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Grotesqueness   Listen
Grotesqueness

noun
1.
Ludicrous or incongruous unnaturalness or distortion.  Synonyms: grotesquerie, grotesquery.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Grotesqueness" Quotes from Famous Books



... more convincingly, with his vivid ugliness. Sylvie's face turned up to him like a white flower to the sun it lives by, without seeing. It was strange to watch the adoration, the worship on that small face, and at the same time to behold the grotesqueness toward which it was directed. Bella was listening with her lowered eyes and tightened lips. She was interested in spite of herself; and Pete's inscrutable face ...
— Snow-Blind • Katharine Newlin Burt

... word should be spoken. Yet it was true that she had been married eighteen years. In another seven she would be able to celebrate her silver wedding, an anniversary she had always associated with old age. The horror of the situation was not lessened by its grotesqueness. ...
— Other People's Business - The Romantic Career of the Practical Miss Dale • Harriet L. Smith

... ominous buzz circulated round the house: the singers, the orchestra,—electrically sensitive to the impression of the audience,—grew, themselves, agitated and dismayed, and failed in the energy and precision which could alone carry off the grotesqueness of the music. ...
— Zanoni • Edward Bulwer Lytton

... interesting, as it brought us unexpectedly upon several relics of antiquity,—a loop-holed and battlemented gateway; and at various points fragments of the old Gothic stone-work, built in among more recent edifices, which themselves were old; grimness intermixed with quaintness and grotesqueness; old fragments of religious or warlike architecture mingled with queer domestic structures,—the general effect sombre, sordid, and grimy; but yet with a fascination that makes us fain to linger about such scenes, and come to ...
— Passages From the English Notebooks, Complete • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... described in Hall and in Holinshed, and to believe that he left the play—originally written, we think, by Greene—very much as he found it. It is not indeed till the fifth act, when Joan is represented as a magician, and when the grotesqueness of the author passes even the limits of burlesque, that we fail to see a shred of the poet's skill. Nothing in Shakespeare is at once so unpoetical as well as so untrue to history as the last scene, in which Joan repudiates her father. If it is by Shakespeare—which ...
— Joan of Arc • Ronald Sutherland Gower

... they both admired the huge shoulder of rock near the gate, with its poplars atop, and the battery at the brink, with the muzzles of the guns thrust forward against the sky. She could not move him to her pleasure in the grotesqueness of the circus-bills plastered half-way up the rock; but he tolerated the levity with which she commented on them, and her light sallies upon passing things, and he said nothing to prevent her reaching home in ...
— A Chance Acquaintance • W. D. Howells

... rushed off to call one, and a minute afterwards the messenger whom she had already despatched rattled up in a hansom. She quickly got into it, and as she rolled away she saw Mr. Booker returning in all haste with another. She gave a passionate moan—this common confusion seemed to add a grotesqueness to her predicament. ...
— A London Life; The Patagonia; The Liar; Mrs. Temperly • Henry James

... circlets carved by idle soldiers. There were no more genuine tears than those which flowed from the eyes of the Southern women resident within the Federal lines when they saw the rig of their kinswomen, at the cessation of hostilities. And all this grotesqueness, all this dilapidation, was shot through by specimens of individual finery, by officers who had brought back resplendent uniforms from beyond seas, by heroines who had engineered themselves and their belongings ...
— The Creed of the Old South 1865-1915 • Basil L. Gildersleeve

... involuntarily to the portrait of the unsightly dwarf, painted by Velasquez. The broad shaft of sunlight had crept backward, away from it, leaving the canvas unobtrusive, no longer harshly evident either in violence of colour or grotesqueness of form. It had become part of the great whole, merely modulated to gracious harmony with the divers objects surrounding it, and like them softly overlaid by ...
— The History of Sir Richard Calmady - A Romance • Lucas Malet

... not only a common but a necessary one, and in no way to be blamed. As for the other criterion hinted at above, no one is likely to condemn the diction according to that. In its remoteness without grotesqueness, in its lavish colour, in its abundance of matter for every kind of cadence and sound-effect, it is exactly suited to the subject, the ...
— A History of English Literature - Elizabethan Literature • George Saintsbury

... be done by art for nearly all other animals of high organisation. There are few birds or beasts that have not a range of character which, if not equal to that of the horse or dog, is yet as interesting within narrower limits, and often in grotesqueness, intensity, or wild and timid pathos, more singular and mysterious. Whatever love of humour you have,—whatever sympathy with imperfect, but most subtle, feeling,—whatever perception of sublimity in conditions ...
— Lectures on Art - Delivered before the University of Oxford in Hilary term, 1870 • John Ruskin

... expression of a very remarkable personality. From Marthe to La-Bas every story, every volume, disengages the same atmosphere—the atmosphere of a London November, when mere existence is a sufficient burden, and the little miseries of life loom up through the fog into a vague and formidable grotesqueness. Here, for once, is a pessimist whose philosophy is mere sensation—and sensation, after all, is the one certainty in a world which may be well or ill arranged, for ultimate purposes, but which is certainly, ...
— Figures of Several Centuries • Arthur Symons

... always late; but the afternoon was so lovely." She stood drawing her gloves off, propitiatory and graceful, diffusing about her a sense of ease and familiarity in which the situation lost its grotesqueness. "But before talking business," she added brightly, "I'm sure every one wants a cup ...
— The Descent of Man and Other Stories • Edith Wharton

... All this I have experienced, yet all the time have been under contract to furnish "humorous" matter, once a month, for this magazine. I am speaking the exact truth in the above details. Please to put yourself in my place and contemplate the grisly grotesqueness of the situation. I think that some of the "humor" I have written during this period could have been injected into a funeral sermon without disturbing the ...
— Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete - The Personal And Literary Life Of Samuel Langhorne Clemens • Albert Bigelow Paine

... coy with me that night. I lay listening to the soughing of the wind, and thinking of Mr. Jaffrey's illusion. It had amused me at first with its grotesqueness; but now the poor little phantom was dead, I was conscious that there had been something pathetic in it all along. Shortly after midnight the wind sunk down, coming and going fainter and fainter, floating around the eaves of the tavern with an undulating, murmurous sound, as if it were ...
— Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern, Vol. 1 • Charles Dudley Warner

... poor temple, to what strange uses are you come. . . . This excess of grotesqueness in profanation is more insulting surely than to be sacked by barbarians! Behold a table set for some thirty guests, and the guests themselves—of both sexes—merry and lighthearted, belong to that ...
— Egypt (La Mort De Philae) • Pierre Loti

... of grotesqueness to Dorothy. The moonlight night, the black houses and pines looming up against the snowy landscape, the red glare in the immediate foreground caused by the burning buildings, the gesticulating figure of ...
— The Rising of the Red Man - A Romance of the Louis Riel Rebellion • John Mackie

... looking forward with delight to the welcome which she would receive from her sisters. Presently Thurston House came in view, and, sure enough, there were four excited heads bobbing to and fro at the window, four broad beams of amusement to testify to the grotesqueness of her appearance. Nan lifted a solemn glance in return, and Chrissie, seized with a sudden demon of mischief, pointed a forefinger at the door opposite, and gesticulated violently in its direction. As ...
— A Houseful of Girls • Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey

... to-day, while listening to the poems, bad to the point of grotesqueness, that have been sent for the competition of 1847, M. de Barante remarked: "Really, in these times, we no longer know how to ...
— The Memoirs of Victor Hugo • Victor Hugo

... raised himself into an upright attitude, and the moonlight falling upon him showed his shape in all its grotesqueness of outline. This, with his words, at once recalled their having seen him before. Yes; it was the enano, whom the big Texan had swung up to the ...
— The Free Lances - A Romance of the Mexican Valley • Mayne Reid

... German writers, at least the most German among the great ones of his fatherland. And it is here that the drawback lies—he carried to such excess all the peculiarities of his very peculiar country, and was a giant of grotesqueness. No one can really know German literature ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 3 No 2, February 1863 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... to be Aunt Olivia; if she were being burned at the stake I verily believe she would have dragged some grotesqueness into the ...
— Chronicles of Avonlea • Lucy Maud Montgomery

... a speech and an ode. Late at night, at last, the wagon was heard rumbling into the courtyard, with the guest arrived in safety, but, if one must confess one's self, perhaps forbidding at first sight. From a comfortless portico, with all the grotesqueness of the Middle Age, supported by brown, aged bishops, whose meditations no incident could distract, Our Lady looked out no better than an unpretending nun, with nothing to say the like of which one was used to hear. Certainly one ...
— Imaginary Portraits • Walter Horatio Pater

... Keeley stood beside the couch, holding her hand; he was still in full fig as Polichinel; and the grotesqueness of his attire contrasted strangely with the anguish depicted on his countenance. As I came forward, he slowly made way for me—looked in my face imploringly, as if to gather from its expression some gleam of hope, and then stood aside, in an ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, Complete • Various

... into uncontrollable laughter. "That is the best thing I ever heard in all my life. I don't think I ever heard anything that amused me more. The grotesqueness of the whole thing." Seeing that Mike was annoyed he hastened to explain his mirth. "The inexplicableness of human action always amuses me; the inexplicable is romance, at least that is the only way I can understand ...
— Mike Fletcher - A Novel • George (George Augustus) Moore

... followed the runner along the dark and tangled pathway. They had not gone far when they heard the sounds of a horse's hoofs behind them, and presently there dashed up to their side a singular-looking person, with extraordinary long thin legs, an emaciated body, and an enormous head. The grotesqueness of his figure was enhanced by a sky-blue coat and a soiled vest of embossed silk embroidered with tarnished silver lace. Coming up with the party, he declared his intention of accompanying them to Fort William Henry. Refusing to listen to any objection, he took from his vest a curious musical ...
— The Worlds Greatest Books - Vol. II: Fiction • Arthur Mee, J. A. Hammerton, Eds.

... informally, I was not to come in all the state I could put into my dress. You know what the evening dress of men is here, from the costumes in our museum, and you can well believe that I never put on those ridiculous black trousers without a sense of their grotesqueness—that scrap of waistcoat reduced to a mere rim, so as to show the whole white breadth of the starched shirt-bosom, and that coat chopped away till it seems nothing but tails and lapels. It is true that I might go out to dinner ...
— Through the Eye of the Needle - A Romance • W. D. Howells

... looked gravely at each other. A Spanish dwarf trying to beguile an officer of his majesty's navy into stealing a mule for him—that was too funny, too ridiculous, too incredible. Those were the exclamations of the captain. He couldn't get over the grotesqueness of it. ...
— Within the Tides • Joseph Conrad

... singleness of purpose, assiduity of application, and profound feeling. He had to labour against a tendency to uncouthness in stiff lines and angular figures; to petty elaboration of details; and to that grotesqueness which, while it suited in some respects his allegorical engravings, marred his historical paintings, so that he was known to regret the wasted fantastic crowding and confusion of his earlier work. From the Italians and Flemings he learnt simplicity, and a more correct sense of material ...
— The Old Masters and Their Pictures - For the Use of Schools and Learners in Art • Sarah Tytler

... though Robin felt a sort of brotherhood with these strangers, his eyes were attracted from them to a person who stood near the door, holding whispered conversation with a group of ill-dressed associates. His features were separately striking almost to grotesqueness, and the whole face left a deep impression on the memory. The forehead bulged out into a double prominence, with a vale between; the nose came boldly forth in an irregular curve, and its bridge was of more than a finger's breadth; the eyebrows were deep and shaggy, and the eyes glowed ...
— The Snow Image • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... of economy. I did not speak to him. He trod the deck of that decadent British ship with a scornful foot while his breast (and to a large extent his stomach, too) appeared expanded by the consciousness of a superior destiny. Later I could observe the same truculent bearing, touched with the racial grotesqueness, in the men of the Landwehr corps, that passed through Cracow to reinforce the Austrian army in Eastern Galicia. Indeed, the haughty passenger might very well have been, most probably was, an officer of the Landwehr; and perhaps those ...
— Notes on Life and Letters • Joseph Conrad

... thing must be one of the Alpha Centaurians, for in its alien grotesqueness the figure was utterly dissimilar to anything ever seen ...
— Astounding Stories, May, 1931 • Various

... chairman's seat the actor kept a corner of one eye on Ramsey and as the hymn's last line rolled away he stood up. She had not sung, but neither had she laughed. No one could have seen the moment's huge grotesqueness larger, yet to the relief of many she had kept her poise. In her mind was the bishop, overhead in the texas, consciously imperilling his life to save her brother's soul, and in the face of all drolleries ...
— Gideon's Band - A Tale of the Mississippi • George W. Cable

... passed a corner of the house to another garden more ancient in aspect, and in some things quaint even to grotesqueness, she was in front of a portion of the house which indicated a far statelier past—closed and done with, like the rooms within those shuttered windows. The inhabited wing she had left looked like the dwelling of a yeoman farming his own land; nor did this appearance greatly belie the ...
— St. George and St. Michael • George MacDonald

... biologists, in fact, were fast nearing the conception of a God who was both personal and material, but who could not be made to square with pantheistic notions inasmuch as no provision was made for the inorganic world; and, indeed, they seem to have become alarmed at the grotesqueness of the position in which they must ere long have found themselves, for in the autumn of 1879 the boom collapsed, and thenceforth the leading reviews and magazines have known protoplasm no more. About the same time ...
— Luck or Cunning? • Samuel Butler

... had burned it: superstition was a desperate thing for retaining life, and, as the brain weakened, might conceivably reassert itself. Christianity was both wild and dull, he told himself, wild because of its obvious grotesqueness and impossibility, and dull because it was so utterly apart from the exhilarating stream of human life; it crept dustily about still, he knew, in little dark churches here and there; it screamed with hysterical sentimentality ...
— Lord of the World • Robert Hugh Benson

... little stupidly, Cobb thought, and suddenly smiled. He was bulky to the point of grotesqueness, with a huge white torpid face and a hypochondriac stoop of the shoulders, and the hand that traveled over his waistcoat, from pocket to pocket, looked as if it had been shaped ...
— The Second Class Passenger • Perceval Gibbon

... some great artist, a lover of contrasts, an inexorable logician, whose invisible hand traces human character unvaryingly, and whose mournful irony unfailingly depicts side by side, in strong relief, the grotesqueness of folly and the seriousness of death. How many perished on account of this misery? Probably more than a ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 4 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 3 (of 3) • Hippolyte A. Taine

... cap common on bulls, the Assyrian arrangement of hair, Assyrian earrings, and wings nearly like those of the ordinary winged bull or lion. [PLATE CXLVI., Fig. 2.] The figures near the lions were mythic, and exhibited somewhat more than usual grotesqueness, as we learn from the representations of ...
— The Seven Great Monarchies Of The Ancient Eastern World, Vol 2. (of 7): Assyria • George Rawlinson



Words linked to "Grotesqueness" :   ugliness, grotesquery, grotesque, grotesquerie



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