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Temptation   /tɛmtˈeɪʃən/   Listen
Temptation

noun
1.
Something that seduces or has the quality to seduce.  Synonym: enticement.
2.
The desire to have or do something that you know you should avoid.
3.
The act of influencing by exciting hope or desire.  Synonym: enticement.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Temptation" Quotes from Famous Books



... saddled her, you will easily see, with a positively new obligation to her father, an obligation created and aggravated by her unfortunate, even if quite heroic, little sense of justice. She began with wanting to show him that his marriage could never, under whatever temptation of her own bliss with the Prince, become for her a pretext for deserting or neglecting HIM. Then that, in its order, entailed her wanting to show the Prince that she recognised how the other desire—this wish to remain, intensely, the same passionate little daughter she had always been—involved ...
— The Golden Bowl • Henry James

... after a somewhat long pause, and with a sarcastic intonation, "is that you should resist the very natural temptation of exhibiting me to the world as a penitent and reformed character. In that document you have just read you suggest to me—first, that I should retire from three lawsuits in which, whatever other people may think, I conceive that I have a ...
— The Mating of Lydia • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... Yielding to this temptation, he strode forward, chased away the Brahmins with an air of authority, and, uplifting his countenance to heaven, recited the appellations of seven devils. No effect ensuing, he repeated seven more, and so continued until, the fit having passed off in the course of ...
— The Twilight of the Gods, and Other Tales • Richard Garnett

... yet deeply and imaginatively loved; the moods of spiritual revolt against the harsh doctrines of the creed in which he had been brought up, and to which his parents were deeply, his father even passionately, attached; the seasons of temptation, to which he was exposed alike by temperament and circumstance, to seek solace among the crude allurements ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 23 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... There may be ports too sickly to risk lives in; but the men to be selected now are the few who cannot be trusted, the percentage which every society contains. This result will be variously interpreted. Some will attribute it to the abolition of the grog ration, the removal of temptation, a change of environment. Others will say that the extension of frequent leave, and consequent opportunity, has abolished the frenzied inclination to make the most—not the best—of a rare chance; has renewed men from within. Personally, ...
— From Sail to Steam, Recollections of Naval Life • Captain A. T. Mahan

... great object," said Justice Best, in delivering his sentiments in favour of the Game Laws, "that gentlemen should have a temptation to reside in the country, amongst their neighbours and tenantry, whose interests must be materially advanced by such a circumstance. The links of society are thereby better preserved, and the mutual advantages and dependence of the higher and lower classes on one another ...
— Curiosities of Literature, Vol. 3 (of 3) • Isaac D'Israeli

... money. The second saw clearly that, without an adequate army and the necessary defences, Belgium would be unable to fulfil her obligations in case her integrity should be violated, and would suffer in consequence; it realized that any weakness in the country's defences increased the temptation of some Powers to break their pledge. It is easy to understand that the first school was generally more popular than the other, and rallied not only the sincere idealists who thought such a contingency ...
— Belgium - From the Roman Invasion to the Present Day • Emile Cammaerts

... in her thoughts. Instead, she spent the time in wondering if Tango would let her catch him in the corral; in fretting because she must wait at all, when there was no telling what might have happened at Sinkhole; and in giving audience to a temptation that came with the lagging minutes and began persuading her that Tango was too slow for the trip she had before her; and in climbing into bed, turning over three times and climbing out again, leaving the light covering in its usual heap ...
— Skyrider • B. M. Bower

... do; that it will result in nothing but disaster all round. In the first place, whosoever so runs will be beaten and will be spotted for life; in the second place, while the race is in progress, he will be under the strongest temptation to trade with the Democrats, and to favor the election of certain of their friends to the Legislature; thirdly, I shall be held responsible for it, and Republican members of the Legislature who are partial to Lovejoy will for that purpose oppose ...
— The Papers And Writings Of Abraham Lincoln, Complete - Constitutional Edition • Abraham Lincoln

... analyse the first act of this the first historical play of Shakespeare. As the tragedy moves onward, and the style gathers strength while the action gathers speed,—as (to borrow the phrase so admirably applied by Coleridge to Dryden) the poet's chariot-wheels get hot by driving fast,—the temptation of rhyme grows weaker, and the hand grows firmer which before lacked strength to wave it off. The one thing wholly or greatly admirable in this play is the exposition of the somewhat pitiful but not unpitiable character of ...
— A Study of Shakespeare • Algernon Charles Swinburne

... a hand in every one of those crimes! Everything that he did is something that I might have done under the same temptation." ...
— Black Jack • Max Brand

... mind, Tallisker," said fretfully, "the warld thinks more o' the who mak money than o' those who gie it awa." Certainly this change was not a sudden one; for two years after Helen's death it was coming slowly forward, yet there were often times when Tallisker hoped that it was but a temptation, and would be finally conquered. Men do not lose the noble savor of humanity in a moment. Even on the downward road good angels wait anxiously, and whisper in every better moment to ...
— Scottish sketches • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr

... expediency would be to violate one of the most important trusts ever committed to any people. Whilst I do not deny to Congress the power, when acting bona fide as a proprietor, to give away portions of them for the purpose of increasing the value of the remainder, yet, considering the great temptation to abuse this power, we can not be too cautious in its exercise. Actual settlers under existing laws are protected against other purchasers at the public sales in their right of preemption to the extent of a quarter section, or 160 acres, of land. The remainder may then be disposed ...
— State of the Union Addresses of James Buchanan • James Buchanan

... chamber all alone, Kneeling on the floor of stone, Prayed the Monk in deep contrition For his sins of indecision, Prayed for greater self-denial In temptation and in trial; It was noonday by the dial, And the ...
— Poems Teachers Ask For, Book Two • Various

... the Dordogne Valley during the summer months. When, by gliding over the transparent water, which revealed the pebbles at the bottom almost in the deepest places, and the shoals of fish as they passed up and down the stream, the temptation to plunge became irresistible, the blue jacket and the other garments were thrown off in a few seconds, and the fish were startled by the descent of a black head and beard, followed by the rest of that human form which Carlyle has compared to ...
— Two Summers in Guyenne • Edward Harrison Barker

... each had a private struggle with that inside disagreeableness which is part of all of us, and which is sometimes called the Old Adam—and both were victors. Neither of them said to Robert (and both tried hard not even to think it), 'This is YOUR doing.' Anthea had the additional temptation to add, 'I told you so.' And she ...
— The Story of the Amulet • E. Nesbit

... been had he been able to see straight into Paul de Virieu's heart! Had he divined the other's almost unendurable temptation to take Sylvia Bailey at her word, to impose on her pathetic ignorance of life, to allow her to become a ...
— The Chink in the Armour • Marie Belloc Lowndes

... of it; then, mebbe, ye begin to limber up an' think ye'll try it yerself. An' some morning ye'll wake up an' find yer moral character has scooted. You fellers that go t' meetin' here an' talk about resistin' temptation—if you ever git t' goin' it down there in New York City, temptation 'll have to resist you. My friends, ye don't want to make it too easy fer everybody to go somewhere else. If ye do, by an' by there won't be nobody left here but them that's too old ...
— Darrel of the Blessed Isles • Irving Bacheller

... he was not only learned, so learned, in fact, that he was promptly dubbed the "scholar in politics," but he was rich, and therefore immune from all sordid temptation; he was a gentleman. Mr. Lodge's forbears had been respectable tradesmen who knew how to make money and to keep it—and the latter trait is strongly developed in their senatorial descendant. From them he inherited a fortune; he had been educated in a select private school ...
— The Mirrors of Washington • Anonymous

... Mary Potter, who thereupon issued from the house to greet the unexpected guest. Mark had already dismounted, and although Sally protested that she would remain in the saddle, the strong arms held out to her proved too much of a temptation; it was so charming to put her hands on his shoulders, and to have his take her by the waist, and lift her to ...
— The Story Of Kennett • Bayard Taylor

... against this class of laws may be left—in the necessary limits of space—with this careful and moderate statement, though the temptation is strong to quote from Mr. Schurz and other authorities further specimens of the great body of harassing legislation, both state and local;—the establishment of pillory and whipping-post; the imposition of unjust taxes, with heavy license fees for the practice of mechanic arts; ...
— The Negro and the Nation - A History of American Slavery and Enfranchisement • George S. Merriam

... There is one respect, indeed, in which the identity fails,—He was "yet without sin;" but this recoil of His Holy nature from moral evil gives Him a deeper and intenser sensibility towards those who have still corruption within responding to temptation without. ...
— The Words of Jesus • John R. Macduff

... the whole physical man from intemperate excess, the deadness to temptation which comes from utter exhaustion, was his condition, according to himself and Moore, when he first left England, ...
— Lady Byron Vindicated • Harriet Beecher Stowe

... absolutely unanimous to a man. Thirdly, don't give the major time to fortify: keep your own counsels, and don't send in your ultimatum until the final moment. And, lastly, shun violence as you would a temptation of the devil." ...
— The Grafters • Francis Lynde

... lie in the warmth nor share in the cheer. Famished he was and very cold, but without Nello he would partake neither of comfort nor food. Against all temptation he was proof, and close against the door he leaned always, watching only for ...
— A Dog of Flanders • Louisa de la Rame)

... which the troops generally had earned by their conduct: it instilled venom into the resentment of those few cases (and it was beyond hope that they should not occur) in which soldiers had either lost their heads or yielded to the temptation of revenge in ...
— John Redmond's Last Years • Stephen Gwynn

... Mother ever walked with her head among the stars," sneered the Devil. "Why do the highest fall the lowest, when temptation comes?" ...
— The White Ladies of Worcester - A Romance of the Twelfth Century • Florence L. Barclay

... oranges, coffee, wild honey, lemons, limes, mahogany, cam-wood, satin-wood, rose-wood, &c., abound there; mules, oxen, horses, sheep, hogs, fowls of all kinds, are in the greatest abundance. She holds out a rich temptation to commerce and a strong inducement to emigration. To the latter the United States owed what she was, making her one of the most effective nations of the world. For years the glorious galaxy of stars which arose in the western ...
— The Journal of Negro History, Vol. I. Jan. 1916 • Various

... age for independence; and general bad manners for individuality. Has nobody ever trained these girls to think? What kind of schools do they attend? Who has spoiled them by flattery, until they are little peacocks to whom a mirror is an irresistible temptation? ...
— From a Girl's Point of View • Lilian Bell

... and the weather so fine that the strains of music came wafted across the arbours and over the stream, and, needless to say, conduced to exhilarate their spirits and to cheer their hearts. Unable to resist the temptation, Pao-yue was the first to snatch a decanter and to fill a cup for himself. He quaffed it with one breath. Then pouring another cup, he was about to drain it, when he noticed that Madame Wang too was anxious for a drink, and that she bade a servant bring a warm supply of wine. ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book II • Cao Xueqin

... vice. And how is it to be overcome? Preaching will not do it. Give Englishmen a chance, furnish them with counter attractions, and they will abjure intoxication like their continental neighbors. Elevate their tastes, and they will feel superior to the vulgar temptation of drink. Every other method has been tried and has failed; this is the ...
— Arrows of Freethought • George W. Foote

... first time that she had thus addressed him and his heart throbbed; but the temptation to confide in her lasted ...
— The Red Redmaynes • Eden Phillpotts

... when I won,—still I did not like it; but the bank notes caught my eye as they lay on the table, and—I was satisfied. Alas! how easy are scruples removed when we want money! How many are there who, when in a state of prosperity and affluence, when not tried by temptation, would have blushed at the bare idea of a dishonest action, have raised and held up their hands in abhorrence, when they have heard that others have been found guilty; and yet, when in adversity, have themselves committed the very acts which before they so loudly condemned! How many of the other ...
— Japhet, In Search Of A Father • Frederick Marryat

... a few rods. She was lying quite quietly, taking her morning siesta in the sun; plunged in ruminative thoughts, I supposed, and the temptation was irresistible to ...
— Diana • Susan Warner

... life was he conscious of a more awful desire to flee by means of the wings that God had given him. The weakness was over in a few seconds, and he crept on; but it was a near thing while it lasted. He passed, however, away from the danger zone, resisting temptation, ...
— The Way of the Wild • F. St. Mars

... glad, Edmund, that the temptation was not too strong for you. If we can find a spring ...
— The Dragon and the Raven - or, The Days of King Alfred • G. A. Henty

... hint at such a scheme, which is a temptation to all lofty souls at periods of social reform. But is not this purpose, in some cases, the result of a vocation? Do not some of them endeavor to concentrate their powers by long silence, so as to emerge fully capable of governing the world by word or by deed? Louis must, assuredly, ...
— Louis Lambert • Honore de Balzac

... sufferers forget their grief. But they may be too successful. Though the practice of the ladies of Jerusalem was a benevolent one, the gift mixed by their charitable hands appeared to our Lord a cup of temptation, and ...
— The Trial and Death of Jesus Christ - A Devotional History of our Lord's Passion • James Stalker

... say, that each time he yielded to temptation the resistance of his conscience became less and less, until finally it appeared to be paralyzed. He had woven the toils about himself until he seemed powerless to escape; no chrysalis, apparently lifeless in its silky shroud, was feebler than he. He was strong to do ...
— Holidays at the Grange or A Week's Delight - Games and Stories for Parlor and Fireside • Emily Mayer Higgins

... critic, even in honourable and open criticism, is beset with dangers. It is often hard to avoid saying an unkind thing, a cruel thing, which is smart, and which may even be deserved. Who can say that he has escaped this temptation, and what man of heart can think of his own fall without a sense of shame? There are, I admit, authors so antipathetic to me, that I cannot trust myself to review them. Would that I had never reviewed them! ...
— Essays in Little • Andrew Lang

... Ralph, 'I had never done this. And yet it will keep this boy to me, while there is money to be made. Selling a girl—throwing her in the way of temptation, and insult, and coarse speech. Nearly two thousand pounds profit from him already though. Pshaw! match-making mothers do the same ...
— The Life And Adventures Of Nicholas Nickleby • Charles Dickens

... hope you have been able to bear prosperity with meekness, and adversity with patience. These things are all ordered for us far better than we could order them for ourselves. We may pray for our daily bread; we may pray for forgiveness of sins; we may pray to be kept from temptation, and that the kingdom of God may come in us, and in all men, and His will everywhere be done. Beyond this we hardly know for what good to supplicate the Divine Mercy. Our Heavenly Father knoweth what we have need of better than we know ourselves, and we are assured ...
— The New England Magazine Volume 1, No. 3, March, 1886 - Bay State Monthly Volume 4, No. 3, March, 1886 • Various

... another direction; and how much credit do people deserve for refraining from doing what they feel no temptation to do?" said Evelyn, with an arch look and smile ...
— Christmas with Grandma Elsie • Martha Finley

... despair. But I will set down this story which I have heard told of him. It relates that one night Dante drifted toward that quarter of the city where such light loves find shelter. There many women plucked at his sleeve as he passed, and, at last, surrendering to temptation, he followed through the darkness one that was closely cloaked and hooded. It seemed to him that they went a long way together, he and the hooded woman by his side, and though at times he spoke to her, she answered him no word. After a while they came to an open place that was moon-lit, ...
— The God of Love • Justin Huntly McCarthy

... but the face of a strange man who stood in the door with a proprietary air deterred her. There was Hale's little frame cottage and his name, half washed out, was over the wing that was still his office. Past that she went, with a passing temptation to look within, and toward the old school-house. A massive new one was half built, of gray stone, to the left, but the old one, with its shingles on the outside that had once caused her such wonder, ...
— The Trail of the Lonesome Pine • John Fox, Jr.

... credit my own hearing. I gazed at the shrouded and veiled speaker—at the commanding arm that signed my mortal body to destruction. For a moment I was lost in wild terror and wilder doubt. Was this fearful suggestion a temptation or a test? Should it be obeyed? I strove to find the centre-poise of my own self—to gather all my forces together,—to make myself sure of my own will and responsible for my own deeds,—and then—then I paused. All that was purely ...
— The Life Everlasting: A Reality of Romance • Marie Corelli

... not fair," Mr. Hadley cried. "I am not here to say, 'I told you so,' I am not so proud of it. Well, damme, I have no temptation to be meddling in your affairs. But I think you will have to know. It is with Mr. Waverton I have ...
— The Highwayman • H.C. Bailey

... not try to explain her reasoning, her contempt for convention. It would be gratuitous. As for him, women had never constituted a temptation. He knew that he loved this simple, ingenuous girl with a tenderness of passion that was wholly free from the dross of mesmerism. ...
— Carmen Ariza • Charles Francis Stocking

... Christendom that occupies the position of absolute and perfect liberty, with some measure of Christian faith, or you must continue to occupy that position and thank God for it without hankering after some immediate victories that are so strong a temptation to many in our denomination." When the resolution in favor of a creed was brought to a vote, it was "defeated by a very large majority." By this act the Unitarian body again asserted its Christian position, but refused to define ...
— Unitarianism in America • George Willis Cooke

... passed my eyes over the whole assembly., and though I constantly constrained them, I could not resist the temptation to indemnify myself upon the Chief-President; I perseveringly overwhelmed him, therefore, a hundred different times during the sitting, with my hard-hitting regards. Insult, contempt, disdain, triumph, were darted at him from my eyes,—and pierced him to the very marrow often ...
— The Memoirs of Louis XIV., His Court and The Regency, Complete • Duc de Saint-Simon

... as the new man may be, he is mortal after all, and being mortal, is not proof against temptation—at least, after five or six weeks of his pupilage have passed. The good St. Anthony resisted all the endeavours of the Evil One to lure him from the proper path, until the gentleman of the discoloured cutis vera assumed the shape of ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 1, October 16, 1841 • Various

... smile about the corners of his lips which quietened my fears. I should not have liked that smile if I had been Vere. There was something contemptuous in it despite its admiration, and a sort of defiance, too, as if he were quite, quite sure of himself and secure from all temptation; but then they do begin like that sometimes, and the siren weaves on them her spells, and they succumb. I wonder how it will end with Vere and ...
— The Heart of Una Sackville • Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey

... terraced, and covered with vineyards; great sheets of silver sheen in the landscape mark the growth of the olive; the dark green orchards of oranges and lemons are starred with gold; the lusty fig, always a temptation as of old, leans invitingly over the stone wall; everywhere are bloom and color under the blue sky; there are shrines by the way-side, chapels on the hill; one hears the melodious bells, the call of the vine-dressers, the ...
— Our Italy • Charles Dudley Warner

... wrongdoing. Whatever anybody does is noticed at once and everything that happens is immediately found out. The favorite haunt of vice and crime is not in a sparsely settled community, public opinion to the contrary notwithstanding, but in the centers of population, in, our large cities where temptation to do evil is strong and dark deeds find ready concealment in the mingling and ...
— Arizona Sketches • Joseph A. Munk

... splendid and well-attested tribute to a gallant and worthy Negro. There were many such, but, beyond receiving and reading, no action was taken thereon by Congress. There is no lack of incidents, and the temptation to quote many of them is great, but the time allotted me is too brief for extended mention, and I must bring this branch of my subject to a close. It is in evidence that while so many Negroes were offering their lives a willing sacrifice for the country, in some sections the officers of the ...
— Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence - The Best Speeches Delivered by the Negro from the days of - Slavery to the Present Time • Various

... they learn how, they progress to something new. It would be infinitely easier for us to follow Mrs. Lippett's immoral custom of keeping each child sentenced for life to a well-learned routine; but when the temptation assails me, I recall the dreary picture of Florence Henty, who polished the brass doorknobs of this institution for seven years—and I ...
— Dear Enemy • Jean Webster

... comprise the author's chief motives in the publication of the following work. It is a well-known fact, that thousands of our fellow-Christians, in all parts of this vast free country, are continually subjected to a most trying ordeal of temptation and persecution on account of their religion, and that the wonderful progress of Catholicity and renewed power of the church only add to the malice, if not to the influence, of sectarians, in their efforts to make use of this odious persecution of servant boys and servant girls, of widows and ...
— The Cross and the Shamrock • Hugh Quigley

... "No man could help being moved and flattered, yes, and tempted by the suggestion. And yet when I think of the loneliness of a man like me in the White House, the loneliness, and the gradual disillusionment such as the President spoke of you, the temptation has very ...
— The Enchanted Canyon • Honore Willsie Morrow

... most extraordinary case. In some respects, it has hardly a precedent anywhere; certainly none in our New England history. This bloody drama exhibited no suddenly excited, ungovernable rage. The actors in it were not surprised by any lion-like temptation springing upon their virtue, and overcoming it, before resistance could begin. Nor did they do the deed to glut savage vengeance, or satiate long-settled and deadly hate. It was a cool, calculating, money-making murder. It was all "hire and salary, not revenge." ...
— The Great Speeches and Orations of Daniel Webster • Daniel Webster

... Vows drawn from us only by Danger, how soon effaced by Safety and Temptation! Scarce was Zeokinizul returned to the Hurry, Brilliancy, and Diversions of the Court, but those Impressions which it was hoped would be as lasting as they were salutary, were by Degrees soon dissipated. ...
— The Amours of Zeokinizul, King of the Kofirans - Translated from the Arabic of the famous Traveller Krinelbol • Claude Prosper Jolyot de Crbillon

... they inflicted on them, made the government uneasy, and even odious. But Cimon practiced a contrary method; he forced no man to go that was not willing, but of those that desired to be excused from service he took money and vessels unmanned, and let them yield to the temptation of staying at home, to attend to their private business. Thus they lost their military habits, and luxury and their own folly quickly changed them into unwarlike husbandmen and traders; while Cimon, continually embarking large numbers of Athenians on board his galleys, thoroughly disciplined ...
— The Boys' and Girls' Plutarch - Being Parts of The "Lives" of Plutarch • Plutarch

... of the law of meum and tuum had early been impressed upon my mind, and I entertained, even at that tender age, the utmost horror for theft; so I stood staring at the variegated clusters, in doubt as to what I should do. I know not how I argued the matter in my mind; the temptation, however, was at last too strong for me, so I stretched forth my hand and ate. I remember, perfectly well, that the taste of this strange fruit was by no means so pleasant as the appearance; but the idea of eating fruit was sufficient for a child, and, after all, the flavour was much superior to ...
— Lavengro - The Scholar, The Gypsy, The Priest • George Borrow

... Probabilities. That is the best God that theoretic philosophy can give us. It may be better than nothing. But who can love a Balance of Probabilities? Who can feel the hand of such a deity as that when his hand gropes for support in face of temptation, disaster, heartbreak? ...
— The Chief End of Man • George S. Merriam

... guess what a temptation she was putting before him. It would be so easy to make this a fork in the road from which he and she should take different ways forever, in the end leaving him free, and at little cost to her! But he fought ...
— The House of Toys • Henry Russell Miller

... resist the temptation to extract, and conclude this notice by expressing our approval of the numerous facsimile reproductions of old prints illustrative of the text, each on a leaf of plate paper, while vignettes, maps, and plans are liberally dispersed through the letterpress, ...
— In Search Of Gravestones Old And Curious • W.T. (William Thomas) Vincent

... are simply its depositaries;"[4286] never had this new principle entered into, nor will it enter, their rude brains; always, through habit and instinct, will they work against it.—Let them be spared the temptation. Let us (the Jacobins) relieve them from, and, in fact, take their crops; let the State in France become the sole depositary and distributor of grain; let it solely buy and sell grain at a fixed rate. Consequently, ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 4 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 3 (of 3) • Hippolyte A. Taine

... Centennial and Chicago Fairs. The Republic is not only the greatest of agricultural nations, but also leads Great Britain in manufactures. In the quality of our textile fabrics we are outstripping Europe, and the statement that cloth is imported is a temptation now only to ignorant purchasers. In the more refined arts America is also gaining upon the older world, and it is absurd to see Americans purchasing silverware, for instance, abroad when they can get a much finer article ...
— The Land We Live In - The Story of Our Country • Henry Mann

... however, there is needed not only ships individually powerful, but numbers of such ships; and that the numbers of Sampson's fleet were maintained—not drawn off to other, though important, operations—even under such sore temptation as the dash of Camara's fleet from Cadiz towards the Philippines, was due to the Department's ability to hold fast the primary conception of concentration upon a single purpose, even though running thereby such a risk as was feared from Camara's armored ships ...
— Lessons of the war with Spain and other articles • Alfred T. Mahan

... can stand and rest, when, they have crossed the deep places lying between them and the shore. In order that they may know exactly where these shallow places are, little red banners are hoisted over the sandbanks. Here lay for me a daily temptation. When the sea was calm and everything normal, my skill as a swimmer was just sufficient to carry me safely over the deep places to the nearest sandbank. But if the conditions were less favorable, or if by chance I let myself down too soon, so that I had no ...
— The German Classics Of The Nineteenth And Twentieth Centuries, Volume 12 • Various

... sister, for both clung to him as though stupefied with fear as they were whirled under the bridge here. The man could save himself if he had wished by simply reaching up his hand and catching the timber of the structure. He apparently saw this himself, and the temptation must have been strong for him to do so, but in one second more he was seen to resolutely shake his head and clasp the women tighter ...
— The Johnstown Horror • James Herbert Walker

... secured scenes so consecrated from profanation. The lakes had now become celebrated; visitors flocked hither from all parts of England; the fancies of some were smitten so deeply, that they became settlers; and the Islands of Derwent-water and Winandermere, as they offered the strongest temptation, were the first places seized upon, and were instantly defaced by ...
— The Prose Works of William Wordsworth • William Wordsworth

... aside the book he had idly picked up. "I am afraid I am an intentional intruder this time, Miss Nott. But I found no one here, and I was tempted to look into this ship-shape little snuggery. You see the temptation got ...
— Frontier Stories • Bret Harte

... anxiety in Micipsa. He saw himself in the decline of life, and his children very young. He knew the prodigious lengths which ambition is capable of going, when a crown is in view: and that a man, with talents much inferior to those of Jugurtha, might be dazzled by so glittering a temptation, especially when united with such favourable circumstances.(939) In order therefore to remove a competitor so dangerous with regard to his children, he gave Jugurtha the command of the forces which he sent to the assistance of the Romans, who, at that time, were ...
— The Ancient History of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians, • Charles Rollin

... opportunities and does those things which might bring disgrace to the family. The question of education should not be brought up in connection with the purdah, for even the educated ladies are apt to fall in the same temptation as the uneducated ones when the purdah system is removed altogether. The purdah system has done much to maintain the honor and respect of the higher class ladies. The low class women who are always abroad working among men and in ...
— Lighted to Lighten: The Hope of India • Alice B. Van Doren

... it is all to please Mr. Sutherland? If it were, I don't think you would be able to guide him right. Is it not to get rid of your suffering by yielding to temptation, Euphra? At all events, if you go, even should Mr. Sutherland be successful with him, you will never feel that you have overcome him, or he, that he has lost you. He will still hold you fast. Don't go. I am sure you ...
— David Elginbrod • George MacDonald

... faint plop of the Ranger's body as it dropped into the water, his heart died under the fifth rib. He was alone—alone with a wounded man in his care, and five hundred fiends ravenous for his blood. For a moment the temptation was strong in him to follow Roberts into the water. Why should he stay to let these devils torture him? Dinsmore had betrayed him, to the ruination of his life. He owed the fellow nothing but ill-will. And the man was a triple-notch murderer. It ...
— Oh, You Tex! • William Macleod Raine

... a romance by Le Sage, from the name of the hero, a character described by Scott as honestly disposed, but being constitutionally timid, unable to resist temptation, though capable of brave actions, and intelligent, but apt to be deceived through vanity, with sufficient virtue to make us love him, ...
— The Nuttall Encyclopaedia - Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge • Edited by Rev. James Wood

... the sudden easy prosperity of his neighbors, fought down the temptation to join them and resolutely strove with the soil for its best yield. The drouth and hot winds had not forgotten all their old tricks, and even the interest on his mortgage could not be met promptly sometimes. Yet with the same old Aydelot ...
— Winning the Wilderness • Margaret Hill McCarter

... from this side—now they rebellowed from the other; and that party, to whom they fell at length from their tremulous and dancing balance, always received them in a tempest of applause. The fortune of such men was a temptation too great to be resisted by one to whom a single whiff of incense withheld gave much greater pain than he received delight in the clouds of it which daily rose about him from the prodigal superstition of innumerable admirers. He was a candidate for contradictory honours; and his ...
— Selections from the Speeches and Writings of Edmund Burke. • Edmund Burke

... philosophers who have made the human mind the object of their study, that idleness is often the mother of love. It might indeed have been supposed, that Mr. Hartley, for that was his name, by having attained the age of sixty, might have outlived every danger of this kind. But opportunity and temptation supplied that, which might have been deficient on ...
— Damon and Delia - A Tale • William Godwin

... or of life. It was very reposeful (when one felt one could get away for a little while), but I think the absolute calm and monotony would pall upon one, and the "Call of the World"—the struggling, living, joyous world outside the walls—would be an irresistible temptation. ...
— My First Years As A Frenchwoman, 1876-1879 • Mary King Waddington

... revenge, and for five years Paris was the scene of frightful atrocities as each faction gained the upper hand and took a bloody vengeance on its rivals. At length the infamous policy of an alliance with the English was resorted to. The temptation was too great for the English king, and in 1415 Henry V. met the French army, composed almost entirely of the Armagnacs, at Agincourt, and inflicted on it a defeat more disastrous than Crecy or Poitiers. The famous oriflamme of St. Denis passed from history in that ...
— The Story of Paris • Thomas Okey

... present Dominion would have been impossible but for their labours and sacrifice. A federated state without an Atlantic seaboard would have resulted in a different destiny for Canada. Each of these statesmen withstood the temptation to bend before the storm of local prejudice. By yielding to the passion of the hour each would have been a hero in his own province and have enjoyed a long term of office. If evidence were needed that Confederation inspired ...
— The Fathers of Confederation - A Chronicle of the Birth of the Dominion • A. H. U. Colquhoun

... inferred, that the most base imposition must have been practised to render this business so extremely lucrative, and the article itself must have been diluted away to excessive weakness; but while the temptation remained so strong, it is not to be wondered at that such numbers of persons, in a colony of this or any other description, should be found to quit every other object for a free and full pursuit of one so full ...
— The Present Picture of New South Wales (1811) • David Dickinson Mann

... acts wisely, there," Philip said. "It would be well-nigh destruction to our cause, should anything befall him now; and the fewer of our leaders in Charles's hands, the less temptation to the court ...
— Saint Bartholomew's Eve - A Tale of the Huguenot WarS • G. A. Henty

... across to Tresco for his life (the tide being low), and implored the Lord Proprietor's agent to lock him up; "for," said he, "either the world or my head has turned round in the last twenty minutes, and whichever 'tis, I want to be put in a cool place out of temptation." But the usual plan was, of course, for the two to change rigs at night-time when on a trip, and by agreement, and for the one to slock off suspicion while the other ran the cargo. Yes, yes; Dan'l Leggo and Phoby Geen were both very ...
— Merry-Garden and Other Stories • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... the Jew, bowing to the earth, "but I cannot resist the temptation of claiming kindred with one through whom the horn of Israel ...
— Leila, Complete - The Siege of Granada • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... that we asked ourselves the question, "Shall we give in and go home!" We were only the length of one county away, and about to make a long detour to avoid going near, yet here was the train waiting that would convey us thither. What a temptation! But for the circumstance that we had left our bags at Ulverston our ...
— From John O'Groats to Land's End • Robert Naylor and John Naylor

... time getting much thinner. The cub found himself much less sleepy. He grew restless. He wanted to stretch his sturdy little legs to find out what they were good for. His mother, too, woke up. She found herself so hungry that there was no temptation to go to sleep again. Moreover, it was beginning to feel too warm for comfort—that is, for a polar bear's comfort, not for yours or mine—in the snowhouse. She got up and shook herself. One wall of the snowhouse very civilly gave way a ...
— Children of the Wild • Charles G. D. Roberts

... long, narrow table, runs a wooden bench of rough construction, which is the only seat the place affords. The knives and forks are chained to the table. Strange implements they are, and a thief, one would think, must be reduced to shifts indeed if they could offer him a temptation. Almost every fork has lost one of its prongs, and every knife has been notched or otherwise abused. The plaster has mostly fallen from the walls of the room, the very laths are cut away, and the naked bricks and rude masonry are exposed. The ceiling is blackened with ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 2 No 4, October, 1862 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... too,' answered I. 'Tarry awhile, and thou shalt see this punt (so let me call it) lead them into temptation, and swamp them or carry them to the gallows; I would not ...
— Citation and Examination of William Shakspeare • Walter Savage Landor

... I do not say that I have always been as abstinent as I think a translator ought to be; here, as in all matters connected with this most difficult work, weakness may claim a licence of which strength would disdain to avail itself; I only say that I have not surrendered myself to the temptation habitually and without a struggle. As a general rule, while not unfrequently compelled to vary the precise image Horace has chosen, I have substituted one which he has used elsewhere; where he has talked of triumphs, meaning no more than victories, I have talked of bays; where he gives the ...
— Odes and Carmen Saeculare of Horace • Horace

... two in the seven days to speak to them; if we make some endeavor to conceive how precious these hours ought to be to him, a small vantage on the side of God after his flock have been exposed for six days together to the full weight of the world's temptation, and he has been forced to watch the thorn and the thistle springing in their hearts, and to see what wheat had been scattered there snatched from the wayside by this wild bird and the other, and ...
— Stones of Venice [introductions] • John Ruskin

... came over him to bid his men retrace their steps to the harbour. Then hard on the heels of that desire came thoughts that softened the hard lines that had gathered about his mouth. He pitched his cigarette away as if with it he threw from him an actual temptation, and resolutely put out of his mind Atherton and the ...
— The Shadow of the East • E. M. Hull

... little faith in Percy's strength of purpose in case any new temptation presented itself in the meantime; that is, any temptation to spend the money in any ...
— Bessie Bradford's Prize • Joanna H. Mathews

... guided, Nance. No considerations of expediency can deflect me now. This had to be! I admit that I had my hour of temptation—but that has gone, and thank God ...
— The Seeker • Harry Leon Wilson

... with such a temptation—so wouldst thou: For never did thy eyes behold, or thy concupiscence covet any thing in this world, more ...
— The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman • Laurence Sterne

... temptation was too strong. He was alone in the office. The old cashier had gone out to luncheon, leaving the key in his drawer, a most extraordinary thing. Risler could not resist. He opened the drawer, moved the papers, and searched for his letter. It ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... petticoats and reached the part which was the principal scene of her excitement and which I could see from the motions of her arm she was attempting to allay. In a few minutes she appeared to be unable longer to withstand the temptation which the opportunity offered, and rising up, she went to the hiding-place and took from it some lascivious pictures and the little object with which she intended to ...
— Laura Middleton; Her Brother and her Lover • Anonymous

... day by day at the side of so much beauty and so much grace without thinking that it would be well to draw the bond of union closer. Indeed, had John been a younger man of less experience, he would have succumbed to the temptation much sooner than he did. But he was neither very young nor very inexperienced. Ten years or more ago, in his green and gushing youth, as has been said, he had burnt his fingers to the bone, and a lively recollection ...
— Jess • H. Rider Haggard

... along the gallery again, peeped in at the parlour window, then in a great hurry he yielded to the temptation, climbed over the wooden gate, got down the rotten old steps, and in two minutes was up to his neck in a mass of tangled blossoms. Then he began to feel that passion of deep delight which is born of adventure and curiosity. He quite forgot his top: ...
— Fated to Be Free • Jean Ingelow

... hurried up the steep bank from the trains than with him. She would never take any pay for her wares from him, and for a week he had stopped coming himself and sent by a friend his money for the cakes; but one day poor Johnny's heart could not resist the temptation of going with the rest, and Nora had given him a happy look, straightforward and significant. There was no time for a word, but she picked out a crusty bun, and he took it and ran back without offering to pay. It was the ...
— The Queen's Twin and Other Stories • Sarah Orne Jewett

... syphilis are indeed transmitted according to Mendelian law, being the two solitary examples of diseased conditions that are thus transmitted. But they are so plainly pathologic phenomena that there is little temptation for the advocates of Lamarckianism to use them ...
— Q. E. D., or New Light on the Doctrine of Creation • George McCready Price

... happily for us, these are about all fenced in, even the great Sahara desert is fenced in. We cannot be tyrants if we would, nor can we despoil our fellows for they are as poor as we. Our road is made smooth before us. God has not led us into temptation. We ought then to come nearer than other peoples to a Christian life, to that better community, where one half of the world is not happy while the other half ...
— A Comparative Study of the Negro Problem - The American Negro Academy. Occasional Papers No. 4 • Charles C. Cook

... mad temptation Not for him an earthly crown He whose sword hath freed a nation Strikes the offered sceptre down. See the throneless Conqueror seated, Ruler by a people's choice; See the Patriot's task completed; Hear ...
— The Poetical Works of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Complete • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

... not thus befriended, we see it, either exposed to the dangerous associations of the street, or to the bad examples of its parents; to their unkindness and severity, or misguided indulgence; and presented, moreover, with every facility, as well as every temptation, to do wrong. Now, is it to be wondered at, that, in the former case, kind, obedient, honest characters should be the result; and in the latter, such as we have, in our preceding examples, exhibited? Reason tells us such a consequence is likely, and experience has shewn us that it really happens. ...
— The Infant System - For Developing the Intellectual and Moral Powers of all Children, - from One to Seven years of Age • Samuel Wilderspin

... his habitual reticence would find in these volumes, ready made for his purpose, a large assortment of convenient phrases ranging from 'discreet reserve' to 'wilful and deliberate evasion.' I do not intend to yield to this temptation. But the reader will have drawn his own conclusions from this recklessness of assault in one whose own armour is gaping ...
— Essays on "Supernatural Religion" • Joseph B. Lightfoot

... was rich in the Neighbouring Golden Mines, and a fruitful Soil, nay the People were very expert and industrious in those Mine-works: Upon this Account, or Temptation it was, that from the Year 1540, to 1542, abundance of Tyrants sailed thither, laying waste the whole Country by their Depredations, slaughtering the Inhabitants at a prodigious and bloody rate; and robbing them of all their ...
— A Brief Account of the Destruction of the Indies • Bartolome de las Casas

... this moment, in the face of any possible temptation, William's sober tastes and devout resolutions were strengthened by certain appealing sermons. Here it was at Oxford, the nursery of enthusiasms and holy causes, that he received the impulse which determined all his after life. He spent but a scant two years in college; and the work ...
— William Penn • George Hodges

... of scorn for the hapless measure. Looked it all over, and behold! there is no good thing in it. Might have said this in ten minutes, or at most, quarter of an hour. But temptation to straddle irresistible; discoursed for full hour and half; talked clean out of Peers' Gallery FIFE and Earl SPENCER, who had innocently looked in. MADDEN, not to be outdone, talked for another hour and half; ...
— Punch Volume 102, May 28, 1892 - or the London Charivari • Various

... thus particular Am I, that thou may'st plainly see how far This fierce temptation went: and thou may'st not Exclaim, How then, was Scylla ...
— Endymion - A Poetic Romance • John Keats

... to go home, I s'pose," said David, with the air and tone of a man dallying with a great temptation. "Zillah'll be waiting tea for me; and there's the stock to ...
— Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, 1909 to 1922 • Lucy Maud Montgomery

... a crime," cried the King angrily. "Dare not to speak to me of this deed again. Now, enough. The King expects me back, and to-morrow I will place myself outside temptation, and leave this place. Whatever happens, my visit ...
— The King's Esquires - The Jewel of France • George Manville Fenn

... (my father's old tenant) has come over. It seems—I am afraid there is no doubt of it—he has been peculating to a large amount. My father has been too careless, and has placed his dependents in great temptation; and Crayston—he is an old man, with a large extravagant family—has yielded. He has been served with notice of my father's intention to prosecute him; and came over to confess all, and ask for forgiveness, and time to pay back what he could. A month ago, ...
— The Moorland Cottage • Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

... impartially how many vices he has never been guilty of, not from any care or vigilance, but for want of opportunity, or some accidental circumstance intervening; how many of the weaknesses of mankind he has escaped, because he was out of the line of such temptation; and, what often, if not always, weighs more than all the rest, how much he is indebted to the world's good opinion, because the world does not know all: I say, any man who can thus think, will scan the ...
— The Complete Works of Robert Burns: Containing his Poems, Songs, and Correspondence. • Robert Burns and Allan Cunningham

... for what she shall prepare them. Such a woman will not only not encourage her husband to false and delusive labor, which has but one object, that of using the labors of others; but she will bear herself with disgust and horror towards such an employment, which serves as a double temptation to her children. Such a woman will not choose a husband for her daughter on account of the whiteness of his hands and the refinement of manner; but, well aware that labor and deceit will exist always and everywhere, ...
— What To Do? - thoughts evoked by the census of Moscow • Count Lyof N. Tolstoi

... bear it no longer, and Maurice spoke out. 'I'll tell you what, Kendal, it is time to attend to your own concerns. If you choose to let your son run to ruin, because you will not exert yourself to remove him from temptation, I shall not stand by to see my sister worn out with making efforts to save him. She is willing and devoted, she fancies she could work day and night to preserve him, and she does it with all her heart; but it is not woman's work, she cannot do it, and it is ...
— The Young Step-Mother • Charlotte M. Yonge

... manner of happiness too, Miss Cornelia," said Gilbert, solemnly; "but," he added, unable to resist the temptation to tease Miss Cornelia, despite Anne's imploring eyes, "I fear your day of independence is done. As you know, Marshall Elliott ...
— Anne's House of Dreams • Lucy Maud Montgomery

... to slay him, and recover the bride of whom he had been unfairly deprived. But although Frithiof's hot young heart clamoured for his beloved, he utterly refused to entertain the dastardly suggestion, but, fearing lest he should be overcome by temptation, despite his horror at the thought, he impulsively flung his sword far from him ...
— Myths of the Norsemen - From the Eddas and Sagas • H. A. Guerber

... the knowledge of powers in nature of wondrous value, but permanently effective for good only; secrets to be entrusted to those alone whose goodness, discipline, and self-knowledge enable them to stand firmly against the varied attacks of temptation, and rise above the motives by which men are ordinarily ruled, the chosen High Priests of the Science who would never use for evil purposes the ...
— Another World - Fragments from the Star City of Montalluyah • Benjamin Lumley (AKA Hermes)

... the bed of sickness a sadder and a wiser man than he had hitherto shown himself. He dismissed Craigengelt from his society, but not without such a provision as, if well employed, might secure him against indigence and against temptation. Bucklaw afterwards went abroad, and never returned to Scotland; nor was he known ever to hint at the circumstances attending his fatal marriage. By many readers this may be deemed overstrained, ...
— Bride of Lammermoor • Sir Walter Scott

... throughout eternity it would not warrant such an attitude. But this second child! It was the absorbing topic of her thoughts as she vainly tried to rest. She was so worn out that she could face no more work than she already had to do, and ever as she thought this serpent of temptation thrust its head out at her and said: "If the child would ...
— The Wind Before the Dawn • Dell H. Munger

... subsist. 10 Since then these arguments prevail, And itching palms are still so frail, Hence politicians, you suggest, Should drive the nail that goes the best; That it shows parts and penetration, To ply men with the right temptation. To this I humbly must dissent; Premising no reflection's meant. Does justice or the client's sense Teach lawyers either side's defence? 20 The fee gives eloquence its spirit; That only is the client's merit. Does art, wit, wisdom, ...
— The Poetical Works of Addison; Gay's Fables; and Somerville's Chase • Joseph Addison, John Gay, William Sommerville

... believed his cousin to be stronger than Hazard, because Hazard was a clergyman, but he had not hitherto thought her stronger than himself, and he now looked at her carefully, wondering whether he could have managed her. Never in his life had he felt so nearly in love with her as now, under the temptation to try whether she could be made to give up her will to his. This feeling was the stronger because even in his own eyes his conduct so far seemed a little cowardly and ridiculous. He pulled himself up sharply, and, seeing nothing else to be done, he took up ...
— Esther • Henry Adams

... Let those whose rank claims as its right such bloody homage take pride and pleasure in it; we, who have no share in the sacrifice, may the better pity the sufferings of the victim. Let us thank our lowliness, since it secures us from temptation. But forgive me, father, if I have stepped over the limits of my duty, in contradicting the views which you entertain, with so many others, ...
— The Fair Maid of Perth • Sir Walter Scott

... now! You have heard those soft words—you have drank in the glory of that smile. In all your life what temptation ...
— Mabel's Mistake • Ann S. Stephens

... certain that our own conduct is right, to persist in that conduct against all resistance, whether of counter-opinion, counter pain, or counter-pleasure. To be defiant alike of the mob's thought, of the adversary's threat, and the harlot's temptation,—this is in the meaning of every great nation to be free; and the one condition upon which that freedom can be obtained is pronounced to you in a single verse of the 119th Psalm, "I will walk at liberty, ...
— Val d'Arno • John Ruskin

... noted. Many months have passed since then, and yet the thought of that sweet girl sends a thrill all over me. I wonder where she is now? I feel that we shall meet again some time, and perhaps you will see her yourself. If so, you will see that I couldn't be expected to withstand any such temptation. ...
— The Darrow Enigma • Melvin L. Severy

... poor as poverty. Then the heroine comes in. Her name is Rosamond, which sounds well and may be euphoniously coupled with Desmond; and, with the single exception of a boarding-school girl, she is the only young woman he ever thought of twice. In order to save her and himself he goes away, but the temptation to write to her overpowers him, and of course she answers his letter. This brings on a correspondence. His letters take the form of confessions, and are the fruits of much philosophical reflection. 'Inconstancy in woman,' he says, because of the present social ...
— The Crossing • Winston Churchill

... told herself. That day she drew a hundred dollars more, in twenty-dollar gold pieces as before. From that time Trina began to draw steadily upon her capital, a little at a time. It was a passion with her, a mania, a veritable mental disease; a temptation such as drunkards ...
— McTeague • Frank Norris

... fateful prohibition. It was the discovery to herself, as to Eve of the tree by the serpent, of a temptation seductive and forbidden. Thereafter "like that" her mind, missing no day nor no night, was often found by her to be there. The quality that made "like that" not seemly to her, increased, ...
— This Freedom • A. S. M. Hutchinson

... come this time on account of the Iowa boy having quit his job. There remained several hundred calves and thin cows in the Philbrook pasture, too much of a temptation to old Nick Hargus and his precious brother Sim to ...
— The Duke Of Chimney Butte • G. W. Ogden

... perhaps as fair a representation of the original movement as may be, where direct imitation is out of the question. Though the stanza of the translation has five lines to four for the slow-stepper, it contains fewer syllables; a constant check on the temptation to padding. ...
— Translations of Shakuntala and Other Works • Kaalidaasa



Words linked to "Temptation" :   hook, lure, leading off, solicitation, desire, seduction, blandishment, forbidden fruit, leading astray, sweetener, wheedling, influence, tempt, come-on, allurement, bait



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