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Black swan   /blæk swɑn/   Listen
Black swan

noun
1.
Large Australian swan having black plumage and a red bill.  Synonym: Cygnus atratus.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Black swan" Quotes from Famous Books



... Philosophy (Vol. ii., p. 56.).—JARLTZBERG is wrong in supposing that Richard Viscount Preston's translation appeared first in 1712. I have now before me an edition in 8vo. "London: printed by J.D. for Awnsham and John Churchill, at the Black Swan, in Paternoster row; and Francis Hildyard, bookseller in York, MDCXCV." Horace Walpole, in his Royal and Noble Authors, states that the publication in 1712 was the "second edition corrected;" and Mr. Park says in a note, that the first edition ...
— Notes & Queries, No. 41, Saturday, August 10, 1850 • Various

... changed his position every three minutes; a patient, placid-looking elderly lady in brown satin; and two pattern young ladies, in pattern attire, with pattern deportment. Shirley had the air of a black swan or a white crow in the midst of this party, and very forlorn was her aspect. Having brought her into respectable society, we will leave her there a while, and look after ...
— Shirley • Charlotte Bronte

... Lo, the black swan, paddling slowly, Pintail ducks, and sheldrakes holy, Nile-goose flaked, and herons gray, Silver-voiced at ...
— Fringilla: Some Tales In Verse • Richard Doddridge Blackmore

... bearing, for example; and some credit on this score was due to Mr. Poulter, the village schoolmaster, who, being an old Peninsular soldier, was employed to drill Tom,—a source of high mutual pleasure. Mr. Poulter, who was understood by the company at the Black Swan to have once struck terror into the hearts of the French, was no longer personally formidable. He had rather a shrunken appearance, and was tremulous in the mornings, not from age, but from the extreme perversity ...
— The Mill on the Floss • George Eliot

... thou rare black swan! This, this is the Church. Where this is found, there is the Church of Christ, though but twenty in the whole of the congregation; and were twenty such in two hundred different places, the Church would be entire in each. ...
— Coleridge's Literary Remains, Volume 4. • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... bustle ensued that you might have thought a goose the rarest of all birds; a feathered phenomenon, to which a black swan was a matter of course—and, in truth, it was something very like it in that house. Mrs. Cratchit made the gravy (ready beforehand in a little saucepan) hissing hot; Master Peter mashed the potatoes with incredible ...
— A Christmas Carol • Charles Dickens

... me of the great horse race between Jose Andres Sepulveda's 'Black Swan' and Pio Pico's 'Sarco.' Don Jose imported the 'Black Swan' from Australia while Don Pio's horse was a California steed. The race was run along a nine-mile course on San Pedro street ...
— Spring Street - A Story of Los Angeles • James H. Richardson

... to whom Robin referred lived in a leather tent twenty miles distant from the Fort. They were an Indian, named "The Black Swan," his wife, named "The White Swan," and a half-caste trapper, whose proper name was unknown to all save himself. His cognomen in the wilderness was "Slugs," a name which originated in his frequent use of clipped pieces of lead instead of shot in ...
— Silver Lake • R.M. Ballantyne

... in the next assize town, in a state of great excitement, when a chaise-and-four drove rapidly up to the hotel, and out tumbled Johnson the constable. His tale was soon told. On the previous evening, the landlady of the Black Swan, a roadside public-house about four miles distant from the scene of the murder, reading the name of Pearce in the report of the trial in the Sunday county paper, sent for Johnston to state that that person had on the fatal evening called and left a portmanteau in her charge, promising ...
— The Experiences of a Barrister, and Confessions of an Attorney • Samuel Warren

... day). Up, and walked to Holborne, where got John Powell's coach at the Black Swan, and he attended me at St. James's, where waited on the Duke of York: and both by him and several of the Privy-Council, beyond expectation, I find that my going to Sir Thomas Allen was looked upon as a thing necessary: and I have got some advantage by it, among them. ...
— Diary of Samuel Pepys, Complete • Samuel Pepys

... by birds and small animals. The branches of the fallen tree were covered with a feathered company, and in the open space between it and Dot's nook, was a constantly increasing crowd of larger birds, such as cranes, plover, duck, turkey-buzzards, black swan, and amongst them a great grave Pelican. The animals were few, and apparently came late. There was a little timid Wallaby, a Bandicoot, some Kangaroo Rats, a shy Wombat who grumbled about the daylight, as also did a Native Bear and an Opossum, who were really driven to the ...
— Dot and the Kangaroo • Ethel C. Pedley

... Gladstone, Pasteur, Browning, Brunetiere—as many more as you please." To which that quite admirable and idealistic young man made this astonishing reply—"Oh, but of course they had to say that; they were Christians." First he challenged me to find a black swan, and then he ruled out all my swans because they were black. The fact that all these great intellects had come to the Christian view was somehow or other a proof either that they were not great intellects or that they had not really come to that view. The argument thus stood ...
— All Things Considered • G. K. Chesterton



Words linked to "Black swan" :   swan, Cygnus, genus Cygnus



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