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Belittle   /bɪlˈɪtəl/   Listen
Belittle

verb
(past & past part. belittled; pres. part. belittling)
1.
Cause to seem less serious; play down.  Synonyms: denigrate, derogate, minimize.
2.
Express a negative opinion of.  Synonyms: disparage, pick at.
3.
Lessen the authority, dignity, or reputation of.  Synonym: diminish.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Belittle" Quotes from Famous Books



... snapped, cutting in. "We will say, a little indiscreet. My errand is not concerned with Monsieur Marius's morals or with his lack of them. These indiscretions which you belittle appear to have been enough to have estranged him from his father, a circumstance which but served the more to endear him to his mother. I am told that she is a very handsome woman, and that the boy favours ...
— St. Martin's Summer • Rafael Sabatini

... most favourite novel in the English language, it has been so written that it would not have offended the author had he lived to read it, nor does it disgust or annoy those who most love the original. There is not a word in it having an intention to belittle Scott. It has sprung from the genuine humour created in Thackeray's mind by his aspect of the romantic. We remember how reticent, how dignified was Rowena,—how cold we perhaps thought her, whether ...
— Thackeray • Anthony Trollope

... easy at Las Guasimas," Elsie said, with a strained little laugh. "You remember the last war, mother; did you belittle ...
— A Touch Of Sun And Other Stories • Mary Hallock Foote

... think that several of your friends were warm enough towards you. "My God! my God! how mean literary men are!" A bit out of the correspondence of the first Napoleon. What a nice bit, eh? Doesn't it seem to you that they belittle ...
— The George Sand-Gustave Flaubert Letters • George Sand, Gustave Flaubert

... family of nations in these latter times is the highest billow in humanity's evolution, the crowning effort of ages in the aggrandizement of man. Unless we take her in this altitude, we do not comprehend her; we belittle her towering stature and conceal the singular design of Providence in ...
— America First - Patriotic Readings • Various

... critic, "is nothing but the place for the development of the human will, attacking the obstacles opposed to it by destiny, fortune, or circumstances." And again: "Drama is a representation of the will of man in conflict with the mysterious powers or natural forces which limit and belittle us; it is one of us thrown living upon the stage, there to struggle against fatality, against social law, against one of his fellow-mortals, against himself, if need be, against the ambitions, the interests, the prejudices, the folly, ...
— Play-Making - A Manual of Craftsmanship • William Archer

... prophet; he cannot tell what may happen agriculturally in Alaska or the rest of the arctic regions when the world outside is filled up and all unfrozen lands are under cultivation. Still less is he one who would belittle a country he has learned to love or detract in any way from its due claims to the attention of mankind. There is in the territory a false newspaper sentiment that every one who lives in the land should be continually singing extravagant praises of it and continually making extravagant ...
— Ten Thousand Miles with a Dog Sled - A Narrative of Winter Travel in Interior Alaska • Hudson Stuck

... jealousies, of overmuch fashionable society, with its shallow and bitter emulations, do far more to contract and sour the spirit of woman, to falsify and deprave her heart, to belittle and spoil her mind, to degrade and veneer her character, than any professional career can well be supposed to do. It cannot be doubted, that many a woman, who displays herself, as good as naked, in brilliant drawing-room assemblies, spends half her existence in the ...
— The Friendships of Women • William Rounseville Alger

... blame for the whole matter where it belonged. He wanted to track the man who had conferred with known conspirators back to his home. He wanted to be able to point out the treacherous government which had so sought to belittle the United States in the eyes of ...
— Boy Scouts on Motorcycles - With the Flying Squadron • G. Harvey Ralphson

... time, it is necessary to point out, such reflex influence may act not in one direction only, but also in the reverse direction. From the standpoint of ascetic contemplation eager to belittle humanity, the excretory centers may cast dishonor upon the genital center which they adjoin. From the more ecstatic standpoint of the impassioned lover, eager to magnify the charm of the woman he worships, it is not ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 5 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... you may find still another mode of defence, entirely personal, seldom employed by husbands, but the men of superiority will not fear to attempt it. It is to belittle the lover without letting your wife suspect your intention. You ought to be able to bring it about so that she will say to herself some evening while she is putting her hair in curl-papers, "My husband ...
— Analytical Studies • Honore de Balzac

... he takes Horatio apart to recount his adventures and unfold the plot of the king; but before he utters a word of this his settled mood is revealed to us in the graveyard scene. Hamlet, ever prone to belittle the world, is not loth to watch the making of a grave. There is the limit and boundary of what can be done or suffered; there the triumph is ended, and there the enmity is stayed. He advances step by step to look closely at the ruins of mortality; ...
— The Contemporary Review, January 1883 - Vol 43, No. 1 • Various

... toleration, enterprise, industriousness, and progress—which is England—plus the element of equality and opportunity caused by pioneer settlement. It is the expression of the world's highest race under the most favourable social, political, and geographical conditions. Those who endeavour to belittle the importance of our British ancestry, are invited to consider the other nations of this continent. All these are equally "American" in every particular, differing only in race-stock and heritage; yet of them all, none save British Canada will even bear comparison ...
— Writings in the United Amateur, 1915-1922 • Howard Phillips Lovecraft

... to belittle the achievements of modern scientists, we have the greatest admiration for them and we entertain high expectations of what ambitions they may yet realize, but we perceive a limitation in the fact, that all discoveries of the ...
— The Rosicrucian Mysteries • Max Heindel

... hair, which had gone grey in the last year, and on his figure, with its square shoulders and its look of obvious distinction, as of a man who had achieved results so emphatically that it was impossible either to overlook or to belittle them. How splendid he looked! And what a pity that, after all his triumphs, he should still be so nervous on the first ...
— Virginia • Ellen Glasgow

... lady admitted. "It is very important work, of course; and I'd dearly love to have a share in it. I am a great believer in the colored races, you know. But you are making me begin to think I am all wrong about the church at home. I don't mean to belittle it. Perhaps I appreciate it more than I realized. Anyway, tell me something else that you ...
— John Wesley, Jr. - The Story of an Experiment • Dan B. Brummitt

... expenses, though you protested against an election in a moral land involving the expenditure of a dime, and though you pass for the closest man west of the mountains. And here we are, going upon errands of duty, as little worldly as we can be, yet not anxious to belittle ourselves ...
— Tales of the Chesapeake • George Alfred Townsend

... better Mrs. Malaprop than Mrs. Drew, and better Sir Anthony than John Gilbert? No one denies that the English actors and actresses are great. No one will deny that the plays of Shakespeare are the greatest that have been produced, and no one wishes in any way to belittle the genius ...
— The Works of Robert G. Ingersoll, Volume VIII. - Interviews • Robert Green Ingersoll

... um go out av his way to belittle himsilf an' phwat he knows, an' Oi w'udn't trust him wid a bent penny as far as Oi cud t'row a bull be th' tail fer 'tis done wid a purpose. 'Tis ...
— The Promise - A Tale of the Great Northwest • James B. Hendryx

... frank embarrassment and limped toward the door. "Why, ma'am," he said regretfully as he reached the door, "I cert'nly don't want to do anything which you think ain't right, after what you've done for me. I don't want to belittle you, an' I think that when I said that I might have been gassin' a little. But I thought mebbe I'd been enough ...
— The Two-Gun Man • Charles Alden Seltzer

... not in this brief note propose to dwell, though it seems to me insane either to ignore them or to belittle them. The point on which I desire to insist is that they arise not from the establishment of a subordinate Parliament alone, nor from the existence of a "nationalist" sentiment alone, but from the action and reaction of ...
— Against Home Rule (1912) - The Case for the Union • Various

... make sure that you'll get it," sneered Gresham, and laughed. He was anxious to belittle Gamble in the ...
— Five Thousand an Hour - How Johnny Gamble Won the Heiress • George Randolph Chester

... country, but I'm a little disappointed in the Moritos. As for San Diego, Colonel Booth of your old regiment is in command, and I half think he didn't back up the Morito garrison out of jealousy toward you. He wanted to have the Morito country go back, so as to belittle our exploit. But we'll get even with him. I've seen the cable-censor, and not a word about it will go home. I have just sent a despatch saying that the whole island is entirely in our hands and that the natives are swearing ...
— Captain Jinks, Hero • Ernest Crosby

... is easy to do so, we must not belittle this cry of "Race-Suicide!" It is not usually accompanied by definite argument, but it assumes that birth-control is the method of such suicide, and that the first and most immediately dangerous result is that one's own nation, ...
— Little Essays of Love and Virtue • Havelock Ellis

... vast extension of commerce, to the marvelously increased facilities for travel, transportation and intercommunication; to the innumerable and wonderful inventions that in their application have brightened our civilization. They exalt present conditions and they belittle the long ...
— Usury - A Scriptural, Ethical and Economic View • Calvin Elliott

... and particularly upon the economic causes need not belittle the strictly religious factor in the movement. The success of the revolt was due to the fact that many kings, nobles, and commoners, for financial and political advantages to themselves, became the valuable allies of real religious reformers. It required dogmatic differences as well ...
— A Political and Social History of Modern Europe V.1. • Carlton J. H. Hayes

... Upon the struggle implicit in this question the modern drama necessarily is based, since the dramatist, in any period when the theatre is really alive, is obliged to tell the people in the audience what they have themselves been thinking. Those critics, therefore, have no ground to stand on who belittle the importance of the modern social drama and regard it as an arbitrary phase of art devised, for business reasons merely, by ...
— The Theory of the Theatre • Clayton Hamilton

... your duty, tell the truth, and be industrious—this was the New England ideal; and until we can replace it by a better, we can hardly afford to belittle it.—Preface. ...
— A Mother's List of Books for Children • Gertrude Weld Arnold

... have such control of, his personality, that he can lay it down, so to speak, and let humanity cross over upon it. History may get no news of him at all; although he is then the Chief of Men, and the greatest living;—or it may get news, only to belittle him. His own and the after ages may think very little of him; he may possess no single quality to dazzle the imagination:—he may seem cold and uninteresting, a crafty tyrant;—or an uncouth old ex-rail-splitter to have in the White House;—or an illiterate peasant-girl ...
— The Crest-Wave of Evolution • Kenneth Morris

... place in a Government examination; he can get into the diplomatic service. Just believe that I love him too much to stand in his way. Why, I can even help him. If he does this I know that he'll want influence. You haven't influence to help him. I don't want to belittle you, but I know you've nothing but your money, while I can help him. My cousin is Lord Halberton. He's been a Cabinet minister. There's no knowing what he mightn't do with his help. If you love anyone as ...
— The Tragic Bride • Francis Brett Young

... efforts of idealists to belittle it, there is scarcely a fact of human experience capable of more universal substantiation than that in order to live it is necessary to eat. The corollary is equally true: in order to eat ...
— The Wall Street Girl • Frederick Orin Bartlett

... inspiration of every great religious awakening since the world began. In this country and in other parts of the English-speaking world that spirit is becoming associated with the name the New Theology. To associate it with any one personality is to belittle the subject and to obscure its real significance. There are many brave and good men in the churches and outside the churches to-day, men of true prophetic spirit, who would reject utterly the name New Theology, but who ...
— The New Theology • R. J. Campbell

... "You belittle your own kindness, I am sure," said Hazel. "And that dear boy who got me out of the ...
— Ruth Fielding in Moving Pictures - Or Helping The Dormitory Fund • Alice Emerson

... publicists again and again tell us that Germany does not want to copy English institutions. The old German monarchic institutions are good enough for Germany. Read the treatise of Treitschke, the great historian and political philosopher of modern Prussia. He systematically attempts to belittle every achievement of the Parliamentary system; and every prominent writer follows in his footsteps. Prussia has not produced a Guizot, a Tocqueville, a Stuart Mill, or a Bryce. Her thinkers are ...
— German Problems and Personalities • Charles Sarolea

... and no man of all the Fianna was keener and hardier in fight. There was also another Conan, namely, mac Morna, who was big and bald, and unwieldy in manly exercises, but whose tongue was bitter and scurrilous; no high brave thing was done that Conan the Bald did not mock and belittle. It is said that when he was stripped he showed down his back and buttocks a black sheep's fleece instead of a man's skin, and this is the way it came about. One day when Conan and certain others of the Fianna were ...
— The High Deeds of Finn and other Bardic Romances of Ancient Ireland • T. W. Rolleston

... especially those from the seaboard. Many of the worst tory bandits did not rally to him, preferring to plunder on their own account. The American army itself was by no means free from scoundrels. Most American writers belittle the character of Ferguson's force, and sneer at the courage of the tories, although entirely unable to adduce any proof of their statements, the evidence being the other way. Apparently they are unconscious of the fact that they thus ...
— The Winning of the West, Volume Two - From the Alleghanies to the Mississippi, 1777-1783 • Theodore Roosevelt

... is freely admitted that many of the thoughts attributed to the son of Mary are superlatively fine. They will live forever whether the personality of Jesus be rejected as a divinity or not. That these beautiful preachments are ignored here is not due to any desire to belittle admirable sentiments or to disparage right living. The loving side of Jesus has been emphasized again and again and will be borne in mind by the reader when other less admirable traits are criticized. The intent of this ...
— The Mistakes of Jesus • William Floyd

... of the events that he had witnessed with his own eyes and had special opportunities of studying accurately. "The writings of my predecessors contain sometimes slanders, sometimes eulogies, but nowhere the accurate truth of the facts." He goes on to complain of the way in which they belittle the action of the Jews in order to aggrandize the Romans, which defeats its own purpose; and he contrasts the merit of one who composes by his own industry a history of events not hitherto faithfully recorded, ...
— Josephus • Norman Bentwich

... sense of proportion far enough, lo! he is back at the point from which he started. He knows that eternity, as conceived by him, is but an instant in eternity, and infinity but a speck in infinity. How should they belittle the things near to him?... Oxford was venerable and magical, after all, and enduring. Aye, and not because she would endure was it the less lamentable that the young lives within her walls were like to be taken. My equanimity was gone; and ...
— Zuleika Dobson - or, An Oxford Love Story • Max Beerbohm

... know more of us," Hinde interrupted, "you'll know that all journalists belittle journalism. It's the one consolation that's left to them. Unless you're prepared to associate only with journalists, Mac, you'd much better keep out of Fleet Street. Newspaper men always feel like fish out of water when they're in the company of other men. They must be near the newspaper ...
— The Foolish Lovers • St. John G. Ervine

... she really looked like an angel of light compared with the dark child of Nature. Agnes was tall and slender, and moved with a great air of dignity and calm self-possession, and this to the uncontrolled Chaldea was also a matter of offence. She inwardly tried to belittle her rival by thinking what a milk-and-water useless person she was, but the steady and resolute look in the lady's brown eyes gave the lie to this mental assertion. Lady Agnes had an air of breeding and command, which, with all her beauty, Chaldea ...
— Red Money • Fergus Hume

... the public crier, "it will be all the better for my tongue and your ears if I do not answer that question. I simply do what I have been told to do. I unveil this odalisk, I proclaim what she can do, to what use she can be put. I neither belittle her nor do I exalt her. I advise nobody to buy her and I advise nobody not to buy her. Allah is free to do what He will with us all, and that which has been decreed concerning each of us ages ago must needs befall." And with these words ...
— Halil the Pedlar - A Tale of Old Stambul • Mr Jkai

... Standards.—It cannot be too emphatically stated that any tendency in the community to belittle or ridicule the estate of matrimony has a definite cumulative effect on desertion. The "when a man's married" series in the comic supplements, certain comic films in the moving picture shows, the form of drama popularly called "bedroom farce" are examples ...
— Broken Homes - A Study of Family Desertion and its Social Treatment • Joanna C. Colcord

... impossible happenings—simply because Mr. Anthony Hope, a few years ago, achieved success by similar means, which at that time had a semblance of novelty. I may be "prejudiced," but then I have at least the courage of my own prejudices. In "Nancy Stair" Mr. Potter even seemed to belittle opportunities that might have raised his play from ...
— Ainslee's, Vol. 15, No. 5, June 1905 • Various

... all in court—that convinced you? Let me have something wherewith to meet my mother. She won't look at this altogether from the worldly point of view. She will have a standard of her own. Merely to belittle the thing, as long past and forgotten, won't help me. But if I could awaken her pity!—if you could give me ...
— The Testing of Diana Mallory • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... modest, my dear fellow!" smiled the dwarf. "I am the last one to belittle your achievement. Indeed, it is because of it that I have invited you here to-day. Permit me to introduce myself, and to make clear one or two possibly perplexing matters. Then I am sure we shall ...
— Astounding Stories of Super-Science, August 1930 • Various

... which had far-reaching consequences: the first interview between Cavour and Garibaldi. Cavour was one of Garibaldi's earliest admirers; he applauded his exploits at Montevideo and at Rome, when the old Piedmontese party tried to belittle him and obliged Charles Albert to decline his services. In one way the hero was a man after the minister's own heart: he was absolutely practical; he might be obstinate or rash, but he was no doctrinaire. ...
— Cavour • Countess Evelyn Martinengo-Cesaresco

... belittle my own sense of Osgood's real worth if I confined myself to expatiating on his brilliant physical achievements. His moral worth and gentle bravery were to me the chief points in him that arouse true admiration. When I, as coach of Penn's ...
— Football Days - Memories of the Game and of the Men behind the Ball • William H. Edwards

... published Alton Locke, describing the life of a young tailor whose mind and whose fortunes are profoundly influenced by the Chartist movement. From a literary point of view it is far from being his best work; and the critics agreed to belittle it at the time and to pass it over with apology at his death. But it received a warm welcome from others. While it roused the imagination of many young men and set them thinking, the veteran Carlyle could speak of 'the snatches of excellent poetical description, occasional sunbursts of ...
— Victorian Worthies - Sixteen Biographies • George Henry Blore

... the new movement cannot yet be regarded as organised. There is, however, a temptation for those among us who have all their lives been working in the cause of Feminism to belittle the future possibilities of Masculinism. There can be no doubt that all civilisation is now, and always has been to some extent, on the side of Feminism. Wherever a great development of civilisation has occurred—whether in ancient Egypt, or in later Rome, or in eighteenth-century ...
— Essays in War-Time - Further Studies In The Task Of Social Hygiene • Havelock Ellis

... and have no more reverence for the Scriptures than any other work. So long as tens of thousands of Bibles are printed every year, and circulated over the whole habitable globe, and the masses in all English-speaking nations revere it as the word of God, it is vain to belittle its influence. The sentimental feelings we all have for those things we were educated to believe sacred, do not readily yield to pure reason. I distinctly remember the shudder that passed over me on seeing a mother take our family Bible to make a high seat for ...
— The Woman's Bible. • Elizabeth Cady Stanton

... can you thus ruthlessly belittle my tenderest hope, my fondest ambitions? What do you know about my future career as a brakeman? I intend to be touchingly faithful to my duty, kind and considerate to the public. In time the world will hear of me and I shall be honored ...
— Grace Harlowe's Second Year at Overton College • Jessie Graham Flower

... every unmarried woman, spinster, or widow, or every childless wife, of the power of exercising her warm sympathies for the good of others, is to deprive her of the greatest happiness of which she is capable; to rob her highest faculties of their legitimate operation and reward; to belittle and narrow her mind; to dwarf her affections; to turn the harmonies of her nature to discord; and, as the human mind must be active, to compel her to employ hers with low and grovelling thoughts, which lead ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume I • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... described it, is not, however, incompatible with a certain kind of pride; not that form of it which boasts of physical excellence, nor that arrogance which leads a man to look down upon others and belittle their achievements. These forms of pride are bad and diametrically opposed to true humility. Legitimate mental pride is that which leads a person blessed with intellectual gifts to feel grateful to God for his favor, and to strive ...
— A History of Mediaeval Jewish Philosophy • Isaac Husik

... say grace." As this was an official function in John's eyes, that worthy man allowed himself to take a general view, and he was pleased to express his high approval of the company, enlarging especially on Carmichael, whom, as a Free Kirkman, he had been accustomed rather to belittle. ...
— Kate Carnegie and Those Ministers • Ian Maclaren

... indicate a weakness of character which augurs ill for the future: and if you insist upon the sacrifice, you will establish a selfish precedent which can only make you a tyrant in your own domain, and at the same time belittle your husband in the ...
— A Woman of the World - Her Counsel to Other People's Sons and Daughters • Ella Wheeler Wilcox

... a convincing physical element in the feelings and desires of man, evidenced in language and phrase. Superiority equals aboveness, inferiority equals beneathness; sympathy equals the same feeling. To criticize is to "belittle" and to cause the feeling of littleness; to praise is "to make a man expand," to enlarge him. Blame hurts ...
— The Foundations of Personality • Abraham Myerson

... modern fashion somewhat to belittle Puritanism. It is easy to emphasize its absurdities, to ridicule the almost fanatical fervor which goaded men to harshness and inconsistency. The fact remains that a tremendous selective force was ...
— The Old Coast Road - From Boston to Plymouth • Agnes Rothery

... as long as I please," blustered the showy youth. "It's a fine piece of business you've been in—trying to belittle me and my chums in the eyes of ...
— The Rover Boys at Big Horn Ranch - The Cowboys' Double Round-Up • Edward Stratemeyer

... of a demagogue. He did not attempt to belittle the public service. He championed the provision for higher pay for the United States Judges, and for increasing the stipend of army officers, although he denounced the system of double rations as vicious. ...
— Robert Toombs - Statesman, Speaker, Soldier, Sage • Pleasant A. Stovall

... he is always ready to impart in a somewhat strident voice (another family characteristic) the political wisdom that he has garnered from the New World and the Old. But somehow the House fails to take him at his own valuation, and when he tried to belittle the Imperial Conference, on the ground that the Dominion Premier and his colleagues would be much better employed at home, I think there was a general feeling that the physician would be none the worse for a ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 152, April 11, 1917 • Various

... miles from New York. After several months of futile effort, spaced by periods of laziness that Margaret put an end to, a gentleman's job was secured for Larry, through the kindness of one of his father's friends. At first Larry was inclined to think that the work would belittle him, spoil his chances of "better things." But Margaret, seeing that as assistant secretary to the Malachite Company he could do no harm, could neither gamble nor loaf, replied to these doubts in ...
— Together • Robert Herrick (1868-1938)

... worse, every time, whether he is trying to get your reputation or your life. You never want to take chances. Watch him. Sleep with one eye open. Listen to every breath of wind. Watch, and watch eternally. You are only safe when he is dead, or disarmed and in prison. And never belittle your enemy. Better think of him as bigger than he is, cleverer, and more cunning. When you belittle his strength you give him the advantage because you will not fight so hard. And don't ...
— The Boy Scouts on a Submarine • Captain John Blaine

... prefer to live with their inferiors. 'The only remedy against a superiority,'—says some French writer—'is to love it.' But Bridget was so made that she could not love it; she could only pull it down and belittle it. ...
— Missing • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... as much for the butcher. Don't belittle the circle of your benevolence. (She walks across the room.) Three o'clock already— and Marian asked me to give orders about the carriages. Let me see—Mr. Oberville is the first arrival; if you'll ring I will send word to the stable. ...
— The Greater Inclination • Edith Wharton

... feeling perhaps reaches its maximum with those who have made a specialty of the investigation and application of physical laws. Young men who have learned how to harness the powers of nature and guide them to do their will are apt to belittle the difficulties they have yet to overcome, and have a false impression of the problems of life. This feeling is shown to a minimum extent by graduates of the Stevens Institute, on account of their careful practical training, in connection with the thorough ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 623, December 10, 1887 • Various

... Marne (surely fated to be the most fought-again engagement in history) are here very clearly described, with illustrative plans; while one other chapter, called suggestively "Kultur," may be commended to those super-philosophers amongst us who are already beginning an attempt to belittle the foul record of calculated crime that must for at least a generation place Germany outside the pale of civilization. For this grim chapter alone I should like to see Major CORBETT-SMITH'S otherwise cheery volume ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 153, Oct. 17, 1917 • Various

... misanthropy, and quarrels with him and in turn becomes the object of Chapman's invectives. After Shakespeare's death Jonson made amends for his past ill-usage by defending his memory against Chapman, who, even then, continued to belittle his reputation. ...
— Shakespeare's Lost Years in London, 1586-1592 • Arthur Acheson

... Francesco Moretti would not feel the smallest desire to belittle the works of any contemporary artist of the still rival cities around him. Doubtless he would fraternize with any such with all courtesy and a genuine sentiment of the universal brotherhood of art. But ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science Volume 15, No. 89, May, 1875 • Various

... you should try to belittle this family whom you do not know. Francois Darbois, the philosopher, is a fine character, of unparalleled honour and integrity: his wife has never frequented the world where people are 'taken in,' as you say, and as for Mlle. Esperance ...
— The Idol of Paris • Sarah Bernhardt

... the Confederacy, John C. Breckenridge and Judah P. Benjamin attained the dignity of national events, and his heroic death early in the war on field of battle renders it forever impossible for any just man to belittle the deeds or influence of Edward D. Baker. What he might have effected had he remained in California, or had his life been longer spared, we may not say. The fact remains that after his mission ...
— Starr King in California • William Day Simonds

... of these women. Sometimes, indeed, the talents and usefulness of these women, and of the earnest women of our own day, are admitted after a fashion; but it is done in such a way as, in reality, to belittle the sex as much as possible. They are considered as occupying the same relation to men that the moon does to the sun, and all that is desired of them is to reflect a borrowed light. If she be unable to reflect a light when there is none to borrow, what ...
— Woman: Man's Equal • Thomas Webster

... could to belittle Nancy's triumph. She stood on the landing and sneered at the work of the crew, and especially at "Number 6" until one evening Jennie Bruce came up behind her, caught her by both elbows, and thrust her suddenly toward the ...
— A Little Miss Nobody - Or, With the Girls of Pinewood Hall • Amy Bell Marlowe

... Hannibal, it must never be forgotten, that for all we know of him, we are indebted to his implacable enemies. No Carthaginian record of that astounding career has come down to us. The Romans did all that unscrupulous malignity can, to blacken the fame and belittle the deeds of the most terrible of their foes. Yet, though calumny has done its bitterest against him, Hannibal not only dazzles the imagination, but takes captive the heart. He stands out as the incarnation of magnanimity and patriotism and self-sacrificing ...
— Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 1 of 8 • Various

... at the gate as we marched out to the moor, to take "Eyes right" and a salute, for no useful purpose that we could see except to belittle a British soldier's pride. As corporal I was supposed to give that command to my squad but rather than do so I took my stripes down, although that ended my immunity as a "non-com" from the labour of cutting peat. Others, I am sorry to say, were glad ...
— The Escape of a Princess Pat • George Pearson

... Henry," said John, "our history is enough for us. Even since the war, the English have tried to belittle the Irish. They've done the most inept, small things to annoy us. They'd have got far more men from Ireland than they have done, if they 'd behaved decently; but they couldn't. They simply couldn't do the decent ...
— Changing Winds - A Novel • St. John G. Ervine

... His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected."(811) Here is the test of every man's profession. We cannot accord holiness to any man without bringing him to the measurement of God's only standard of holiness in heaven and in earth. If men feel no weight of the moral law, if they belittle and make light of God's precepts, if they break one of the least of these commandments, and teach men so, they shall be of no esteem in the sight of Heaven, and we may know that their claims are ...
— The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan • Ellen G. White

... once I came and a rude man in a carriage spoke to me. Mother told me never to come alone again. It seems strange to me that men who are so proud of their strength, and who should be the natural protectors of woman, can belittle themselves by annoying or frightening her when alone. I am sure that same man would never think of speaking to me now that I am with you. How cowardly he seems when you think of it! Yet I am told there are many like him, though that was my ...
— An Ambitious Man • Ella Wheeler Wilcox

... likewise. Reforms which were steps in capitalism thus become to them steps in Socialism. It is not the fashion of "reformists" to try to claim that they are very great steps—on the contrary, they usually belittle them, but it is believed that agitation for such reforms as capitalist governments allow, is the best way to gain the public ear, the best kind of political practice, the most fruitful mode ...
— Socialism As It Is - A Survey of The World-Wide Revolutionary Movement • William English Walling

... "Well, you can belittle it as much as you like, but you certainly saved me from an awfully nasty situation. And you didn't know ...
— The Boy Scouts In Russia • John Blaine

... any moment, and then the correspondence that eager devotees have found between them and the Bible is a slur that falls altogether on the religion and not on the science. This is a great error, and those who are drawn into it belittle the cause that is dear to them. While our author is catholic in his reading, he does not seem to assign to all writers in his field their just value. His quotations, the fresh, the obsolete, the trustworthy, and the doubtful, are mingled in a ...
— The Galaxy, Volume 23, No. 2, February, 1877 • Various

... Neither should they be constantly coaxed to right-doing by promised rewards,—a new toy, a book, an excursion, nor even the pleasures of Heaven. All of these incentives are selfish, and invariably narrow the character and belittle life when made the chief motives of action. But rather begin at the earliest possible moment to instill into the mind a love for right, and truth, and purity, and virtue, and an abhorrence for their contraries; ...
— Plain Facts for Old and Young • John Harvey Kellogg

... of wholesome mischief among the upper classmen, seemed to be the chief instigator of the tendency to belittle Bill, aided by one Luigi Malatesta, a Sicilian. Siebold never had forgiven Bill and Gus for the electrical trap sprung on his hazing party. He had a certain following that shared most of ...
— Radio Boys Loyalty - Bill Brown Listens In • Wayne Whipple

... different. 'Our sin is a voluble boastfulness; theirs is an irritating, unrestrainable, all-but-constantly manifested, satisfied self-consciousness. The same results are reached by different avenues. We praise ourselves; they belittle others.' Then he added with a smile: 'Thus even in these latter days are the Scriptures exemplified; the same spirit with ...
— The Bibliotaph - and Other People • Leon H. Vincent

... know one another as 'I,' and 'the other.' They converse together in their language, not by necessity according to our thoughts, but what they will. And note, too, that there may be anger between them, and one may belittle or injure the other; this injury is in the Soul, the Soul in the body. Then the body suffers and is ill— not materially or from a material Ens, but from the Soul. For this we need spiritual remedy. Ye are two who are dear unto one another; ...
— The Mystic Will • Charles Godfrey Leland

... effective details and personal episodes. His facts are gleaned from a variety of sources as well as from personal knowledge; and though proud of his own cause and of his companions, he does not belittle their renown by decrying the valor or the intelligence of his opponents. The conflicts themselves will never be forgotten. It is desirable that they shall be kept vivid and clear in the minds of the rising generation, to cultivate a correct idea of the necessity of personal ...
— Sword and Pen - Ventures and Adventures of Willard Glazier • John Algernon Owens

... body—something keener of mood. 'And the men new-freed from the levies return to the fields again, 'Matching a hundred battles, cottar and lord and thane. 'And they talk aloud in the temples where the ancient wargods are. 'They thumb and mock and belittle the holy harness of war. 'They jest at the sacred chariots, the robes and the gilded staff. 'These things fill them with laughter, they lean on their spears and laugh. 'The men grown old in the war-game, hither and thither they range— 'And scorn and laughter together ...
— Songs from Books • Rudyard Kipling

... of them. You, poor thing, belittle yourself by seeking to imitate them. You stand on your hind legs, wear a coat when it rains, eat plums—for shame!—and those big green balls, the malicious trees let fall ...
— Barks and Purrs • Colette Willy, aka Colette

... belittle the tranquil and serene joy of the Christian saint, but I cannot see that this is superior to the same joy as it is exhibited in the Psalms of the Brethren or the Sisters in the Buddhistic Order. Nothing is more remarkable in these songs than the ...
— The Reconciliation of Races and Religions • Thomas Kelly Cheyne

... "I don't belittle it," was the quick response. "In some of its phases it is grand—magnificent. We can't always be prying into the cause; the effect is what counts. And there is no denying that the fairy tale which we call Christianity has built some of the ...
— The Quickening • Francis Lynde

... the Spaniard said. "You are one of those who belittle your own good deeds. I feel indeed more grateful than I can express to you as ...
— By England's Aid • G. A. Henty

... of business. Henry permitted himself to indulge his pedagogical and ministerial instincts for the benefit and improvement of his kinsman. They seem to have carried on a mutual recrimination in their letters: Neville was inclined to belittle the divine calling of poets in their teens; while Henry deplored his brother's unwillingness to write at length and upon serious and "instructive" topics. Alas, the ill-starred young man had a mania for self-improvement. If our ...
— Shandygaff • Christopher Morley

... heard evil reports about myself, most blessed Father, by which I know that certain friends have put my name in very bad odor with you and yours, saying that I have attempted to belittle the power of the keys and of the Supreme Pontiff. Therefore I am accused of heresy, apostasy, and perfidy, and am called by six hundred other names of ignominy. My ears shudder and my eyes are astounded. But the one thing in which I ...
— Works of Martin Luther - With Introductions and Notes (Volume I) • Martin Luther

... was little romance in the undertaking; there was far less in the work to be performed. I simply desire to protest against the correctness of the distorted pictures drawn ostensibly to magnify the sacrifices, which were many, and to belittle the rewards, which were great, in the performance of an ordinary piece of work, by a class of persons now rapidly disappearing from the scenes that once knew them. Their work is fast being transferred to the hands of colored men ...
— Black and White - Land, Labor, and Politics in the South • Timothy Thomas Fortune

... explanation of what is taking place." "There are many men," he says, "who could do the same thing." On this point we cannot argue with Mr. Belloc. He may know them: we do not. What we do know is that there are many men who are trying to do the same thing. In saying this we have no wish to belittle either individuals or as a class those courageous gentlemen, among whom the best-known, perhaps, are Colonel Repington and Colonel Maude, who are striving, and striving honestly, we believe, to provide the readers of various papers with an intelligent explanation of the ...
— Hilaire Belloc - The Man and His Work • C. Creighton Mandell

... am not entirely responsible for this little book. Not long ago, I met a man—fit, single, and young—who began to grumble to me of the hardships of his "funkhole" in England, and, incidentally, to belittle the hardships of the man at the front. After I had told him exactly what I thought of him, I was still so indignant that I came home and began to write a book about the trenches. Hence Mud and Khaki. To him, then, the blame for this minor horror of ...
— Mud and Khaki - Sketches from Flanders and France • Vernon Bartlett

... faux bon"? It is something exceedingly difficult to produce. We do not wish to belittle it; we wish to make plain its nature. If we succeed, we shall show also how choice and rare a thing this OEdipus is. At any rate, it keeps good company. The plays of Mr. Stephen Phillips are classical ...
— Pot-Boilers • Clive Bell

... American tinned-food habit, nor, on reading the chap's screed, did they impress me as being fraught with vital interest to thinking people; in truth, I was more concerned with the comparison of myself to a restaurateur of the crude new city of New York, which might belittle rather than distinguish me, I suspected. But what was my astonishment to perceive in the course of a few days that I had created rather a sensation, with attending newspaper publicity which, although bizarre enough, I am bound to say contributed not a little to the consideration in which I afterward ...
— Ruggles of Red Gap • Harry Leon Wilson

... to boast of gold Or belittle it with sneers, Didn't change from hot to cold, Kept his friends throughout the years, Sort of man you like to meet Any time or any place. There was always something sweet And refreshing ...
— A Heap o' Livin' • Edgar A. Guest

... "she deserves it. You talk as if he wan't lucky too. But I jest want to tell you he is and you needn't say he ain't. You ought to be ashamed of yo'se'f to belittle yo' own daughter thatter way. Well, I never. Never did I expect to see the day when you'd say yo' child wan't worthy of a young man, even if ...
— The Starbucks • Opie Percival Read

... that," said Mr. Slick. "I won't stay here and hear you belittle Uncle Sam that way for nothin'. He ain't wuss than John Bull, arter all. Ain't there no swindle-banks here? Jist tell me that. Don't our liners fetch over, every trip, fellers that cut and run from England, with their fobs filled with ...
— The Attache - or, Sam Slick in England, Complete • Thomas Chandler Haliburton

... to this evening's speeches, and that would fill the first paragraph—say, three sides of my copy, or something over. In the second paragraph I'd show the immense issues involved in the present contest, and expose the fallacies of our opponents who attempt to belittle the matter as temporary and unlikely to recur—say, three sides of my copy again, but not a word more. And, then, in the third paragraph, I'd adjure the Government, in the name of all their party hold sacred, to stand firm, and I'd appeal to the people of this great ...
— Essays in Rebellion • Henry W. Nevinson

... than salt-pot cleanlier, Nor ten times cack'st in total year, 20 And harder 'tis than pebble or bean Which rubbed in hand or crumbled, e'en On finger ne'er shall make unclean. Such blessings (Furius!) such a prize Never belittle nor despise; 25 Hundred sesterces seek no more With wonted prayer—enow's ...
— The Carmina of Caius Valerius Catullus • Caius Valerius Catullus

... has said to a child, who has done something wrong or annoying: "I don't love you any more. I don't like you now at all." And I have known countless cases where mothers, themselves, have said and acted the same thing. And the effect of that is to belittle and corrupt in the child's heart a bigger and deeper conception of love, as a loyal and steadfast thing, with no string attached to it. If a nurse, or a mother, can withdraw her love, for a slight cause, then a child when it grows up can expect to do the same; a wife can withdraw her ...
— Heart and Soul • Victor Mapes (AKA Maveric Post)

... and sympathizers with the Labour movement over the world belittle Patriotism, and seem to think that by decrying and discouraging the love of one's country one will bring ...
— The Healing of Nations and the Hidden Sources of Their Strife • Edward Carpenter

... been jealous of your dignity—of the respect that is due you. I have resented keenly any attempt to belittle you. That is why Disston was not welcome when he came to see you. It is the reason why I have not shown a pleasure I did not feel in his ...
— The Fighting Shepherdess • Caroline Lockhart

... his published letters, written while in Canada, and he was ever looking forward to the time when he could rejoin them in his beloved chateau of Candiac, and resume the studies he liked so well. Some Canadian writers have endeavoured to belittle Montcalm, that they may more easily explain away the failings of Vaudreuil, a native Canadian, who thwarted constantly the plans of a greater man; but an impartial historian can never place these two men on ...
— Canada • J. G. Bourinot

... stung him as a lash. It seemed to belittle his powers of attraction. Consequently ...
— Peg O' My Heart • J. Hartley Manners

... underreckon^; depreciate; disparage &c (detract) 934; not do justice to; misprize, disprize; ridicule &c 856; slight &c (despise) 930; neglect &c 460; slur over. make light of, make little of, make nothing of, make no account of; belittle; minimize, think nothing of; set no store by, set at naught; shake off as dewdrops from the lion's mane. Adj. depreciating, depreciated ...
— Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases: Body • Roget

... don't belittle me ner mek light of me ternight. I kain't endure hit. Heven't ye got no idee how master much I loves ye? Don't ye see thet ther two of us war made fer each other? I don't aim ter brag none—but ye knows I'm ther only man hyar-abouts ...
— A Pagan of the Hills • Charles Neville Buck

... any one the right to demand this sacrifice of him? Was it not a devilish temptation to take him from his calling, from that work in which God had evidently intended him to work for the world? Had he a right to spoil his life, to belittle his soul, for any consideration? If Hepsy Ann Nickerson had claims, had not he also, and his Art? If he were willing, in this dire extremity, to sacrifice his love, his prospects of married bliss, might he not justly require the same of her? Was not ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. IV, No. 26, December, 1859 • Various

... contrary to custom, set aside, in deciding to leave London that day, all logical methods of reasoning and acted on what was nothing more than an irresistible impulse, he did not attempt to belittle to himself the possible consequences that might accrue from his action. He was not following the course intelligence had directed; he was not embarking on a journey his best interests would have prompted; on the contrary, he knew himself mad, foolish. But not for one moment did he ...
— Half A Chance • Frederic S. Isham



Words linked to "Belittle" :   lessen, pick apart, disgrace, denigrate, decrease, discredit, criticise, knock, vilipend, criticize, depreciate, minimize, minify, flatter, talk down, deprecate, tear apart, pan, trash



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