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To a fault    fɔlt/   Listen
To a fault

adverb
1.
To a degree exceeding normal or proper limits.  Synonyms: excessively, overly, too.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"To a fault" Quotes from Famous Books



... having served in a lower grade. He commanded a division in the campaign. I had known Blair in Missouri, where I had voted against him in 1858 when he ran for Congress. I knew him as a frank, positive and generous man, true to his friends even to a fault, but always a leader. I dreaded his coming; I knew from experience that it was more difficult to command two generals desiring to be leaders than it was to command one army officered intelligently and with ...
— Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant, Complete • Ulysses S. Grant

... pride or indignation. He required the gentlest teaching, and had received it, while his mind seemed cast in such a mould of stainless honor that he avoided most of the faults to which children are prone. But he was far from blameless. He was proud to a fault; he well knew that few of his fellows had gifts like his, either of mind or person, and his fair face often showed a clear impression of his own superiority. His passion, too, was imperious, and though it always met with prompt correction, his cousin ...
— Eric • Frederic William Farrar

... so far as profit went the whole transaction was for her benefit, and he might lose heavily by it. But in actual dealing he was constitutionally unable to resist the impulse to get the better of the person with whom he dealt. And on her side, Mrs. Rushmore, though generous to a fault, was by nature incapable of allowing money to slip through her fingers without reason. So the two were well matched, being both born financiers, and Logotheti respected Mrs. Rushmore for detecting his little 'mistake,' and she recognised ...
— Fair Margaret - A Portrait • Francis Marion Crawford

... play for peace. The Duchess took one arm formally. Nell seized the remaining arm and almost hugged his Majesty, nestling her head affectionately against his shoulder. Charles observed the decorum of due dignity. He was impartial to a fault; for he realized that there only lay ...
— Mistress Nell - A Merry Tale of a Merry Time • George C. Hazelton, Jr.

... it's quite true. She is warmhearted, generous to a fault, and as silly as they make them. However, she has given me the pleasure of seeing you to-day, and I hope that you will tell me how I can be of use to you. From Gwendolyn's words I judge that you ...
— Reels and Spindles - A Story of Mill Life • Evelyn Raymond

... a very shy man," said the shameless T. X., "difficult to a fault, and rather apt to underrate my social attractions. I have come to you now because you know everybody—by the way, how long have you had your secretary!" ...
— The Clue of the Twisted Candle • Edgar Wallace

... original fineness of organization, Shelley was doubtless indebted for another of his rarest gifts, that exuberance of imagery, which when unrepressed, as in many of his poems it is, amounts to a fault. The susceptibility of his nervous system, which made his emotions intense, made also the impressions of his external senses deep and clear; and agreeably to the law of association by which, as already remarked, the ...
— English Critical Essays - Nineteenth Century • Various

... should reign; and perplexes the minds of the fair sex with nice speculations of philosophy, when he should engage their hearts and entertain them with the softnesses of love. In this (if I may be pardoned for so bold a truth) Mr. Cowley has copied him to a fault: so great a one, in my opinion, that it throws his "Mistress" infinitely below his "Pindarics" and his later compositions, which are undoubtedly the best of his poems and the most correct. For my own part I must avow it freely to the world that I never ...
— Discourses on Satire and Epic Poetry • John Dryden

... more nearly resembled professional duty. Indeed, that peculiarity could be discovered in much of his public conduct. In service to others he was liberal to a fault. In conversation, he would make suggestions to politicians and to lawyers in aid of their views or their causes with great freedom and without apparent concern as to the effect upon parties or men. Rantoul was ...
— Reminiscences of Sixty Years in Public Affairs, Vol. 1 • George Boutwell

... Letter informd me that "the late Conduct of the had weakned that Confidence & Reverence necessary to give a well disposd Government its full operation and Effect." I am sorry for it; and presume it is not to be imputed to a fault in the Institution of that order but a Mistake in the Persons of whom it is composd. All Men are fond of Power. It is difficult for us to be prevaild upon to believe that we possess more than belongs to us. Even publick Bodies of men legally constituted are too prone to covet more Power than the ...
— The Writings of Samuel Adams, vol. III. • Samuel Adams

... too frequently with questionable characters who cleverly used him as a mask for schemes that were an insult to his integrity, but which his lack of experience and his utter inability to judge character kept hidden from his view. Honorable himself and loyal to a fault to his friends, he believed in the honesty of men who betrayed him, long after the rest of the world had discovered what they were. He could accept costly gifts from admirers and appoint these same men to offices, without dreaming that ...
— The United States Since The Civil War • Charles Ramsdell Lingley

... she never said an unkind thing, or did one; she never hurt man or woman; she was generous to a fault; and to aid even people she despised would give herself trouble unending. But these are serious, simple qualities which do not show much, and are soon forgotten by those who benefit from them. Had she ...
— Wisdom, Wit, and Pathos of Ouida - Selected from the Works of Ouida • Ouida

... blended the mildest of manners with the severity and discipline of a camp; and though his deportment was somewhat grave and imposing, the noble frankness of his character imparted at once confidence and respect to those who had occasion to approach his person. As a soldier, he was brave to a fault, and not less judicious than decisive in his measures. The energy of his character was strongly expressed in his countenance, and in the robust and manly symmetry of his frame. As a civil governor, he was firm, prudent, and equitable. In fine, whether we view him as a man, a ...
— The Life and Correspondence of Sir Isaac Brock • Ferdinand Brock Tupper

... to underrate fine drawn nicenesses of all sorts; ingrained Yankee common sense, checking his vaulting enthusiasm; enormous self-confidence, impatience of failure—all of these were in him; and he was besides affectionate to a fault, devoted to his country, his family, his ...
— The Life and Letters of Walter H. Page, Volume I • Burton J. Hendrick

... was enthusiasm for his country, Fox was swayed by the still nobler enthusiasm of Humanity. His style of oratory was the exact reflex of his mind. He was unequalled in passionate argument, in impromptu reply, in ready and spontaneous declamation. His style was unstudied to a fault. Though he was so intimately acquainted with the great models of classical antiquity, his oratory owed little to the contact, and nothing to the formal arts of rhetoric; everything to inborn genius and the greatness ...
— Collections and Recollections • George William Erskine Russell

... and has always continued, in the wrong church for bigotry, the quiet, unpretending Church of England; a church which, had it been a bigoted church, and not long-suffering almost to a fault, might with its opportunities, as the priest says in the text, have stood in a very different position from that which it occupies at present. No! let those who are in search of bigotry seek for it in a church very ...
— The Romany Rye - A Sequel to 'Lavengro' • George Borrow

... Philip Fairlie had been one of the notoriously handsome men of his time. In disposition entirely unlike his brother Frederick, he was the spoilt darling of society, especially of the women—an easy, light-hearted, impulsive, affectionate man—generous to a fault—constitutionally lax in his principles, and notoriously thoughtless of moral obligations where women were concerned. Such were the facts we knew—such was the character of the man. Surely the plain inference that follows needs ...
— The Woman in White • Wilkie Collins

... him. In many respects he is a paragon of goodness. He loves his church, or he would not have stuck to it year in and year out as he has done. He is not self-assertive; he is quite willing to efface his own personality and be invisible. He is generous to a fault. Nobody is more eager to do anything for the general good. And yet nobody likes him. The only thing against him is that he has never disciplined himself to get on with other people. He has never tried to accommodate himself ...
— Mushrooms on the Moor • Frank Boreham

... the front. The present head of the family sustains right well the reputations of the worthies who went before him. A staunch friend and an uncompromising adversary—valuing political honesty no more lightly than private honor—liberal and unsuspicious to a fault in his social relations—very frank and simple in speech—in manner always courteous and cordial—it would be hard to find, in Europe, an apter representative of the ancient regime. I believe, that those who really know General ...
— Border and Bastille • George A. Lawrence

... indoors, come home; your fading fire Mend first and vital candle in close heart's vault: You there are master, do your own desire; What hinders? Are you beam-blind, yet to a fault In a neighbour deft-handed? Are you that liar And cast ...
— Poems of Gerard Manley Hopkins - Now First Published • Gerard Manley Hopkins

... conversationist, our visitor was fluent to a fault. It required but slight urging to draw him out. His history, and that of his fathers for three generations back, he recited in much detail. He himself had, in his best days, been a sub-contractor in railway construction; but fate had gone against him, and he had fallen to the low estate ...
— Afloat on the Ohio - An Historical Pilgrimage of a Thousand Miles in a Skiff, from Redstone to Cairo • Reuben Gold Thwaites

... Though all men capable of thought, they have not thought very deeply upon this point. One of them is a natural aristocrat,—a man who could keep the crowd aloof by simple volition, and without offense; nothing whatever harsh in him,—polite to all, and amiable to a fault ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 30, April, 1860 • Various

... this rueful confession. Judith was generous to a fault. She was always far happier ...
— Jane Allen: Right Guard • Edith Bancroft

... which falls in perfect cadence upon the ear; under a show of regular method, they are loose and diffuse, and often have the qualities which he himself attributed to the style of John Quincy Adams,—"disorderly, ill-compacted, and homely to a fault." He said of Dr. Channing,—"Diffuseness is the old Adam of the pulpit. There are always two ways of hitting the mark,—one with a single bullet, the other with a shower of small shot: Dr. Channing chose the latter, as most of our pulpit orators have ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. VI.,October, 1860.—No. XXXVI. - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... never forget it, as long as he lives. There is, however, no accounting for the conduct of some women. Mr. Cobbett was always, as far as I was capable of seeing, a kind and indulgent husband, as well as a most fond father, and this he carried even to a fault; and it now appeared very evident that he began to feel his error. But perhaps Socrates would never have proved himself so great a philosopher, if he had not been blessed with the little ...
— Memoirs of Henry Hunt, Esq. Volume 3 • Henry Hunt

... belong to nobody, and accordin'ly I takes possession of it. So you see, Cap'n, you're all wrong about it bein' your'n. It's mine; and if I was measly and cantankerous I'd prob'ly order you to take your schooner outer my harbour at once. But I ain't that sorter man: I'm lib'ral and free-handed to a fault; I ain't no greedy grab-all, not by a long chalk, so you may stay in this here harbour o' mine so long as you've a mind to. But, you understan', you ain't none of yer to go ashore ...
— Turned Adrift • Harry Collingwood

... that natural moderation, which is the best corrective of power; that he was of the most artless, candid, open, and benevolent disposition; disinterested in the extreme; of a temper mild and placable even to a fault; without one drop of gall in his ...
— Selections from the Speeches and Writings of Edmund Burke. • Edmund Burke

... off soon after, valiantly fighting. He was shot through the head sideways,—from the throat up through his brain,—through the chest, arms, and hands. He was brave to a fault, and the Indians probably took him for a "brave" white chief ...
— Three Years on the Plains - Observations of Indians, 1867-1870 • Edmund B. Tuttle

... And he gives us examples. "How vilely does this cynic rhyme," he takes from Shakespeare; and Addison speaks of a man degenerating into a cynic. That Thackeray's nature was soft and kindly,—gentle almost to a fault,—has been shown elsewhere. But they who have called him a cynic have spoken of him merely as a writer,—and as writer he has certainly taken upon himself the special task of barking at the vices and follies of the world around him. Any satirist might in the same way be called a cynic ...
— Thackeray • Anthony Trollope

... him, "you will be discovered and exposed. I am not surprised at your passion for her, nor the means by which you seek to destroy the relations existing between her and George Mullholland. It is an evidence of taste in you. But she is proud to a fault, and, this I say in friendship, you so wounded her feelings, when you betrayed her to the St. Cecilia, that she has sworn to have revenge on you. George Mullholland, too, has sworn to ...
— Justice in the By-Ways - A Tale of Life • F. Colburn Adams

... a tiny cottage, and owns no more than a donkey and cart and a few rabbits and fowls, he is just the same sort of man that he used to be in prosperity—thriftless from our point of view, but from the peasant point of view thrifty enough, good-tempered too, generous to a fault, indifferent to discomforts, as a rule very hard-working, yet ...
— Change in the Village • (AKA George Bourne) George Sturt

... of the throne of Spain, was born in 1545. He was a bold, headstrong boy, reckless in disposition, fond of manly exercises, generous to a fault, fearless of heart, and passionately desirous of a military life. In figure he was deformed, one shoulder being higher and one leg longer than the other, while his chest was flat and his back slightly humped. His features were not unhandsome, though very ...
— Historical Tales - The Romance of Reality - Volume VII • Charles Morris

... the young brother, handsome, easy-going to a fault, but with a sense of honor so fine as to shrink in indignation from the slightest breath of shame; read again the closing words of the farewell letter which he had read for the first time on the day now so long ago, which he would have given ...
— A Beautiful Possibility • Edith Ferguson Black

... each other when I first knew them; they are still friends, but separated by distance. Both are exceedingly honorable, and the latter is truthful to a fault." ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 2 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... distance, "Marshal de Saxe has few the equals of these in his camp, my Lord Count!" And well was the compliment deserved: they were gallant men, intelligent in looks, polished in manners, and brave to a fault, and all full of that natural gaiety that sits so ...
— The Golden Dog - Le Chien d'Or • William Kirby

... in Boston, and was keenly sensitive to harmony of all kinds; amiable, thoughtful, kind. Touched with the divine desire to do good to all, he entered into the work with his whole earnest soul. Modest to a fault, but singularly persistent in what he felt to be his duty, he never flinched or failed to act when occasion required it. His tastes were of the most refined order. He shrank from coarse contact with an unusual degree of sensitiveness, ...
— Brook Farm • John Thomas Codman

... is the strictest of disciplinarians but not a prima donna conductor. He demands the utmost attention and concentration from his men, brooks no disturbance or interruption. On the other hand, he is punctual to a fault, arrives fifteen minutes ahead of time, never asks for special privileges of ...
— The World's Great Men of Music - Story-Lives of Master Musicians • Harriette Brower

... favor his wishes, and hold out a prospect of success. Though small in numbers, he placed perfect confidence in the courage of his men, most of whom had long adhered to his service, and followed him in the desultory skirmishes in which he frequently engaged. Impetuous to a fault, and brave even to rashness, he had, as yet, been generally successful in his undertakings, and, though often unimportant, even to his own interests, they were marked by a reckless contempt of danger, calculated to inspirit and attach the ...
— The Rivals of Acadia - An Old Story of the New World • Harriet Vaughan Cheney

... for the moment, but she said, "I told her you thought that if a person owned to a fault they disowned it, and put it away from them just as if it had never been committed; and that if a person had taken their punishment for a wrong they had done, they had expiated it so far as anybody else was concerned. And hasn't poor ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... her, borrer but borrow, actially but actually, Fanny," Mr. Huxter replied—not to a fault in her argument, but to grammatical errors in ...
— The History of Pendennis, Vol. 2 - His Fortunes and Misfortunes, His Friends and His Greatest Enemy • William Makepeace Thackeray

... tell her, her sense of duty amounts almost to a fault—so unselfish, so conscientious, it brings tears to my eyes often at times. I hope it is appreciated in the right quarter—I do ...
— The Far Horizon • Lucas Malet

... a man of a class and apparently normal to a fault: she found herself united now to incarnate storm and tempest. The first time she saw him at Surbiton, he drove her out in five minutes with curses and insult. Why? Laura, wandering about half-stunned in ...
— Nightfall • Anthony Pryde

... as to that," said the landlord, shrugging his shoulders. "But I don't see that Willy Hammond is in any especial danger. He is a young man with many admirable qualities—is social-liberal—generous almost to a fault—but has good common sense, and wit enough, I take it, to ...
— Ten Nights in a Bar Room • T. S. Arthur

... remoteness,—of the far away in time and place,—which makes one doubt the reality of the visible. And the life of Yaidzu is certainly the life of many centuries ago. The people, too, are the people of Old Japan: frank and kindly as children—good children,—honest to a fault, innocent of the further world, loyal to the ancient ...
— In Ghostly Japan • Lafcadio Hearn

... more cruelly misrepresented than the subject of this notice. In reality a person of the gentlest and most inoffensive habits, he is any thing rather than the desperate ruffian he has been described. In his demeanour he is modest and unassuming; in his disposition, liberal and generous to a fault. Like most artists, ardent and enthusiastic in his temperament, and in his actions very much a creature of impulse; he is full of that unaffected simplicity which we almost invariably find associated with true genius. He has an only son, by a Signora ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 17, Number 490, Saturday, May 21, 1831 • Various

... and over-ripe to call a halt upon these spreaders of outlandish and pernicious doctrines. The American is indulgent to a fault and slow to wrath. But he is now passing through a time of tension and strain. His teeth are set and his nerves on edge. He sees more closely approaching every day the dark valley through which his sons and brothers must pass and from which too many, alas, will not return. It is an evil time ...
— Right Above Race • Otto Hermann Kahn

... the elders of the people, the repositories of its ancient traditions, were induced to assemble at the house of the Jesuits, who explained to them the principal points of their doctrine, and invited them to a discussion. The auditors proved pliant to a fault, responding, "Good," or "That is true," to every proposition; but, when urged to adopt the faith which so readily met their approval, they had always the same reply: "It is good for the French; but we are another ...
— The Jesuits in North America in the Seventeenth Century • Francis Parkman

... stone house in a hurricane. You are an alien, with no damned state roots to pull up, your courage is unhuman, or un-American, and you are the one man of genius in the country. Madison is heroic to a fault, a roaring Berserker, but we must temper him, we must temper him; and meanwhile we will both defer to the ...
— The Conqueror • Gertrude Franklin Atherton

... man,—all for his theme and his purpose, nothing for himself. Crude in style, full of the superficial errors of carelessness and haste, rarely diffuse, often brief to a fault, they bear on every page the palpable ...
— Pioneers Of France In The New World • Francis Parkman, Jr.

... He has excellent abilities, and might do much for himself, but is too like the father, but with this difference, Edward was good-natured and careless to a fault; this boy is haughty and petulant, with the unmanageable obstinacy and self-will of old Geoffrey. He is not grateful for the many obligations he owes to me, and gives me frequent cause to regret that I ever ...
— The Monctons: A Novel, Volume I • Susanna Moodie

... other was not. Lapierre was handsome, debonair, easy of speech, and graceful of movement; deferential, earnest, at times even pensive, and the possessor of ideals; generous and accommodating to a fault, if a trifle cynical; maligned, hated, discredited by the men who ruled the North, yet brave and infinitely capable—she remembered the swift ...
— The Gun-Brand • James B. Hendryx

... cage. People passed us, or stood at their doorways watching us, but I never saw them. If by chance I descried somebody coming whom it would be necessary to salute, or to whom I might have to speak, I turned aside to avoid them. I was not only shy to a fault, as a diffident child must be, but the world of sense either did not exist for me or was thrust upon me to my discomfort. And yet all the while, as I moved or sat, I was surrounded by a stream of being, ...
— Lore of Proserpine • Maurice Hewlett

... of his Majesty: doing one thing always reminded him that presently he would have to be doing another. Conscientious to a fault, he led a harassed and over-occupied life, which was not the less wearisome in its routine because no clear results ever presented themselves within his own range of vision. By an unkind stroke of fortune he had been called to the rule of a kingdom that had ...
— King John of Jingalo - The Story of a Monarch in Difficulties • Laurence Housman

... of experience in favor of force as an instrument in the rule of our Colonies. Their growth and their utility has been owing to methods altogether different. Our ancient indulgence [Footnote: 23] has been said to be pursued to a fault. It may be so. But we know if feeling is evidence, that our fault was more tolerable than our attempt to mend it; and our sin far more salutary than ...
— Burke's Speech on Conciliation with America • Edmund Burke

... by a thousand superfluous cares, What I have said has implied the existence of doubts and apprehensions, but in sober truth they were forced into existence. My nature from the first has been full of trust in you; but this very promptness to confide, my anxious fears converted to a fault, and urged suspicion as a duty. Your countenance and your words have now inspired me with an assurance, not, I am certain, to be ever shaken, in your virtues. It shall be my joy to impart the same to Gracchus. ...
— Zenobia - or, The Fall of Palmyra • William Ware

... communal ballad is full of leaps and omissions; the style is simple to a fault; the diction is spontaneous and free. Assonance frequently takes the place of rhyme, and a word often rhymes with itself. There is a lack of poetic adornment in the style quite as conspicuous as the lack of reflection and moralizing in ...
— Library Of The World's Best Literature, Ancient And Modern, Vol 3 • Various

... made their Enemies feel, that their King was restored to them, for they forced them to repass the Nhir with considerable Loss; and the most Skilful in Military Affairs do not scruple to affirm, than if the Kofirans had not been headed by a General prudent even to a Fault, not so much as a single Soldier would have been left to have given the Queen of Ghinoer an Account of their Expedition. This General so deficient in the ardent Bravery of his Country, was call'd Leosanil; he was afterwards disgraced, and though ...
— The Amours of Zeokinizul, King of the Kofirans - Translated from the Arabic of the famous Traveller Krinelbol • Claude Prosper Jolyot de Crbillon

... Bible, as the true Word of God and the only standard of faith, had indeed been shaken for a while by his disgust with the superstitions of his Church, and by the low character of many of its clergy, but he had recovered from this. Though timid and cautious to a fault, like Erasmus, and sometimes open to the charge of time-serving, he gradually led his pupils into new paths of inquiry, until they came to believe that the Church not only may err, but that it had actually erred in many of ...
— History Of The Missions Of The American Board Of Commissioners For Foreign Missions To The Oriental Churches, Volume I. • Rufus Anderson

... author was born, and has always continued in the wrong church for bigotry, the quiet, unpretending Church of England; a church which, had it been a bigoted church, and not long suffering almost to a fault, might with its opportunities, as the priest says in the text, have stood in a very different position from that which it occupies at present. No! let those who are in search of bigotry, seek for it in a church very different from the inoffensive Church of England, which never ...
— The Romany Rye • George Borrow

... Literature in Tuebingen. He also took an active part in the political life of his time in the interest of liberal tendencies and a united Germany. He died in Tubingen, November 13, 1862. His poetry is for the most part a product of his earlier years. Reserved and retiring to a fault, Uhland in his lyrics but rarely gives us directly his own emotional life, preferring to let the shepherd, the soldier, the mountain lad speak. The type of the simple folksong predominates, and from the VOLKSLIED ...
— A Book Of German Lyrics • Various

... porcelain skin, warmed with the tenderest tinge of pink, so transparent withal that you almost see the animal spirit careering within; the drooping shoulder, the rounded bust, clean limbs, well-turned ankle, fine almost to a fault, the light springy step, the graceful easy carriage, the absence of sheepishness or shyness, an air cheerful without noise, a manner playful without rudeness, and you have the true son or daughter of the ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. 327 - Vol. 53, January, 1843 • Various

... the group through the museum, and to make certain that all of the members of the graduating class knew what they were supposed to do on the trip. Billy Kasker was class president. A handsome, husky youth, accommodating, generous, and thoughtful to a fault. He was well liked both by the faculty and the students. He was pleasant to everybody, even to Joe Buckner, who called him "teacher's pet" and sneeringly remarked that he had been elected class president as a result of a ...
— Be It Ever Thus • Robert Moore Williams

... Mr. Stacpoole I quickly discover that the real reason why he is now alive is that ninety-nine out of a hundred of his enemies are as afraid of him as the Glenveagh folk up in Donegal are of Mr. J.G. Adair. Brave and resolute to a fault, he has openly declared his dislike for what is called "protection." "But," he observes, quietly and simply, "I always carry my large-bore revolver, and I never walk alone, even across the path to look down at the lake. ...
— Disturbed Ireland - Being the Letters Written During the Winter of 1880-81. • Bernard H. Becker

... than the rest of us. The years of degradation and struggle he has endured in the woods have not failed to leave their mark upon him. But, as the wage workers go, he is not the common but the uncommon type both as regards physical strength and cleanliness and mental alertness. He is generous to a fault and has all the qualities Lincoln and ...
— The Centralia Conspiracy • Ralph Chaplin

... cases the pupil is not allowed even to know that he is punished,—i.e., why the discipline is changed,—lest he should become attached to a fault for which he has suffered and, as it were, paid dearly; lest, too, the excitement of eluding detection should make it pleasurable to transgress when the immediate pressure is removed, and he should thus become schooled in ...
— Another World - Fragments from the Star City of Montalluyah • Benjamin Lumley (AKA Hermes)

... trust her with you sooner than with most, my lad, for I believe I have seen enough of you to know that you are brave to a fault, and entirely trustworthy. But you know not the wiles of these treacherous Osages, and if this Chevalier Le Moyne is the man I fear he is, he is a much to be ...
— The Rose of Old St. Louis • Mary Dillon

... running Hogs) we found a fox near Colo Masons Plantation on little Hunting Creek (West fork) having followed on his Drag more than half a Mile; and run him with Eight Dogs (the other 4 getting, as was supposed after a Second Fox) close and well for an hour. When the Dogs came to a fault and to cold Hunting until 20 minutes after when being joined by the missing Dogs they put him up afresh and in about 50 Minutes killed up in an open field of Colo Mason's every Rider & every Dog being present ...
— The True George Washington [10th Ed.] • Paul Leicester Ford

... disharmonic nature. With each failure something had shrivelled in him, till the very roots of his affection had dried up. She had worn out a man who, to judge from his actions and appearance, was naturally long-suffering to a fault. Beneath all manner of kindness and consideration for each other—for their good taste, at all events, had never given way—this tragedy of a woman, who wanted to be loved, slowly killing the power of loving her in the man, had gone on year after year. It had ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... he was. He was a little, pale, washed-out looking man, with sandy hair and prominent brown eyes. Being an old bachelor when he married Aunt Agatha, he had very precise, formal ways, and was methodical and punctual to a fault. Next to Uncle Keith, I hated that white-faced watch of his. I hated the slow, ponderous way in which he drew it from his pocket, and produced it for my ...
— The Girl's Own Paper, Vol. VIII: No. 353, October 2, 1886. • Various

... at Bristol, who, as merchants, and by consequence sufficiently studious of profit, cannot be supposed to have looked with much compassion upon negligence and extravagance, or to think any excellence equivalent to a fault of such consequence, as neglect of economy. It is natural to imagine, that many of those, who would have relieved his real wants, were discouraged from the exertion of their benevolence, by observation of the use which was made of their favours, ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. in Nine Volumes - Volume the Eighth: The Lives of the Poets, Volume II • Samuel Johnson

... quarter in 1820, had rendered him quite unpopular with his band, and led to his migration farther west. He appears, however, recently to have reassumed himself of success, and is as anxious as ever to recommend himself to notice. This anxiety is, however, carried to a fault, being unsupported by an equal degree of ...
— Personal Memoirs Of A Residence Of Thirty Years With The Indian Tribes On The American Frontiers • Henry Rowe Schoolcraft

... he was a prodigious favourite, he accomplished his object. I was surprised to see such an expression of concern cross his countenance as he gazed at it, and questioning him thereon, he answered, "Why, Madam, I find both the barometers tell the same tale; therefore, what I imagined was owing to a fault in mine, I must now impute to some ...
— Yr Ynys Unyg - The Lonely Island • Julia de Winton

... had in his veins from one side of his family had made him high-strung and passionate, as well as daring, quick to think, and quick to act; and that his study was to hold this side of his nature in check. I felt sure that he was generous even to a fault, yet I was certain that, if driven to desperation, there might be a cruel streak which would make him a dangerous enemy unless some tide of love broke down the barrier of hardness in his soul. He was not hard at that time, however, ...
— Secret History Revealed By Lady Peggy O'Malley • C. N. Williamson and A. M. Williamson

... Deacon Rosebrook. Rumour had been busy spreading its many-sided tales about Marston-his difficulties, his connection with Graspum, his sudden downfall. All agreed that Marston was a noble-minded fellow, generous to a fault-generous in his worst errors; and, like many other southerners, who meant well, though personally kind to his slaves, never set a good example in his own person. Religion was indispensably necessary to preserve submission; and, with a view ...
— Our World, or, The Slaveholders Daughter • F. Colburn Adams

... the host of petty things that maddened Brian to the point of distraction, it's unnecessary for me to speak. You must know that your happy-go-lucky self-indulgence more often than not has spelled discomfort of a definite sort for Brian. You're generous, I'll admit. Generous to a fault. But your generosity is always congenial. It's never the sort that hurts. The only kind of generosity that will help in this crisis is the kind that hurts. It's up to you, Kenny, to do some mental house-cleaning, admit ...
— Kenny • Leona Dalrymple

... lie of evasion is a form of lying which seldom appears when the relations between child and parents are absolutely friendly and open. However, the child who is very desirous of approval may find it difficult to own up to a fault, even when he is certain that the consequence of his offense will not be at all terrible. This is the more difficult, because the more subtle condition. It is obvious that the child who lies merely to avoid punishment can be cured of ...
— Study of Child Life • Marion Foster Washburne

... of the Board of Trade, but he was scarcely an operator in the strictest sense of the word. If he won he whistled, if he lost he whistled. It mattered little. Good looking, well dressed, generous to a fault, tainted but moderately with scandal, he was a man whom everybody admired, but who admired few in return—a perfectly natural and proper condition if ...
— Nedra • George Barr McCutcheon

... their unphilosophical way this law of nature into a principle of justice. Meantime the failure of all their cherished ambitions had plunged them into a penitential mood. Though in fact pious and virtuous to a fault, they still looked for repentance—their own or the world's—to save them. This redemption was to be accomplished in the Hebrew spirit, through long-suffering and devotion to the Law, with the Hebrew solidarity, by vicarious attribution ...
— The Life of Reason • George Santayana

... Prince Bernard of Saxe-Weimar, who saw the need of holding Quatre Bras at all costs.[480] The young leader imposed on the foe by making the most of his men—they were but 4,500 all told, and had only ten bullets apiece—and he succeeded. For once, Ney was prudent to a fault, and did not push home the attack. In his excuse it may be said that the men of Reille's corps, on whom he had to rely—for D'Erlon's corps was still far to the rear—had been marching and fighting ever since dawn, and were too weary for another battle. Moreover, the roar ...
— The Life of Napoleon I (Volumes, 1 and 2) • John Holland Rose

... physical strength and vigor, no doubt, but carrying within him a nature more than commonly alert and impressible. His organization, though thoroughly healthy, was both complex and high- wrought; his character was simple and straightforward to a fault, but he was abnormally conscientious, and keenly alive to others' opinion concerning him. It might be thought that he was overburdened with self- esteem, and unduly opinionated; but, in fact, he was but overanxious to secure the good-will ...
— Confessions and Criticisms • Julian Hawthorne

... in the purlieus of the town, which, like all such places anywhere, were foul and filthy enough; but that was their own faults. I have often wondered much to see men, who on board ship were the pink of cleanliness and neatness, fastidious to a fault in all they did, come ashore and huddle in the most horrible of kennels, among the very dregs and greaves of the 'long-shore district. It certainly wants a great deal of explanation; but I suppose the most ...
— The Cruise of the Cachalot - Round the World After Sperm Whales • Frank T. Bullen

... impression that he was a drunkard and a rowdy. It was recalled that he was of good family and that his forebears had rendered valuable service to the State, and that he had never been seen to drink before, or known to be in a fight, but that on the contrary he was quiet and harmless to a fault. Indeed, the Clarendon public would have admired a little more spirit in a young man, even to the extent of condoning an occasional ...
— The Colonel's Dream • Charles W. Chesnutt

... conversation sparkled with wit and wisdom; she could hold fluent discourse in half a dozen tongues; she played and sang divinely, wrote elegant verses, and painted dainty pictures. Her manner was caressing and courteous; she was generous to a fault, with a heart as tender as it was large. And the supreme touch was added by an entire unconsciousness of her charms, and an unaffected ...
— Love affairs of the Courts of Europe • Thornton Hall

... had not been attracted by the other sex, and his own qualities certainly did not attract them. Not that there was a word to be said seriously against him. Hard and shrewd though he was, his respectability was extreme and his observance of the conventions scrupulous to a fault. He was an elder of the Kirk, a non-smoker, an abstemious drinker (to be an out and out teetotaler would have been a little too remarkable in those regions for a man of Mr. Rattar's conventional tastes), and indeed ...
— Simon • J. Storer Clouston

... jests [1] and extempore versifying. The only other name worthy of mention is Q. HATERIUS, who from an orator became a noted declaimer. The testimonies to his excellence vary; Seneca, who had often heard him, speaks of the wonderful volubility, more Greek than Roman, which in him amounted to a fault. Tacitus gives him higher praise, but admits that his writings do not answer to his living fame, a persuasive manner and sonorous voice having been indispensible ingredients in his oratory. [2] The ...
— A History of Roman Literature - From the Earliest Period to the Death of Marcus Aurelius • Charles Thomas Cruttwell

... Cutler, and Frances D. Gage, and Jane Elizabeth M. Jones are widely honored. Another of this class is Josephine S. Griffing, a woman of rare endowments intellectually, with a heart as true and gentle as God ever gave to woman. Modest, almost to a fault, she is the unseen power that moves the machinery in the very heart of the nation; asking no recognition, no applause, she works on with a steady, systematic, careful earnestness which commands the respect ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume II • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... Concannon on that very Monday when she had brought him home from the Trimmins place. The old gentleman, although conservative to a fault where money was concerned—his money, or anybody's—agreed that one or two men should not be allowed to benefit at the moral expense of their ...
— How Janice Day Won • Helen Beecher Long

... have taught me several things. Her sincerity and absence of vanity and worldliness were her really striking qualities. Her power of suffering passively, without letting any one into her secret, was carried to a fault. We who longed to share some part, however small, of the burden of her emotion were not allowed to do so. This reserve to the last hour of her life remained her inexorable rule and habit. It arose from a wish to spare ...
— Margot Asquith, An Autobiography: Volumes I & II • Margot Asquith

... a striking blonde, tall to a fault, pink and white to bisqueness and, withal, evidently conscious of her charms. Even while motoring she affected the pastel tints, and this morning looked radiant in her immense blue scarf and her ...
— The Motor Girls on a Tour • Margaret Penrose

... liberally enriched him with; though he was thus qualified to give the senses their richest feast, still there was something more wanting to create in me, and constitute the passion of love. Yet Will had very good qualities too: gentle, tractable, and, above all, grateful; silentious, even to a fault: he spoke, at any time, very little, but made it up emphatically with action; and, to do him justice, he never gave me the least reason to complain, either of any tendency to encroach upon me for the liberties I allowed him, or of his indiscretion in blabbing them. There is, then, a fatality in ...
— Memoirs Of Fanny Hill - A New and Genuine Edition from the Original Text (London, 1749) • John Cleland

... to hasten out to the Monk Road to visit Sophia, and a very unconventional caller he proved to be. The rough life had taken off much of his exterior polish, but otherwise he was the same good-natured Tom, generous to a fault, and, therefore, blessed with but little to give. These were grand opportunities for Sophia, and she lectured him roundly for his loose habits. She told him that he could have a good position in the neighboring town, and society more in keeping ...
— Nancy McVeigh of the Monk Road • R. Henry Mainer

... due ceremony deposited in the Exchequer and at the Admiralty. A fleet was equipped, and as an atonement for the wrongs done to the elder Northumberland, the King gave the command to his son, whose portrait as Admiral forms one of the noblest of Vandyck's canvases. But Northumberland, though brave to a fault, was no seaman, and the whole enterprise threatened to end in ridicule. Stung to the quick, Charles again turned to the nation. But in the nine intervening years since 1628 the nation's heart had left him. To his demand for supplies to strengthen the ...
— The Origins and Destiny of Imperial Britain - Nineteenth Century Europe • J. A. Cramb

... never known a mother's love. Her mother died when she was a few weeks old, and she had been confided to the care of two maiden aunts—excellent ladies, both of them; good beyond expression; correct almost to a fault; but prim, starched, and extremely self-possessed and judicious, so much so that they were injudicious enough to repress some of the best impulses of their natures, under the impression that a certain amount of dignified formality ...
— The Red Eric • R.M. Ballantyne

... Senator F——, the richest mine owner out in this section; he looks like a countryman. You see he was raised in the West, but he is one of the most honest and good-hearted fellows in the world, liberal to a fault, fond of fun, but a good and true ...
— A Desperate Chance - The Wizard Tramp's Revelation, A Thrilling Narrative • Old Sleuth (Harlan P. Halsey)

... Tennyson. His blank verse is often too easy; it cannot be said to fly, for the paradoxical reason that it has no weight; it slips by, without halting or tripping indeed, but also without the friction of the movement of vitality. This quality, which is so near to a fault, this quality of ease, has come to be disregarded in our day. That Horace Walpole overpraised this virtue is not good reason that we should hold it for a vice. Yet we do more than undervalue it; ...
— Hearts of Controversy • Alice Meynell

... them all equally well. For instance, she likes dainty food, but she does not like cooking; the details of cookery offend her, and things are never clean enough for her. She is extremely sensitive in this respect and carries her sensitiveness to a fault; she would let the whole dinner boil over into the fire rather than soil her cuffs. She has always disliked inspecting the kitchen-garden for the same reason. The soil is dirty, and as soon as she sees the manure heap she fancies there ...
— Emile • Jean-Jacques Rousseau

... who gave birth to tragedy. He is sublime, and grave, and often pompous to a fault. But his plots are mostly ill-contrived and as ill-conducted. For which reason the Athenians permitted the poets who came after him to correct his pieces and fit them for the stage, and in this way many of these poets received the honor of ...
— The Training of a Public Speaker • Grenville Kleiser

... cases.[5] He was a lover of athletic sports and never knew ill-health. For the accumulation of riches he had no talent and no desire, but he had a simple wealth of affection which he bestowed generously on his children and his friends. "My father," wrote Browning, "is tender-hearted to a fault.... To all women and children he is chivalrous." "He had," writes Mr W.J. Stillman, who knew Browning's father in Paris in his elder years, "the perpetual juvenility of a blessed child. If to live in the world as if not of it indicates a saintly nature, then Robert Browning the elder ...
— Robert Browning • Edward Dowden

... to infer, from the more desultory and unsystematized character of our out-door amusements, that we are less addicted to them than we really are. But this belongs to the habit of our nation, impatient, to a fault, of precedents and conventionalisms. The English-born Frank Forrester complains of the total indifference of our sportsmen to correct phraseology. We should say, he urges, "for large flocks of wild fowl,—of swans, a whiteness,—of geese, a gaggle,—of brent, ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 1, No. 5, March, 1858 • Various

... this merit, give me leave to say, you are neither beloved by the patricians, or plebeians at home, nor by the officers or private soldiers of your own army abroad: And, do you know, Crassus, that this is owing to a fault, of which you may cure yourself, by one minutes reflection? What shall I say? You are the richest person in the commonwealth; you have no male child, your daughters are all married to wealthy patricians; you are far in the decline ...
— The Prose Works of Jonathan Swift, D. D., Volume IX; • Jonathan Swift

... it was in everything. Miss Jenkyns's rules were made more stringent than ever, because the framer of them was gone where there could be no appeal. In all things else Miss Matilda was meek and undecided to a fault. I have heard Fanny turn her round twenty times in a morning about dinner, just as the little hussy chose; and I sometimes fancied she worked on Miss Matilda's weakness in order to bewilder her, and to make her feel more in the power of her clever servant. I determined ...
— Cranford • Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

... his commercial prosperity as the inevitable and socially wholesome triumph of the ability, industry, shrewdness and experience in business of a man who in private is easygoing, affectionate and humorously convivial to a fault. Corporeally, he is a podgy man, with a square, clean shaven face and a square beard under his chin; dust colored, with a patch of grey in the centre, and small watery blue eyes with a plaintively sentimental expression, which ...
— Candida • George Bernard Shaw

... or durable friendship between men of such opposite qualities and dispositions. Count Villabuena had the feelings and instincts of a nobleman, in the real, not the conventional sense of the term: he was proud to a fault, stern, and unyielding, but frank, generous, and upright. Don Baltasar was treacherous, selfish, and unscrupulous. He felt himself cowed and humbled by the superiority of the Count, whom he began secretly to ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 59, No. 364, February 1846 • Various

... communicated to his wife. The worrying uncertainty, however, proved too much for Aymer, and the following evening when he was alone with his father he told him the story, half hoping to be scolded for harbouring uncharitable suspicions. Now, Mr. Aston had been scrupulous to a fault in avoiding the offer of any suggestions or advice on Christopher's upbringing. He desired above all things to leave Aymer free in his chosen task, but he realised at once this was a point where Aymer was quite as likely to hurt himself as Christopher, and, therefore, that he, Aymer's ...
— Christopher Hibbault, Roadmaker • Marguerite Bryant

... result of our traffic with Planchet was that we became temporarily suspicious and careful to a fault. The horse had been stolen. For the next three weeks we locked not only the stable door, but every single door to which a key could be fitted—and suffered accordingly. In a word, our convenience writhed. To complete our discomfort, if ever one of us ...
— Jonah and Co. • Dornford Yates

... He was tender-hearted to a fault, and never could resist the appeals of wives and mothers of soldiers who had got into trouble and were under sentence of death for their offences. His Secretary of War and other officials complained that ...
— The Papers And Writings Of Abraham Lincoln, Complete - Constitutional Edition • Abraham Lincoln

... no one will believe me when I say that Mellish was in every respect, except one, an exemplary citizen and a good-hearted man. He was generous to a fault and he gave many a young fellow a start in life where a little money or a few encouraging words were needed. He drank, of course, but he was a connoisseur in liquors, and a connoisseur never goes in for excess. Few could tell a humorous story ...
— The Face And The Mask • Robert Barr

... behaviour. Without any preliminaries he would burst out suddenly into snatches of sea-songs, the "Bay of Biscay" being an especial favourite, until Mrs. Chalk thought fit to observe that, "if the thunder did roar like that she should not be afraid of it." Ever sensitive to a fault, Mr. Chalk fell back upon "Tom Bowling," which he thought free from openings of that sort, until Mrs. Chalk, after commenting upon the inability of the late Mr. Bowling to hear the tempest's howling, indulged in idle ...
— Dialstone Lane, Complete • W.W. Jacobs

... returned from the west, relates among other matters the following anecdote: 'On board of one of the steam-boats on the Mississippi, I encountered a deck-hand, who went by the name of BARNEY. Like many of his class, he was a drinking, reckless fellow, but warm-hearted, good-natured, and generous to a fault. In early life he was in easy circumstances; was a husband, and the father of several children. But one night during a violent storm the house in which he resided was struck by lightning, and the whole family, save himself, were instantly killed. His own escape was considered ...
— The Knickerbocker, or New-York Monthly Magazine, January 1844 - Volume 23, Number 1 • Various

... he returned, bowing low. "I have a neat little collection of stories accounting for my presence here, from which I shall allow you to choose later. Not to mention the real one, which is simple almost to a fault." ...
— Seven Keys to Baldpate • Earl Derr Biggers

... youths and looked so much alike that people could never tell which was the prince and which the maid-servant's son. They were haughty in bearing, both were charming, winning in speech, and brave, brave to a fault. ...
— Roumanian Fairy Tales • Various

... halfback was as difficult to determine as why some folks got short of breath in the proximity of a cat. "Cat asthma", this was called. There weren't any words exactly descriptive of Speed's disorder for he was courageous to a fault. In the heat of battle he played with an abandon and a drive that usually carried him through to his objectives. It wasn't, then, a matter of his actually being "afraid" of anything. But, still, the seeming ...
— Interference and Other Football Stories • Harold M. Sherman

... my surroundings, I became fond of my Indian protegees, and to crown all, in December last, Mrs. Gowanlock came to live near us. I felt that even though a letter from home should be delayed, that I would not feel as lonesome as before. My husband was generous to a fault. He was liked by all the bands;—our white neighbours were few, but they were splendid people, fast and true friends, and I might say since Mrs. Gowanlock arrived, I felt at home; I looked upon the place as my own, and the Indian children ...
— Two months in the camp of Big Bear • Theresa Gowanlock and Theresa Delaney

... you cannot say a kind thing say nothing." In the course of a long and varied experience I may have known half-a-dozen such. But what man has done, man may do again. What is the baneful spirit which tempts the gentlest of us to take more pleasure in calling attention to a fault than to a virtue? If a woman is a tender mother, a model wife, and an excellent housekeeper, why, when her virtues are discussed, is it necessary for some one to "think it is such a pity that she does not read more?" or what good comes from the remark ...
— The Secret of a Happy Home (1896) • Marion Harland

... spirits, for on the whole things did not go well. George McClellan was commander-in-chief, and although he drilled his army splendidly he never did anything with it. He was a wonderful organiser, but he was cautious to a fault, and always believed the enemy to be far stronger ...
— This Country Of Ours • H. E. Marshall Author: Henrietta Elizabeth Marshall

... humanity and a common destiny. On the other hand, in matters of simple almsgiving, where there can be no question of social contact, and in the succor of the aged and sick, the South, as if stirred by a feeling of its unfortunate limitations, is generous to a fault. The black beggar is never turned away without a good deal more than a crust, and a call for help for the unfortunate meets quick response. I remember, one cold winter, in Atlanta, when I refrained ...
— The Souls of Black Folk • W. E. B. Du Bois

... state, in this connection, that Gipsy blood intermingled with Anglo-Saxon when educated, generally results in intellectual and physical vigour. The English Gipsy has greatly changed from the Hindoo in becoming courageous, in fact, his pugnacity and pluck are too frequently carried to a fault. ...
— The English Gipsies and Their Language • Charles G. Leland

... would have suspected everybody in the house but HER. I admit that she has her faults—she is secret, and self-willed; odd and wild, and unlike other girls of her age. But true as steel, and high-minded and generous to a fault. If the plainest evidence in the world pointed one way, and if nothing but Rachel's word of honour pointed the other, I would take her word before the evidence, lawyer as I am! Strong language, Miss Clack; ...
— The Moonstone • Wilkie Collins

... was in the brilliant clearness of her dark complexion. You might almost fancy that you could see into it so as to read the different lines beneath the skin. She was somewhat tall, though by no means tall to a fault, and was so thin as to be almost meagre in her proportions. She always wore her dress close up to her neck, and never showed the bareness of her arms. Though she was the only woman so clad now present in the room, this singularity did not specially strike one, ...
— Phineas Finn - The Irish Member • Anthony Trollope

... I would I had ore-look'd the Letter; It were a shame to call her backe againe, And pray her to a fault, for which I chid her. What 'foole is she, that knowes I am a Maid, And would not force the letter to my view? Since Maides, in modesty, say no, to that, Which they would haue the profferer construe, I. Fie, fie: how way-ward is this foolish loue; That (like a ...
— The First Folio [35 Plays] • William Shakespeare

... gently as she put down the letter; it touched, but it did not completely satisfy her. Michael had not said he was glad to hear of her engagement. He was truthful almost to a fault. The conventional falsehoods that other men uttered were never on his lips. If he could not approve, he would take refuge in silence. 'Silence never damages a man's character,' he was fond of saying; but many people found this oppressive. Audrey ...
— Lover or Friend • Rosa Nouchette Carey

... different character: generous in his disposition, liberal in his opinions, and good-natured almost to a fault; yet eager and impetuous in the pursuit of a favorite object, he staid not to reflect on the consequence which might follow the attainment of his wishes; with a mind ever open to conviction, had he been ...
— Charlotte Temple • Susanna Rowson

... both children tenderly; but the warmest love was certainly for the child who had the Earle face. She was imperious and willful, generous to a fault, impatient of all control; but her greatest fault, Mrs. Vyvian said, was a constant craving for excitement; a distaste for and dislike of quiet and retirement. She would ride the most restive horse, she would do anything to break the ennui and monotony ...
— Dora Thorne • Charlotte M. Braeme

... then about forty-three, and having already seen much of life in various countries and capacities, settled at Esk Grove, Musselburgh, to apply himself to writing historical fiction. He was for the moment elated—carried away, perhaps, for his temper was enthusiastic even to a fault—by the recent and deserved success of his novels of Scottish manners, Sir Andrew Wylie and The Entail; and the soaring idea appears to have entered his head of deliberately attempting to rival Scott in the ...
— Ringan Gilhaize - or The Covenanters • John Galt

... tiniest check, that is meant for a small woman only, or a child, and so makes her appear several sizes larger than she really is. Ulic Ronayne, standing leaning against the chimney-piece as close to Olga as circumstances will permit, is silent to a fault; and, indeed, every one but Mr. Kelly has succumbed to the damp ...
— Rossmoyne • Unknown

... disappointed. Stephen left the house at a very early hour, and walked briskly away without looking back. Mercy forced herself to go through her usual routine of morning work. She was systematic almost to a fault in the arrangement of her time, and any interference with her hours was usually a severe trial of her patience. But to-day it was only by a great effort of her will that she refrained from setting out earlier than usual ...
— Mercy Philbrick's Choice • Helen Hunt Jackson

... nothing silly or finical about him. He sticks to his colours resolutely and honourably. If he flatters his countrymen, it is the unconscious and spontaneous effect of his participation in their weaknesses. He never knowingly calls black white, or panders to an ungenerous sentiment. He is combative to a fault, but his combativeness is allied to a genuine love of fair-play. When he hates a man, he calls him knave or fool with unflinching frankness, but he never uses a base weapon. The wounds which he inflicts may hurt, but they ...
— Hours in a Library - New Edition, with Additions. Vol. II (of 3) • Leslie Stephen

... Expedition saw the Feejee islanders getting their dinner off human bones; and they are said to eat their own wives and children. The husbandry of the modern inhabitants of Gournou (west of old Thebes) is philosophical to a fault. To set up their housekeeping nothing is requisite but two or three earthen pots, a stone to grind meal, and a mat which is the bed. The house, namely a tomb, is ready without rent or taxes. No rain can pass through the roof, and there is no door, for ...
— Essays, Second Series • Ralph Waldo Emerson

... Owing to a fault which had caused Soeur Therese much pain, but of which I had deeply repented, I intended to deprive myself of Holy Communion. I wrote to her of my resolution, and this was her reply: "Little flower, most dear to Jesus, by this humiliation your roots ...
— The Story of a Soul (L'Histoire d'une Ame): The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux • Therese Martin (of Lisieux)

... write, and it pleased her to sing, and she did both when the impulse came upon her. She must, however, have had considerable natural facility of expression. Writing seems always to have been her best mode of communication. She was shy from the first in conversation, but bold to a fault with her pen. Some of the criticisms she wrote in her "Commonplace Book" are quite exhaustive; most of them are temperate, although she does give way occasionally to bursts of fiery indignation at things which outrage her sense of justice; but the general characteristic ...
— The Heavenly Twins • Madame Sarah Grand

... equal the lustre of such an action, except the modesty of him who was the hero of it. Indeed, upon all occasions, forward as he was to eulogize the merits of his followers, Sir Edward was reserved almost to a fault upon everything connected with his own services. The only notice taken of the Dutton, in the journal of the Indefatigable, is the short sentence:—"Sent two boats to the assistance of a ship on shore in the Sound;" and in his letter to Vice-Admiral Onslow, who ...
— The Life of Admiral Viscount Exmouth • Edward Osler

... uniformity of sound. This, however, is partly true, and partly otherwise; for though it must be owned that no person was better skilled in the subject than Isocrates; yet the first honour of the invention belongs to Thrasymachus, whose style (in all his writings which are extant) is numerous even to a fault. But Gorgias, as I have already remarked, was the original inventor of those measured forms of expression which have a kind of spontaneous harmony,—such as a regular succession of words with the same termination, and the comparing similar, ...
— Cicero's Brutus or History of Famous Orators; also His Orator, or Accomplished Speaker. • Marcus Tullius Cicero

... human nature. There is no fondness of the sensational for its own sake. The conditions of probability are observed with a closeness which, in books dependent for their interest so largely upon plot and incident, amounts almost to a fault. ...
— Australian Writers • Desmond Byrne

... then. You must admit that he is generous to a fault, amiable; and persevering, else he would never have attained the position he enjoys. And his affection for you, Mr. Crocker, is really touching, considering how little he ...
— The Crossing • Winston Churchill

... couple never fawn—oh no! They don't even scruple to tell their friends of their faults. One is too generous, another too candid; a third has a tendency to think all people like himself, and to regard mankind as a company of angels; a fourth is kind-hearted to a fault. 'We never flatter, my dear Mrs. Jackson,' say the plausible couple; 'we speak our minds. Neither you nor Mr. Jackson have faults enough. It may sound strangely, but it is true. You have not faults enough. You know our way,—we must speak out, and always do. Quarrel with us for saying so, ...
— Sketches by Boz - illustrative of everyday life and every-day people • Charles Dickens

... the hill, abashed and hurt at the reception of her offer; and her husband, proud to a fault, had forbidden her to repeat it. Nevertheless her motherly heart went out in a great tenderness for the little orphan David. She knew well the desolateness of his life; his father's aversion from him, and ...
— Bob, Son of Battle • Alfred Ollivant

... leaving with a heavy purse. "Your expenses will be large," he said, "among so many young gallants, and you must do credit to me as well as to yourself. The young prince is generous to a fault, and as he holds you in high favour, both from his knowledge of you and from my report, you will, I know, lack nothing when you are once fairly embarked in his service; but it is needful that when you first join you should be provided with many suits of courtly raiment, of cloth ...
— Saint George for England • G. A. Henty

... fandangoes with the vilest outcasts of society. 'It is a necessary evil,' said some; 'it is the very nature of sailors, poor fellows.' While the thoughtless multitude were immensely tickled with Jack's mad antics and drolleries. Generous to a fault to all who were in need, Jack's ...
— The Hero of the Humber - or the History of the Late Mr. John Ellerthorpe • Henry Woodcock

... poverty by his own slaves, so that his children were left portionless, and had been married when young to one of those high-minded, gallant spirits, who bear their country's flag so proudly on the wave—brave, and generous to a fault, and in fact one of those who almost literally "spend half a crown out of six-pence a day." She was adored by her husband, to whom she early presented several cherub-looking sailor-boys, and while he lived to supply her wants, though free-hearted and reckless of expenditure, she ...
— Ups and Downs in the Life of a Distressed Gentleman • William L. Stone

... modest, and almost morbidly retiring, he was fearless and outspoken when occasion required. Strong in will and prompt in action, with a naturally hot temper, he was yet forgiving to a fault. Somewhat brusque in manner, his disposition was singularly sympathetic and attractive, winning all hearts. Weakness and suffering at once enlisted his interest. Caring nothing for what was said of him, ...
— Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 6 of 8 • Various

... of the siege and his share therein, of the subsequent events and of the men whose acquaintance he made there, with lively and emphatic interest. To all associated with the capture he was in after years generous to a fault, except a few enemies like Auna whom he treated with harshness. In particular it must not be forgotten that among many men of minor importance he there began his relations with some of his greatest generals and marshals: Desaix, ...
— The Life of Napoleon Bonaparte - Vol. I. (of IV.) • William Milligan Sloane

... don't mistake me. These same newspaper men are nice fellows, kindly to a fault, if you avoid rubbing them the wrong way. Swear to yourself that you will be genial and affable with every human soul you meet, and that you will never be betrayed into an argument—on any American subject, ...
— Recollections • David Christie Murray

... are gone, are they not?' she said. 'Fool! to lock up one party to a fault, and yet let the other one go free! Do you suppose that during your carousing with your boon companions, she would fail to succor him for whose sake she has ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 6, No. 6, December 1864 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... have a vast dislike to puppies—quite a horror of them. They were never tolerated at Maple Grove. Neither Mr. Suckling nor me had ever any patience with them; and we used sometimes to say very cutting things! Selina, who is mild almost to a fault, bore with them ...
— Persuasion • Jane Austen

... to idealise him; but he certainly seems to me, in retrospect, to have then been invested with a singular charm. He was pure-minded and fastidious to a fault. He had considerable personal beauty, rather perhaps of expression than of feature. He was one of those people with a natural grace of movement, gesture and speech. He was wholly unembarrassed in manner, but he talked little in a mixed company. No one had fewer ...
— The Altar Fire • Arthur Christopher Benson

... internal organs are most extensive and varied, and therefore a visible disorder in the skin may point at once and specifically to a particular fault in diet, to an injudicious use of cold water when the system is heated, to a fault in drainage, ventilation, or lighting of the stables, to indigestion, to liver ...
— Special Report on Diseases of the Horse • United States Department of Agriculture

... he shows up more extraordinarily. His mind is so retentive that nothing ever escapes from it. Any date, or fact, or figure that he has ever heard, may be instantly and accurately recalled. Why, sir, I would as soon contradict an encyclopedia! He is truthful to a fault!" ...
— Sunlight Patch • Credo Fitch Harris

... its lyre in praise of him who had been most devoted to his Church, most faithful to his mistress, and most loyal to his king. As a whole, this Cathedral of Winchester is a vast building, simple almost to a fault, yet one that possesses a solemn repose unspeakably restful to mind and spirit—a sense of undisturbed harmony and refined yet massive simplicity. Towards eventide the shadows of the turrets and pinnacles creep, day by day, over the ...
— Winchester • Sidney Heath

... been led captive to San Paulo, and thousands had dispersed into the woods. Still, assembled on the banks of the Paranapane, there was a multitude of Indians of every sex and age. Fortunately or unfortunately, no record by an eye-witness exists,* except that written by Montoya, and he is modest to a fault about all details, and absolutely silent as to the part he played himself. He tells us that at the starting-point were gathered two thousand five hundred families, and this in spite of the dispersions and the efforts made by the Spanish settlers in the town of ...
— A Vanished Arcadia, • R. B. Cunninghame Graham

... generally, Baker was liberal to a fault, and eminently improvident. He made a fortune by his work, but at the annual rendezvous of the traders, at Bent's Fort or the old Pueblo, would throw away the earnings of months in a ...
— The Old Santa Fe Trail - The Story of a Great Highway • Henry Inman

... strenuous advocate for universal toleration and forbearance in matters of religion; rightly supposing that no service can be acceptable to the supreme Being, unless it proceeds from the heart; and that force serves only to make hypocrites, but adds no new lights to the understanding. He was modest to a fault, entertaining the most humble opinion of his own performances; and was always ready to do justice to those of others. His affection for his friends indeed sometimes biassed his judgment, and led him to the commending their ...
— The Lives of the Poets of Great Britain and Ireland (1753) - Vol. IV • Theophilus Cibber

... unselfish and thoroughly benevolent; the homeless wanderer was sure of shelter under his roof, and the poor of some provision by the way. Towards his aged parents his filial affection was of the most devoted kind. Hospitable even to a fault, every visitor received his kindly welcome, and his visitors were more numerous than those of any other man of letters in the land.[44] Fond of conviviality, he loved the intercourse of congenial minds; the voice of friendship was always more precious ...
— The Modern Scottish Minstrel, Volume II. - The Songs of Scotland of the past half century • Various

... race, being accentuated here. Yet the faces are pleasing, honest, and good-tempered. There is to be found in the world no more splendid specimens of fighting humanity than the Montenegrin borderer. Brave, reckless to a fault, with absolutely no fear of death, inured to every hardship, and able to live and thrive on the barest fare, they are typical of the old Viking, chivalrous and courteous, with the purest blood of the ...
— The Land of the Black Mountain - The Adventures of Two Englishmen in Montenegro • Reginald Wyon



Words linked to "To a fault" :   excessively, too



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