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Nail   /neɪl/   Listen
Nail

verb
(past & past part. nailed; pres. part. nailing)
1.
Attach something somewhere by means of nails.
2.
Take into custody.  Synonyms: apprehend, arrest, collar, cop, nab, pick up.
3.
Hit hard.  Synonyms: blast, boom, smash.
4.
Succeed in obtaining a position.  Synonyms: nail down, peg.
5.
Succeed at easily.  Synonyms: ace, breeze through, pass with flying colors, sail through, sweep through.  "You will pass with flying colors" , "She nailed her astrophysics course"
6.
Locate exactly.  Synonym: pinpoint.  "The chemists could not nail the identity of the chromosome"
7.
Complete a pass.  Synonym: complete.



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"Nail" Quotes from Famous Books



... slowly, looking with renewed wonder on everything from the magnetic screw in the light above my head to the nail on the wriggling toe of my left foot. I was more than Achilles' Ship. I was a living being at whose center lay a still yet turning point that could neither be new ...
— Man Made • Albert R. Teichner

... disconcerted. He remained silent for a moment, wearing a look of impatient embarrassment. He still extended the piece, turning it over and over with his thumb-nail as it ...
— Dr. Sevier • George W. Cable

... was the only one known in the olden times. The belcher (what a name! ) supplies its place, together with the bird's eye, or the colours of some black or white boxer. An accomplished man was the delight of all companies in former times. An out and outer, one up to every thing, down as a nail or the knocker of Newgate, a trump, or a Trojan, now carry the mode of praise; one that can patter flash, floor a charley, mill a coal-heaver, come coachey in prime style, up to every rig and row in town, and down to every move upon the board, from a nibble ...
— The English Spy • Bernard Blackmantle

... the day they are gathered, as otherwise they lose much of their sweetness and flavor. For corn, select young, tender, well-filled ears, from which the milk will spurt when the grain is broken with the finger nail. Beans and peas are fresh only when the pods are green, plump, snap crisply when broken, and have unshriveled stems. If the pods bend and appear wilted, they are stale. Corn, peas, and beans are wholesome ...
— Science in the Kitchen. • Mrs. E. E. Kellogg

... mad, yu bet, And say, "Ay skol fule dese geezers yet." She run to her bureau double haste, And, yerking out dandy peek-a-boo waist, Nail it to flagstaff, and vave it hard, And say: "Dis skol hold yu avile, old pard. Shoot, ef yu must, dis peek-a-boo, Ef it ant qvite holy enough for yu, And tak gude aim at dis old gray head, But spare yure ...
— The Norsk Nightingale - Being the Lyrics of a "Lumberyack" • William F. Kirk

... away gaily to Sara, giving her vivacious thumb-nail portraits of her future neighbours—the people Selwyn had described as ...
— The Hermit of Far End • Margaret Pedler

... thousands of Pheasants, Partridges and Wood-cocks. His Stable Doors are patched with Noses that belonged to Foxes of the Knight's own hunting down. Sir ROGER shewed me one of them that for Distinction sake has a Brass Nail struck through it, which cost him about fifteen Hours riding, carried him through half a dozen Counties, killed him a Brace of Geldings, and lost above half his Dogs. This the Knight looks upon as one of the greatest Exploits of his Life. The perverse Widow, whom I have given ...
— The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3 - With Translations and Index for the Series • Joseph Addison and Richard Steele

... is, there is no doubt about it. He's as dead as a door-nail. Well, Halil, that was a fine blow of yours I must say. By the Prophet! one does not see a blow like that every day. With your bare hand too! To kill a man with nothing but your empty fist! If a cannon-ball ...
— Halil the Pedlar - A Tale of Old Stambul • Mr Jkai

... sauntered down to the door, peered at the woodwork as though examining it, scratched with his finger-nail, and then began to ...
— Don Strong, Patrol Leader • William Heyliger

... "Nail him where he is!" Em cried excitedly; "he's getting up on you." Gordon's hands moved uncertainly upward on the chair; his knees rose from the floor. A shower of blows fell on him; the woman beat him with her pudgy fists; Mr. Ottinger was kicking at him; Jake was weeping, and ...
— Mountain Blood - A Novel • Joseph Hergesheimer

... Master Jack Dillard gits de 'state," she proceeded, as though she had not heard my eager question, "wy, den Sabra Smif am as dead as a door-nail from dis time to de day ob judgment, an' de ole man'll have to git anoder 'fectionate companion. I'se mity sorry for de poor ole soul, but I a'n't gwine to put myself in Jack Dillard's claws, not ef I knows ...
— Miriam Monfort - A Novel • Catherine A. Warfield

... floor of the hut with Captain Dieppe on the top of him—Dieppe, dusty, dirty, panting, bleeding freely from a bullet graze on the top of the left ear, and with one leg of his trousers slit from ankle to knee by a rusty nail, that had also ploughed a nasty furrow up his leg. But now he seized Guillaume's revolver, and dragged the old fellow out of the hut. Then he sat down on his chest, pinning his arms together on ...
— Captain Dieppe • Anthony Hope

... they are fighting tooth and nail to get possession of something which I might be only too glad ...
— The Rover Boys in the Land of Luck - Stirring Adventures in the Oil Fields • Edward Stratemeyer

... exultant—reviewing the advance of the cause from its first despised beginning to its present position, where, she alleged, it commanded the attention of the world. She spoke in her usual pungent, vehement style, hitting the nail on the head every time, and driving it in up to the head. Indeed, it seems to me, that while Lucretia Mott may be said to be the soul of this movement, and Mrs. Stanton the mind, the "swift, keen intelligence," ...
— The Life and Work of Susan B. Anthony (Volume 1 of 2) • Ida Husted Harper

... poor little Molly. It wasn't that I am so helpful, but that "fools rush in where angels fear to tread." It was Mrs. O'Shaughnessy who was the real help. She is a woman of great courage and decision and of splendid sense and judgment. A few days ago a man she had working for her got his finger-nail mashed off and neglected to care for it. Mrs. O'Shaughnessy examined it and found that gangrene had set in. She didn't tell him, but made various preparations and then told him she had heard that if there ...
— Letters of a Woman Homesteader • Elinore Pruitt Stewart

... of agaric, moss and fern, [1] Who forged a thousand theories of the rocks, Who taught me how to skate, to row, to swim, Who read me rhymes elaborately good, His own—I call'd him Crichton, for he seem'd All-perfect, finish'd to the finger nail.[2] And once I ask'd him of his early life, And his first passion; and he answer'd me; And well his words became him: was he not A full-cell'd honeycomb of eloquence Stored from all flowers? ...
— The Early Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson • Tennyson

... are made of many woods, Of ash, of oak, and maple; Well seasoned is this stock of goods, Some kinds are very staple. Some are made with iron plates, To clinch the screw or nail, But when we would a peg shoe make, To use these plates would fail. Made, also, for men and boys, Women and girls, for each Has on this art a special claim, Their feet to train and teach. To dwell here longer would not do, The last ...
— How to Make a Shoe • Jno. P. Headley

... thought had flung to the weapons, too. She had taken off her pistol when she had been nursing Bill and hadn't put it on since. Quietly, so as not to attract attention, she glanced about to locate it. It was hanging on a nail at the opposite end of the table,—and Joe stood just beside it. She had no desire to waken his suspicions of her fear. She knew she must put up a bold front, at least. Nevertheless her fingers longed for the comforting feel of its butt. She resolved to watch for a ...
— The Snowshoe Trail • Edison Marshall

... Siyatelstvo," he whispered, as he kissed Paul's hand. And then in perfect silence they began to ascend a path. Presently it stopped abruptly. They had come up perhaps not fifty feet, when their way was barred by a great nail-studded door. ...
— Three Weeks • Elinor Glyn

... the young princes, with many other nobles and ladies, all came and gathered round the Emperor and watched me while I ate. His Majesty was taller than any of the others; that is to say, he stood about the breadth of my nail above the heads of his people. He was handsome and well made and had an air of great dignity. I heard that he had reigned seven years, and had been victorious, and that ...
— The Elson Readers, Book 5 • William H. Elson and Christine M. Keck

... ingenious contrivance of the ancient artist. The orbit has been cut out from the stone, the hollow being filled with an eye composed of enamel, white and black. The edges of the eyelids are of bronze, and a small silver nail inserted behind the iris receives and reflects the light in such wise as to imitate the light of life. The contours of the flesh are somewhat full and wanting in firmness, as would be the case in middle life, if the man's occupation debarred him from active exercise. The forms of the arm and ...
— Manual Of Egyptian Archaeology And Guide To The Study Of Antiquities In Egypt • Gaston Camille Charles Maspero

... music was the only touchstone; through the piano-player there is added the fascination of being yourself a participator in producing the music you hear. When Theodore Thomas said "Nothing so awakens interest in music as helping to make it," he hit the nail on the head. "After playing all this music I want to go to concerts next winter. I'd like to hear how the 'Fifth Symphony' sounds on the orchestra," said my little girl after the pianola had been in the house only a week. "All this music?" Yes indeed. ...
— The Pianolist - A Guide for Pianola Players • Gustav Kobb

... which are considered the birthright of the New Englander. He had not the mechanical turn of the whittling Yankee. I once questioned him about his manual dexterity, and he told me he could split a shingle four ways with one nail, —which, as the intention is not to split it at all in fastening it to the roof of a house or elsewhere, I took to be a confession of inaptitude for mechanical works. He does not seem to have been ...
— Ralph Waldo Emerson • Oliver Wendell Holmes

... week! I can't do that: they'd have the black spot on me by then. The lubbers is going about to get the wind of me this blessed moment; lubbers as couldn't keep what they got, and want to nail what is another's. Is that seamanly behaviour, now, I want to know? But I'm a saving soul. I never wasted good money of mine; nor lost it neither; and I'll trick 'em again. I'm not afraid on 'em. I'll shake out another reef, ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 6 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... it is not the custom for women to live altogether with men. Now, what I wish is, that the hinder part of the cabin, where you used to stow away your dried birds, should be made over to me. We have oars with which we can make a division, and then nail up seal skins, so that I may have that part of the cabin to myself. Now, do you ...
— The Little Savage • Captain Marryat

... preserved fresh on their stalks for more than two months, and for several days when plucked off. This plant may be transported to almost any distance; and will produce flowers annually, if merely hung up on a nail. ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 5 • Robert Kerr

... a long-drawn guttural sound of mingled pain and satisfaction. This operation he repeated several times. On my inquiring the meaning of his strange conduct, he only said, 'Me carpenter-make 'em' ('I am mending my foot'), and then showed me his charred great toe, the nail of which had been torn off by a tea-tree stump, in which it had been caught during the journey, and the pain of which he had borne with stoical composure until the evening, when he had an opportunity of cauterizing the wound in the primitive manner ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... projects every one of which is a life job for a man, especially when you cannot get the men, and when you do get them they do not stay on the job for life. So there is the great difficulty. Mr. Littlepage has hit the nail on the head. The Department of Agriculture is not well organized but it is not an easy thing to organize experimental work on at least 150 different kinds of industries with the money and the men we have. The fact that the investigations require the men to be on the land close to their work ...
— Northern Nut Growers Association Report of the Proceedings at the Eleventh Annual Meeting - Washington, D. C. October 7 AND 8, 1920 • Various

... of tools was gained, besides room for a desk containing the government working drawings and specifications, pay-rolls, etc. In addition to its door, fastened at night with a padlock, and its one glass window, secured by a ten-penny nail, the shanty had a flap-window, hinged at the bottom. When this was propped up with a barrel stave it made a counter from which to pay the men, the paymaster ...
— Tom Grogan • F. Hopkinson Smith

... he brought himself to make any for Eudoxia Pence. He came to see a great deal of the Bunnies; in a month or two he quite had the run of the place. There were friendly fellows who heaved big lumps of clay upon huge nail-studded scantlings, and nice little girls who designed book-plates, and more mature ones who painted miniatures, and many earnest, earnest persons of both sexes who were hurrying, hurrying ahead on their ...
— Under the Skylights • Henry Blake Fuller

... submarine world was almost deserted (except by a huge lobster and a shark, who were drinking lemonade) when Grover entered upon his quest for the vanished water-nymph. He investigated two or three grottoes, with no result except to tear his cloak on an exposed nail and knock a hole in his helmet. He was just about to resort to a classical imprecation, when the necessity for it was suddenly dissipated. There stood the daughter of Rhine, wonderful to behold, in sweet converse with her chaperone, the black domino. ...
— Stories by American Authors, Volume 10 • Various

... the treatment is different. But oh! Grantley, I wish I had that Scotch-gray confidence in myself that you have. If you were a doctor you would tell a man he had typhoid, and he'd proceed to have it, even if he had only set out to have an ingrowing toe-nail. But my patients have a decided will of their own. There's young Ab Cowan—they sent for me last night to go out to see him. He has a bad attack of quinsy, but it is the strangest ...
— Sowing Seeds in Danny • Nellie L. McClung

... dissolution than to respect the departed. Julian could not help smiling at the child's evident discomfiture as he pursued his way towards Grosvenor Place. On one of the doorsteps of the big houses that drive respect like a sharp nail into the hearts of the poor passers-by, a ragged old woman was tumultuously squatting. Her gin-soddened face came, like a scarlet cloud, to the view from the embrace of a vagabond black bonnet, braided with rags, viciously glittering here and there with the stray bugles which survived from some ...
— Flames • Robert Smythe Hichens

... are. I was afraid that Martha had had an accident with the fungi, and had prepared a substitute from my old shooting boots, but I can't see either eyelet or nail. Can you?" ...
— The Weathercock - Being the Adventures of a Boy with a Bias • George Manville Fenn

... you can drive without a whip or reins?" asked Laddie again. "The answer is a nail. You can ...
— Six Little Bunkers at Uncle Fred's • Laura Lee Hope

... concern that was now upon me, put an end to all invention, and to all the contrivances that I had laid for my future accommodations and conveniences. I had the care of my safety more now upon my hands than that of my food. I cared not to drive a nail, or chop a stick of wood now, for fear the noise I might make should be heard: much less would I fire a gun for the same reason: and above all I was intolerably uneasy at making any fire, lest ...
— Robinson Crusoe • Daniel Defoe

... were comfortably at rest, "I can't help but get angry at the women as I walk about, for I do see them do so much foolishness. Why, to-day I saw one crazy for souvenirs, and I believe she thought everything was a souvenir. I saw her pick up a nail and put it into her handbag, and when she came up to the Pennsylvania coal monument in the Mining building, she commenced putting pieces of the coal in her pocket. Then one of the working men played really a mean joke on her. He came up with a lump as big as a water ...
— The Adventures of Uncle Jeremiah and Family at the Great Fair - Their Observations and Triumphs • Charles McCellan Stevens (AKA 'Quondam')

... could be found to make a coffin for the body of the dead General. The old servant of the Ursulines, faithful to the last, went hither and thither and collected a few planks and nails, and the midshipmen and Colin assisted her to nail together a rude coffin in which the body was presently laid. It must be buried that same evening, for none knew from hour to hour what was in store for the city. But no pomp or circumstance could attend the funeral; and indeed no one could be found ...
— French and English - A Story of the Struggle in America • Evelyn Everett-Green

... at his funny work," suggested Shelley, hitting the nail directly on the head, as ...
— The Rover Boys on Treasure Isle - or The Strange Cruise of the Steam Yacht. • Edward Stratemeyer (AKA Arthur M. Winfield)

... her shattered hulk Should sink beneath the wave; Her thunders shook the mighty deep, And there should be her grave; Nail to the mast her holy flag, Set every threadbare sail, And give her to the god of storms, ...
— Initial Studies in American Letters • Henry A. Beers

... "Fight us tooth and nail though you may, we intend to have you married. You have happened upon us by chance, and you shall have no reason to repent of it. We are in earnest on ...
— Dead Souls • Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol

... upon him by the press, by many of his friends, and by such a man as Emerson, whom he deeply reverenced, to change or omit certain passages from his poems, seems only to have served as the opposing hammer that clinched the nail. The louder the outcry the more deeply he felt it his duty to stand by his first convictions. The fierce and scornful opposition to his sex poems, and to his methods and aims generally, was probably more confirmatory ...
— Whitman - A Study • John Burroughs

... wing feathers short, arched, much hidden in the soft downy plumage; barely capable of flight; tail short, generally formed of 16 feathers, developed at a late period in the young males; legs thick, feathered; spurs short, thick; nail of middle toe flat and broad; an additional toe not rarely developed; skin yellowish. Comb and wattle well developed. Skull with deep medial furrow; occipital foramen, sub- triangular, vertically elongated. Voice peculiar. Eggs rough, buff- coloured. ...
— The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication - Volume I • Charles Darwin

... to say, Jack breaks plates, dishes and cups with a perfectly easy and unembarrassed conscience, and is already far too civilized to care in the least for his misfortunes in that line. Whenever a fowl is killed—and I came upon Jack slowly putting one to death the other day with a pair of nail-scissors—he possesses himself of a small store of feathers, which he wears tastefully placed over his left ear. A gay ribbon, worn like a bandeau across the forehead, is what he really loves. Jack is very proud of a tawdry ribbon of many colors with a golden ground which ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, April, 1876. • Various

... entitled the bridge of the King's Garden [du Jardin du Roi], a double enigma, which disguised the bridge of Austerlitz and the Jardin des Plantes at one stroke. Louis XVIII., much preoccupied while annotating Horace with the corner of his finger-nail, heroes who have become emperors, and makers of wooden shoes who have become dauphins, had two anxieties,—Napoleon and Mathurin Bruneau. The French Academy had given for its prize subject, The Happiness ...
— Les Miserables - Complete in Five Volumes • Victor Hugo

... thar's to be any whippin', ur tarrin' an' featherin' in this case, I'm agin it tooth an' toe-nail. Cap Westerfelt's boy sha'n't have a hair o' his head fetched on sech flimsy evidence as we've had while I'm alive. You kin think what you please o' me. I've got too much faith in the Westerfelt ...
— Westerfelt • Will N. Harben

... Rome at the head of 150,000 men. Belisarius, in the three months, had done his best to repair the walls, the towers, and the gates of the city. He had also laid up provisions. He dug trenches round the least defended spots, and had constructed great machines which shot bolts strong enough to nail an armoured man to a tree. Vitiges approached from the Anio, and made a desperate attempt to storm the city at once. Having failed in this, through the great courage and skill of Belisarius, and ...
— The Formation of Christendom, Volume VI - The Holy See and the Wandering of the Nations, from St. Leo I to St. Gregory I • Thomas W. (Thomas William) Allies

... 'em talk about a little winder and a shed, and when they'd gone I found it and come in. The glass was broke, and I only pulled the nail out. I haven't done a mite of harm sleepin' here two nights. I was so tuckered out I couldn't go on nohow, though ...
— Under the Lilacs • Louisa May Alcott

... passed his legs over he gave a feeble moan and then.... flopper-ti flop, flopper-ti flop, he crashed down the other side and ended with a dull thud on the ground. On the other side there he was dead as a door-nail and all covered with blood. It was our first proper work. But he was not a soldier, he was a Boxer; and in place of the former incomplete attire of red sashes and strings, this true patriot wore a long red tunic edged with blue, and had his head tied up in the regulation ...
— Indiscreet Letters From Peking • B. L. Putman Weale

... blaze they struck was truly startling. It was a little silver birch tree with the stem painted entirely red. Nailed to it with a big rusty nail was a piece of cardboard. At the top ...
— The Camp Fire Girls in the Maine Woods - Or, The Winnebagos Go Camping • Hildegard G. Frey

... before the caste committee, and a divorced woman is at liberty to marry again. The Nais worship all the ordinary Hindu deities. On the Dasahra and Diwali festivals they wash and revere their implements, the razor, scissors and nail-pruners. They pay regard to omens. It is unpropitious to sneeze or hear the report of a gun when about to commence any business; and when a man is starting on a journey, if a cat, a squirrel, a hare or a snake should cross the road in front of him he will give it up and return ...
— The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India - Volume IV of IV - Kumhar-Yemkala • R.V. Russell

... situation in this light, modern business has largely solved the age-long problem of producing and distributing the material necessities and amenities of life; and nothing remains except to perfect the system in detail, develop its further potentialities, and fight tooth and nail those who are led by lack of personal success or a maudlin sympathy for the incompetent to attack ...
— The Mind in the Making - The Relation of Intelligence to Social Reform • James Harvey Robinson

... sail for'ard," observed Willy Dicey to Harry. "Don't you think we can manage to nail it on round the stern and quarters? I saw some tools put into the boat, and one of the carpenter's mates is ...
— The Voyages of the Ranger and Crusader - And what befell their Passengers and Crews. • W.H.G. Kingston

... the shingle, so gently that not a pebble was disturbed. He rose, a gaunt scarecrow, stepped off, and drew the shallow craft somewhat further up the sloping beach. Then he helped Iris to her feet. She became conscious at once that his thumb-nail was of extraordinary length, and—so strangely constituted is human nature—this peculiarity made a ...
— The Stowaway Girl • Louis Tracy

... leaves to the inside edges of the diamonds in long twisted stitches, rows of button-hole stitches, or any kind of lace-work. After being washed and starched, the collar ought to be pressed on the wrong side with the head of a round nail warmed ...
— The Lady's Album of Fancy Work for 1850 • Unknown

... as one nail by strength drives out another, So the remembrance of my former love Is by a newer object quite forgotten. Two Gentlemen of Verona, Act ii. ...
— The World's Best Poetry — Volume 10 • Various

... dare do it," she answered, with such fine intrepidity that I was silent, and began to crease patterns on the cloth with my thumb nail. ...
— Strictly Business • O. Henry

... Molly made a deep mark in the paper under them with her nail; so deep as to signify that she meant to have them for present study or future reference or both. Then, as Molly seemed to have said her say, Daisy said no more and ...
— Melbourne House • Elizabeth Wetherell

... advantage. I could have settled in San Francisco for life with the certainty of securing a handsome annual income. I never feared coming to want. If I had lost my money and all other resources had failed, I was not afraid to make a horse-nail or turn a horse-shoe with the best blacksmith in California, and I could have got my living, as I did for many a year, at ...
— Seven Wives and Seven Prisons • L.A. Abbott

... best refuge was now to place his back against an oak, and defend himself with his sword. The felon knight, who had taken another spear, watching the moment when his formidable antagonist was most closely pressed, galloped against him in hopes to nail him with his lance against the tree; but Wamba, springing forward in good time, checked the fatal career of the Blue Knight, by hamstringing his horse with a stroke of his sword; and horse and man went heavily to the ground. Almost immediately ...
— The Junior Classics, V5 • Edited by William Patten

... unwillingness to be seen in their vicinity, and a casual inspection of the records of the Auxiliary Patrol probably locked up somewhere in Whitehall. Some day these records may be made public, and then we shall read of happenings which will cause us to hold our breath, and our hair to bristle like a nail-brush. Who has not heard the story of the unarmed fishing boat which attacked a hostile periscope with nothing more formidable than a coal hammer, or the ex-fisherman who attempted to cloud Fritz's vision with ...
— Stand By! - Naval Sketches and Stories • Henry Taprell Dorling

... but widely known brotherhood appeared to pass their time on street corners arrayed like the lilies of the conservatory and busy with nail files and penknives. Thus displayed as a guarantee of good faith, they carried on an innocuous conversation in a 200-word vocabulary, to the casual observer as innocent and immaterial as that heard in clubs ...
— The Trimmed Lamp • O. Henry

... to interfere: the hoof required no special attention. Almost every horse-hoof in a large circuit of miles was known to him—as well, he would remark, as the nail of his own thumb. ...
— There & Back • George MacDonald

... more, shaking with merriment like a jolly old fellow amused by a funny story, he took his departure, not forgetting, however, to set his great hob-nail boots on each of the compromising footprints which his son had ...
— The Eight Strokes of the Clock • Maurice Leblanc

... hither," she cried. "See." And she showed them nail-marks on her naked flesh. "Last night my father's ghostly hands dragged ...
— Dreamers of the Ghetto • I. Zangwill

... legends, by tales and poems, allegories, ethical reflections, and historical reminiscences. For it, the Bible was not only the supreme law, from whose behests there was no appeal, but also "a golden nail upon which" the Haggada "hung its gorgeous tapestries," so that the Bible word was the introduction, refrain, text, and subject of the poetical glosses of the Talmud. It was the province of the Halacha to build, upon the foundation of biblical law, a legal ...
— Jewish Literature and Other Essays • Gustav Karpeles

... drop the bolt, and securely nail The horse-shoe over the door; 'T is a wise precaution; and, if it should ...
— The Complete Works of Whittier - The Standard Library Edition with a linked Index • John Greenleaf Whittier

... perversissimi; regnat superbia, ardet avaritia, invidia corrodit singulos, luxuria diffamat totam illam curiam, gula in omnibus dominatur." It was not the charge of magic alone that brought Roger Bacon's works into discredit with the Church, and caused a nail to be driven through their covers to keep the dangerous pages ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 6, No. 38, December, 1860 • Various

... but you yourself selected it for me. You know that we give a party to-morrow to celebrate the birthday of the crown prince, and I wished to wear that dress. Now, I knew what no one else knew, that the last time I wore it I had torn it by a nail in the wall, on crossing the corridor. If I had informed my maid of this mishap, I should have been unable to wear it again, for custom, I believe, forbids queens to wear mended dresses. I was, however, bent on saving it. For this purpose I took ...
— Napoleon and the Queen of Prussia • L. Muhlbach

... were so inclined), and whether his hosts had slept well. He glanced at his watch—it was still early—and began to wash and dress. His water was ready, and everything on the washing-stand and dressing-table was ready for use and properly laid out—his soap, his tooth and hair brushes, his nail scissors and files. He washed his hands and face in a leisurely fashion, cleaned and manicured his nails, pushed back the skin with the towel, and sponged his stout white body from head to foot. Then he began to brush his hair. Standing in front of the mirror, he first brushed his curly ...
— The Forged Coupon and Other Stories • Leo Tolstoy

... the whole group of girls; but it was to Tilly she addressed herself, and by Tilly's side she seated herself. It was in doing this that the delicate material of her dress caught in a protruding nail in the splint piazza chair ...
— A Flock of Girls and Boys • Nora Perry

... "Ah! vous m'avez ecrit une lettre charmante." This was all the preliminary of our talk, which then went on as if we had always known one another.... Her way of talking is just like her writing—lively, picturesque, with an undertone of deep feeling, and the same happiness in striking the nail on the head every now and then with a blow.... I heartily enjoyed the sense of so rich, so prolific, so ardent a genius. I liked the woman in her, too, very much; I never liked a woman better.... For the rest, she holds her place in the literary ...
— The Best of the World's Classics, Restricted to Prose, Vol. X (of X) - America - II, Index • Various

... that still felt his life in every limb, a boy devoured with fantastic ambitions. He had a genius within that smothered and struggled till it all but perished unexpressed. It lived only enough to be an anguish. It hurt him like a hidden, unmentioned ingrowing toe nail that cuts and bleeds and excruciates the fleet member it ...
— The Best Short Stories of 1920 - and the Yearbook of the American Short Story • Various

... was laughing softly as a boy in the midst of a prank, and busily throwing off the robe of serge. Fumbling through the night he located the shirt and overalls he had seen hanging from a nail on the wall. Into these he slipped, leaned to kiss the chill, damp forehead of the sleeper, and then went out under the ...
— Riders of the Silences • John Frederick

... capacity, the prosecution and accomplishment of the necessary work formerly proposed; and which they could not but judge the Lord still called them unto, while after all the above-mentioned breaches made upon them, he still continued to give them a nail in his holy place, and a wall in Judah and Jerusalem, Ezra ix, 8, 9, they therefore again laid their appointments upon some others to prepare a draft of An Act, Declaration, and Testimony, &c., and which, under ...
— Act, Declaration, & Testimony for the Whole of our Covenanted Reformation, as Attained to, and Established in Britain and Ireland; Particularly Betwixt the Years 1638 and 1649, Inclusive • The Reformed Presbytery

... and the others watched him, he was evidently nervous, and fumbled. Then he tried to open it with his teeth, but the spring was strong, and he had to alter his tactics and begin to open it with his forefinger and thumb nail, and still it seemed as if he could not get it open; and all the time the boat was rapidly setting nearer. In another few seconds it would be alongside, and the Americans would be on board, five against two, unless Taters made a brave defence. There were a couple of dozen blacks on deck, but ...
— The Black Bar • George Manville Fenn

... the parchment can be crumbled between the fingers, and the bean within is too hard to be dented by finger nail or teeth. ...
— All About Coffee • William H. Ukers

... to me in a very feeling manner. Although she was an entire stranger, she spoke so pointedly to my state of mind, and expressed the reward of faithfulness in such encouraging terms, that my feelings were in nowise able to resist the power which attended, but I was forced to acknowledge it as a nail fastened in a ...
— Memoir and Diary of John Yeardley, Minister of the Gospel • John Yeardley

... for ordinary work a small pair with fine sharp points, for gold work small ones with strong points similar to nail scissors, and for cutting-out purposes a large pair with one rounded ...
— Embroidery and Tapestry Weaving • Grace Christie

... but instead of getting up and going away, he put his elbows on the table and pressed his head in his hands. He felt as if a nail were being driven into his skull. A strange idea suddenly occurred to him, to get up at once, to go up to Nikodim Fomitch, and tell him everything that had happened yesterday, and then to go with him to his lodgings and to show him the things in the hole ...
— Crime and Punishment • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... scientific, and medical study! Ah! she, Rosita, had heard of such cases before. Had not a paternal ancestor of hers, one Don Diego Castro, believed he had discovered the elixir of youth. Had he not to that end refused even to wash him the hand, to cut him the nail of the finger and the hair of the head! Exalted by that discovery, had he not been unsparingly uncomplimentary to all humanity, especially to the weaker sex? Even ...
— The Argonauts of North Liberty • Bret Harte

... ridiculous performances of Chord. Once I thought she looked squarely at me, and my heart beat like a drum so loudly that I thought people must hear. But her glance wandered on casually over the throng, and then I felt truly insignificant, like a man who could hide behind the nail of his own thumb. ...
— The O'Ruddy - A Romance • Stephen Crane

... opened and Dr. Albant, a handsome old man, entered with smiles and nods. He removed his coat and tied on a large apron. Trying the edge of his scalpel on his nail, he turned to the students and physicians, and began to talk of the German method ...
— The Son of Monte Cristo • Jules Lermina

... which has once been forced into any particular train, can scarcely give it up as hopeless. One day I chanced to observe a nail trodden into the mud floor at no great distance from me. I seized upon this new treasure, and found that I could unlock with it the padlock that fastened me to the staple in the floor. By this means I had the pitiful consolation of being able to range, without constraint, the miserable ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol IV. • Editors: Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton

... with Thomas, and holding up his dry, hooked forefinger, with its long, dirty nail, in warning, would ...
— The Crushed Flower and Other Stories • Leonid Andreyev

... glass, white as a bell flower, she had a breast and head joined by a noble poised throat, which baited the very hook of love. Upon her lily finger she wore a red and golden ring. Even her frock was a miracle of millinery. This lovely creature, complete to a nail, much disturbed the mind of Hugh, and played her pretty tricks upon her unexercised pastor: now demure, now smiling, now darting soft glances, now reining in her eyes. But he, good man, was rock or diamond. At last the fair creature actually stroked his arm, and then Hugh ...
— Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln - A Short Story of One of the Makers of Mediaeval England • Charles L. Marson

... silk stockings, several mysterious under garments (from the same source); one cigarette tin containing sewing materials, buttons of all sorts and sizes nine empty cotton-reels, three spools from a sewing-machine, one pair nail-scissors (broken); one cigar-box containing several yards of tape (varying widths), cuttings of many different materials, one button-hook, one tin-opener and corkscrew combined, one silver thimble, one ditto (horn), one Chinese pipe; one packet of tea, one ditto sugar, one tin condensed ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 156, Jan. 15, 1919 • Various

... the old houses are entered by Gothic doorways, and the oak doors are studded with large nail-heads. The locks and bolts are of mediaeval workmanship. Sometimes you see an iron ring hanging to a string that has been passed through a hole in the door. It is just such a string as Little Red Riding-hood (an ...
— Wanderings by southern waters, eastern Aquitaine • Edward Harrison Barker

... never went aside for any impediment. One ceased his movements altogether just before the mid-watch. At sunrise I found him butted like a battering-ram against the immovable foot of the foremast, and still striving, tooth and nail, to force the impossible passage. That these tortoises are the victims of a penal, or malignant, or perhaps a downright diabolical enchanter, seems in nothing more likely than in that strange infatuation of hopeless toil which so often possesses ...
— The Piazza Tales • Herman Melville

... be so good as to remember what a hang-nail is like? or a grain of dust in your eye? or a blister on your heel? or a corn on your toe? and then reflect what the word "torture" implies, when it meant all that the most devilish cruelty could invent. Savonarola! good gracious me! I would have canted and recanted, and called black white, ...
— Records of Later Life • Frances Anne Kemble

... wig of short, coarse, red hair, which he took off with his hat, and hung upon a nail. Having adopted in its place a dirty cotton nightcap, and groped about in the dark till he found a remnant of candle, he knocked at the partition which divided the two garrets, and inquired, in a loud voice, whether Mr Noggs ...
— The Life And Adventures Of Nicholas Nickleby • Charles Dickens

... your big fellow in his football suit,' said Jim. 'The biggest part of him is hanging up in there on a nail.' ...
— Football Days - Memories of the Game and of the Men behind the Ball • William H. Edwards

... to the tool-house at the bottom of the garden, and there, tied to a nail in the wall, was a pretty little black-and-tan ...
— Chatterbox, 1906 • Various

... tell you that the severity of the weather, and the heat of the intolerable furnaces, dry the hair and break the nails of strangers? There is not a complete nail in the whole British suite, and my hair cracks again when I brush it. (I am losing my hair with great rapidity, and what I don't lose ...
— The Letters of Charles Dickens - Vol. 2 (of 3), 1857-1870 • Charles Dickens

... Why, dis berry curous sarcumstance, pon my word—dare's a great big nail in de skull, what fastens ob ...
— Short Stories Old and New • Selected and Edited by C. Alphonso Smith

... and Tomio joined them, from the observatory. Tomio said, that she was related to Tarrao; and brought him a present of a long nail, at the same time complimenting ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 12 • Robert Kerr

... provinces, and especially at Matelle, the colours being mixed with a resinous exudation collected from a shrub called by the Singhalese Wael-koep-petya (Croton lacciferum). The coloured varnish thus prepared is formed into films and threads chiefly by aid of the thumb-nail of the left hand, which is kept long and uncut for the purpose. It is then applied by heat and polished. It is chiefly employed in ornamenting the covers of books, walking-sticks, the shafts of spears, and the handles of fans for the priesthood. The Burmese artists who make the japanned ware of ...
— Ceylon; an Account of the Island Physical, Historical, and • James Emerson Tennent

... room, looking out over the school grounds. There were a couple of deal tables, two empty bookcases, and a looking-glass, hung on a nail. ...
— Mike • P. G. Wodehouse

... supplying the buffalo for Bronx Park. I rounded up a magnificent 'king' buffalo bull, belligerent enough to fight a battleship. When I rode after him the cowmen said I was as good as killed. I made a lance by driving a nail into the end of a short pole and sharpening it. After he had chased me, I wheeled my broncho, and hurled the lance into his back, ripping a wound as long as my hand. That put the fear of Providence into him and took ...
— The Last of the Plainsmen • Zane Grey

... but in the ability to discover facts by personal observation and investigation and in the power to use these facts in deducing new conclusions and establishing fundamental principles. There is no comparison between the value of a ton of horseshoe nails and the ability to make a single nail. ...
— College Teaching - Studies in Methods of Teaching in the College • Paul Klapper

... is seldom served at table sliced in its crude state. It is principally grown for pickling: for which purpose it should be plucked when about half grown, or while the skin is tender, and can be easily broken by the nail. As the season of maturity approaches, the rind gradually hardens, and the fruit becomes worthless. In all stages of its growth, the flesh is comparatively spongy; and, in the process of pickling, absorbs a ...
— The Field and Garden Vegetables of America • Fearing Burr

... hang by the wall, And Dick the shepherd blows his nail, And Tom bears logs into the hall, And milk comes frozen home in pail, When blood is nipp'd and ways be foul, Then nightly sings the staring owl, Tu whit, Tu whu, a merry note While greasy Joan ...
— Penny Plain • Anna Buchan (writing as O. Douglas)

... dinner of the day; And Juan took his place, he knew not where, Confused, in the confusion, and distrait, And sitting as if nail'd upon his chair: Though knives and forks clank'd round as in a fray, He seem'd unconscious of all passing there, Till some one, with a groan, exprest a wish (Unheeded twice) to have ...
— Don Juan • Lord Byron

... His right arm bone is however preserved separate in a glass case. The sword of this prince too, and the Imperial crown is to be seen here. The sacristan next proceeded to show to us the other relics, but having begun with the exhibition of a rag dipped in the sweat of Jesus Christ and a nail of the Holy Cross, we began to think we had seen enough and went away perfectly satisfied. There is no other monument in honour of Charlemagne, but a plain stone on the floor of the Church with the simple inscription "Carolo Magno." On going out ...
— After Waterloo: Reminiscences of European Travel 1815-1819 • Major W. E Frye

... all the window-soles whitewashed over with frost rind in the mornings, that as I was going out in the dark, before lying down in my bed, to give a look into the hen-house, and lock the coal-cellar, so that I might hang the bit key on the nail behind our room window-shutter, I happened to give a keek in, and, lo and behold! the awful apparition of a man with a yellow jacket, lying sound asleep on a great lump of parrot-coal in ...
— The Life of Mansie Wauch - tailor in Dalkeith • D. M. Moir

... way, I'm thinkin'," the little man replied. "Gin ye haud Shep's the guilty one I wad, by all manner o' means—or shootin'd be aiblins better. If not, why"—he shrugged his shoulders significantly; and having shown his hand and driven the nail well home, the little man left ...
— Bob, Son of Battle • Alfred Ollivant

... had a minstrel show, wearing masks of black cambric, with red mouths painted on them; you should have seen us, all in a dusky semicircle, seated on boards supported by nail-kegs: it was a scene better imagined than described. This is certainly the ideal way to live in summer-time, and we should be perfectly happy and content if you could only shake off your troublesome cough and come to share our pleasure. We feel incomplete without you; and no ...
— A Summer in a Canyon: A California Story • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... the nails are really parts of the outer skin, which is curiously changed and hardened. The nails lie upon the surface of the true skin and grow from the under side as well as from the little fold of skin at the root of the nail. They are made to give firmness and protection to the ends of the fingers and toes. The nails of the fingers are also useful in picking up small objects and in many ...
— First Book in Physiology and Hygiene • J.H. Kellogg

... dead, sir!" was his criticism, "dead as a door nail! All the medicine in the shop wouldn't kindle one spark of ...
— The Midnight Queen • May Agnes Fleming

... great head on you, old chap," he said, affectionately. "It certainly seems as though you have hit the nail on the head this time. I understand, now, why their leader was so anxious to have us move away. They expect to encounter the Indians somewhere in this neighborhood and they do not want any witnesses. What shall ...
— The Boy Chums in the Forest - or Hunting for Plume Birds in the Florida Everglades • Wilmer M. Ely

... your noble profession! I think every Scotch gardener of you believes himself a gentleman, simply because he can nail a few stripes of old blanket against a wall. How did you come by this ...
— Willy Reilly - The Works of William Carleton, Volume One • William Carleton

... edicts of the Emperor in this matter of faith had been despised, scorned, ridiculed, and derided by the Lutherans. (Foerstemann, 2, 190.) Such were the miserable arguments with which the Romanists defended their treachery. Luther certainly hit the nail on the head when he wrote that the Romanists refused to deliver the Confutation "because their consciences felt very well that it was a corrupt, futile, and frigid affair, of which they would have to be ashamed in case it should become public and ...
— Historical Introductions to the Symbolical Books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church • Friedrich Bente

... by subscription; but compliments lord Jefferies for so pious an undertaking. He also says, that the cause of Dryden's death was an inflammation in his toe, occasioned by the flesh growing over the nail, which, being neglected, produced a ...
— Lives of the Poets, Vol. 1 • Samuel Johnson

... which appear to be innocent. A knife or a nail file can be carried normally on your person; either is a multi-purpose instrument for creating damage. Matches, pebbles, hair, salt, nails, and dozens of other destructive agents can be carried or kept in your living quarters without exciting any suspicion whatever. If you are a worker in a particular ...
— Simple Sabotage Field Manual • Strategic Services

... strong and tender tie so long existing between us? My affection, my gratitude, all warred against the idea of working with those who wronged him so bitterly. But the cry of starving children was ever in my ears; the sobs of women poisoned in lead works, exhausted in nail works, driven to prostitution by starvation, made old and haggard by ceaseless work. I saw their misery was the result of an evil system, was inseparable from private ownership of the instruments of wealth production; that while the worker was himself but an instrument, ...
— Annie Besant - An Autobiography • Annie Besant

... Toby, taking his pipe from his mouth, and striking the head of it two or three times upon the nail of his left thumb, as he began his sentence,—I think, says he:—But to enter rightly into my uncle Toby's sentiments upon this matter, you must be made to enter first a little into his character, the out-lines of which I shall just give you, ...
— The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman • Laurence Sterne

... was dignified and businesslike, and if a smile hovered about her lips as they explored the odd little house, it did not go beyond the bounds of a polite interest. At length she seated herself on an empty nail keg in the shop, and became absorbed in thought. The agent leaned against the ...
— The Pleasant Street Partnership - A Neighborhood Story • Mary F. Leonard

... San Pedro de Cardena, the Cid embraced his wife Ximena and his two daughters, and left them in the protection of the abbot, to whom he promised recompense. Hard was the pain of parting as when the finger nail is torn away from the flesh, but a banished man has no choice. And as they passed the night at Higeruela a sweet vision promising success comforted the Cid in his slumbers; and many from Castile, who heard of the departure of the hero, sought his ...
— National Epics • Kate Milner Rabb

... best. It is the law of good economy to make the best of everything. How much more to make the best of every creature! Therefore, when your pauper comes to you and asks for bread, ask of him instantly—What faculty have you? What can you do best? Can you drive a nail into wood? Go and mend the parish fences. Can you lay a brick? Mend the walls of the cottages where the wind comes in. Can you lift a spadeful of earth? Turn this field up three feet deep all over. Can you only drag a weight with your shoulders? ...
— The Crown of Wild Olive • John Ruskin



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