked the question. "Have you seen anything really of the world? I do not mean to be rude, but this world of ours, this world of society that holds us all, is there anything real about it, since nearly everything in it is a sham? Look at the lives we lead, look at Paris and London and Berlin. Why the very language of society is framed to say things we do ...
— The Beach of Dreams • H. De Vere Stacpoole

... are highly beneficial, it does not follow that they are to be exempted from criticism. Their effect depends on the prestige of their truth. That is, they must have reasons on their side. But a doctrine is not supported by reasons, unless the objections are stated and answered; not sham objections, but the real difficulties of an enquiring mind. If the statement of such difficulties is forcibly suppressed, the rational foundations will sooner or ...
— Practical Essays • Alexander Bain

... of the Gospel which we call faith has in it quite as much of the element of obedience as of the element of trust. And the presence of that element is just what makes the difference between a sham and a real faith. 'Faith which has not works is dead, being alone.' A faith which is all trust and no obedience is ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture: Romans Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V) • Alexander Maclaren

... scores of older authorities. Still it must be borne in mind that a similarity does not always establish an identity. There are few persons who cannot cite some droll instance of a sharper or greedy fellow, who, expecting an undeserved reward for some sham service, has found himself drolly overreached. So Rabelais dresses up for us anew the fable of the woodman, who, having lost his hatchet, and wearied Jupiter with prayers for its recovery, was tempted by Mercury with a golden ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 3 No 2, February 1863 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... sham polish and fiddlestick ends," echoed Henderson; and Mackworth, who had every intention of making a very flourishing speech, was so disconcerted by this unwonted pruning of his periods, that he somewhat abruptly sat down, muttering ...
— St. Winifred's - The World of School • Frederic W. Farrar

... spunk, all the energy, had been sapped out of me long before, and even her promise couldn't revive it. My search for a berth wasn't much more than a sham. At the back of my head I knew very well what I'd come to. The only work I was capable of was dancing attendance on her, and filling in what remained of the day and night at a rotten restaurant, ...
— The 'Mind the Paint' Girl - A Comedy in Four Acts • Arthur Pinero

... continued, "that love is a very rare thing, nowadays, and is so very generally an abominable sham that I have often amused myself by diabolically devising plans for its destruction. On this occasion I very nearly came to grief myself. The same thing happened to me some time ago—about forty years, I should say,—and I perceive that it ...
— A Roman Singer • F. Marion Crawford

... their lives in the midst of environments where insincerity would not have been so painful; but in a home and a community where sham and hypocrisy were almost unknown these perpetual deceptions became more and more intolerable with every passing hour. Nothing could be more certain than that in a short time, like some foreign substance in a healthy body, his nature would force him out of this uncongenial environment. ...
— The Redemption of David Corson • Charles Frederic Goss

... letter. It is, as you say, very genuine, truthful, affectionate, maternal—without a taint of sham or exaggeration. Mary will love her child without spoiling it, I think. She does not make an uproar about her happiness either. The longer I live the more I suspect exaggerations. I fancy it is sometimes a sort of fashion for each to vie with the other in protestations about their wonderful ...
— Charlotte Bronte and Her Circle • Clement K. Shorter

... pluck which often makes it necessary to circumscribe the freedom of his movements. One day last spring, when he joined an assembly of his fellow-boarders on a sunny porch, the shortness of his tether did not prevent him from picking a quarrel with a big raccoon. After a few sham manoauvres the old North American suddenly lost his temper and charged his tormentor with an energy of action that led to an unexpected result,—for in springing back the Rhesus snapped his wire chain, and in the next moment ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, October 1885 • Various

... beauty with fine clothes and peacock along the streets on matinee days. If you asked a San Francisco girl why she wore such expensive clothes, she would say, frankly, "Because I like to have the men admire me," and she would see no harm in saying it. There was very little sham about the San Francisco women. Their men understood them and worshiped them. They bore themselves with the freedom that was theirs by right of their heritage of open-air living, the Bohemian atmosphere they breathed, the unconventional character of their surroundings. ...
— The San Francisco Calamity • Various

... into an old church in a large town ten miles from here to-day with Sergeant Hodge. There were the usual tinsel things and red baize and sham flowers. Sergeant Hodge much impressed. He said after we emerged: "You know, sir, it's very fine indeed. It puts me in mind of a bazaar." This was in all good faith, and was intended as a great compliment to the church! We are having lots of rain, which is bad for the horses, ...
— Letters to Helen - Impressions of an Artist on the Western Front • Keith Henderson

... the archway, and very squalid and unrestful the little street looked when contrasted with the dignity and monastic quiet of the old garden. As to the surgery, with its oilcloth floor and walls made hideous with gaudy insurance show-cards in sham gilt frames, its aspect was so revolting that I flew to the day-book for distraction, and was still busily entering the morning's visits when the bottle-boy, Adolphus, entered stealthily to ...
— The Vanishing Man • R. Austin Freeman

... one of them king? The expulsion of the princes belongs to the same category of political idiocies with the pacte de famine. Either the Republic is a reality accepted by the French people, or it is a sham imposed upon them by a party. If it is a reality, the princes are simply French citizens, as much entitled to live in France under the protection of the laws as if they were peasants. From this ...
— France and the Republic - A Record of Things Seen and Learned in the French Provinces - During the 'Centennial' Year 1889 • William Henry Hurlbert

... Mandarin Fum Hoam (a name afterwards borrowed in better known work), who seems to have been excluded from the knowledge of anything particularly Celestial.[236] But they are rather smartly told. On the other hand, Florine ou la Belle Italienne, which is included in the same volume with the sham Chinoiseries, is one of the worst instances of the confusion of kinds noted above. It honestly prepares one for what is coming by a reference in the Preface to Fenelon; but a list of dramatis (or fabulae) personae, which follows, would have tried the saintliness even ...
— A History of the French Novel, Vol. 1 - From the Beginning to 1800 • George Saintsbury

... him? Or for some secret reason, did he pretend not to perceive it? His manner towards her was gentle and kindly, but reserved, as if he sought to prevent or repel some importunate confession which it would have given him pain to reply to. And yet the sham Hora was very beautiful. Her charms, betrayed by the poverty of her dress, were all the more beautiful; and just as in the hottest hours of the day a luminous vapour is seen quivering upon the gleaming earth, so did an atmosphere of love shimmer ...
— The Works of Theophile Gautier, Volume 5 - The Romance of a Mummy and Egypt • Theophile Gautier

... and riding with the Hampshire Yeomanry at a great sham fight on the Wiltshire downs, when I heard of the Cabinet crisis. I well remember that on a hill-top, which was finally carried by our side, I met the present Lord Middleton, then Mr. St. John Broderick, Secretary of State for War and learned from ...
— The Adventure of Living • John St. Loe Strachey

... only son, and she was very ambitious that he should make a name in the world, and wanted him to get into the very highest circles. Oh, what a mistake people make about these highest circles. Society is false; it is a sham. She was deceived like a good many more votaries of fashion and hunters after wealth at the present time. She thought it was beneath her son to go down and associate with those young men who hadn't much money. She tried to get ...
— Moody's Anecdotes And Illustrations - Related in his Revival Work by the Great Evangilist • Dwight L. Moody

... had arisen at every available point of the landscape, wherever there had been barrenness before. Here and there the old timber had been thinned a little, always judiciously. No cockney freaks of fancy disfigured the scene. There were no sham ruins, no artificial waterfalls poorly supplied with water, no Chinese pagodas, or Swiss cottages, or gothic hermitages. At one point of the shrubbery where the gloom of cypress and fir was deepest, they came suddenly on a Grecian temple, whose slender marble columns might have gleamed amidst the ...
— The Lovels of Arden • M. E. Braddon

... it is an Elgin watch. Of course you know the reputation of that make. They don't make any sham ...
— Walter Sherwood's Probation • Horatio Alger

... will do!" Chia Lien rejoined laughing, "none of these sham attentions for me! So long as you don't pry into my doings it will be enough; and will I go so far as to ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book I • Cao Xueqin

... vernunftlose und lcherliche Weise, also da ussert, wo sie nicht hingehrte." Campe goes yet further in his distinctions and invents the monstrous word, "Empfindsamlichkeit" for the sentimentality which is superficial, affected, sham (geheuchelte). Campe's newly coined word was never accepted, and in spite of his own efforts and those of others to honor the word "Empfindsamkeit" and restrict it to the commendable exercise of human sympathy, the opposite process was victorious and "Empfindsamkeit," ...
— Laurence Sterne in Germany • Harvey Waterman Thayer

... exclaimed, catching me round the waist and turning me to the light, "what have you been doing? where have you been staying? Ill!—tired!—it is all a sham. He need not try to impose on me such a story as that. I never saw you look so brilliantly well. Your cheeks and lips are red like the damask rose, and your eyes,—I never saw such eyes before. Come here and look in ...
— Ernest Linwood - or, The Inner Life of the Author • Caroline Lee Hentz

... agent of Holy Church, his hands bound, and his heart bursting with yearning toward his fellow-men; Rosendo, simple-minded and faithful, chained to the Church by heredity and association, yet ashamed of its abuses and lusts; Don Jorge, fierce in his denunciation of the political and religious sham and hypocrisy which he saw masking behind ...
— Carmen Ariza • Charles Francis Stocking

... altar at your house a bridge from earth to heaven, or is it a sham, and a helper to those who say, Prayer is an ...
— Broken Bread - from an Evangelist's Wallet • Thomas Champness

... it mean? Was it merely a sham? Or was it a result of his excesses? Or had Carton's relentless pursuit, the raid of Margot's, and the conviction of Dopey Jack, driven ...
— The Ear in the Wall • Arthur B. Reeve

... held Blinker in awful fascination was the mob, the multitude, the proletariat shrieking, struggling, hurrying, panting, hurling itself in incontinent frenzy, with unabashed abandon, into the ridiculous sham palaces of trumpery and tinsel pleasures, The vulgarity of it, its brutal overriding of all the tenets of repression and taste that were held by ...
— The Trimmed Lamp • O. Henry

... a sham railroad station has been built outside of Cologne to deceive French aviators; the Second Secretary of the British Legation is ...
— New York Times Current History: The European War, Vol 2, No. 1, April, 1915 - April-September, 1915 • Various

... satirists of the world, Butler's saeva indignatio was aroused by the daily conflicts between reason and stupidity, between candor and disingenuousness, with all their mutations of hypocrisy, guile, deceit, and sham. In "Erewhon" it was human unreason, as a clever youth sees it, that he was attacking. We remember vividly the beautiful Erewhonians, who knew disease to be sin, but believed vice to be only disease. We remember the "straighteners" who gave moral medicine to the ethically unwell, the musical ...
— Definitions • Henry Seidel Canby

... your attention, I will tell you what I am: I'm a genuine philanthropist - all other kinds are sham. Each little fault of temper and each social defect In my erring fellow-creatures, I endeavour to correct. To all their little weaknesses I open people's eyes, And little plans to snub the self-sufficient I devise; I love my fellow-creatures ...
— Songs of a Savoyard • W. S. Gilbert

... follows:—Representative government in America had by this time become a complete sham. The whole political machinery and internal resources of the United States were now virtually at the command of a great Ring of capitalists who, through the medium of the huge monopolies which they controlled, and the enormous sums of money at their command, held the country ...
— The Angel of the Revolution - A Tale of the Coming Terror • George Griffith

... unorthodoxy of similar work in the eighteenth century, and the sentimentality plus orthodoxy of similar work in the nineteenth. Benassis no doubt plays Providence in a manner and with a success which it is rarely given to mortal man to achieve; but we do not feel either the approach to sham, or the more than approach to gush, with which similar handling on the part of Dickens too often affects some of us. The sin and the punishment of the Doctor, the thoroughly human figures of Genestas and ...
— The Country Doctor • Honore de Balzac

... bribing? And who were the legistators bribed? These facts the committee declared that it did not know. This investigating sham resulted, as almost always happened in the case of similar inquisitions, in the culpability being thrown upon certain lobbyists "who were enriched." These lobbyists were men whose trade it was to act as go-betweens in corrupting ...
— Great Fortunes from Railroads • Gustavus Myers

... sham made Harrietta sick. She, whose very art was that of pretending, hated pretense, affectation, "coy stuff." This was, perhaps, unfortunate. Your Fatigued Financier prefers the comedy form in which a spade is not only called a spade ...
— Gigolo • Edna Ferber

... will be synonymous with injustice as theirs are. Nations no more than individuals can thrive, expand and develop their best faculties unless their lives are based upon freedom and justice. Not freedom to exploit a weaker person or people, not justice before the law which is a mockery and a sham, but freedom for each to live his own life in his own way, and justice to all in the shape of equal opportunity to the earth and all ...
— Mother Earth, Vol. 1 No. 3, May 1906 - Monthly Magazine Devoted to Social Science and Literature • Various

... the granite and rolled away the rocks for the resurrection to a new life? Would it be so some day with the Nation? Would the quiet workers, the pure thinkers, the faithful citizens mass some day to sweep away the lawlessness, the outrage, the crime, the treachery, the trickery, the shame, the sham of self-government's failures; to roll away the stone for the resurrection to a new Democracy? 'High brows,' 'dreamers,' 'ghost walkers,' 'barkers,' 'biters,' 'muck-rakers!' Oh, he knew the choice names that lawless greed cast ...
— The Freebooters of the Wilderness • Agnes C. Laut

... daughter—clearly a witty saying. If our theory is correct, we need only lay stress upon the saying, enlarge and magnify it, and we shall see it expand into a comic scene. Now, we find this very scene, ready made, in the AMOUR MEDECIN of Moliere. The sham doctor, Clitandre, who has been summoned to attend Sganarelle's daughter, contents himself with feeling Sganarelle's own pulse, whereupon, relying on the sympathy there must be between father and daughter, he ...
— Laughter: An Essay on the Meaning of the Comic • Henri Bergson

... the Egyptian scornfully. "Did you ever see light like that come out of a sham stone? You should know more about gems ...
— The Mummy and Miss Nitocris - A Phantasy of the Fourth Dimension • George Griffith

... to the adventure, was caught by the redness and whiteness, the brandnewness and compactness of the little houses; she was seduced beyond prudence by the sham porphyry pillar. ...
— The Combined Maze • May Sinclair

... reformers, alike in England, in France, and in Germany, were fighting for truth, honesty, and private judgment against priestcraft and ecclesiastical tyranny. The scepticism and cynicism of which he was often accused were on the surface. They were provoked by what he felt to be hypocrisy and sham. They were not his true self. He believed firmly unflinchingly, and always in "the grand, simple landmarks of morality," which existed before all Churches, and would exist if all ...
— The Life of Froude • Herbert Paul

... they all in silence heard, Sham'd to refuse, but fearful to accept. At length in anger Menelaus rose, Groaning in spirit, and with bitter words Reproach'd them: "Shame, ye braggart cowards, shame! Women of Greece! I cannot call you men! 'Twere foul disgrace indeed, and scorn on scorn, ...
— The Iliad • Homer

... blundered into a place where there were a lot of fellows from his own regiment, he took off the badges, and he wasn't very numerous around the boys the rest of the week. But he was lightning on the sham battle," says ...
— Peck's Bad Boy and His Pa - 1883 • George W. Peck

... places of interest in the outskirts of the city that deserve a visit are Sham Castle, an artificial antique on Bathwick Hill; Widcombe Old Church (built by Prior Bird); the chapel of St Mary Magdalen in Holloway (built by Prior Cantlow in 1495); Beckford's Tower on Lansdowne, and Combe Down (where a portion of the Wansdyke ...
— Somerset • G.W. Wade and J.H. Wade

... a lie on thy cheek in its roses, A lie echo'd back by thy glass, Thy necklace on greenhorns imposes, And the ring on thy finger is brass. Yet thy tongue, I affirm, without giving an inch back, Outdates the sham jewels, rouge, mirror ...
— Notes & Queries, No. 53. Saturday, November 2, 1850 • Various

... so." Thus he plays upon the name Esau, and takes the Hebrew word as though it were written, not [Hebrew: 'eshaw] but [Hebrew: 'ashav], a thing made.[123] Whence he shows that Esau represents the sham (made-up) greatness, which is boastful and insolent and shameless. Philo is referring perhaps to Apion, the vainglorious anti-Semite, whom he often covertly attacks. Again, whenever there is repetition in the text, a deeper meaning is portended. Dealing with the verse, ...
— Philo-Judaeus of Alexandria • Norman Bentwich

... him as good a subject as a Great Western train. He who has got the sense of beauty in his eye can find it in things as they really are, and needs no stagey time of artificial pastorals to furnish him with a sham nature. Idealise to the full, but idealise the real, else the picture is ...
— Field and Hedgerow • Richard Jefferies

... their political puppets. Emotional susceptibility, once recognized as a legitimate force, thus becomes an instrument of intrigue and constraint. The Assembly, having accepted theatrical exhibitions when these were sincere and earnest, is obliged to tolerate them when they become mere sham and buffoonery. At this vast national banquet, over which it meant to preside, and to which, throwing the doors wide open, it invited all France, its first intoxication was due to wine of a noble quality; but it has touched glasses with the populace, ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 2 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 1 (of 3) • Hippolyte A. Taine

... himself in his own way, and not in obedience to the ruling of custom and authority, in order that he may escape from himself through the real outlet of sincere self-expression, and not through the sham outlet of hypocrisy ...
— What Is and What Might Be - A Study of Education in General and Elementary Education in Particular • Edmond Holmes

... Who is Lemuel Barker?" She stood with the pillow- sham in her hand which she was just about to fasten on the pillow, and Sewell involuntarily took note of the fashion ...
— The Minister's Charge • William D. Howells

... was afraid to open my eyes, or even to breathe; and I thought that, if I could sham being dead, they would carry me on deck, and I would then soon show them the contrary. I guessed that I must have rolled over with my face away from the door, so that they couldn't see it. Presently I felt a hand placed on my shoulder to draw me round. I let them move ...
— Dick Cheveley - His Adventures and Misadventures • W. H. G. Kingston

... his lads were lighter in the heel, glegger in the eye, and brisker in the manoeuvres of war: moreover, they were all far more similar in their garb and appearance, which gave them a seeming compactness that the countrymen had nothing like. But when the sham contest began, it was not long till Bannerman's disciples showed the proofs of their master's better skill to such a mark, that Hepburn grew hot, and so kindled his men by reproaches, that there was like to have been ...
— Ringan Gilhaize - or The Covenanters • John Galt

... right, and retreated as fast as we could, but still backward, mine being the duty to keep the mouth of our sham cannon to bear upon them as well as the blundering backward through the mudholes of ...
— Blue Jackets - The Log of the Teaser • George Manville Fenn

... as an ugly sore in the State, to be healed, is tended and watered as a fair flower by a clerical government. Pray give something to yonder sham cripple; give to that cadger who pretends to have lost an arm; and be sure you don't forget that blind young man leaning on his father's arm! A medical man of my acquaintance offered yesterday to restore ...
— The Roman Question • Edmond About

... least deserves credit, the nominal Sovereign Majesty of Poland. Anarchic Grandees have been kings over him; ambitious, contentious, unmanageable;—very fanatical too, and never persuaded that August's Apostasy was more than a sham one, not even when he made his Prince apostatize too. Their Sovereignty has been a mere peck of troubles, disgraces and vexations: for those thirty-five years, an ever-boiling pot of mutiny, contradiction, insolence, hardly tolerable even ...
— History of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. IX. (of XXI.) • Thomas Carlyle

... to the house and into the cellar. By merely sounding along the wall we discovered the door; it was cleverly constructed and for a time defied our efforts; but Jerome got it open by means of a jemmy and a pick. The outside was a clever piece of sham work shaped like stone and smeared over with cement. In the dim light we ...
— The Blind Spot • Austin Hall and Homer Eon Flint

... of the reality; seeming innocence comes very near in meaning to probable guilt. Apparent indicates less assurance than probable, and more than seeming. A man's probable intent we believe will prove to be his real intent; his seeming intent we believe to be a sham; his apparent intent may be the true one, tho we have not yet evidence on which to pronounce with certainty or even with confidence. Likely is a word with a wide range of usage, but always implying the belief that the thing is, or will be, true; it is often ...
— English Synonyms and Antonyms - With Notes on the Correct Use of Prepositions • James Champlin Fernald

... veil in the tall white bandbox upon the table, she hurried off to prepare our dinner, while President urged me in an undertone to "sham sick" that afternoon so that he wouldn't have to take me out for an airing ...
— The Romance of a Plain Man • Ellen Glasgow

... a nurse's name doesn't soothe a fretful child, nor make her more patient or loving. It might make her less patient, if she took to wishing the 'Mrs.' was real instead of sham; some women are like that, all for marrying. I dare say," said Nannie, when going over her experiences, "my face did look blank when I missed all my treasures, but f said nothing, although it was a blow ...
— The Professional Aunt • Mary C.E. Wemyss

... of our conversation Mr. Gerard suggested that the realisation of far-reaching aspirations in Belgium would give King Albert merely a sham authority and asked whether it would not be better for Germany to forego such plans and instead of them endeavour to acquire Liege which Mr. ...
— Face to Face with Kaiserism • James W. Gerard

... there was really nothing to prevent us from taking possession of the ship. The crew were a set of ruffians, specially picked for the job. The sham chaplain came into our cells to exhort us, carrying a black bag, supposed to be full of tracts, and so often did he come that by the third day we had each stowed away at the foot of our beds a file, a brace of pistols, a pound of powder, and ...
— Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

... reading novels or making a row. They would play various games about the bedrooms, vaulting or jumping over the beds, running races in sheets, getting through the windows upon the roofs, to frighten the study-boys with sham ghosts, or playing the thousand other pranks which suggested themselves to the fertile imagination of fifteen. But the favorite amusement was a bolstering match. One room would challenge another, and, stripping the covers ...
— Eric • Frederic William Farrar

... nothing of interest in the couple's interview. Now at this point the girl invites Elfonzo to a village show, where jealousy is the motive of the play, for she wants to teach him a wholesome lesson, if he is a jealous person. But this is a sham, and pretty shallow. McClintock merely wants a pretext to drag in a plagiarism of his upon a scene or ...
— The $30,000 Bequest and Other Stories • Mark Twain

... of the electric light; monstrous hotels parade the sham splendour of their painted facades; the whole length of the streets is one long triumph of imitation, of mud walls plastered so as to look like stone; a medley of all styles, rockwork, Roman, Gothic, New Art, Pharaonic, and, above all, the pretentious ...
— Egypt (La Mort De Philae) • Pierre Loti

... menace to sham All talk and no cider Condition my room is always in when you are not around Deprived of the soothing consolation of swearing Frankness is a jewel; only the young can afford it Genius defies the laws of perspective Hope deferred maketh the heart sick ...
— Quotes and Images From The Works of Mark Twain • Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

... of food still visible in his interior, and, in order to get rid of a piece of evidence contrary to the traditions he holds to, seriously maintaining that this skeleton never belonged to a living creature, but was created with just these appearances; a make-believe, a sham, a Barnum's-mermaid contrivance to amuse its Creator and impose upon his intelligent children! And now people talk about geological epochs and hundreds of millions of years in the planet's history as calmly as if they were discussing the age of their deceased great-grandmothers. ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... sat at my side in the car. I might not have found the tiny thing there for weeks: as a matter of fact I did find it two days after Manderson was dead, but a police search would have found it in five minutes. And then I—I with the case and its contents in my pocket, my false name and my sham spectacles and the rest of it—I should have had no explanation to offer but the highly convincing one that I didn't know the ...
— Trent's Last Case - The Woman in Black • E.C. (Edmund Clerihew) Bentley

... wickedness, and Bostock, in spite of their teeth, got seventy-five head of volunteer labour on board, of whom not more than a dozen died of injuries. He had a hand, besides, in the amiable pleasantry which cost the life of Patteson; and when the sham bishop landed, prayed, and gave his benediction to the natives, Bostock, arrayed in a female chemise out of the traderoom, had stood at his right hand and boomed amens. This, when he was sure he was among good fellows, was his favourite yarn. ...
— The Wrecker • Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne

... See how few of the cases of the suspension of the habeas corpus law have been worthy of that suspension. They have been either real treason, wherein the parties might as well have been charged at once, or sham plots, where it was shameful they should ever have been suspected. Yet for the few cases, wherein the suspension of the habeas corpus has done real good, that operation is now become habitual, and the minds of the nation almost prepared to live ...
— Memoir, Correspondence, And Miscellanies, From The Papers Of Thomas Jefferson - Volume I • Thomas Jefferson

... and she doesn't want to have me," he protested to his daughter; "yet she must have me and I must go. The great god Sham again, Daisy." ...
— Half a Hero - A Novel • Anthony Hope

... culture and our spiritual life, and that an intellectual underworld threatens our time, which demands a no less rigorous fight until its vice is wiped out. The vice of the social underworld gives a sham satisfaction to the human desire for sensual life; the vice of the intellectual underworld gives the same sham fulfilment to the human longing for knowledge and for truth. The infectious germs which it spreads in the realm of culture may ultimately be more dangerous to the ...
— Psychology and Social Sanity • Hugo Muensterberg

... of so-called male superiority bears a certain stamp of spuriousness and sham. It is to natural history what chivalry was to human history; ... a sort of make-believe, play, or sport of nature of an airy unsubstantial character. The male side of nature shot up and blossomed out in an unnatural, fantastic way, cutting loose from the real business of life, ...
— The Truth About Woman • C. Gasquoine Hartley

... regiments, for kindling a panic in the heat of battle, by flight, and by a sustained blowing up of tumbrils, under the miserable purpose of shaking the British steadiness. But the evidences are not clear; whereas my brother insisted that the presence of sham men, distributed extensively amongst the human race, and meditating treason against us all, had been demonstrated to the satisfaction of all true philosophers. Who were these shams and make- believe men? They were, in fact, people that had been dead for centuries, ...
— Autobiographic Sketches • Thomas de Quincey

... black-faced charcoal man carrying a sack on his head more than half as high as himself. A party of jolly young German tourists in loose clothes, with red books in their hands, and their field-glasses hanging by straps across their shoulders, try to rid themselves of the flower-girls dressed in sham Sabine costumes, and utter exclamations of astonishment and admiration when they themselves are almost run down by a couple of the giant Royal Grenadiers, each six feet five or thereabouts, besides nine inches, ...
— Ave Roma Immortalis, Vol. 1 - Studies from the Chronicles of Rome • Francis Marion Crawford

... the children of the settlement, on the grassy margin of the street, or at the domestic thresholds, disporting themselves in such grim fashion as the Puritanic nurture would permit; playing at going to church, perchance; or at scourging Quakers; or taking scalps in a sham-fight with the Indians; or scaring one another with freaks of imitative witchcraft. Pearl saw, and gazed intently, but never sought to make acquaintance. If spoken to, she would not speak again. If ...
— The Scarlet Letter • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... lifted itself belligerently. "What do you think she is? Imitation? Why, she's the one REAL thing in this whole sham world! I guess you've never met anybody who knew her or you wouldn't keep gulping out idiotic things like that! I guess if you ever talked with her even a minute you'd understand how real she is. She has the crispest—the sincerest way of speaking. Though ...
— Little Miss By-The-Day • Lucille Van Slyke

... conduct or present promises. A few months after this treaty, they induced a large number of Indians, from the various tribes, to come to the same place, and where all the militia of the provinces had assembled, and while professing to practice some sham evolutions, the Indians were suddenly surrounded and captured. Many of the prisoners so treacherously obtained were executed, and others sold into slavery for having been in arms ...
— The Abenaki Indians - Their Treaties of 1713 & 1717, and a Vocabulary • Frederic Kidder

... facade, while the apparently built up windows above the genuine windows of the nave aisles, whose roofs have their apex about on a level with the sills of the large central lancets, are as much frauds as any of those sham windows in symmetrical Renaissance work, which so excite the ire of ...
— Bell's Cathedrals: The Cathedral Church of Salisbury - A Description of its Fabric and a Brief History of the See of Sarum • Gleeson White

... told the pleasantest Story, which you'd swear was a Sham, if I did not know the Place, the Persons, and whole Matter, as ...
— Colloquies of Erasmus, Volume I. • Erasmus

... Cesarine, keeping her eyes in play but little rewarded by her scrutiny of the sham Marseillais who devoured, like an old campaigner, never sure of the next meal, or of Rebecca who superintended the table in her stead with a ...
— The Son of Clemenceau • Alexandre (fils) Dumas

... what your folly has cost you, late, Henceforth for me the calm comfort of Clubs! To lounge on a cushion and hear the balls rattle 'Midst smoke-fumes, and sips on the field of green cloth, Is better than leading slow troops to sham battle, In stupid conditions that rouse a ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 100, April 11, 1891 • Various

... for charitable purposes is, by this admirable invention, transformed into an amusement, and puts on the externals of profitable commerce. You play at shopping a while; and in order to keep up the illusion, sham goods do actually change hands. Thus, under the similitude of a game, I have seen children confronted with the horrors of arithmetic, and even ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. XXII (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... immence deal of your writings, witch, betwigst you and me, contain more sham sentiment, sham morallaty and sham potry than you'd like to own; but in spite of this, there's the stuf you; you've a kind and loyal heart in your buzm, bar'net—a trifle deboshed, praps: a keen i, igspecially for what is comick (as for your tragady, ...
— Lippincott's Magazine. Vol. XII, No. 33. December, 1873. • Various

... the Prince of the Black Mountain; so we followed, and reached the camp just as the fort was being stormed. That evening we had an audience of the Pasha, in which Englefield laid the whole matter before him; he spoke us fair, and promised help, but it was all a sham, a regular sham; you will not wonder this when I tell you that Orlando Jones, unseen by us was at the Pasha's elbow, bribing, cringing, and sticking at nothing to gain his ends! It seems the wretched man has long been in communication with the Turks, and has now adopted ...
— The Grateful Indian - And other Stories • W.H.G. Kingston

... galloped with these to the glacis of Almeida, spoke the governor, drew off a score of invalid troopers from the hospital in the town, and at dusk made his way back up the mountain, which in three hours he had covered with sham ...
— The Laird's Luck • Arthur Quiller-Couch

... Greek and Latin and the secular part of the college discipline I will say nothing, except that it was generally inefficient. The theological and Biblical teaching was a sham. We had come to the college in the first place to learn the Bible. Our whole existence was in future to be based upon that book; our lives were to be passed in preaching it. I will venture to say that there was no book less understood either by students or professors. ...
— The Autobiography of Mark Rutherford • Mark Rutherford

... but in the high building which surmounted the gate, and which was several stories one above the other, the port-holes were closed with red doors, on the outside of which were painted the representations of cannon, not unlike at a distance the sham ports in a ship of war. The gates of a Chinese city are generally double, and placed in the flanks of a square or semicircular bastion. The first opens into a large space, surrounded with buildings, which are appropriated entirely for military ...
— Travels in China, Containing Descriptions, Observations, and Comparisons, Made and Collected in the Course of a Short Residence at the Imperial Palace of Yuen-Min-Yuen, and on a Subsequent Journey thr • John Barrow

... me as passionately as I wooed them: there was a certain little bronze, a little Venus Callipyge, who had drawn me, drawn me, drawn me, imploring me to rescue her from her unspeakable surroundings in a vulgar bric-a-brac shop at Biarritz, where she shrank out of sight among sham Sevres and Dutch silver, as one has seen certain women—rare, shy, exquisite—made almost invisible by the vulgar splendours surrounding them. Well! that little Venus, who was just a specious seventeenth century attempt ...
— Tales Of Men And Ghosts • Edith Wharton

... a poor book of it. Yet if machine-made paper must be used, it should not profess fineness or luxury, but should show itself for what it is: for my part I decidedly prefer the cheaper papers that are used for the journals, so far as appearance is concerned, to the thick, smooth, sham-fine papers on which respectable books are printed, and the worst of these are those which imitate the ...
— The Art and Craft of Printing • William Morris

... this was nothing but a sham; whatever people may swear they will do, they are not so hasty now-a-days in ...
— The Blunderer • Moliere

... made—people knew how my father had died: and showed that they knew it. Not so much by shunning or staring at me (vile as human nature is, there were not many who did that), as by insulting me with over-acted sympathy, and elaborate anxiety to sham entire ignorance of my father's fate. The gallows-brand was on my forehead; but they were too benevolently blind to see it. The gallows-infamy was my inheritance; but they were too resolutely generous to discover it! This was hard to ...
— Basil • Wilkie Collins

... that country. The Ahoms, together with the Shans of Burma and Eastern China and the Siamese, were members of the Tai race. The name is believed to be a corruption of the word "A-sam,'' the latter part of which is identical with "Shan'' (properly "Sham'') and with "Siam.'' Under their king Su-ka-pha they invaded Assam (q.v.) from the East in the year A.D. 1228, giving their name to the country. For a century and a half from 1228 the successors of Su-ka-pha appear ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... the Apostle Paul, "then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain." The one tries all he can to do away with the proofs submitted for the accepted fact; the other plainly says that if the resurrection cannot be believed, then Christianity is nothing but a sham. If the resurrection of Christ can be successfully denied, if it can be proven to be absolutely untrue, then the whole fabric of the Gospel falls to pieces, the whole structure of the Christian religion is shaken at its foundation, and ...
— The Great Doctrines of the Bible • Rev. William Evans

... an explosion. Lamartine, the poet, was one of those legitimists who believed that 1830 had killed monarchy, who considered the Orleans dynasty a sham, and set themselves at once to look ahead of it towards the inevitable Republic. Talleyrand warned him to hold himself ready for something more substantial than the exchange of a nephew for an uncle on a baseless throne. With the intuition of genius he saw sooner than most ...
— Lectures on the French Revolution • John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton

... time as a whole, and challenged it as a whole; consequently he went without support. It is a mark of our whole modern history that the masses are kept quiet with a fight. They are kept quiet by the fight because it is a sham-fight; thus most of us know by this time that the Party System has been popular only in the same sense that a football match is popular. The division in Cobbett's time was slightly more sincere, but almost as superficial; ...
— A Short History of England • G. K. Chesterton

... you be a deep one! Mistaken! well, that's clever—it's a real stroke of genius! It is a thing I never thought o', wi' all my experience! I never thought beyond bringing about the real thing—not that one could sham it!" ...
— Jude the Obscure • Thomas Hardy

... the miller's view, counting the loss of one stout young Englishman to his country of far greater importance than the escapades of dozens of girls, for which simple creatures he had no compassion: he held the expression of it a sham. He had grown coxcombical. Without talking of his conquests, he talked largely of the ladies who were possibly in the situation of victims to his grace of person, though he did not do so with any unctuous boasting. On the contrary, there was a rather taking undertone of regret that his ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... of all, for when done up in a glittering suit of sham armour, with a sword and dagger of lath, his entire speech, though well conned, deserted him, and he stood red-faced, hesitating, and ready to cry, when suddenly from the midst of the spectators there issued a childish ...
— Unknown to History - A Story of the Captivity of Mary of Scotland • Charlotte M. Yonge

... lash.... I seldom recall the touch of it more shrewd than in Queen Lucia (HUTCHINSON), an altogether delightful castigation of those persons whom a false rusticity causes to change a good village into the sham-bucolic home of crazes, fads and affectation. All this super-cultured life of the Riseholme community has its centre in Mrs. Lucas, the acknowledged queen of the place (Lucia wife of Lucas, which shows you the character of her empire ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 159, August 18th, 1920 • Various

... the velvet being visible. It was set with three small sapphires, and even from a distance I clearly made them out to be imitations, and poor ones. I felt a queer thrill of self-mistrust. Was the large stone no better? Could I, even for an instant, have been dazzled by a sham, and a sham of that quality? The events of the evening had flurried and confused me. I wished to think them over in quiet. I would go ...
— The Lock And Key Library - Classic Mystery And Detective Stories, Modern English • Various

... finally, whether with too much or too little violence to the principles of the ancient constitution—all these topics, we say, would, if we were so inclined, supply us, as they have supplied Mr. Macaulay, with abundant opportunities of grave tautology and commonplace; but we decline to raise sham debates on points where there is no contest. We can have little historic difference, properly so called, with one who has no historical difference on the main facts with anybody else: instead, then, of pretending to treat any great questions, either of constitutional ...
— Famous Reviews • Editor: R. Brimley Johnson

... the unknown road he had so recently followed. It was but justice to him. Then she could laugh at Time and Fate and the juggling unseen Controller who had played with him and her, had wrecked their little lives, forced their little passions under a sham security, then snapped the thread on which she hung for everything, killed the better part of herself, and left her all alone without a hand to shield or a heart to pity. In the darkness, as the moon stole away and her chamber window blackened, she sounded all sorrow's wide and solemn ...
— Children of the Mist • Eden Phillpotts

... and furnished in yellow satin, whose high white panels were decorated with trophies of antique weapons carved in wood and gilded. A dauber from the Ecole des Beaux-Arts would have branded with the epithet "sham" the armchairs and sofas ornamented with sphinx heads in bronze, as well as the massive green marble clock upon which stood, all in gold, a favorite court personage, clothed in a cap, sword, and fig-leaf, who seemed to be making love to a young person in a floating tunic, with her hair dressed ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... of her studies, why, she did not know. But the whole thing seemed sham, spurious; spurious Gothic arches, spurious peace, spurious Latinity, spurious dignity of France, spurious naivete of Chaucer. It was a second-hand dealer's shop, and one bought an equipment for an examination. ...
— The Rainbow • D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence

... impulse to a dangerous action. The highest reported degree, in which even criminal actions are performed by honest men, exists in my opinion only in the imagination of amateurs; it is certainly not difficult to produce sham crimes for performance sake, with paper daggers and toy pistols, but that is no proof at all that the hypnotized person would commit a crime under conditions under which he has the conviction that he faces a real criminal situation. But if we abstract ...
— Psychotherapy • Hugo Muensterberg

... tender interest, and, however small it may be, relating possibly to some one hardly known, and playing but a small part in the events he is recording, and he will wax amazingly sentimental, and perhaps shed as many real tears as Sterne or Dickens do sham ones over their figments. This realism of Carlyle's gives a great charm to his histories and biographies. The amount he tells you is something astonishing—no platitudes, no rigmarole, no common-form, articles which are the staple of most biography, but, instead ...
— Obiter Dicta • Augustine Birrell

... the whole pit-prop business was a sham, a mere blind to cover those other operations from which the money came. But when Hilliard came to ask himself what those operations were, he found himself up against a more ...
— The Pit Prop Syndicate • Freeman Wills Crofts

... fool?" said he half-aloud to himself with bitter certainty in the utterance. "There's my punishment: by something sham—and I ken it's sham too—I must go through life beguiled from right and content. Here's what was to be the close of my folly, and Sim MacTaggart eager to be a good man if he got anything like a chance, but never the ...
— Doom Castle • Neil Munro

... the State troops are out, and having manoeuvres, with a sham battle, could it?" questioned ...
— The Banner Boy Scouts Afloat • George A. Warren

... with a lot of cucumbers. Says the fellows are going to have a sham battle and wants me to ...
— A Son of the City - A Story of Boy Life • Herman Gastrell Seely

... adventures; the central figure not very well or very sharply drawn; no philosophy, no destiny, to it; some of the happenings very good in themselves, I believe, but none of them bildende, none of them constructive, except in so far perhaps as they make up a kind of sham picture of the time, all in italics, and all out of drawing. Here and there, I think, it is well written; and here and there it's not.... If it has a merit to it, I should say it was a sort of deliberation and swing to the style, which seems to me to suit the mail-coaches and post-chaises with ...
— The Bibliotaph - and Other People • Leon H. Vincent

... I take in party fray, With tropes from Billingsgate's slang-whanging Tartars, I fear no Pope—and let great Ernest play At Fox and Goose with Fox's Martyrs! I own I laugh at over-righteous men, I own I shake my sides at ranters, And treat sham Abr'am saints with wicked banters, I even own, that there are times—but then It's when I 've got my wine—I say ...
— The Humourous Poetry of the English Language • James Parton

... outside cupola does not bear the heavy weight of the lantern it has been denounced as a sham, but this is an exaggeration. It is evident, as we look at it, that it is incapable of bearing any such weight. Much more practical is the objection of Gwilt that the elaborate framework of beams supporting this outside cover is certain to decay in course of time. A third objection is ...
— Bell's Cathedrals: The Cathedral Church of St. Paul - An Account of the Old and New Buildings with a Short Historical Sketch • Arthur Dimock

... I.viii.14 (321,2) you have sham'd me/In your condemned seconds] For condemned, we may read contemned. You have, to my shane, sent me help which ...
— Notes to Shakespeare, Volume III: The Tragedies • Samuel Johnson

... glad to know that they are so good an imitation as to deceive you. There is some comfort in that, although it is not pleasant to have to acknowledge the sham." ...
— Mona • Mrs. Georgie Sheldon

... by British law, the deputy suffered. "If an information were lodg'd but an informer wou'd get tar'd and feather'd, no jury wou'd find the fact." The government-riders were in truth the chief offenders. Any ship's captain, or wagon-driver, or post-rider could carry merchandise; therefore small sham bundles of paper, straw, or chips would be tied to a large sealed packet of letter, and both be exempt from postage paid ...
— Home Life in Colonial Days • Alice Morse Earle

... Harrington, "you wicked, tempting girl, my sham virtue has oozed away, and my real mania triumphs. She lives at 'The Golden Star.' I was weak enough to send Harris in last ...
— The Woman-Hater • Charles Reade



Words linked to "Sham" :   impostor, fraud, cheater, belie, feint, pillow sham, pretended, take a dive, slicker, postiche, imitation, imposter, pretender, fictive, deceiver, Tarabulus Ash-Sham, assumed, feign, ringer, make, bull, fake, role player, dissemble, pseudo, put on, pseud, name dropper, cheat, counterfeit, faker, act, affect, trickster, make believe, Potemkin village, talk through one's hat



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