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Idiom   /ˈɪdiəm/   Listen
Idiom

noun
1.
A manner of speaking that is natural to native speakers of a language.  Synonym: parlance.
2.
The usage or vocabulary that is characteristic of a specific group of people.  Synonyms: accent, dialect.  "He has a strong German accent" , "It has been said that a language is a dialect with an army and navy"
3.
The style of a particular artist or school or movement.  Synonym: artistic style.
4.
An expression whose meanings cannot be inferred from the meanings of the words that make it up.  Synonyms: idiomatic expression, phrasal idiom, phrase, set phrase.



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"Idiom" Quotes from Famous Books



... as partners in the labours of harvest. In my fifteenth autumn, my partner was a bewitching creature, a year younger than myself. My scarcity of English denies me the power of doing her justice in that language, but you know the Scottish idiom: she was a "bonnie, sweet, sonsie lass." In short, she, altogether unwittingly to herself, initiated me in that delicious passion, which, in spite of acid disappointment, gin-horse prudence, and bookworm ...
— The Complete Works of Robert Burns: Containing his Poems, Songs, and Correspondence. • Robert Burns and Allan Cunningham

... said, not with a broad accent, but with a subdued trace of Irish in the inflection and idiom. ...
— Duffels • Edward Eggleston

... tiresome and difficult a Piece of Work it is to translate, nor how little valued in the World. My Experience has convinced me, that 'tis more troublesome and teazing than to write and invent at once. The Idiom of the Language out of which one translates, runs so in the Head, that 'tis next to impossible not to fall frequently into it. And the more bald and incorrect the Stile of the Original is, the more shall that of the Translation ...
— Franco-Gallia • Francis Hotoman

... for simplicity and clearness among all literatures. Besides, he compares with the French writers of the middle ages in his disregard of "style." It is true, he handles with ease Hebrew and Aramaic, or, rather, the rabbinical idiom, which is a mixture of the two. But he is not a writer in the true sense of the word. His language is simple and somewhat careless, and his writing lacks all traces of ...
— Rashi • Maurice Liber

... themselves a special language borrowed from the conversation of the studios, the jargon of behind the scenes, and the discussions of the editor's room. All the eclecticisms of style are met with in this unheard of idiom, in which apocalyptic phrases jostle cock and bull stories, in which the rusticity of a popular saying is wedded to extravagant periods from the same mold in which Cyrano de Bergerac cast his tirades; ...
— Bohemians of the Latin Quarter • Henry Murger

... philosophers themselves as philosophistes. He would have designated them as literators, but few exotic words will circulate; new words must be the coinage of our own language to blend with the vernacular idiom. Many new words are still wanted. We have no word by which we could translate the otium of the Latins, the dillettante of the Italians, the alembique of the French, as an epithet to describe that sublimated ingenuity ...
— Curiosities of Literature, Vol. 3 (of 3) • Isaac D'Israeli

... thin, zis crowd," said the violinist, who took pride in his mastery of idiom. "Zen, when zere remains but a small few, I play for you. You sit zere, in ze leetle garden of flowers." He indicated the secluded seat near the stairway, where she had sat with Ban on the occasion of her first visit to The House With Three Eyes. ...
— Success - A Novel • Samuel Hopkins Adams

... safely applied to the work of Mr. Dakyns. An accomplished Greek scholar, for many years a careful and sympathetic student of Xenophon, and possessing a rare mastery of English idiom, he was unusually well equipped for the work of a translator. And his version will, as I venture to think, be found to satisfy those requirements of an effective translation which Professor Jowett laid down. It is faithful ...
— Cyropaedia - The Education Of Cyrus • Xenophon

... such an imputation would proceed from a friend or an enemy. The very nature of language guides us almost infallibly in forming a judgement of this nature; and as every tongue possesses one set of words which are taken in a good sense, and another in the opposite, the least acquaintance with the idiom suffices, without any reasoning, to direct us in collecting and arranging the estimable or blameable qualities of men. The only object of reasoning is to discover the circumstances on both sides, which are common to these qualities; to ...
— An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals • David Hume

... sitting on chairs, begins to fidget, and shows signs of a desire to gather up his feet into the seat and nurse them. At last drowsiness overtakes him. His eyes are open, but his mind is asleep, and I may do as I please with grammar and idiom: even when I yawn, he omits to snap his fingers and lets the devil skip down my throat. When he awakes he suggests that it is time to stop, and asks leave for the next day, as he has to renew his sacred thread. Poor old Ragunath! I fear he has gone long since to the burning ground on the ...
— Behind the Bungalow • EHA

... assured fundamentals the next change will not affect. What folly, then, to dream of mapping out our minds in however general terms, of providing for the endless mysteries of the future a terminology and an idiom! We follow the vein, we mine and accumulate our treasure, but who can tell which way the vein may trend? Language is the nourishment of the thought of man, that serves only as it undergoes metabolism, ...
— A Modern Utopia • H. G. Wells

... of the thirteen concepts that our sentence happens to embody may not only be expressed in different form but that they may be differently grouped among themselves; that some among them may be dispensed with; and that other concepts, not considered worth expressing in English idiom, may be treated as absolutely indispensable to the intelligible rendering of the proposition. First as to a different method of handling such concepts as we have found expressed in the English sentence. If we turn to German, we find that in the equivalent sentence (Der Bauer ...
— Language - An Introduction to the Study of Speech • Edward Sapir

... was no need to be so literal," returned Mrs. Challoner, reprovingly; for she was a gentlewoman of the old school, and nothing grieved her more than slipshod English or any idiom or idiotcy of modern parlance in the mouths of her bright young daughters: to speak of any young man except Dick without the ceremonious prefix was a heinous misdemeanor in her eyes. Dulce would occasionally trespass, and was always rebuked ...
— Not Like Other Girls • Rosa N. Carey

... all! But the sensation remained; there, I suppose, you have an odd case of a transference of something that was happening in the brain to the extremities. My feet were quite warm to the palm of my hand, but to my sense they were frozen. But what a testimony to the fitness of the American idiom, "cold feet," as signifying a depressed and desponding mood! But, somehow or other, the tale was finished and the "notion" was at last out of my head. I have gone into all this detail about "A Fragment of Life" because I have been assured in many quarters that it is the best thing that ...
— The House of Souls • Arthur Machen

... pewee (Contopus virens), the Tl[)a]niw[)a] or mythic hawk, the Gul[)i][']sgul[)i]['] or great crested flycatcher (Myiarchus crinitus), the Ts[^u]ts[^u] or martin (Progne subis), and the A[']nig[^a]sta[']ya or chimney swift (Chaetura pelasgia). In the idiom of the formulas it is said that these "have just come and are sticking to them" (the players), the same word (dan[^u]tsg[^u][']lani'ga) being used to express the devoted attention of a lover to his mistress. ...
— The Sacred Formulas of the Cherokees • James Mooney

... great epoch of the partition of 843. Rustic Roman, the Romance language, prevailed in Western France; the people of the country of Vaud, of the Valais, of the Engadine valley, and of a few other cantons, still retain to-day manifest vestiges of this idiom. ...
— Voltaire's Philosophical Dictionary • Voltaire

... made him think suddenly of Gideon Vetch. Was that the secret of the Governor's irresistible magnetism, of his meteoric rise into power? He embodied the modern fetish—success; he was, in the lively idiom of the younger set,—personified "pep." After all, if the old order crumbled, was it not because of its own weakness? Was not the fact of its decay the sign of some secret disintegration, of rottenness at the core? And if the new spirit could ...
— One Man in His Time • Ellen Glasgow

... offices, the place in the Seal-office, or even the humbler position of mace-bearer to his Holiness. When my brethren see, moreover, that I force from them no pension nor moneys, not even a white farthing, that I even preach to them without wage, verily for the love of Heaven, as your idiom hath it, when they see that I live pure and lonely, then they will listen to me. Perchance their hearts will be touched and their eyes opened." His face shone with wan radiance. That was, indeed, the want, he felt sure. No Jew had ever stood before ...
— Dreamers of the Ghetto • I. Zangwill

... near intercourse he thus had with some of the noblest and highest in rank, he again began to possess great influence in the city. The work which he set himself to do was to compose and translate philosophical dialogues and to render logical and physical terms into the Roman idiom. For he it was, as it is said, who first or principally gave Latin names to technical Greek terms, which, either by metaphors or other means of accommodation, he succeeded in making intelligible to the Romans. For his recreation, he exercised his dexterity in poetry, and when he was set to ...
— The Boys' and Girls' Plutarch - Being Parts of The "Lives" of Plutarch • Plutarch

... against the Presbyterians, of the government of the English Church by bishops. No work of equal dignity and scope had yet been published in English prose. It was written in sonorous, stately and somewhat involved periods, in a Latin rather than an English idiom, and it influenced strongly the diction of later writers, such as Milton and Sir Thomas Browne. Had the Ecclesiastical Polity been written one hundred, or perhaps even fifty, {91} years earlier, it would doubtless have been written ...
— Brief History of English and American Literature • Henry A. Beers

... promulgated a decree to the effect that, whereas the divine art of printing had been abused for the sake of lucre and whereas by this means even Christ's books, missals and other works on religion, were thumbed by the vulgar, and whereas the German idiom was too poor to express such mysteries, and common persons too ignorant to understand them, therefore every work translated into German must be approved by the doctors of the university of ...
— The Age of the Reformation • Preserved Smith

... (still preserved at Bivar, the hero's birth-place,) bears the date of 1207, or at latest 1307, for there is some obscurity in the writing. Its learned editor, Sanchez, has been led by the peculiarities of its orthography, metre, and idiom, to refer its composition to as early a date as 1153. (Coleccion de Poesias Castellanas anteriores al Siglo XV. (Madrid ...
— History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella V1 • William H. Prescott

... from Soudan or Abyssinia who had fallen into the hands of the natives of an archipelago of the Pacific, it might be that he could speak English or one or two words of the European languages which Godfrey understood. But it was soon apparent that the unhappy man only used an idiom that was absolutely incomprehensible—probably the language of the aborigines among whom he had doubtless arrived when very young. In fact, Godfrey had immediately interrogated him in English, and had obtained no reply. He then made him understand by signs, ...
— Godfrey Morgan - A Californian Mystery • Jules Verne

... HERMANN before I read either THE MESSIAH or the odes. He flattered himself that some time or other his dramatic poems would be known in England. He had not heard of Cowper. He thought that Voss in his translation of THE ILIAD had done violence to the idiom of the Germans, and had sacrificed it to the Greeks, not remembering sufficiently that each language has its particular spirit and genius.[231] He said Lessing was the first of their dramatic writers. I complained of NATHAN as tedious. He said there was not ...
— The Prose Works of William Wordsworth • William Wordsworth

... recent translation, likewise, of Schiller's History of the Thirty Years' War diminished the motives thereto. In the translation I endeavoured to render my Author literally wherever I was not prevented by absolute differences of idiom; but I am conscious that in two or three short passages I have been guilty of dilating the original; and, from anxiety to give the full meaning, have weakened the force. In the metre I have availed myself of ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge - Vol I and II • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... his rifle, sticking muzzle-down in the mud a little behind and to the right of the jeep, and swore briefly in the local Fourth Level idiom, for Verkan Vall was a man who loved good weapons, be they sigma-ray needlers, neutron-disruption blasters, or the solid-missile projectors of the lower levels. By this time, he was feeling considerable pain from the claw-wounds he had received. He peeled ...
— Police Operation • H. Beam Piper

... run in grooves, so that only certain forms in certain combinations will ever suggest themselves to a given designer. Every writer's style, too, however varied within limits, is single and monotonous compared with the ideal possibilities of expression. Genius at every moment is confined to the idiom it ...
— The Life of Reason • George Santayana

... Mignon's refusal to go on with his interrogations as to the cause of the enmity made them, they said, suspect that, knowing he had reached the end of Ashtaroth's classical knowledge, he felt it useless to try to continue the dialogue in the Ciceronian idiom. Moreover, it was well known that only a few days before all Urbain's worst enemies had met in conclave in the village of Puidardane; and besides, how stupidly Mignon had shown his hand by mentioning Gaufredi, ...
— Celebrated Crimes, Complete • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... the case with our present Gospel. Many of the quotations in it from the Old Testament are made directly from the Septuagint and not from the Hebrew. There are turns of language which have the stamp of an original Greek idiom and could not have come in through translation. But, without going into this question as to the original language of the first Gospel, a shorter method will be to ask whether it can have been an original document at all? The work to which Papias referred ...
— The Gospels in the Second Century - An Examination of the Critical Part of a Work - Entitled 'Supernatural Religion' • William Sanday

... loco?" The Old Cattleman's face offered full hint of his amazement as he repeated in the idiom of his day and kind the substance of ...
— Wolfville Days • Alfred Henry Lewis

... to its isolated position, a thousand miles from the sea-coast, it is perhaps the most backward of all the South American capitals. Although under Spanish rule for three hundred years, the natives still retain the old Indian language and the Guarani idiom is spoken by all. ...
— Through Five Republics on Horseback • G. Whitfield Ray

... there. She had a bugbear; Slang. Could not endure the smart technicalities current; their multitude did not overpower her distaste; she called them "jargon"—"slang" was too coarse a word for her to apply to slang: she excluded many a good "racy idiom" along with the real offenders; and monosyllables in general ran some risk of' having to show their passports. If this was pedantry, it went no further; she was open, free, and youthful with her young pupils; and had the art to put herself on their level: often, when they were quite young, she ...
— Hard Cash • Charles Reade

... complain of the style of your Excellency's Secretary, who, perhaps from his ignorance of the idiom of the Spanish language, cannot express himself with decency—his soul not having been ...
— Narrative of Services in the Liberation of Chili, Peru and Brazil, - from Spanish and Portuguese Domination, Volume 1 • Thomas Cochrane, Tenth Earl of Dundonald

... in the idiom of the professionals, he "raised his plant," and the burglar's kit manufactured in the Connecticut State Prison did what Stoneman considered yeoman service. With all his art and cunning, justice would not be cajoled by him, but weighed him in her balance, ...
— Bidwell's Travels, from Wall Street to London Prison - Fifteen Years in Solitude • Austin Biron Bidwell

... my friend in the expressive Provencal idiom, rehabilitating the creature so libelled by ...
— Social Life in the Insect World • J. H. Fabre

... current to swell the volume of the Orinoco,—we shall observe, at distant intervals upon the plain, irregular groups of palm-trees surmounting the wavy level of the grass. These isolated clumps or groves, called matas in the provincial idiom, form the landmarks of the Venezuelan Plains; and in the neighborhood of each we shall find the hato or dwelling of a Llanero. The building, we shall find in every case, is a roughly-constructed hut, consisting of a floor raised a couple of feet above the ...
— Atlantic Monthly Vol. 3, No. 16, February, 1859 • Various

... Ante-Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, yet all translations have been revised in accordance with the best critical texts available. The aim in the revision has been accuracy and closeness to the original without too gross violation of the English idiom, and with exactness in the rendering of ecclesiastical and theological technical terms. Originality is hardly to be expected in such a work ...
— A Source Book for Ancient Church History • Joseph Cullen Ayer, Jr., Ph.D.

... inhabitants of Greece, driven out by the Dorians. By the sixth century B. C. the Greek colonies were well established on the west and south-west coasts of Asia Minor, and had evolved their own characteristic architectural idiom in the Ionic order and its column, more slender than the Doric, with its moulded base and its strange characteristic capital, unsuitable from the constructional point of view in stone or marble, yet ultimately attaining the exquisite beauty of line and modelling of the capitals ...
— The Legacy of Greece • Various

... Mark's, the magnificent mansion and hospital of the knights of St. James, where the ministers of justice attempting to seize them were repulsed by force of arms; nevertheless, all of a sudden, and I know not how, everything was hushed up. At this time they had a Count, a fellow who spoke the Castilian idiom with as much purity as if he had been a native of Toledo; he was acquainted with all the ports of Spain, and all the difficult and broken ground of the provinces. He knew the exact strength of every city, and who were ...
— The Zincali - An Account of the Gypsies of Spain • George Borrow

... said truthfully. The Tr'en idiom was like the Earthly one; and certainly a planet had no name. People attached names to it, that was all. It ...
— Lost in Translation • Larry M. Harris

... that they will have to learn an absolutely new and an unheard-of language if they would speak with Behmen and have Behmen speak with them. For Behmen's books are written neither in German nor in English of any age or idiom, but in the most original and uncouth Behmenese. Like John Bunyan, but never with John Bunyan's literary grace, Behmen will borrow, now a Latin word or phrase from his reading of learned authors, or, more often, ...
— Jacob Behmen - an appreciation • Alexander Whyte

... authority[42] who holds that, owing to the monosyllabic character of the Chinese language and to the further disadvantage that it lacks wholly or partly several consonants,[43] it will be practically impossible, as the Japanese have already found, to apply the new alphabet to the traditional literary idiom. Neither can it be employed for the needs of education, journalism, of the administration, or for telegraphing. It will, however, be of great value for elementary instruction and for postal correspondence. It is ...
— The Inside Story Of The Peace Conference • Emile Joseph Dillon

... argument, which those who are blinded by prejudice frequently employ against Esperanto, that is to say, that on account of the differences in pronunciation and national idiom, Esperantists of various countries would not be able to understand the Esperanto of a foreigner, was effectually silenced. From the first moment that the English set foot on French soil to the final adieux, no difficulty was experienced, ...
— The Esperantist, Vol. 1, No. 1 • Various

... variant on "Your Excellency;" and there is something really pathetic in the Baboo's benediction, "You have been very good to us, and may Almighty God give you tit for tat." But to deride these errors of idiom scarcely lies in the mouth of an Englishman. A friend of mine, wishing to express his opinion that a Frenchman was an idiot, told him that he was a "cretonne." Lord R——, preaching at the French ...
— Collections and Recollections • George William Erskine Russell

... The Atlanta Journal (September 19, 1928) says, "The collection and preservation of mountain folk music is a singularly gracious work and one of rare value to history. Collected in its natural environment, it is perforce authentic both in tune and idiom, and sincere collectors are not content with this alone—they complete the record by tracing the songs to their origins. Such is a most gracious work and one which lovers of beauty, whether music or in legend or in local history, throughout the South, ...
— Blue Ridge Country • Jean Thomas

... great pleasure, a very great pleasure, Miss Messiter," he thanked her warmly, his Western idiom sloughed with his villainy for the moment. "It has been a good many months since I have heard any decent music. With your permission ...
— Wyoming, a Story of the Outdoor West • William MacLeod Raine

... Monsieur, with what mixed feelings I descend next morning. On the one 'and, I must keep the sharp look-out for my uncle, for 'im I must avoid till he shall have—what do you say in your idiom? Yes, I have it—simmered down and tucked in his shirt. On the other 'and, I must watch for my lady of the parrot. I count the minutes ...
— The Man Upstairs and Other Stories • P. G. Wodehouse

... scholastic term for an argument not latent merely, or merely having the office of sustaining a truth, but urged as an objection, having the polemic office of contradicting an opponent) is in Shakespeare's idiom, when viewed as against a substantial argument, ...
— The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. 1 (2 vols) • Thomas De Quincey

... fecundity in their art was equal, and I ventured to assert the great artistic superiority of Gilbert. "You are right!" cried my enthusiastic friend, with more judgment of art than accuracy of English idiom; "Gilbert cocks Dore into ...
— The History of "Punch" • M. H. Spielmann

... prilojite, signifying, literally, to put the hand to it. It may be remarked, however, that this is a form of expression even in our own country; although there is certainly no trace of the singular custom in question having ever prevailed among our ancestors. Whatever may be the fact as to the Russian idiom, our own undoubtedly refers merely to the application of the hand with the pen in it. Each chief appears to be intimately acquainted with the peculiarities ...
— John Rutherford, the White Chief • George Lillie Craik

... been given above in the original do, to the best of my judgment, clearly refer to three different species of food; and I would appeal to the candid opinion of any competent Greek scholar, whether, according to the idiom of that language, the second part of it is so expressed, as to connect it with, and make it explanatory of, the first. We want, for this purpose, a relative, either with or without [Greek: esti]; and the change of gender in haematia seems perfectly unaccountable if it is intended to ...
— Notes & Queries, No. 19, Saturday, March 9, 1850 • Various

... of my objection is practically admitted in the fullest way by Dr. Lightfoot himself. "Tischendorf's words," he says, "are 'und deshalb, sagen sie, habe der Herr den Ausspruch gethan.' He might have spared the 'sagen sie,' because the German idiom 'habe' enables him to express the main fact that the words were not Irenaeus's own without this addition." Writing of a brother apologist of course he apologetically adds: "But he has not altered ...
— A Reply to Dr. Lightfoot's Essays • Walter R. Cassels

... irrational and emotional conceptions, which have no existence, and the fiction of which has no object except to control feminine exuberances; but among ourselves, and in our books, we have an entirely different vocabulary and I may also say, idiom. "Love" them becomes "the anticipation of benefits"; "duty" becomes "necessity" or "fitness"; and other words are correspondingly transmuted. Moreover, among Women, we use language implying the utmost deference for their Sex; and they fully believe that the Chief Circle Himself is not more devoutly ...
— Flatland • Edwin A. Abbott

... literature existed. During the first centuries of writing in Japan, the spoken and written language was identical, but with the study of the Chinese literature and the composition of native works almost exclusively in that language, there grew up differences between the colloquial and literary idiom, and the infusion of Chinese words steadily increased. In writing, the Chinese characters occupy the most important place. But all those words which express the wants, feelings, and concerns of everyday life, all that is deepest ...
— Handbook of Universal Literature - From The Best and Latest Authorities • Anne C. Lynch Botta

... appear to have the very idiom and genius of the Hebrew. Their words and sentences are expressive, concise, emphatical, sonorous and bold; and often both the letters and signification are synonymous with the Hebrew language." Of these Mr. Adair ...
— Chronicles of Border Warfare • Alexander Scott Withers

... again."—"These things come, with time, to be habitual."—"By which these people come to be either scattered or destroyed."—"Which alone could pretend to contest it with them:" (upon which phrase he remarks, "It refers to nothing here:") and the following graceful idiom in some ...
— Memoirs of the Life of the Rt. Hon. Richard Brinsley Sheridan V1 • Thomas Moore

... kindness for any unpopular person, and among the rest, for Lord Braxfield, than to give way to perfect raptures of moral indignation against his abstract vices. He was the last judge on the Scots bench to employ the pure Scots idiom. His opinions, thus given in Doric, and conceived in a lively, rugged, conversational style, were full of point and authority. Out of the bar, or off the bench, he was a convivial man, a lover of wine, and one who "shone perculiarly" at tavern meetings. He has left behind ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition - Vol. 2 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... which Petronius wrote in the middle of the first century of our era. The characters in his story are Greeks, and the language which they speak is Latin, but they introduce into it a great many Greek words, and now and then a Greek idiom ...
— The Common People of Ancient Rome - Studies of Roman Life and Literature • Frank Frost Abbott

... familiar forms of factory-made humour. Now the English people are apt to turn away from the whole field of slang. In the first place it puzzles them—they don't know whether each particular word or phrase is a sort of idiom already known to Americans, or something (as with O. Henry) never said before and to be analysed for its own sake. The result is that with the English public the great mass of American slang writing (genius apart) doesn't ...
— My Discovery of England • Stephen Leacock

... well known in Tuscany, and forms the subject of a satirical narrative ("Il Sortilegio") by Giusti, a modern Tuscan poet, of true fire and genius, who has lashed the vices of his country in verses remarkable for point, idiom, and power. According to him, the method of divination resorted to in this case was as follows:—The sorcerer who invented it ordered his dupes to procure, either at dawn or twilight, ninety dry beans, called ceci, and upon each of these to write one of the ninety numbers drawn in the ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 5, No. 28, February, 1860 • Various

... Sand soon had reason to think that the convoy would soon reach its destination. Though he did not understand the language employed by the chiefs of the caravan, sometimes Arab, sometimes the African idiom, he remarked that the name of an important market of that region was often pronounced. It was the name Kazounde, and he knew that a very great trade in slaves was carried on there. He was then naturally led to believe that there the ...
— Dick Sand - A Captain at Fifteen • Jules Verne

... is an Anglicism, which has become an idiom in all languages, so gracefully does it depict the nuptial season which is so fugitive, and during which life is nothing but sweetness and rapture; the expression survives as illusions and errors survive, for it contains the most odious of falsehoods. If this season ...
— The Physiology of Marriage, Part I. • Honore de Balzac

... he been disposed to mysticize and to shroud himself in "impenetrable darkness," he would have found it difficult to indulge that propensity in French. Thanks to the strict rgime and happy limitations of that idiom, the French is not a language in which philosophy can hide itself. It is a tight-fitting coat, which shows the exact form, or want of form, of the thought it clothes, without pad or fold to simulate fulness or to veil defects. ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. II, No. 8, June 1858 • Various

... language which they do not properly understand. In the early periods of communication between the countries, when they stood in a hostile relation to each other, and even long afterwards, it was not surprising that "the wild Irishman" who expressed himself with difficulty, and often impressed the idiom of his own language upon one with which he was not familiar, should incur, in the opinion of those who were strongly prejudiced against him, the character of making the bulls and blunders attributed to him. ...
— The Ned M'Keown Stories - Traits And Stories Of The Irish Peasantry, The Works of - William Carleton, Volume Three • William Carleton

... ornament.[5] Instead of unfamiliar terms, he uses "the pure and open words of the language of this people."[6] In connection with the translation of the Bible he lays down the principle that Latin must give way to English idiom.[7] For all these things Aelfric has definite reasons. Keeping always in mind a clear conception of the nature of his audience, he does whatever seems to him necessary to make his work attractive and, consequently, profitable. Preparing his Grammar for "tender youths," though ...
— Early Theories of Translation • Flora Ross Amos

... judge among the nations;" which means: He will preach among the nations. The word found in this passage is evidently the same. And in the New Testament this phrase, originally Hebrew, is very much in vogue, especially in Paul's writings, who uses the Hebrew idiom ...
— Commentary on Genesis, Vol. II - Luther on Sin and the Flood • Martin Luther

... other, sir, may be both charitably and accurately described in your native idiom as a daughter ...
— Fanny's First Play • George Bernard Shaw

... in various departments of literature. Not only their talents, but also their nations and dialects were so various, that our conversation resembled the confusion of tongues at Babel. We had the Irish brogue, the Scotch accent, and foreign idiom, twanged off by the most discordant vociferation; for, as they all spoke together, no man had any chance to be heard, unless he could bawl louder than his fellows. It must be owned, however, there was nothing pedantic in their discourse; they carefully ...
— The Expedition of Humphry Clinker • Tobias Smollett

... develop a noble idiom will count in the final result, as the writers of early English made possible the language of the Bible, Shakespeare, and Milton. We are perfecting a medium to be used as long as Chinese ideographs have been. It will no doubt, like the Chinese language, record in the end massive and classical treatises, ...
— The Art Of The Moving Picture • Vachel Lindsay

... to!" cried the Arab with the bound of a wild beast, springing up, flashing the blade out, and uttering the taunt, which in his own idiom was but a ...
— For Fortune and Glory - A Story of the Soudan War • Lewis Hough

... appearance in the fourteenth century of the first great modern English poet, Chaucer. To the present day, however, the three dialects, and subdivisions of them, are easily distinguishable in colloquial use; the common idiom of such regions as Yorkshire and Cornwall is decidedly different from that of London or indeed any ...
— A History of English Literature • Robert Huntington Fletcher

... robot to furnish him with a cold beer and another cigar. Erskyll was drumming an impatient devil's tattoo with his fingernails on the gold-encrusted table in front of him. Lanze Degbrend began interpolating sarcastic comments. And finally, Pyairr Ravney, who came from Lugaluru, reverted to the idiom of his ...
— A Slave is a Slave • Henry Beam Piper

... is an answer to the following anonymous letter, sent to Mr. Walpole by Miss Hannah More, ridiculing the prevailing adoption of French idioms into the English language. There is not in this satirical epistle one French word nor one English idiom:— ...
— Letters of Horace Walpole, V4 • Horace Walpole

... in the University of Leyden. In his inaugural oration on The Dignity and Utility of the Hebrew Tongue, he puts himself on record in favour of the Divine origin and miraculous purity of that language. "Who," he says, "can call in question the fact that the Hebrew idiom is coeval with the world itself, save such as seek to win vainglory for ...
— History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom • Andrew Dickson White

... of coupling a man and woman together as partners in the labors of the harvest. In my fifteenth summer my partner was a bewitching creature, a year younger than myself. My scarcity of English denies me the power of doing her justice in that language, but you know the Scottish idiom. She was a bonnie, sweet, sonsie lass. In short, she, altogether unwittingly to herself, initiated me in that delicious passion, which in spite of acid disappointment, gin-house prudence, and book-worm philosophy, I hold to ...
— Stories of Authors, British and American • Edwin Watts Chubb

... fear not."[1] "Quit yourselves like men; be strong."[2] "O man greatly beloved, fear not! Peace be unto thee! Be strong, yea, be Strong."[3] When, at some occasional test, dismay or self-pity took hold of me I formed a habit of saying to myself, in our expressive American idiom: "This is your special stunt. It's up to you to do this thing just as if you had all the facilities. Go at it boldly, and you'll find unexpected forces closing round you and ...
— The Conquest of Fear • Basil King

... telling where the speaker was when the Lord led him, and to make the whole a continuous expression of the one fact—'As for me, the Lord hath led me in the way to the house of my master's brethren.' The literal rendering is, 'I in the way, Jehovah led me.' No doubt the Hebrew idiom admits of the 'I' being thus emphatically premised, and then repeated as 'me' after the verb, and possibly no more is to be made of the words than that. But the fuller and more impressive meaning is possible, ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers • Alexander Maclaren

... distinguish the birth and merit of Matthew of Montmorency; the famous Simon of Montfort, the scourge of the Albigeois; and a valiant noble, Jeffrey of Villehardouin, [30] marshal of Champagne, [31] who has condescended, in the rude idiom of his age and country, [32] to write or dictate [33] an original narrative of the councils and actions in which he bore a memorable part. At the same time, Baldwin, count of Flanders, who had married the sister of Thibaut, assumed the cross ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 6 • Edward Gibbon

... Journal of Small Things (MELROSE), sets before us with, it might seem, almost too deliberate simplicity of idiom little scenes and remembered reflections of her days in France since the July of the terrible year. An American to whom France has come to be her adopted and most tenderly loved foster-country, she tells of little things, chiefly sad little things, seen in the hospitals ...
— Punch, or The London Charivari, Vol. 152, February 21st, 1917 • Various

... impossible for people to communicate when first brought together, but the vocabularies are sufficiently alike, and the morphology of the dialects is so similar that it is the task of only a short time for a person conversant with one idiom to acquire a speaking and understanding knowledge of any other in this region. It is important to note that these dialects belong to the Philippine group, and there seems to be very little evidence of Chinese influence [27] either in structure ...
— The Tinguian - Social, Religious, and Economic Life of a Philippine Tribe • Fay-Cooper Cole

... is quite well versed in the Holy Scriptures, having been for many years a Methodist preacher among his people. He uses fairly good English and freely talks in answer to questions. Without giving the questions put to him by this writer, his remarks given in the first person and as near his own idiom are as follows: ...
— Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States - From Interviews with Former Slaves - Maryland Narratives • Works Projects Administration

... much to say on the points of resemblance between the Goidelic and Brythonic branches, and though no one who studies both can fail to be struck by their affinity in vocabulary, in grammar, and even in idiom, the speakers of different branches—a Welshman and a Highlander, for instance—are no more mutually intelligible than an Englishman and a German would be, if as much so. The three sets of Gaels, however, can understand one another with considerable difficulty, and Irish priests have been known ...
— A Handbook of the Cornish Language - chiefly in its latest stages with some account of its history and literature • Henry Jenner

... battle-axes and had lost some of his red blood. There he had acquired a full line of Fifth Avenue dialect and conversation with trills and grace notes from France and Italy. He had been slowly recovering from that trouble for a year or so when I met him. Now and then a good, strong, native idiom burst ...
— 'Charge It' - Keeping Up With Harry • Irving Bacheller

... nothing the matter," declared the mother, using an effective German idiom. "Jennie has gone walking with him once or twice. He has called here at the house. What is there now in that for the people to talk about? Can't the girl ...
— Jennie Gerhardt - A Novel • Theodore Dreiser

... eulogy for Graetz's rendering, "Her arrows are fiery arrows," nor can the Hebrew easily mean it. "The flashes thereof are flashes of fire," is the best translation possible of the Hebrew line. There is nothing Greek in the comparison of love to fire, for fire is used in common Hebrew idiom to denote any powerful emotion (comp. the association of fire with jealousy ...
— The Book of Delight and Other Papers • Israel Abrahams

... from Plautus, as ein wahrer Poet, "Congruenz, und richtige innere Logik harmonische Construction" (p. 12), and finally declares (p. 22): "Interesse, Character, logischer Bau in der Zusammensetzung, Naturlichkeit der Sprache und des Witzes, Rythmus und antikes Idiom des Ausdrucks werden die Kriterien sein mussen, nach dem wir uber die Vortrefflichkeit und PlautinitAt plautinischer ...
— The Dramatic Values in Plautus • William Wallace Blancke

... fell partially into the error, but was wise enough to recognize it. Shelley, with much of Milton's intensity and somewhat too of his sublimity, could successfully follow the great stride and at the same time preserve his own idiom. Tennyson, keeping both the freedom and as much of the "continuous planetary movement" as was consistent with his themes, softened the metre—weakened it, some will say—by his decorative tendency and indulgence in only half-concealed ...
— The Principles of English Versification • Paull Franklin Baum

... out; acabo de hacerlo I have just done it (this idiom is used only with the present and imperfect of acabar); acaba por rendirse ...
— Heath's Modern Language Series: Mariucha • Benito Perez Galdos

... the Middle Ages, the creator of his nation's poetry, and the most original of all writers, and the most concise. But he blamed him for obscurity, forced and unnatural turns of expression, and barbarous licenses of idiom. The "Paradise" seemed to him tedious, as a whole, and much of the "Purgatory" heavy. Hallam repeated, if he did not originate that nice bit of discernment, that in his "Paradise" Dante uses only three leading ideas—light, music, and motion. Then came Macaulay's essay "Milton," in the Edinburgh ...
— A History of English Romanticism in the Nineteenth Century • Henry A. Beers

... accomplishment of a task so important in the saving of civilization from the clutches of Prussian tyranny was in some degree inhibited, unhappily, by a complete absence of cordial relations between the man whom fate had placed over us and ourselves. Or, to use the vulgar American idiom, B. and I and Mr. A. didn't get on well. We were in fundamental disagreement as to the attitude which we, Americans, should uphold toward the poilus in whose behalf we had volunteered assistance, Mr. A. maintaining ...
— The Enormous Room • Edward Estlin Cummings

... emotional sympathy for self is as true a part of art as sympathy for others; and a prejudice in favor of the good and bad of one personality against the virtue of many personalities. It may be that when a poet or a whistler becomes conscious that he is in the easy path of any particular idiom,—that he is helplessly prejudiced in favor of any particular means of expression,—that his manner can be catalogued as modern or classic,—that he favors a contrapuntal groove, a sound-coloring one, a sensuous one, a successful one, or a melodious ...
— Essays Before a Sonata • Charles Ives

... rhythm—still it is worth while to note that the force of the expression which the Psalmist employs is correctly given in the margin, 'in an image'—or 'in a shadow.' The phrase sounds singular to us, but is an instance of a common enough Hebrew idiom, and is equivalent to saying—he walks in the character or likeness of a shadow, or, as we should say, he walks as a shadow. That is to say, the whole outward life and activity of every man is represented as fleeting and ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... counted them. But in China it is above all things necessary to be an ancestor, and this may lead to complications if Mr. G. S. DE MORANT, who appears to be much more at home with the French and the Oriental idiom than the English, is to be trusted. In the Claws of the Dragon (ALLEN AND UNWIN) describes the experiences of a young lady named Monique, who married the Secretary to the Chinese Embassy in Paris and was obliged, after visiting her relations-in-law, ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 159, December 22, 1920 • Various

... orator went on, I had to own that he was giving me a better account of the column than I could have got for myself out of the guide-book. He spoke first in French, with an Italian accent and occasionally an Italian idiom; then he spoke in English, and then in a German which suffered from ...
— Roman Holidays and Others • W. D. Howells

... vicissitude of nature to the use of a language that practically amounts to deafness and dumbness, never suffers his philosophical interest in them to affect his commercial efficiency; he drops them now and then a curt English phrase, or expressive Yankee idiom; he knows very well when they mean to buy and when they do not; and they equally wary and equally silent, unswayed by the glib allurements of a salesman, judge of price and quality for themselves, make their solitary offer, and stand or ...
— Suburban Sketches • W.D. Howells

... good deal damaged by low debauchery. Now for the duel I spoke about. Never did two tradesmen of the worst type, with the worst manners, the lowest pair of villains imaginable, go into partnership in a dirtier business. Their stock-in-trade consisted of the peculiar idiom of the man about town, the audacity of poverty, the cunning that comes of experience, and a special knowledge of Parisian capitalists, their origin, connections, acquaintances, and intrinsic value. This partnership of two 'dabblers' (let the Stock Exchange term pass, for it is the ...
— A Man of Business • Honore de Balzac

... the dead languages or the obsolete or obsolescent forms of thought and diction in the living language, or to denote other items of scholarly activity or apparatus to which it is applied with less aptness. So the archaic idiom of the English language is spoken of as "classic" English. Its use is imperative in all speaking and writing upon serious topics, and a facile use of it lends dignity to even the most commonplace and trivial string of talk. The newest ...
— The Theory of the Leisure Class • Thorstein Veblen

... peculiar idiom in the Scotch this is frequently conjoined with the pronoun: as, "his lane," "my lane," "their lane," i. e., "by himself," "by myself," "by themselves." "Lang ten," the ten of trumps in Scotch whist. Lassie, lassock, a little girl. ...
— Old Mortality, Complete, Illustrated • Sir Walter Scott

... The Midland dialect is a very difficult one to deal with, as it presents us with no uniform type; and, moreover, works written in this idiom are marked by Northern or Southern peculiarities, which have led many of our editors altogether astray in determining the locality of ...
— Early English Alliterative Poems - in the West-Midland Dialect of the Fourteenth Century • Various

... was wonderful to hear him talk it. No American could say that he spoke better English than Coronado, and no American surely ever spoke it so fluently. It rolled off his lips in a torrent, undefiled by a mispronunciation or a foreign idiom. And yet he had begun to learn the language after reaching the age of manhood, and had acquired it mainly during three years of exile and teaching of Spanish in the United States. His linguistic cleverness was a fair specimen of ...
— Overland • John William De Forest

... fight in the proper terms which are used at sea: and if there be any such, in another language, as that of Lucan in the third of his Pharsalia, yet I could not avail myself of it in the English; the terms of art in every tongue bearing more of the idiom of it than any other words. We hear indeed among our poets, of the thundering of guns, the smoke, the disorder, and the slaughter; but all these are common notions. And certainly, as those who, in a logical dispute, keep in general terms, would hide ...
— The Poetical Works of John Dryden, Vol I - With Life, Critical Dissertation, and Explanatory Notes • John Dryden

... insist, had nothing in common with the gipsies. The gipsies were a nation; the Comprachicos were a compound of all nations—the lees of a horrible vessel full of filthy waters. The Comprachicos had not, like the gipsies, an idiom of their own; their jargon was a promiscuous collection of idioms: all languages were mixed together in their language; they spoke a medley. Like the gipsies, they had come to be a people winding through ...
— The Man Who Laughs • Victor Hugo

... accused of having told stories against him. He also for the first time assumed such a tone of superiority in addressing me as evinced that he considered us to be completely in his power and he gave vent to several expressions of hatred towards the white people or as he termed us in the idiom of the voyagers, the French, some of whom he said had killed and eaten his uncle and two of his relations. In short, taking every circumstance of his conduct into consideration, I came to the conclusion that he would attempt to destroy us on ...
— The Journey to the Polar Sea • John Franklin

... who attempts a similar feat. Let him try to report the best conversation of a lively evening, following its course, preserving its point, differentiating sharply the traits of the participants, keeping the style, idiom, and exact words of each. Let him reject all parts of it, however diverting, of which the charm and force will evaporate with the occasion, and retain only that which will be as amusing, significant, and lively ...
— Life of Johnson - Abridged and Edited, with an Introduction by Charles Grosvenor Osgood • James Boswell

... my business," he said presently; "but from your general appearance, from bits of idiom you occasionally drop, and from the way you handled those two boes the night we met I should rather surmise that at some time or other you had been less than a thousand miles from ...
— The Mucker • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... interposed Morris Woolridge, who had been giving the native lessons in English, for he mixed with it the German idiom. ...
— Four Young Explorers - Sight-Seeing in the Tropics • Oliver Optic

... idiom that the sentence, if it has the verb be, seems awkward or affected without this ...
— An English Grammar • W. M. Baskervill and J. W. Sewell

... one, I must say." It may be that the recent agitation of his feelings had shaken Sir John's native vulgarity to the surface. Certainly he spoke now with a commonness of idiom and accent he was usually at pains to conceal. "You must have a fair nerve altogether, for all you're such a quiet-looking chap. Hadn't even the curiosity—had you?—to find out what had gone wrong; but just picked up a handy fishing-rod and strolled off to fill up the time till damages ...
— Merry-Garden and Other Stories • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... EVANS' work, whether it attracts or violently repels, there can be no question of its devastating skill. His sketches, no more than a few pages in length, contain never an idle word, and the phrases bite like vitriol. Moreover he employs an idiom that is (I conjecture) a direct transcription from native speech, which adds enormously to the effect. Understand me, not for worlds would I commend these volumes haphazard to the fastidious; I only say they ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 158, March 3rd, 1920 • Various

... the stories for publication, the aim has been to preserve, as much as possible, in vocabulary and idiom, the original folk-lore language, and to retain the conversational style of the teller of tales, in order that the sympathetic young reader may, in greater or less degree, be translated into the atmosphere of ...
— East O' the Sun and West O' the Moon • Gudrun Thorne-Thomsen

... note that I have not made the boatman say "whateffer," because he doesn't. The occasional use of the imperfect is almost his only Gaelic idiom. It is a great comfort and pleasure, when the trout do not rise, to meet a skilled and unaffected narrator of the old beliefs, old legends, as ancient as the hills that girdle and guard the loch, or as antique, at least, as man's ...
— Angling Sketches • Andrew Lang

... studied by the Semitic priests and scribes. So the fact that the tablet is written in the old Sumerian tongue proves that the story it tells had come down from a very much earlier period. This inference is not affected by certain small differences in idiom which its language presents when compared with that of Sumerian building-inscriptions. Such would naturally occur in the course of transmission, especially in a text which, as we shall see, had been employed for a practical purpose after being subjected to a process of reduction to suit it ...
— Legends Of Babylon And Egypt - In Relation To Hebrew Tradition • Leonard W. King

... him, they were probably Spaniards and, if not, they were from Genoa or Naples,—in short, were compatriots accustomed to live and eat in all latitudes just as though they were in their own little inland sea. Soon they would begin a speech in the Mediterranean idiom, a mixture of Spanish, Provencal and Italian, invented by the hybrid peoples of the African coast from Egypt to Morocco. Sometimes they would send each other presents, like those that are exchanged between tribes,—fruits from distant countries. At other times, suddenly inimical, without ...
— Mare Nostrum (Our Sea) - A Novel • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... at any moment that unwelcome, though not unfamiliar, tap on the shoulder, with the words (gratifying under quite other circumstances and from quite different lips) "I want you," might incapacitate him from prosecuting his enterprise (he expressed this idea in more homely idiom—less Latinized was his language, metaphorical indeed, yet terse); finally he had that healthy distrust of his accomplices which is essential to success in a career of crime; he thought that Sergeant Hooper ...
— The Secret of the Tower • Hope, Anthony

... from that moment, the development of their religion took another turn. In all probably this augmentation of Semitic religious influence was due to the increased numbers of the Semitic population, and at the same period the Sumero-Akkadian language began to give way to the Semitic idiom which they spoke. When at last the Semitic Babylonian language came to be used for official documents, we find that, although the non-Semitic divine names are in the main preserved, a certain number of them have been ...
— The Religion of Babylonia and Assyria • Theophilus G. Pinches

... bishops, of that of which they charged him with as great a fault for meddling with civil and secular affairs; for they not only looked upon them to form the army and to purge it of such as whom, in their idiom, they called Malignants, but really such as were loyal to the King; and also would have no Acts of Parliament to pass without their consent and approbation. Their proselytes in the laity were also heavy upon and uneasy to such as they found or conceived to have found with ...
— History Of The Mackenzies • Alexander Mackenzie

... branches of modern science, spectroscopy. "In cases of poisoning by these substances, the spectroscope often has obvious advantages over chemical methods, for minute amounts will produce a well-defined spectrum. The spectroscope 'spots' the substance, to use a police idiom, the moment the case is turned over to it. There was no poison there." He had raised his voice to emphasise the startling revelation. "Instead, I found an extraordinary amount of the substance and products of glycogen. The liver, where this substance is stored, ...
— The Dream Doctor • Arthur B. Reeve

... him as a foreigner—not by any variation from the idiom and accent of good English, but because he spoke with more caution and accuracy than if ...
— Twice Told Tales • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... southern counties, where the Germanic settlement was most dense, but they subsist as a conquered race; they till the ground in the country, and in the cities occupy themselves with manual labour. Wales and Cornwall alone, in the isle of Britain, were still places of refuge for independent Celts. The idiom and traditions of the ancient inhabitants were there preserved. In these distant retreats, at the foot of Snowdon, in the valley of St. David's, beneath the trees of Caerleon, popular singers accompany on their harps the old national poems; perhaps they even begin to chaunt those tales telling ...
— A Literary History of the English People - From the Origins to the Renaissance • Jean Jules Jusserand

... help smiling, nor could the rest, except David, who for politeness tried to be blank, and thoroughly warmed himself by the inward struggle, turning quite red. When the captain got us back to the road and "fell us out" (note the idiom!) we had calisthenics, with pushing matches that put warmth into us. And then we marched in skirmish line through low bushes for half a mile, till the captain lined us ...
— At Plattsburg • Allen French

... with concern and apprehension, that pockets are gradually falling into disuse. To use the flippant idiom of the day, they are going out! This is an alarming, as well as a lamentable fact; and one, too, strikingly illustrative of the degeneracy of modern fashions. Whether we ascribe the change to a contemptuous ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 1, September 18, 1841 • Various

... and a peculiar grin wreathed itself around his lips. "I've seen no white man here," he said. "Except myself. They call me a white man." He spoke English without a trace of the red man's clipped idiom. ...
— The Woman from Outside - [on Swan River] • Hulbert Footner

... therefore remained in the possession of the learned, that is, of the few; and among these, with the exception of Colet and More, or of the pedants who revived a Pagan worship in the gardens of the Florentine Academy, their direct influence was purely intellectual. But the language of the Hebrew, the idiom of the Hellenistic Greek, lent themselves with a curious felicity to the purposes of translation. As a mere literary monument the English version of the Bible remains the noblest example of the English tongue, while its perpetual ...
— History of the English People, Volume V (of 8) - Puritan England, 1603-1660 • John Richard Green

... Trois and Antony, the language of Boileau was safe enough; and his triumph, all-important and significant as it was, seemed neither fatal nor abominable. It was another matter with Hernani. Its success meant ruin for the Academy and destruction for the idiom of Delille and M. de Jouy; and the classicists mustered in force, and did their utmost to stay the coming wrath and arrest the impending doom. They failed of course; for they fought with a vague yet limited apprehension of the question at issue, ...
— Views and Reviews - Essays in appreciation • William Ernest Henley

... [FN211] In Arab. idiom a long hand or arm means power, a phrase not wholly unused in European languages. Chavis and Cazotte paraphrase "He who keeps his hands crossed upon his breast, shall not ...
— Supplemental Nights, Volume 1 • Richard F. Burton

... of Catwick or its neighbourhood feel they can live no longer without each other, they in local phrase "put in the banns." They then, of course, expect to have them published, or again in local idiom "thrown over the pulpit." On all such occasions, according to a very old custom, after the rector had read out the names, with the usual injunction following, from the middle compartment of the three-decker, Dixon would rise from his seat below, ...
— The Parish Clerk (1907) • Peter Hampson Ditchfield

... that these two distinguished functionaries spoke the French dialect altogether, the gallant Frenchman not having yet been enabled to master the good old Anglo-Saxon idiom.' ...
— Continental Monthly, Vol. II. July, 1862. No. 1. • Various

... also observe, that the stress which Mr. Everett lays upon the phrase "no iniquity," shows either great carelessness, or great ignorance of the idiom of the Hebrew Scriptures; because every man, familiar with those writings, knows that this expression is one of those called Hebreisms, which must be understood in a restrained sense. In proof of which, and a decisive ...
— Five Pebbles from the Brook • George Bethune English

... or am an angel, I shall acquaint myself a little further With our new land's new language, which is not — Peace to your dreams — an idiom to your liking. I'm wondering if a man may always know How old a man may be at thirty-seven; I wonder likewise if a prettier time Could be decreed for a good man to vanish Than about now for you, before you fade, And ...
— The Three Taverns • Edwin Arlington Robinson

... erre, "quickly", and the whole line reads: "Let it (my body) be delivered to it (luyla terre) quickly," the "erre" here is from the popular late Latin "iterare""iter facere". It survives in the nautical idiom "reprendre son ...
— Avril - Being Essays on the Poetry of the French Renaissance • H. Belloc

... know how many drops more I shall drink. We get so fierce and reckless about our victuals. Will it be the spirit of the old counterfeiters who used to inhabit this island entering into us?" suggested Eva, using the English-Canadian idiom ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, August, 1885 • Various

... very blue, and his hair very white. After having pump-handled Benson's arm for some time, he made an attack on Le Roi, whom he just knew by name, and inquired if he had just come de l'autre cote, meaning the other side of the Atlantic, according to a common New-York idiom; but the Vicomte not unnaturally took it to mean from the other side of the road, and gave a corresponding answer in English as felicitous as Mr. Simpson's French. Then he digressed upon Ashburner, whom he saw to be an Englishman, in so pointed a manner, ...
— The International Magazine, Volume 2, No. 2, January, 1851 • Various

... her voice was gentle, the child had caught the idiom and pronunciation of the fisherman's family; but even in that respect there was a natural refinement in the tone of her voice; and as Adam was a God-fearing man, and had brought up his sons to fear God also, no coarse language or objectionable ...
— Won from the Waves • W.H.G. Kingston

... of the Kojiki, a second work termed Nihongi or Chronicles of Japan was issued. It was prepared by imperial command and appeared in A.D. 720 in the reign of the Empress Gensho. It differs from the older book in being composed in the Chinese idiom, and in being much more tinctured with the ideas of Chinese philosophy. These two works, so nearly contemporaneous, both of them composed in so great a degree of the legendary elements of Japanese history, must be looked upon as marking a distinct ...
— Japan • David Murray

... said, noting for the first time the strong broken accent of the other and his use of French idiom. "I am a Methodist minister, spending some time at St. Ignace, and yesterday I encountered a lady, who, I believe, lives here. ...
— Ringfield - A Novel • Susie Frances Harrison

... the coffee-in-bed habit yet," laughed the lazy one, sitting up. "Also, you may make my apologies to Mrs. Blount and tell her I'll be down pronto. There; doesn't that sound as if I were getting back to the good old sage-brush idiom? Great land! I haven't heard anybody say pronto since I was ...
— The Honorable Senator Sage-Brush • Francis Lynde

... Baron Munchausen of real life and the first appearance of the work in 1785, when Raspe was certainly in England, there seems to be little difficulty in accepting his authorship as a positive fact. There is no difficulty whatever, in crediting Raspe with a sufficient mastery of English idiom to have written the book without assistance, for as early as January 1780 (since which date Raspe had resided uninterruptedly in this country) Walpole wrote to his friend Mason that "Raspe writes English much above ill and speaks it as ...
— The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen • Rudolph Erich Raspe

... the King to give in to an English idiom. As a rule he rushed at one the minute he heard it with reckless confidence. But he was depressed and lonely on Salissa. He chatted cheerily enough to Donovan. He was always bright and talkative at meals. But he confessed to Gorman several ...
— The Island Mystery • George A. Birmingham

... illiteracy and vulgarity. By vulgarity vulgar Jews mean the reproduction of the Hebrew words with which the poor and the old-fashioned interlard their conversation. It is as if English-speaking Scotchmen and Irishmen should object to "dialect" novels reproducing the idiom of their "uncultured" countrymen. I do not possess a copy of my first book, but somehow or other I discovered the MS. when writing Children of the Ghetto. The description of market-day in ...
— The Idler Magazine, Volume III., July 1893 - An Illustrated Monthly • Various

... faults must be added the positive ones of too many trifling, unconnected, and uninteresting incidents (at least to readers who cannot taste the flavour of the racy Tuscan idiom); great occasional prolixity, even in the best as well as worst passages, not excepting Orlando's dying speeches; harshness in spite of his fluency (according to Foscolo), and even bad grammar; too many low or over-familiar forms of speech (so the graver critics allege, though, perhaps, ...
— Stories from the Italian Poets: With Lives of the Writers, Volume 1 • Leigh Hunt

... trousers in a loud tone made reference in the idiom to my miserable head: "Did you ever see ...
— The Beautiful Lady • Booth Tarkington

... give myself as little trouble as possible in this lesson; it would not do yet to trust my unpractised tongue with the delivery of explanations; my accent and idiom would be too open to the criticisms of the young gentlemen before me, relative to whom I felt already it would be necessary at once to take up an advantageous position, and I proceeded to ...
— The Professor • (AKA Charlotte Bronte) Currer Bell

... dancing, we all—that is the two Russian ladies, Robinet the French painter, Mr. and Mrs. Johnstone, two governesses, and fitful kids joining us at intervals—played a game of the stool of repentance in the Gallic idiom. ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 23 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... helter-skelter through the gamut of opinion, went forward chiefly in German, which the foreigners of the party spoke with various accents, but glibly enough; only now and then did one of them spring over to his mother-tongue, to fetch a racy idiom ...
— Maurice Guest • Henry Handel Richardson

... pure when he uses such words only as belong to the idiom of the language. The only standard of purity is the practice of the best writers and speakers. A violation of purity is ...
— Slips of Speech • John H. Bechtel

... to learn the idiom of Earl Street, which he showed himself most anxious to acquire. He clearly recognised that the Bible Society required different treatment from the Army Pay Office, or the Solicitor of the Treasury. It was accustomed to humility in those it employed, and a trust in a higher power, and Borrow's ...
— The Life of George Borrow • Herbert Jenkins

... every corner!"—from Magee. "A country town where you don't know any one." "The easiest place in the world to get acquainted. I must be alone, man! Alone!" "Baldpate Inn," Bentley had cried in his idiom. "Why, Billy—Baldpate Inn at Christmas—it must be old ...
— Seven Keys to Baldpate • Earl Derr Biggers

... Swift visited or dined with Mrs. Barton at her lodgings. He was also at this time on good terms with Halifax, and dined with him November 28, 1710, and with Mrs. Barton on November 30. According to the idiom of the day, lodgings was a name for every kind of residence, and even for the apartments of a guest in the house of his host. For anything to the contrary in the mere word, the lodgings might have been in the house of Lord Halifax, or of Newton himself. But, on the other hand, the ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 210, November 5, 1853 • Various

... in tremendous form. He began to tell Scotch stories, memories of his old Parliament House days. He told them admirably, with a raciness of idiom which I had thought beyond him. They were long tales, and some were as broad as they were long, but Mr. Cargill disarmed criticism. His audience, rather scandalised at the start, were soon captured, and political troubles were ...
— The Moon Endureth—Tales and Fancies • John Buchan

... others to the study of that interesting tongue, his own command of it was of the slightest. He never mastered 'deep' (or inflected) Romani, and even his broken gypsy is a curious Borrovian variety, distinct from the idiom of the tents. No gypsy ever uses chal or engro as a separate word, or talks of the dukkering dook or of penning a dukkerin. His genders are perversely incorrect, as in the title of the present book; ...
— The Romany Rye - A Sequel to 'Lavengro' • George Borrow

... thinkers and workers. Not that I believe it is left to me to interest the children of my old Fatherland, here present, in the new era of truth and freedom, as if these glorious principles were not of yore implanted in their hearts—as if they could not take them up in a strange idiom—but because I am urged from my deepest soul to speak out loud and free, as I have ever felt myself constrained to do, and as I can not do in the language of my beloved adopted land. The consciousness and the holy ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume II • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... few, especially of the modern poets,—and they will find no reason to undervalue his judgment. His language, it is true, is provincial, and his choice of words in ordinary conversation is indifferent, because Clare is an unpretending man, and he speaks in the idiom of his neighbours, who would ridicule and despise him for using more or better terms than they are familiar with. But the philosophic mind will strive to read his thoughts, rather than catch at the manner of their utterance; and will delight to trace the native nobleness, strength, and beauty ...
— The Life of John Clare • Frederick Martin

... saloons no longer existed when I was there, owing to the recent reform which restricted intoxicants to the wealthier classes. But we feel that the saloons have been there; if one may so express it, their absence is still present. They remain in the structure of the street and the idiom of the language. But the saloons were not inns. If they had been inns, it would have been far harder even for the power of modern plutocracy to root them out. There will be a very different chase when the White ...
— What I Saw in America • G. K. Chesterton

... hotel now, a very noisy life, and fearfully expensive. "But what do you wish, my friend?" as the French say, in their peculiar idiom. Believing in the ancient Egyptians, who worshipped the Nilotic ichneumon, I have privately canonized his cousin, the Mangouste, by the style and title of St. Mungo; and if ever surplus funds are discovered to my credit in any solvent bank, at present unknown to me, I will certainly ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume V, Number 29, March, 1860 - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... into many forms before reaching mutual intelligibility; but gradually our work became easier, and when two or three months had passed we fairly understood each other—I trying to express myself in Hindustanee, and he performing the much-needed work of correcting my words and idiom. I commenced with a portion of the New Testament, and soon got into some of the classics of the language. The use of the Roman character in the writing of Indian languages had been strongly advocated by Sir Charles Trevelyan, by Dr. ...
— Life and Work in Benares and Kumaon, 1839-1877 • James Kennedy

... animated in an instant. 'Oh yes!' she said, using her favourite English idiom. 'The door was open as always, monsieur, and I shut it as always. But it is necessary to explain. Listen! When I enter the room of madame from the other door in there—ah! but if monsieur will give ...
— Trent's Last Case - The Woman in Black • E.C. (Edmund Clerihew) Bentley

... evening prayers. The intervening time was spent by the laymen in cultivating the little clearing, and by the fathers in hearing confessions at the fort a mile away, or in struggling with the Algonquin idiom, by the vague assistance of one Pierre, an Indian proselyte, who, in weakness of flesh, ran away when the ...
— Old Quebec - The Fortress of New France • Sir Gilbert Parker and Claude Glennon Bryan

... political philosopher might do, than as one intimately acquainted with it by a personal experience of his own. His spirit, however, is humane and liberal. It is the spirit of Montaigne, it is the spirit of Voltaire, speaking in the idiom of this different man, and of this different man as influenced by his different circumstances. Montesquieu had had practical proof of the importance to himself of not offending ...
— Classic French Course in English • William Cleaver Wilkinson

... laka an 'alayk" lit. either to thee (be the gain) or upon thee (be the loss). This truly Arabic idiom is varied in ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 9 • Richard F. Burton



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