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Incompetent   /ɪnkˈɑmpətənt/   Listen
Incompetent

noun
1.
Someone who is not competent to take effective action.  Synonym: incompetent person.



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"Incompetent" Quotes from Famous Books



... winced, and shot a glance at the aged, unheroic figure. "And there," thought he, "but for God's grace and a woman's word, stands Narcisse Vigoureux! Even so, a few days since, did I consent to be incompetent and dread only ...
— Major Vigoureux • A. T. Quiller-Couch

... and acted, without an idea of how to set about either; and a dark young man, like a tutor, a recalcitrant house-painter, who sang and acted not amiss. The mother was the genius of the party, so far as genius can be spoken of with regard to such a pack of incompetent humbugs; and her husband could not find words to express his admiration for her comic countryman. "You should see my old woman," said he, and nodded his beery countenance. One night they performed in the stable-yard, with flaring lamps—a ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition - Vol. 1 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... cost him to renounce pleasures so accessible and so delightful to a young man. He did not fail to protest, on all occasions, his unfitness for sea-service, going so far, it is said, that he even caused himself to be rejected by the examining board of the navy as incompetent, though he could easily have prepared himself to answer the few questions asked. However, the will of the First Consul must be obeyed, and Jerome was compelled to embark. On the day of which I have spoken, after some moments of ...
— The Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte • Bourrienne, Constant, and Stewarton

... old-timers as perhaps the greatest of our Indian-fighters, led the cavalry against the Apaches. Crook's understanding of the Indian was perfect; and not only was he able to beat the natives at their own game of ambuscade but he thoroughly sympathized with their cause. He knew how Washington and incompetent officers had ...
— When the West Was Young • Frederick R. Bechdolt

... and enthusiastic young men, in the circumstances in which he was placed, would have been elated and vain at their elevation, and would have replaced the old and well-tried servants of the father with personal favorites of their own age, inexperienced and incompetent, and as conceited as themselves. Alexander, however, made no such changes. He continued the old officers in command, endeavoring to have every thing go on just as if his father ...
— Alexander the Great - Makers of History • Jacob Abbott

... regenerate these poor wretches by her example? No! She could not teach them to be good, and they excelled in teaching others harm. She must leave this gilded vice, taking with her those she loved, and leave the idle and incompetent to consume ...
— Serge Panine, Complete • Georges Ohnet

... beauty in form, color, and sound. Soyaux says of African industry, "Whoever denies to them independent invention and individual taste in their work either shuts his eyes intentionally before perfectly evident facts, or lack of knowledge renders him an incompetent judge."[62] M. Rutot had lately told us how the Negro race brought art and sculpture to pre-historic Europe. The bones of the European Negroids are almost without exception found in company with drawings and sculpture in ...
— The Negro • W.E.B. Du Bois

... cat,' said Annette. She felt her temper, always quick, getting the better of her. She knew just how incompetent Sellers was, and it irritated her beyond endurance to see Beverley's ...
— The Man Upstairs and Other Stories • P. G. Wodehouse

... complicated, and the temptations to break or evade many of them stronger. In the absence of a clear apprehension of the natural sanctions of these rules, a supernatural sanction was assumed; and imagination supplied the motives which reason was supposed to be incompetent to furnish. Religion, at first independent of morality, gradually took morality under its protection; and the supernaturalists have ever since tried to persuade mankind that the existence of ethics is bound up with that ...
— Collected Essays, Volume V - Science and Christian Tradition: Essays • T. H. Huxley

... of the United States and other countries where they relate to the views expressed by the authors. The most authentic text has been used; the antiquated and often absurd punctuation—largely due to incompetent early printers—has been rationalized; and an introduction, abundant cross-references, and a full index materially increase the value of this edition for both students and lawyers. Matter of obsolete or minor interest has ...
— The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of Citizens • Georg Jellinek

... I do anything for you?—Let me do that," she added hastily, as she saw the success of the dinner put in jeopardy by an awkward movement of the incompetent cook. In another moment Shenac's black dress was pinned up, and soon the dinner was on the table, and the father and children were seated at it. To her husband's entreaty that she would try and eat something, the poor woman did not yield. She was ...
— Shenac's Work at Home • Margaret Murray Robertson

... support of this theory. By reason of the extraordinary nature of the views expressed, and the author's well-known tendency to build magnificent structures on a slight foundation, his later writings were received, for the most part by critics utterly incompetent to understand them, with a sneer, or what seems to have grieved the writer more, in silence. Now that the great Americanist is dead, while it is not likely that his theories will ever be received, his zeal in the cause of antiquarian science, and the many valuable works from his pen ...
— The Mayas, the Sources of Their History / Dr. Le Plongeon in Yucatan, His Account of Discoveries • Stephen Salisbury, Jr.

... a little suspicious of so much thoughtful kindliness from these lawyers, whom after the prejudice of her sort she was wont to regard as human harpies. She had her widow's pension and her roomers, and her expenses would be considerably lessened by the death of the incompetent veteran, who would no longer be ...
— Clark's Field • Robert Herrick

... incompetent for the post than his enemies had declared, and his friends admitted. He proved a respectable master, and held his post until age and sickness compelled him to resign it; and then, sustained in spirits by the usual retiring pension, he sauntered ...
— A Book About Lawyers • John Cordy Jeaffreson

... and true friend Robt. Cooke. His last visit to me did me much good, and another might probably do me the same. What a horrible state the country seems to be in, and no wonder—a monster-minister whose principal aim seems to be the ruin of his native land, a parliament either incompetent or indifferent. However, let us hope for the best. Pray send my cordial respects to Mrs. Murray and kind regards to the rest of your good family.—Ever ...
— George Borrow and His Circle - Wherein May Be Found Many Hitherto Unpublished Letters Of - Borrow And His Friends • Clement King Shorter

... utterly ashamed, although I was quite alone, of the nonsense I was uttering.' 'It is not a speech that I want,' said my friend, 'I can talk for three hours without hesitating, but I want an address to circulate through the county, and I find myself utterly incompetent to put one together; do oblige me by writing one for me, I know you can; and, if at any time you want a person to speak for you, you may command me not for three but for six hours. Good morning; to-morrow I will breakfast with you.' In the morning he came again. ...
— Lavengro - The Scholar, The Gypsy, The Priest • George Borrow

... relinquish a scrap of what they call their freedom of action. And my labour men, because I'm a fairly big coal owner myself, sit and watch and suspect me, too stupid to grasp what I am driving at and too incompetent to get out a scheme of their own. They want a world control on scientific lines even less than the owners. They try to think that fuel production can carry an unlimited wages bill and the owners try to think that ...
— The Secret Places of the Heart • H. G. Wells

... didn't know how to snare a bird, or were hopelessly stupid in the art of chipping flint arrowheads, died out of starvation, leaving no representatives. The beneficent institution of the poor law does not exist among savages, in order to enable the helpless and incompetent to bring up families in their own image. There, survival of the fittest still works out its own ultimately benevolent and useful end in its own directly cruel and relentless way, cutting off ruthlessly the stupid or the weak, ...
— Falling in Love - With Other Essays on More Exact Branches of Science • Grant Allen

... was compelled to render, insisted on quitting the land; a great loss was incurred in an attempt to compel it to remain; then open rebellion broke out in the weakened state; and the reign, which had commenced under such fair auspices, terminated in calamity and confusion. Menephthah was quite incompetent to deal with the difficulties and complications wherewith he found himself surrounded; he hesitated, temporized, made concessions, retracted them, and finally conducted Egypt to a catastrophe from which she did not ...
— Ancient Egypt • George Rawlinson

... vessels, most of them were of wood, and the modern ones were unnecessarily large in size. I created a commission and all the officers except a few who were too old for active service were subjected to an examination and those who were found incompetent were discharged from the service. Their places were filled by young, active ...
— Reminiscences of Sixty Years in Public Affairs, Vol. 2 • George S. Boutwell

... lie, first, in the fact that to give the vote to women is to give it to voters who as a class are quite incompetent to adjudicate upon political issues; secondly, in the fact that women are a class of voters who cannot effectively back up their votes by force; and, thirdly, in the fact that it may seriously ...
— The Unexpurgated Case Against Woman Suffrage • Almroth E. Wright

... recent support to the policy of complaisance to France. His appointment aroused anger and consternation; and General Kalckreuth expressed to Gentz the general opinion when he said that the Duke was quite incompetent for such a command: "His character is not strong enough, his mediocrity, irresolution, and untrustworthiness would ruin the best undertaking." The Duke himself was aware of his incompetence. Why then, we ask, did he accept the command? The answer is startling; but it rests on the evidence ...
— The Life of Napoleon I (Volumes, 1 and 2) • John Holland Rose

... through its Lord Chancellor's Visitors, performed its duty towards its "worn-out lunatics," not only "in every mad-house," but in many a home in which they enjoy as much liberty as possible, while the property of which they are incompetent to take charge, is carefully administered by the Lord Chancellor. In his Address at the eighth section of the International Congress, Dr. Lockhart Robertson pointed out that 34.6 per cent. of the Chancery lunatics are treated ...
— Chapters in the History of the Insane in the British Isles • Daniel Hack Tuke

... chanced to come in, greeting heartily his old friends, and remembering every detail of their circumstances, opinions, and conduct. Concerning the latter, he did not fail to remind them of any failings he had taken note of. Those who were frauds, incompetent, or lazy, he never spared, and often such conversations were a source of much amusement to me. On the other hand, those who had been true to him, and had not veered round with the tide of public opinion after 1896, ...
— South African Memories - Social, Warlike & Sporting From Diaries Written At The Time • Lady Sarah Wilson

... sacrifices of our race having been forgotten, may drive us forth from a Constitution which we have ever loyally upheld, they may not deliver us bound into the hands of our enemies; and that it is incompetent for any authority, party, or people to appoint as our rulers a Government dominated by men disloyal to the Empire and to whom our faith and traditions are hateful; and inasmuch as we reverently believe that, as in times past it was given our fathers to save themselves ...
— Ulster's Stand For Union • Ronald McNeill

... is quite evident that you have ascertained by some means that my daughter is exceedingly wealthy, and you have managed to delude her into the belief that your conduct is altruistic and above reproach. But you make a great mistake if you believe that I can be set aside as an incompetent fool. I shall go straight from this office to that of the District Attorney, and lay the whole of the facts before ...
— One Wonderful Night - A Romance of New York • Louis Tracy

... present Legislature will go down in history as the most incompetent body of lawmakers that ever sat in ...
— The Hindered Hand - or, The Reign of the Repressionist • Sutton E. Griggs

... the Futurists while welcoming the Cubists. I cannot deny, however, that in that moment of enthusiasm and loyalty we were rather disposed to find extraordinary merits in commonplace painters. We knew well enough that a feeble and incompetent disciple of Cezanne was just as worthless as a feeble and incompetent disciple of anyone else—but, then, was our particular postulant so feeble after all? Also, we were fond of arguing that the liberating influence of Cezanne had made it possible for a mediocre artist ...
— Since Cezanne • Clive Bell

... incompetent. Argument here is needless. We have plenty of everything, and plenty of hunger at the same time, which shows mismanagement. Our leaders, therefore, must be incompetent. Nor should the blame of this be charged to the people. Statecraft, like the prescribing of medicine ...
— Confiscation, An Outline • William Greenwood

... standpoint nothing is falser. The idea of a State which is outside the community is but a survival in another form of that antiquated notion which compelled Louis XIV to declare "L'Etat c'est moi!" A State which admits that the individuals composing it are incompetent to perform their own most sacred and intimate functions, and takes upon itself to perform them instead, attempts a task which would be undesirable, even if it were possible of achievement. It must always be ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 6 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... seated in Mrs. Majendie's drawing-room, she had no impulse to wound her mortally. Her instinct was rather to patronise and pity, to unfold the long result of a superior experience, to instruct this woman who was so incompetent to deal with men, who had spoiled, stupidly, her husband's life and her own. In that moment Sarah contemplated nothing more outrageous than a little straight ...
— The Helpmate • May Sinclair

... oppressively hot, and, for the first thirty-six hours, scarcely a breath of wind lifted us on our way, so that the engine, wholly incompetent to the work of both sails and machinery, bore us very slowly on our northward ocean-flight. Indeed, the failure of this engine to do its duty, at first, had sorely disheartened both captain and crew as we found later, for upon its execution ...
— Miriam Monfort - A Novel • Catherine A. Warfield

... are both great causes of worry. The careless man, the lazy man are each indifferent as to how their work is done; such men seldom do well that which they undertake. Everything carelessly or lazily done is incomplete, inadequate, incompetent, and, therefore, a source of distress, discontent, and worry. A careless or lazy plumber causes much worry, for, even though his victims may have learned the lesson I am endeavoring to inculcate throughout these pages, it is a self-evident ...
— Quit Your Worrying! • George Wharton James

... if forced to do so, underrate its value, or grossly misrepresent its operation. But we are convinced that this will not do. Proofs of their humbug and falsehood are, as it were, daily forcing themselves into the very stomachs of those whom once, when an incompetent Ministry was in power, these heartless impostors were able to delude. "A single shove of the bayonet," said Corporal Trim to Doctor Slop, "is worth all your fine discourses about the art of war;" and so the English ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXXXIX. January, 1844. Vol. LV. • Various

... defect in my imagination—why they called him 'Birdie,' nor, for the matter of that, why they called him a lamb. I can imagine that he may have been a lamb once; but of feathers I could discover no trace at all. Yes, after all, these are prosaic details, and only show how incompetent a novelist I should prove to be. I grovel when I ought to soar. John and Mary were very fond of Birdie, and Birdie was very fond of them. He came trotting up when he was called, wagging his long tail as though it were proof positive ...
— Mushrooms on the Moor • Frank Boreham

... mean, beastly world. She must be grieving over mankind. It is her duty to see that no spoon is lost, and not an orange or banana wasted, and her mournful eyes are fixed with the intensity of despair upon the incompetent waiters, who, when hard pressed by wild shouts from American officers, frantic for lack of proper nourishment, fall into a panic and dance and squeal at each other; and then the woman of fixed sorrow, her left shoulder thin and copper-colored, ...
— The Story of the Philippines and Our New Possessions, • Murat Halstead

... of all incompetent Advocates, "Follow that Attorney-Company, you; away!"—sifting out all these, and retaining in each Court, with fees accurately settled, with character stamped sound, or at least SOUNDEST, the number actually needed. In a milder way, but still more strictly, Judges stupid or otherwise incompetent ...
— History of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. XVI. (of XXI.) - Frederick The Great—The Ten Years of Peace.—1746-1756. • Thomas Carlyle

... often the best strategy, sire. The great Maurice, of Saxony, has said that fighting is an expedient by which incompetent commanders are accustomed to draw themselves out of difficult positions. When they are perplexed as to their next move, they are apt to stumble into a battle. I coincide with the great captain, although ...
— Joseph II. and His Court • L. Muhlbach

... expect them to get on in the world as she wished. With regard to Margaret, the consideration of how she was to be brought up in a way befitting a young lady, caused her more anxiety than anything else. She might, indeed, teach her many useful things, but she was herself incompetent, she felt, to train the little damsel's manners, or to give her instruction from books. Still, "where there's a will there's a way," she said to herself, "and I ha' a tongue in my head, and that tongue I can wag whene'er it ...
— Janet McLaren - The Faithful Nurse • W.H.G. Kingston

... brother-in-law inherits the property. The deceased brother's wife is a part of this property. When the father dies, the son is the heir, and, if of sufficient age and capabilities, takes the place of his father. But should he be deemed incompetent by his near male relatives, his paternal uncle, or, if he has none, a brother-in-law, becomes the manager of the household. Any property which may be of value is thus retained within the line of male descent. This is in accordance with the principles of the ...
— The Manbos of Mindano - Memoirs of the National Academy of Sciences, Volume XXIII, First Memoir • John M. Garvan

... regularly and towards noon, he signalled and I went aboard No. 3 for a lesson in navigation. It was the third day that, returning, I found Grimalson didn't stomach these visits. Grimalson was a mean man, and incompetent; the sort that knows he's not trusted, knows there's good reason for it, and resents it all the time. I thought him just a sulky brute, and noted that on some excuse or other it was always inconvenient to be close up with No. 3 boat as ...
— Foe-Farrell • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... what seemed to him to be bitter experience also. An individual, notoriously slack and incompetent, ten years his junior, had been promoted over his head, because he was somebody's cousin and the kind of fatuous ass that only labours industriously in drawing-rooms and at functions, recuperating ...
— Driftwood Spars - The Stories of a Man, a Boy, a Woman, and Certain Other People Who - Strangely Met Upon the Sea of Life • Percival Christopher Wren

... an ill look-out for the cycle mechanic who is not prepared to tackle the new problems that will arise. For all this next century this particular body of mechanics will be picking up new recruits and eliminating the incompetent and the rule-of-thumb sage. Can it fail, as the years pass, to develop certain general characters, to become so far homogeneous as to be generally conscious of the need of a scientific education, at any rate in mechanical and chemical matters, and to possess, down ...
— Anticipations - Of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress upon - Human life and Thought • Herbert George Wells

... conversation of the boys were immeasurable. When he came next morning with a black, extravasated eye, which he bathed at intervals with a rag, he was regarded by most of us as absolute scum. The German master, a tall, good-looking man, was treated as utterly incompetent because, when he asked a question in grammar or syntax, he walked up and down with the book in front of him, and quite plainly compared the answer with the book. We boys thought that anyone could be a master, with a book in his hand. History ...
— Recollections Of My Childhood And Youth • George Brandes

... at 6 a.m. I left York via Cobourg, Kingston, and New York, on my first important mission to England, an undertaking for which I feel myself utterly incompetent; and in prosecution of which I rely wholly on the guidance of heavenly wisdom, imploring the special blessing of the ...
— The Story of My Life - Being Reminiscences of Sixty Years' Public Service in Canada • Egerton Ryerson

... he was diminutive in stature, and he could boast of no noble blood running in his veins.[128] A more formidable hinderance in the path to distinction had been the barbarous instruction he had received from incompetent masters, both in the inferior schools and in the university itself. But all obstacles, physical, social, and intellectual, melted away before the ardor of an extraordinarily active mind. Rising ...
— The Rise of the Hugenots, Vol. 1 (of 2) • Henry Martyn Baird

... of literature. Many are famous; some are obscure; not a few, which had before been overlooked or overshadowed, owe the recognition they have since received to their admission into a gallery where the places have been assigned and the lights distributed by no partial or incompetent umpire. ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 102, April, 1866 • Various

... the nomination of the legislatures of the States. This legislature should enjoy all the legislative rights given to the federation, and there followed the sweeping grant that it "could legislate in all cases to which the separate States are incompetent or in which the harmony of the United States may be interrupted by the exercise of individual legislation," with power "to negative all laws passed by the several States contravening in the opinion of the national legislature the Articles ...
— The Constitution of the United States - A Brief Study of the Genesis, Formulation and Political Philosophy of the Constitution • James M. Beck

... the universe, just as this fact or that principle would. He trusts his temperament. Wanting a universe that suits it, he believes in any representation of the universe that does suit it. He feels men of opposite temper to be out of key with the world's character, and in his heart considers them incompetent and 'not in it,' in the philosophic business, even tho they may far ...
— Pragmatism - A New Name for Some Old Ways of Thinking • William James

... good or ill, artistically considered. Such delicate mechanisms can also be easily injured or hopelessly ruined; and, as a matter of fact, this is being done daily. A great musical periodical has made the statement that thousands of voices are being ruined annually, in America alone, by incompetent teaching. My experience when a practising laryngologist made me acquainted with the extent of the ruin that may be brought about by incorrect methods of using the voice, both as regards the throat and the voice itself; and contact with teachers and students has so ...
— Voice Production in Singing and Speaking - Based on Scientific Principles (Fourth Edition, Revised and Enlarged) • Wesley Mills

... medium possessing these two properties can transmit waves, and unless a medium possesses these properties in some form or other, or some equivalent for them, it may be said with moderate security to be incompetent to transmit waves. But if we make this latter statement, one must be prepared to extend to the terms elasticity and inertia their very largest and broadest signification, so as to include any possible kind of ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 717, September 28, 1889 • Various

... Act was suspended by executive decree, and those whose action was thought a hindrance to military success were arrested in shoals by the orders of Stanton, the new energetic War Secretary, a Jacksonian Democrat whom Lincoln had put in the place of an incompetent Republican, though he had served under Buchanan and supported Breckinridge. The constitutional justification of these acts was widely challenged, but the people in the main supported ...
— A History of the United States • Cecil Chesterton

... the public schools assign picture-study work in each grade, recommending the study of certain pictures by well-known masters. As Supervisor of Drawing I found that the children enjoyed this work but that the teachers felt incompetent to conduct the lessons as they lacked time to look up the subject and to gather adequate material. Recourse to a great many books was necessary and often while much information could usually be found about the artist, very little was ...
— Stories Pictures Tell - Book Four • Flora L. Carpenter

... of the new shops he left to Mershon, knowing himself incompetent. He knew what sort of shops he wanted; Mershon knew how to produce them, and Mershon was dependable. Bonbright had implicit confidence in the engineer's ability and integrity, and it was justified. The new mills ...
— Youth Challenges • Clarence B Kelland

... been proclaimed, the half-hearted leaders proceeded to look about for a King; and from that time till now they have been in this quest, as if it were the Holy Grail, or happiness on earth. The royal family of Spain was declared incompetent. Therefore a king must be found outside,——and so the quest was continued in other lands. One day the throne is offered to a prince of Portugal, then to a prince of Italy, but declined by each,——how wisely the future will show. At last, after a ...
— The Duel Between France and Germany • Charles Sumner

... their structural distinctions, the species of animals and plants, or at least a great number of them, exhibit physiological characters—what are known as distinct species, structurally, being for the most part either altogether incompetent to breed one with another; or if they breed, the resulting mule, or hybrid, is unable to perpetuate its race with another hybrid of the ...
— On the Relations of Man to the Lower Animals • Thomas H. Huxley

... occurrence, but to admit in general terms that evil is only apparent and not real. But see to what such an admission commits us: if we have no grounds for saying that evil is evil, we can have no grounds either for saying that good is good; if our faculties are incompetent to diagnose the one kind of phenomena accurately, they cannot be any more competent to diagnose and deliver reliable verdicts upon the other kind. It is quite a mistake to think that by getting rid of the reality of evil we preserve or affirm the more ...
— Problems of Immanence - Studies Critical and Constructive • J. Warschauer

... Enniskillen; the other from Sir William Betham, one of the soundest and most learned of our Irish Antiquaries. Both gentlemen differ in their opinion respecting the antiquity of the Donagh; and, as the author is incompetent to decide between them, he gives their ...
— The Hedge School; The Midnight Mass; The Donagh • William Carleton

... cloud. In the autumn of 1862, while his army lay between Corinth and Memphis, the cloud still rested on his reputation. In spite of the glory he had won for a moment at Fort Donelson, large circles were ready to speak of him simply as an "incompetent and disagreeable man." The crowning work of his life was accomplished with terrible bloodshed which was often attributed to callousness and incapacity on his part. The eight years of his Presidency afterwards, which cannot ...
— Abraham Lincoln • Lord Charnwood

... Testimony of Mrs. Monk considered.—The only evidence against that fact is her mother. Now it is undeniable, that her mother is a totally incompetent witness. She is known in Montreal to be a woman of but little principle; and her oath in her daughter's favour would be injurious to her; for she is so habitually intemperate, that it is questionable whether she is ever truly competent to explain any matters which come under her notice. ...
— Awful Disclosures - Containing, Also, Many Incidents Never before Published • Maria Monk

... that the gateway is again open for his passage. Here again the "forgiveness" is but the declaration by a proper authority of the true state of affairs, the opening of the gate to the competent, its closure to the incompetent. Where there had been failure, with its accompanying suffering, this declaration would be felt as a "baptism for the remission of sins," re-admitting the aspirant to a privilege lost by his own act; this would certainly give ...
— Esoteric Christianity, or The Lesser Mysteries • Annie Besant

... bishop, between them, choose the new incumbent. By the constitution of this Court of Election, it is certain that no one will be appointed to whom the parish objects, whilst if the parish desires the nomination of an incompetent man, that is checked by the diocesan voters in ...
— The Reminiscences of an Irish Land Agent • S.M. Hussey

... taking the representation of miracles, therefore, which Divines themselves give, they are utterly incompetent to perform their contemplated functions. If they are super-human, they are not super-Satanic, and there is no sense in which they can be considered miraculously evidential of ...
— The Lost Gospel and Its Contents - Or, The Author of "Supernatural Religion" Refuted by Himself • Michael F. Sadler

... could so great an amount of property have passed through the hands of thieves without leaving some clue by which the police would have made their way to the truth. Major Mackintosh had been declared to be altogether incompetent, and all the Bunfits and Gagers of the force had been spoken of as drones and moles and ostriches. They were idle and blind, and so stupid as to think that, when they saw nothing, others saw less. The major, who was a broad-shouldered, ...
— The Eustace Diamonds • Anthony Trollope

... no reply, but for a time, at least, he desisted from puzzling himself over matters which he felt he was utterly incompetent to explain. But an event soon afterwards occurred which ...
— Off on a Comet • Jules Verne

... In various phases of my mental and spiritual development, I had framed different conceptions of a future state beyond this life. Never, even in my earliest years, had I sincerely wished to be an angel with an undeserved crown weighing down my forehead, and a harp, which I should be totally incompetent to play, within my hand; but now it struck me that there might be a worse sort of Nirvana than driving a 10,000 horsepower car along a broad, straight road free from dogs, chickens, or any other animals (except, perhaps, rich, knighted grocers), and ...
— The Princess Passes • Alice Muriel Williamson and Charles Norris Williamson

... he was crazy," agreed the seamen. It was as though the gaiety, the spring of gladness, within the little man had been dried up; there was left only the incompetent and despised Dago. He faced the routine of his toil now with no smile of preoccupation for a sweeter vision; he shuffled about decks, futile as ever, with the dreariness of a ...
— Those Who Smiled - And Eleven Other Stories • Perceval Gibbon

... and blooming matrons, spreading out in their pride, like the anxious clucking hen, over their numerous encircling offspring, who have borne them with a mother's throes, watched over them with a mother's anxious mind, and reared them with a mother's ardent love, are considered to be wholly incompetent, in the opinion of these dessicated and barren branches of ...
— Newton Forster • Frederick Marryat

... and carried to Greece; the rest of the Christians when they got to Constantinople took refuge at the Russian Embassy, declaring that they came against their own free will and that of the Cretans. At this time a change for the better took place at Athens, the incompetent ministry which had neither known how to do nor how not to do giving place to that in which Comoundouros was prime minister and Tricoupi minister of foreign affairs; and, while the paralysis of utter failure ...
— The Autobiography of a Journalist, Volume II • William James Stillman

... week passed in a blind confusion. She did not know how to teach, and she felt she never would know. Mr. Harby came down every now and then to her class, to see what she was doing. She felt so incompetent as he stood by, bullying and threatening, so unreal, that she wavered, became neutral and non-existent. But he stood there watching with the listening-genial smile of the eyes, that was really threatening; ...
— The Rainbow • D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence

... this triumvirate; but your friends were unworthy of your honorable conduct. Your majesty's mistake is to be solely attributed to generous sentiments carried to excess, and to misconceptions to which ministers, incompetent and bribed, have given rise. You were wrong to persist in patronizing ungrateful and jealous neighbors like the Germans; or in serving the interests of mere traders, like the English. God and history have intrusted a much more exalted task to you, and for this ...
— Napoleon and the Queen of Prussia • L. Muhlbach

... Balliot, whose life had been saved, and army disarmed and brought back from rebellion in spite of himself, was not the man to let any vague feeling of gratitude overweigh his own deep sense of injury. He was incompetent, and he knew it, but Kettle had been tactless enough to tell him so; and, moreover, Kettle had thrown out the national gibe about Waterloo, which no Belgian can ever forgive. Commandant Balliot gritted his teeth, and ...
— A Master of Fortune • Cutcliffe Hyne

... that the injured husband has been married before and that his first wife, honestly supposed to be dead, returns to threaten his happiness, you will see that Mrs. Woods sets forth upon a path trodden by many hundreds of thousands of incompetent feet. To start with such a situation almost suggests bravado. If it be bravado, it is entirely justified as the tale proceeds: for amid the crowd of failures Mrs. Woods's solution wears the singular distinction of truth. That the book is written in restrained and beautiful ...
— Adventures in Criticism • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... an English butler, and as many strapping indoor men—some of them much better fitted for manual labor—as he liked, and find it a social glory; while a family of moderate means were obliged to pay high wages to crude incompetent women from the darkest backwaters of European life, just because ...
— The Dust Flower • Basil King

... of love for the emperor, but because Shih Heng hoped that under the rule of the completely incompetent Ying Tsung he could best carry out a plan of his own, to set up his own dynasty. It is not so easy, however, to carry a conspiracy to success when there are several rival parties, each of which is ready to betray any of the others. Shih Heng's plan ...
— A history of China., [3d ed. rev. and enl.] • Wolfram Eberhard

... the king himself, with a flushed countenance and a very unsteady step, appeared on the stage. It was glaringly evident to all who were not in the same condition themselves, that the King of Judah was altogether incompetent for that important branch of business which, in despite of the kind remonstrances of his personal friends, he ...
— The Young Captives - A Story of Judah and Babylon • Erasmus W. Jones

... certainly the best friend that a scientist can have. A physician without a microscope is like a man without eyes: he is uncertain and unprotected and must be considered incompetent, simply because he cannot arrive at a correct and positive conclusion in diagnosing ...
— The Arena - Volume 4, No. 23, October, 1891 • Various

... deserve it," declared Beth. "And think of what the public would gain! Instead of having to suffer during the performances of incompetent actors and singers, as we do to-day, the whole world would be able to see and hear the best talent of the ages for an insignificant fee. I hope your prediction will come ...
— Aunt Jane's Nieces Out West • Edith Van Dyne

... behaves as though he had been placed under eternal obligation by Rickett, and yearly sends the little Ricketts a box of presents and toys. It is the same everywhere. The men who do not take the trouble to conceal from you their opinion that you are an incompetent ass, and the women who blacken your character and misunderstand your wife's amusements, will work themselves to the bone in your behalf if you fall sick or ...
— The Works of Rudyard Kipling One Volume Edition • Rudyard Kipling

... Dorth had scarcely entered upon his duties when he fell into an ambush of native levies near San Salvador and was killed. His successor, Willem Schouten, was incompetent and dissolute; and, when the fleet set sail on its homeward voyage at the end of July, the garrison soon found itself practically besieged by bodies of Portuguese troops with Indian auxiliaries, who occupied the neighbouring woods and stopped supplies. Meanwhile the ...
— History of Holland • George Edmundson

... ancient manager. Mr. Hopper only narrowed his lids when the Colonel pensioned Mr. Hood. But the Colonel had a will before which, when roused, even Mr. Hopper trembled. So that Eliphalet was always polite to Ephum, and careful never to say anything in the darkey's presence against incompetent clerks or favorite customers, who, by the charity of the ...
— The Crossing • Winston Churchill

... had gone away to her far superior place, and she had been succeeded by one variety of objectionable or incompetent person after another, he had still continued to learn. In different ways he silently collected information, and all of it was unpleasant, and, as he grew older, it took for some years one form. Lack of resources, which should ...
— The Shuttle • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... camps went home with dismal stories to relate; Northern papers came back to the soldiers with these stories exaggerated. Because I would not divulge my ultimate plans to visitors, they pronounced me idle, incompetent and unfit to command men in an emergency, and clamored for my removal. They were not to be satisfied, many of them, with my simple removal, but named who my successor should be. McClernand, Fremont, Hunter and McClellan were all ...
— Memoirs of Three Civil War Generals, Complete • U. S. Grant, W. T. Sherman, P. H. Sheridan

... scoundrel! Says he was going to Paris on private business. But they've got him! And see here again: "The same Rodman is at present wanted by the police on a charge of bigamy." Wanted! If they weren't incompetent fools they'd have had him already. Ten to one he's out ...
— Demos • George Gissing

... lead her into scenes of dissipation, will not find her mind disturbed by being an unwilling actor in the uninteresting amusements. She, on the other hand, who is just beginning a spiritual life, must be an incompetent judge of the variations in the devotional spirit of her mind,—anxious, besides, as one should be to discourage any of that minute attention to variations of religious feeling which only disturbs and harasses the mind, and hinders it from concentrating ...
— The Young Lady's Mentor - A Guide to the Formation of Character. In a Series of Letters to Her Unknown Friends • A Lady

... avert or mitigate the evils to which they may tend. I shall also carry with me the hope that my country will never cease to view them with indulgence, and that, after forty-five years of my life dedicated to its service with an upright zeal, the faults of incompetent abilities will be consigned to oblivion, as myself must soon be to the ...
— Key-Notes of American Liberty • Various

... to assist the enemy in an invasion of the coast of Zealand, was about to be tried by the High Council of War, which is wholly dependent on the Prince, when the States of Holland solemnly signified to the Prince that he ought to cause prosecution to be stayed before this tribunal, as incompetent, and carry it up before the Court of Justice of Holland and Zealand. This High Council of War, is, besides, odious to the nation, and ...
— The Diplomatic Correspondence of the American Revolution, Vol. IX • Various

... fiction, and cannot keep from doing it for any long time together, you are possibly born with a gift for it. But this may be altogether a mistake; it may be the effect of your early and incessant scribblings on the minds of spectators wholly incompetent to judge of your abilities, such as your fond parents. This must rather often happen if we can judge from what nine-tenths of what is called literature is composed of. If your longing to write is the real thing, or is not, ...
— Imaginary Interviews • W. D. Howells

... You say he has produced larger results than ever before, and if the market were normal there would be larger returns. Then, it seems to me, Colonel, that if Ranald suffers he is suffering, not because he has been unfaithful or incompetent, but because the market is bad, and that I am certain you would ...
— The Man From Glengarry - A Tale Of The Ottawa • Ralph Connor

... everything except the bride's dress and the wedding journey. And the first subject I feel myself incompetent to approach. In general, the main thing is that it should gratify curiosity and be somehow in advance of anything of the kind ever worn before. Is not ...
— The Gold of Chickaree • Susan Warner

... thought of Ahulah, but some of those well-intentioned friends that everyone possesses had told of the misadventure to her husband, and the latter, cruel as a woman, had spat upon her, and now through the suburbs she wandered, distraught, incompetent to aid. Her brother occurred to her. It was on him she could rely. His devotion was surpassed only by her own. Thereupon she sought him out, instructed him in his duty, and sent him forth to watch ...
— Mary Magdalen • Edgar Saltus

... the eyes. He was incompetent and knew he was; thought he was already detected, and feared to expose himself again. There was nothing further from his mind than that the captain should deceive him; if the captain was pleased, why, so was he. "All right," he said. "Tell your men ...
— The Wrecker • Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne

... succession to it makes the least disturbance to existing business conditions. This consideration, however, has less weight as the corporate form of organization becomes well nigh universal in "big business." Every profligate son, every incompetent heir, is an argument against the inheritance of property. It is to society's interest that no able-bodied member should stand idle. Every child should have presented to him the motive to use his powers in useful ways. Moreover, many feel that the great fortunes now accumulating ...
— Modern Economic Problems - Economics Vol. II • Frank Albert Fetter

... it." This is all very well in its way, and a climate of incomprehension may suit orators and metaphysicians admirably; but it will not do for politics. The party or people that fails to make its programme understood is politically incompetent, and Ireland is assuredly safe from any such imputation. She has her spiritual secrets, buried deep in what we may call the subliminal consciousness of the race, and to the disclosure of these secrets ...
— The Open Secret of Ireland • T. M. Kettle

... intellectual chasm between the Ape and Man implies a corresponding structural chasm in the organs of the intellectual functions; so that, it is said, the non-discovery of such vast differences proves, not that they are absent, but that Science is incompetent to detect them. A very little consideration, however, will, I think, show the fallacy of this reasoning. Its validity hangs upon the assumption, that intellectual power depends altogether on the brain—whereas the ...
— Lectures and Essays • T.H. Huxley

... this final vindication of his theories he made another stately obeisance and went his way. Theos looked after his tall, retreating figure half in sadness, half in scorn. This proudly incompetent, learned-ignorant Mira-Khabur was no uncommon character—surely there were many ...
— Ardath - The Story of a Dead Self • Marie Corelli

... love—tremendous proof of the vigour of that immortal article, for they were in the graceful uniform under which English Charity delights to hide herself—and they were overgrown, and their legs (his legs at least, for I am modestly incompetent to speak of hers) were as much in the wrong as mere passive weakness of character can render legs. O it was a leaden churchyard, but no doubt a golden ground to those young persons! I first saw them on a Saturday evening, and, perceiving ...
— The Uncommercial Traveller • Charles Dickens

... throw[18] of the principal British naval depots; here were large towns and harbors, filled with the rich commerce of the world, offering the dazzling attraction of rich booty. The French navy was at this time utterly incompetent to their defence; while England supported a maritime force at an annual expense of near ninety millions of dollars. Her largest fleets were continually cruising within sight of these seaports, and not unfrequently attempting to cut out their shipping. "At this period," says one of her naval historians, ...
— Elements of Military Art and Science • Henry Wager Halleck

... possess the advantages of property and superior education, that nothing is more certain than that, if the elective franchise be widely diffused, and no mode of classifying the votes, as at Rome, has been discovered, the sway of a numerical majority of incompetent electors will, erelong, become irresistible. Certain ruin then awaits the state. It was that which ruined Athens in ancient, which has destroyed Poland in modern times, and is fast undermining the foundations of ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 58, Number 360, October 1845 • Various

... clothed in a ridiculous costume and armed like a pirate king, and there was such dissatisfaction among both the officers and men that a new commander was urgently demanded. Of this Grant already knew something, but he was not advised that the regiment had become so utterly demoralized by its incompetent leader that it was nothing less than a dangerous and unruly mob, of which the Governor could not induce any self-respecting officer to take charge. He had, indeed, offered the command to at least half a dozen other men before he tendered it to Grant, and he must have been intensely ...
— On the Trail of Grant and Lee • Frederick Trevor Hill

... allowed to enforce any legal claim in court on condition that, if challenged, he denied his infidelity. If he lied and said he was a Christian, he was accepted, despite his lying. If he told the truth and said he was an unbeliever, then he was practically an outlaw, incompetent to give evidence for himself or for any other. Fortunately all this was changed by the Royal assent to the Oaths Act on 24th December. Has not humanity clearly gained a little in this ...
— Humanity's Gain from Unbelief - Reprinted from the "North American Review" of March, 1889 • Charles Bradlaugh

... Ralph, in the course of his frequent nights from it, found himself always dodging the corners of black glazed boxes and swaying pyramids of pasteboard; always lifting his hat to sidling milliners' girls, or effacing himself before slender vendeuses floating by in a mist of opopanax. He felt incompetent to pronounce on the needs to which these visitors ministered; but the reappearance among them of the blond-bearded jeweller gave him ground for fresh fears. Undine had assured him that she had given up the idea of having her ornaments reset, and there had been ample time ...
— The Custom of the Country • Edith Wharton

... enough to force the nobility and the clergy to pay their share of these taxes. Hence the taxes were paid entirely by the agricultural population. But the peasants living in dreary hovels, no longer in intimate contact with their former landlords, but victims of cruel and incompetent land agents, were going from bad to worse. Why should they work and exert themselves? Increased returns upon their land merely meant more taxes and nothing for themselves and therefore they neglected their fields ...
— The Story of Mankind • Hendrik van Loon

... torment of his wife, was master of his house. While he was rolling out the psalm, expounding the chapter, or 'wrestling' in prayer, he was a personality and an influence even for the wife who, in spite of a dumb congruity of habit, regarded him generally as incompetent and in the way. Reuben's religious sense was strong and deep, but some very natural and pathetically human instincts entered also into his constant pleasure in this daily function. Hannah, with her strong and harsh features settled into repose, with her large hands, reddened by the day's work, ...
— The History of David Grieve • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... I spoke of you as I have found you. (I told him you were a disreputable hound, and that Moore had crossed a fight.) I told him you were a drunken ass, and Moore an incompetent and dishonest boxer. ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson, Volume XV • Robert Louis Stevenson

... that the aerial voyagers, finding this planet to be nothing but a howling wilderness, inhabited by us poor savages and wild beasts, shall take formal possession of it, in the name of his most gracious and philosophic excellency, the Man in the Moon. Finding however that their numbers are incompetent to hold it in complete subjection, on account of the ferocious barbarity of its inhabitants, they shall take our worthy President, the King of England, the Emperor of Hayti, the mighty Bonaparte, and the great King of Bantam, and, returning to their native planet, shall ...
— Knickerbocker's History of New York, Complete • Washington Irving

... Parliament. She drives him full butt at the dear, lazy machinery of government, and knocks and buffets him about the wheels, and cranks, and screws, and pulleys; until somebody, for quiet's sake, makes him something that she wanted him to be made. That's why incompetent men sometimes sit in high places, and interpose their poor, muddled intellects between the things to be done and the people that can do them, making universal confusion in the helpless innocence of well-placed ...
— Lady Audley's Secret • Mary Elizabeth Braddon

... government measures furnished political training for the whole ruling class. Further, the absence of any sharp caste lines made it possible for them to turn, in times of crisis, to such strong-fibred and masterful commoners as Walpole and Pitt, each of whom, in his way, saved the country from the incompetent hands ...
— The Wars Between England and America • T. C. Smith

... inefficient housekeepers, and slatternly in their persons, so also are many who neither know how to read nor write; just as there are many impracticable, inefficient, and slovenly men who are highly educated, and ignorant men who are also incompetent and inefficient. Education has nothing to do with making either men or women inefficient; the inefficient would be inefficient to the end of time, though their minds ...
— Woman: Man's Equal • Thomas Webster

... objected to me, that, being a layman, I ought not to have concerned myself with speculations which belong to the profession of divinity; I could answer, that perhaps laymen, with equal advantages of parts and knowledge, are not the most incompetent judges of sacred things; but in the due sense of my own weakness and want of learning, I plead not this: I pretend not to make myself a judge of faith in others, but only to make a confession of my own. I lay no unhallowed hand upon the ark, but wait on it, with the reverence ...
— The Poetical Works of John Dryden, Vol I - With Life, Critical Dissertation, and Explanatory Notes • John Dryden

... second in rank to General Scott. His ancient home and his ample estate on the Potomac were ravaged by the enemy; but he never expressed a regret for the sacrifice of his fortune. There can be no doubt that he was often thwarted by political superiors and by incompetent subordinates, but his equable temper and lofty nature never inclined him to complaint. The regret for his loss which is felt throughout the vast regions of the South is a just tribute to one of the greatest and purest characters in ...
— A Life of Gen. Robert E. Lee • John Esten Cooke

... batman. His one desire now was to escape from the eyes of his fellow-men. He felt that he bore upon him the stigma of his disgrace, obvious to any casual glance. He was the man who had been turned out of the army as a hopeless incompetent. Even worse than the slacker—for the slacker might have latent the qualities that he lacked. Even at the best and brightest, he could only be mistaken for a slacker, once more the likely recipient of white feathers from any damsel patriotically indiscreet. ...
— The Rough Road • William John Locke

... should find our little cottage in such disorder," said Mr. Maddison. "The contractor for the conservatory undertook to erect it in a week, and my only satisfaction is that he is now paying me a forfeit of 500 dollars a day. As for the electricians in this country, sir, they are not incompetent men, but they must be taught to hustle if they are to work under American orders; and I don't quite see how they are to find ...
— Count Bunker • J. Storer Clouston

... (for more than three years) of the Leyden congregation, and, in spite of the wickedly unjust criticism of Robinson and others, incompetent to judge his acts, their brave, sagacious, and faithful ...
— The Mayflower and Her Log, Complete • Azel Ames

... to despise them, 43 their maladies, 78 case of, stated, 15 incompetent remuneration of, 21 who wrote above the genius of their own age, 84 ill reception from the public of their valuable works, 85 who have sacrificed their fortunes to their studies, ib. who commenced their literary life with ardour, and found ...
— Calamities and Quarrels of Authors • Isaac D'Israeli

... provision should be made for extending to these places and any others alike circumstanced the civil authority of the Northwestern Territory. To do this will require an expense to defray which the ordinary salaries of the governor and secretary of that Territory appear to be incompetent. ...
— A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents - Section 1 (of 4) of Volume 1: George Washington • James D. Richardson

... acquaintances say that in their country it was not always qualifications that get a candidate into office. Some of the ways were devious and not suitable for publicity. Offices were frequently filled by incompetent men. There had been congressmen and other offices of higher and more responsible duties, filled by persons who could not correctly frame a sentence in their native language, who could not spell the simplest words as they were ...
— Mizora: A Prophecy - A MSS. Found Among the Private Papers of the Princess Vera Zarovitch • Mary E. Bradley

... in this story, it is certain that about thirty-six children were withdrawn, and instead of continuing to receive the elements of a good education, they were entrusted to the care of an old man quite incompetent for the office, but who was of ...
— A Boy's Voyage Round the World • The Son of Samuel Smiles



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