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Lessen   /lˈɛsən/   Listen
Lessen

verb
(past & past part. lessened; pres. part. lessening)
1.
Decrease in size, extent, or range.  Synonyms: decrease, diminish, fall.  "The cabin pressure fell dramatically" , "Her weight fell to under a hundred pounds" , "His voice fell to a whisper"
2.
Make smaller.  Synonyms: decrease, minify.
3.
Wear off or die down.  Synonym: subside.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Lessen" Quotes from Famous Books



... certain degree infected with the anxiety to participate in most of these amusements. Adam made no objection, and, though he did not join them with much spirit and alacrity, he neither by word nor deed threw any obstacle in their way to lessen their anticipation or spoil their pleasure, while Jerrem, head, chief and master of ceremonies, found in these occasions ample opportunity for trying Adam's ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 26, August, 1880 - of Popular Literature and Science • Various

... XV. and his feeble ministers; they angered and discomfited England, which was as yet tottering in India, and whose affairs there had for a long while been ill managed, but which remained ever vigorous, active, animated by the indomitable ardor of a free people. At Versailles attempts were made to lessen the conquests of Dupleix, prudence was recommended to him, delay was shown in sending him the troops he demanded. In India England had at last found a man still young and unknown, but worthy of being opposed to ...
— A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times - Volume VI. of VI. • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

... origin. There are Moorish and Buddhist symbols, and many curious developments which have gone far astray from their original types. The agriculturist is still superstitious, and does not like to lessen the number of these somewhat weighty brasses suspended from his horse trappings. For purposes of utility they are useless; they remain, however, a connecting link with the superstitions of the past, and a collection ...
— Chats on Household Curios • Fred W. Burgess

... which will make it impossible for him to take liberties with any woman. A right knowledge of the real meaning and the responsibilities and duties of their lives at this time would be a better safeguard for most young people than any amount of chaperonage. Nor will such training in any way lessen the joy of life, or the charms of courtship, but on the contrary, will enhance ...
— The Renewal of Life; How and When to Tell the Story to the Young • Margaret Warner Morley

... In her rage, she retained enough sense of proportion to understand that he had done this, just as he had insulted Monsieur Harmost and her father—and others—in an ungovernable access of nerve-irritation; just as, perhaps, one day he would kill someone. But to understand this did not lessen her feeling. Her baby! Such a tiny thing! She hated him at last; and she lay thinking out the coldest, the cruellest, the most cutting things to say. She had been ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... crevice, and held it there to act as a step for the others to descend; and at other times he pressed himself against the rock and offered his shoulders as resting-places for their feet, constantly on the watch to lessen the difficulties and guard against dangers in a place where a slip of a few feet might have resulted in the unfortunate person who fell rolling lower with increasing impetus, and the slip ...
— The Crystal Hunters - A Boy's Adventures in the Higher Alps • George Manville Fenn

... as they are, must be habitually checked by some means, probably by other parasitic insects. Hence, if certain insectivorous birds were to decrease in Paraguay, the parasitic insects would probably increase; and this would lessen the number of the navel-frequenting flies—then cattle and horses would become feral, and this would greatly alter (as indeed I have observed in parts of South America) the vegetation: this again would largely affect the insects, and this, as we have just seen in Staffordshire, the insectivorous ...
— Darwinism (1889) • Alfred Russel Wallace

... aspect to the reader, it does scanty justice to the claims of the opposite party. It would not be meet, indeed, that an apology for rebellion should be found in the pages of a royal pensioner; but there are always mitigating circumstances, which, however we may condemn the guilt, may serve to lessen our indignation towards the guilty. These circumstances are not to be found in the pages of Fernandez. It is unfortunate for the historian of such events, that it is so difficult to find one disposed to do even justice to the claims of ...
— History Of The Conquest Of Peru • William Hickling Prescott

... the case as if Miss Macdermot had died at the same moment with her betrothed husband, for you are aware that you cannot allow anything which my learned friend has told you to be taken into consideration by you in finding your verdict. But it will lessen the pain which more or less you must suffer in this sad case, to reflect what strong grounds you have for supposing that the sister, had she lived, could have proved nothing favourable to the brother; for had she been able to do so, she would have done ...
— The Macdermots of Ballycloran • Anthony Trollope

... loaths a feast; For, lo! Philander, of reproach afraid, In secret loves his wife, but keeps her maid. Some nymphs sell reputation; others buy; And love a market where the rates run high: Italian music's sweet, because 'tis dear; Their vanity is tickled, not their ear: Their taste would lessen, if the prices fell, And Shakespeare's wretched stuff do quite as well; Away the disenchanted fair would throng, And own that English is their mother tongue. To show how much our northern tastes ...
— The Poetical Works of Edward Young, Volume 2 • Edward Young

... five sous, even supposing that the raw material is grown on good soil with special culture; three francs' worth of sized pulp will make a ream of paper, at twelve pounds to the ream. I am quite sure that I can lessen the weight of books by one-half. The envelope, the letter, and samples enclosed are all manufactured in different ways. I kiss you; you shall have wealth now to add to our happiness, everything else we ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... fundamental foundation of Physical Culture, of Singing and of Oratory. This is why these studies are recommended to lessen the susceptibility to disease especially tuberculosis and other ...
— The Colored Girl Beautiful • E. Azalia Hackley

... is a true one. But many of the bravest never are known, and get no praise. That does not lessen their beauty, though perhaps it makes them harder, for we all like sympathy," and Dr. Alec sighed a patient sort ...
— Eight Cousins • Louisa M. Alcott

... there is no Bread: And upon the same ground they say, that Faith, and Wisdome, and other Vertues are sometimes powred into a man, sometimes blown into him from Heaven; as if the Vertuous, and their Vertues could be asunder; and a great many other things that serve to lessen the dependance of Subjects on the Soveraign Power of their Countrey. For who will endeavour to obey the Laws, if he expect Obedience to be Powred or Blown into him? Or who will not obey a Priest, that can make God, rather than his Soveraign; ...
— Leviathan • Thomas Hobbes

... me. The dark hair was blown all about her face. She had on over her long white sweater a loose silk waterproof of some sort, which blew every way, but did not disturb the lines of her tall figure, nor lessen the pale red and white which the sea breeze had stung into her cheeks. She did not smile, and her eyes, I say, looked steadily ...
— The Lady and the Pirate - Being the Plain Tale of a Diligent Pirate and a Fair Captive • Emerson Hough

... were some special types of noble character then, of which, when they were done with, nature broke the mould. But the mould is broken, and it is broken for ever. Through aesthetic pining for a past age, we may become unjust to our own, and thus weaken our practical sense of duty, and lessen our power of doing good. I will call the age bad when it makes me so, is a wise saying, and worth all our visionary cynicism, be it never so eloquent. To say the same thing in other words, our age will be good enough for most of us, if there is genuine goodness in ourselves. Rousseau ...
— Lectures and Essays • Goldwin Smith

... unanimity voted with the South to lessen them, and they were made just as low as Southern men asked them to be, and that is the rate they are now at. If reason and argument, with experience, produced such changes in the sentiments of Massachusetts from 1832 to 1857, on the subject of the Tariff, may not like changes be effected there ...
— The Great Conspiracy, Complete • John Alexander Logan

... deemed that lightness and grace were to be attained not so much by proportion between the vertical and the horizontal as by the comparative slenderness of the former. Hence we see a poverty in Roman architecture in the midst of profuse ornament. The great error was a constant aim to lessen the diameter while they increased the elevation of the columns. Hence the massive simplicity and severe grandeur of the ancient Doric disappear in the Roman, the characteristics of the order being frittered down into a multiplicity ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume III • John Lord

... region. In many things, it is true, they will suffer only in common with the people of all the States; but they will also have their own peculiar misfortunes in addition to the common burdens. A generous Government, in the hour of its triumph, will seek to lessen rather than to aggravate their misfortunes, even though resulting from their crimes. Having received them back into the bosom of the Union, it will do so heartily and magnanimously, yielding everything which does not involve a violation of principle, and endanger the future tranquillity ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. IV. October, 1863, No. IV. - Devoted to Literature and National Policy. • Various

... that had been taken to get things ready for the summer journeys Scott naturally felt that these misfortunes were more than a little deplorable. On the other hand, all was going well with the ponies, though Christopher's dislike to sledges seemed rather to increase than to lessen. When once he was in the sledge he had always behaved himself until October 13, when he gave a really great exhibition of perversity. On this occasion a dog frightened him, and having twisted the rope from Oates' hands he bolted ...
— The Voyages of Captain Scott - Retold from 'The Voyage of the "Discovery"' and 'Scott's - Last Expedition' • Charles Turley

... stop their career for ever. Then horror and disgust at the recollection of their savage crimes took the place of pity, and not even ——-'s suggestion, that the robber-chief might have killed his wife in a transport of jealousy, could lessen our indignation at this last most barbarous murder of a ...
— Life in Mexico • Frances Calderon de la Barca

... little child's passions of anger and grief, growing fewer as he grows older, rather increase than lessen in their painfulness. There is a fuller consciousness of complete capitulation of all the childish powers to the overwhelming compulsion of anger. This is not temptation; the word is too weak for the assault of ...
— Essays • Alice Meynell

... let all Things be pleasant and chearful at Table. Lastly, if at any Time he happens to come Home a little merry with Wine, and shall fall to playing on his Fiddle, do you sing, to him, so you will gradually inure your Husband to keep at Home, and also lessen his Expences: For he will thus reason with himself; was not I mad with a Witness, who live abroad with a nasty Harlot, to the apparent Prejudice of my Estate and Reputation, when I have at Home a Wife much more entertaining and ...
— Colloquies of Erasmus, Volume I. • Erasmus

... problems—unless sensible and merciful yet thorough methods are adopted for dealing with the evils. I think that my pages will show that the methods now in use for coping with some of our great evils do not lessen, but considerably increase the evils ...
— London's Underworld • Thomas Holmes

... objects of the act of 1858 were to lessen the power of the East India Company still more than it had been fettered by previous acts; to enlarge the scope of the board of control; to increase the direct authority of the president of that board and the governor-general of India; and to simplify the ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... together. One day by a sudden whim I let a fart as loud as I could, and heard a suppressed titter, they I think never knew I could hear, for usually I tried to be as silent as possible. I never coughed when there, and used to pull open my arse-hole to lessen the noise of my trumpet, and singular as it may seem did this out of a feeling of delicacy. Soon the cess-pool was half-filled, with water, and I could only indistinctly hear. Then I grew tired of the game, and again let off my sperm up cunts instead of spilling ...
— My Secret Life, Volumes I. to III. - 1888 Edition • Anonymous

... had at first looked narrowly at the sand as he shovelled it, for specks of gold, but had seen none; and indeed the proportion of gold at the mines of Kara was so small that they would not have paid if worked by free labour; but the produce served to lessen the expenses of the prisons, and the mines afforded work to the convicts. The prisoners were not forbidden to talk, and Godfrey, who had happened to be placed next to a young fellow of the better class, learned a good many particulars ...
— Condemned as a Nihilist - A Story of Escape from Siberia • George Alfred Henty

... hardest-worked metals. Automobiles in particular owe a great deal to its help. When they first began to be common, in 1904-05, the engines were less powerful than they are now made, and aluminum was largely employed in order to lessen the weight. Before long it was in use for carburetors, bodies, gear-boxes, fenders, hoods, and many other parts of the machine. Makers of electric apparatus use aluminum instead of brass. The frames of opera glasses and of cameras are made of it. Travelers and soldiers and campers, people to whom ...
— Diggers in the Earth • Eva March Tappan

... trout fishing on the estate; and shall be at liberty, at all times, to enter on any holding, to search for and work minerals and quarries, to lay off and make roads, and to alter the marches of any farm in such a manner as he shall see fit. But should such action of his lessen the value of any farm, he will make ...
— Second Shetland Truck System Report • William Guthrie

... reason, and justice tell me I ought to do. Is a politic act the worse for being a generous one? Is no concession proper, but that which is made from your want of right to keep what you grant? Or does it lessen the grace or dignity of relaxing in the exercise of an odious claim, because you have your evidence-room full of titles, and your magazines stuffed with arms to enforce them? What signify all those titles, and all those arms? ...
— Selections from the Speeches and Writings of Edmund Burke. • Edmund Burke

... slowly round between his fingers, watching the smoke curl up from it. She observed that there was more than a light sprinkle of gray in his thick, carefully brushed hair. She was filled with curiosity as to the thoughts just then in that marvelous brain of his; nor did it lessen her curiosity to know that never would those thoughts be revealed to her. What women had he loved? What women had loved him? What follies had he committed? From how many sources he must have gathered his knowledge of human nature of—woman nature! And no doubt he was still gathering. ...
— Susan Lenox: Her Fall and Rise • David Graham Phillips

... be effected. The big chests, the massive brains, the vigorous muscles and stout frames, of the best men will carry the day, whenever it is worth their while to contest the prizes of life with the best women. And the hardship of it is, that the very improvement of the women will lessen their chances. Better mothers will bring forth better sons, and the impetus gained by the one sex will be transmitted, in the next generation, to the other. The most Darwinian of theorists will not venture to ...
— Lay Sermons, Addresses and Reviews • Thomas Henry Huxley

... a Sangley, who was caught while crossing the river by swimming, by the sentinel of the river-boats. He, confessing, when put to the torture, that he was a spy, and that he gave and carried messages, was beheaded. On the other side, it was considered that although it would lessen the anxiety to kill all the Sangleys or to attempt it, it did not appear a just punishment toward people of whose crime they were uncertain—much more so, since they had come to Filipinas to conduct their trading in good faith, and the ...
— The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898: Volume XVI, 1609 • H.E. Blair

... spent on it, it was despatched at the beginning of March, consisting of two galleons, one patache, and one galley—so ill-prepared that the almiranta galleon began to sink in the port. A few days after it had left this bay, it returned to port, because the pumps could not lessen the water, at great risk of the vessel's foundering. Thereupon the effort was made to prepare another ship to supply its lack; but so great unreadiness was found everywhere that that was impossible. In its stead sailed the other galley that had been ...
— The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898 • Emma Helen Blair

... to reach may be removed. Competition will make the accumulation of large estates difficult, property will be equalized, but no motive to effort destroyed. Science will be encouraged. Every day will add to the number of those contrivances which facilitate labor, increase production, lessen distance, and raise man from the degradation of an existence wholly occupied with providing for his physical wants. Under these elastic laws, religion, philanthropy, art, learning, the social amenities, the domestic influences, all humanizing agents, will have opportunity ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. II., November, 1858., No. XIII. • Various

... mission of any woman but to be the best and most efficient human being possible? To enlarge the sphere of duty and the range of responsibility, where there are adequate power and intelligence, is to heighten, not to lessen, ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume II • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... he should speak—everything seemed to be pure mockery now. The end of all things had come. He knew that when a jury pronounced a verdict of guilty of wilful murder, especially as there were no extenuating circumstances sufficient in any way to lessen the guilt, all hope was gone. And yet he felt as though he must say something. It seemed like allowing himself to be led as a lamb to a butcher if he uttered no ...
— The Day of Judgment • Joseph Hocking

... conditions happen to be absolutely indiscriminable, as was true, for example, in the case of the sound tests, in certain of the Weber's law tests, and in the plain electric-box tests, the period of hesitation rapidly increases during the first three or four series of tests, then the mouse seems to lessen its efforts to discriminate and more and more tends to rush into one of the boxes without hesitation or examination, and apparently with the expectation of a shock, but with the intention of getting ...
— The Dancing Mouse - A Study in Animal Behavior • Robert M. Yerkes

... Condition of Life with the proper Accomplishments, before she became reduc'd by Misfortunes, and so not a Servant, but rather an Orphan under hopeless Distresses—-because Opportunities which had made it no Wonder how she came to be so winningly qualified, wou'd have lessen'd her Merit in being so. And besides, where had then been the purpos'd Excitement of Persons in PAMELA's Condition of Life, by an Emulation of her Sweetness, Humility, Modesty, Patience, and Industry, to attain some faint Hope of arriving, ...
— Samuel Richardson's Introduction to Pamela • Samuel Richardson

... understood our motive in doing so, and was very thankful and most reliable. What we owe him to-day you know: he makes light of it, protesting that he only picked up Nell from the gulch where the escaped convicts had dropped her on their way to the hills; but he cannot lessen the debt: it is too great ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, April, 1876. • Various

... constantly from the instant she was noosed. She continued to tug and pull at the rope. But she was at such a disadvantage that she could not put her full weight into her struggles. Nevertheless the strain on Charley's arm was terrific. To lessen the tension would give the bear more leeway and so make the strain still greater. And to hold the bear with one hand, while he cast his rope and got it in with the other, Charley at ...
— The Young Wireless Operator—As a Fire Patrol - The Story of a Young Wireless Amateur Who Made Good as a Fire Patrol • Lewis E. Theiss

... of resisting it, even if it could be met without damage; and there was reason to think that by a judicious choice of model something might be done to break the force of the ice-pressure, and thus lessen its danger. Examples of this had been seen in small Norwegian vessels that had been caught in the ice near Spitzbergen and Novaya Zemlya. It often happens that they are lifted right out of the water by the pressure of the ice without sustaining ...
— The South Pole, Volumes 1 and 2 • Roald Amundsen

... that afternoon in command of a large vessel on a long voyage. She was brimming over with sparkling wit that overjoyed him. She skilfully hinted of marriage on his return, and playfully adjured that he should not allow other attractions when he was abroad to lessen his affection for her. ...
— Windjammers and Sea Tramps • Walter Runciman

... these reflections rack my madding brain!— Turn, Oh! turn that tender aspect from me! 'Tis worse than scorpion rods, or whips of steel. Abhor me; scorn me; tear me from thy fondness, And every imprecation pour upon me: For hope is fled, and I would court despair. Some suff'rings here might lessen those hereafter, I would not ...
— The Female Gamester • Gorges Edmond Howard

... that," admitted Lieutenant Benson, frankly. "It will lessen the danger of my making a fool of myself during my ...
— The Submarine Boys for the Flag - Deeding Their Lives to Uncle Sam • Victor G. Durham

... will lessen their numbers, may be as fallacious, and injudicious, as were banishments from the German States, which, without diminishing Gypsey population, had the injurious effect of alienating them still ...
— A Historical Survey of the Customs, Habits, & Present State of the Gypsies • John Hoyland

... bakufu system; attempt to have Imperial prince appointed; unimportant under Hojo; Fujiwara, then Imperial princes, appointed; Ashikaga in Northern Court; powers transferred to kwanryo; under Tokugawa; minister gets power; separated from ministerial council; Chinese classics lessen power; court of last appeal; Imperial rescript to; power ...
— A History of the Japanese People - From the Earliest Times to the End of the Meiji Era • Frank Brinkley and Dairoku Kikuchi

... neither can I say anything particular relating to it at this distance, different tempers requiring different management. In general, never attempt to govern them (as most people do) by deceit: if they find themselves cheated, even in trifles, it will so far lessen the authority of their instructor, as to make them neglect all their future admonitions. And, if possible, breed them free from prejudices; those contracted in the nursery often influence the whole life after, of which I have seen many melancholy examples. I shall say no more of this ...
— Lady Mary Wortley Montague - Her Life and Letters (1689-1762) • Lewis Melville

... remember to gain the man by the 'suaviter in modo'. If you engage his heart, you have a fair chance for imposing upon his understanding, and determining his will. Tell him, in a frank, gallant manner, that your ministerial wrangles do not lessen your personal regard for his merit; but that, on the contrary, his zeal and ability in the service of his master, increase it; and that, of all things, you desire to make a good friend of so good a servant. By these means you ...
— The PG Edition of Chesterfield's Letters to His Son • The Earl of Chesterfield

... nights in nothing but my under vestments, standing in a small room, unable to stir out of the place or to make the least movement, though I could not perceive any obstacle to prevent me. Yet I must tell you, that all this ill usage does not in the least lessen those sentiments of love, respect, and gratitude I entertain for the princess, and of which she is so deserving; but I must confess, that notwithstanding all the honor and splendor that attends marrying my sovereign's daughter, I would much rather die, than ...
— Types of Children's Literature • Edited by Walter Barnes

... had come to seem very long ago. An almost burdensome solemnity had grown about his memory of the place, so that to revisit it seemed a thing that needed preparation: it was what he could not have done hastily. He half feared to lessen, or disturb, its value for himself. And then, as he travelled leisurely towards it, and so far with quite tranquil mind, interested also in many another place by the way, he discovered a shorter road to the end of his journey, ...
— Marius the Epicurean, Volume Two • Walter Horatio Pater

... we speak of the pursuit of wealth, the pursuit of learning, the pursuit of power in office or in influence, that is, that we shall come into happiness when the objects last named are attained. No amount of failure seems to lessen this belief. It is matter of experience that wealth and learning and power are as likely to bring unhappiness as happiness, and yet this constant lesson of experience makes not the least impression upon human conduct. I suppose that the reason of this unheeding of experience is that ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... anything that may give a colour to the mistake. These bespoken thanks are little less improper than love-letters that were solicited by the lady to whom they are to be directed: so that, besides the little ground there is to give them, the manner of getting them doth extremely lessen their value. It might be wished that you would have suppressed your impatience, and have been content, for the sake of religion, to enjoy it within yourselves, without the liberty of a public exercise, ...
— Political Pamphlets • George Saintsbury

... there was considerable confusion. Sid and Ida came in for a number of rather angry glances, for the mishap seemed to be due entirely to their thoughtless conduct, and that their runabout had been the most damaged did not appear to lessen their offense. ...
— The Motor Girls • Margaret Penrose

... situation in which she found her master, will highly justify and applaud her conduct, unless the prudence which must be supposed to attend maidens at that period of life at which Mrs Deborah had arrived, should a little lessen his admiration. ...
— The History of Tom Jones, a foundling • Henry Fielding

... to continue an institution, which experience shows to be ineffectual. We have now imprisoned one generation of debtors after another, but we do not find that their numbers lessen. We have now learned that rashness and imprudence will not be deterred from taking credit; let us try whether fraud and avarice may be more ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes - Volume IV: The Adventurer; The Idler • Samuel Johnson

... splendor; but a general inquiry was made whether the oil it consumed was not in exact proportion to the light it afforded, in which case there would be no saving in the use of it. No one present could satisfy us on that point, which all agreed ought to be known, it being a very desirable thing to lessen, if possible, the expense of lighting our apartments, when every other article of family expense was so much augmented. I was pleased to see this general concern for economy, ...
— Artificial Light - Its Influence upon Civilization • M. Luckiesh

... war, and what follows in its train, I need not dwell upon. We could not have a higher object than the adoption of any proper and honorable means which would lessen the chance of armed conflicts. Men endure great physical hardships in camp and on the battle-field. In our Civil War the death-roll in the Union Army alone reached the appalling aggregate of 359,000. But the suffering and perils of the men in the field, distressing as ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Vol. 21 - The Recent Days (1910-1914) • Charles F. Horne, Editor

... deeply engaged in it. The approaching campaign will be an interesting one. It is said that the English are sending us some Hanoverians; some time ago they threatened us with, what was far worse, the arrival of some Russians. A slight menace from France would lessen the number of these reinforcements. The more I see of the English, the more thoroughly convinced I am, that it is necessary to speak to them ...
— Memoirs, Correspondence and Manuscripts of General Lafayette • Lafayette

... to strengthen the sovereign's influence in the towns, and to lessen the power of the Gilds, Philip established in Holland, and so far as he could elsewhere, what were called "vaste Colleges" or fixed committees of notables, to which were entrusted the election of the town officials and the municipal administration. These bodies were ...
— History of Holland • George Edmundson

... moved, that he said after a moment, "Let us walk a little;" and when they were walking he added, "To speak quite plainly, Fred will not take any course which would lessen the chance that you would consent to be his wife; but with that prospect, he will try his best at anything ...
— Middlemarch • George Eliot

... door, and set a watch on all around him. He took Celestin into confidence so far as to admit a momentary embarrassment, and Celestin examined him with an amazed and inquisitive look. In his eyes Cesar lessened, as men lessen in presence of disasters when accustomed only to success, and when their whole mental strength consists of knowledge which commonplace ...
— Rise and Fall of Cesar Birotteau • Honore de Balzac

... a thousand Annas I could be happy as man was never happy before! But I must not, dare not, lessen my hold ...
— The Monikins • J. Fenimore Cooper

... teaches no clearer lesson than that the right to pass "Money Bills," without interference from the House of Lords, has been claimed and exercised by the House of Commons for several generations. The public was not slow to take the alarm. To be sure, several causes conspired to lessen somewhat the popular indignation. Among these were the inevitable expenses of the Chinese War, the certainty of an increased income tax, if the bill became a law, and the very small majority which the measure finally received ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 8, No. 50, December, 1861 • Various

... of taking sleep—they could not. There is that in their minds that would keep them wakeful if they had not slept for a week. Time passing does not lessen their suspense. On the contrary, it grows keener, becoming an agony ...
— The Lone Ranche • Captain Mayne Reid

... heard upon inquiry, that any of those gentlemen, who, among us without doors, are called the Court Party, discover the least zeal in this affair. If they had thoughts to interpose, it might be conceived they would shew their displeasure against this Bill, which must very much lessen the value of the King's patronage upon promotion to vacant sees; in the disposal of deaneries, and other considerable preferments in the Church, which are in the donation of the Crown; whereby the viceroys will have fewer good preferments to bestow on their ...
— The Prose Works of Jonathan Swift, Vol. III.: Swift's Writings on Religion and the Church, Vol. I. • Jonathan Swift

... that press us so, must in time yield to this law, and all efforts to rally to our enterprises from pride, and not from reason, must follow the same fate. There are a hundred cents in a dollar but no sentiment. Lessen its purchasing value and you lessen the desire ...
— Twentieth Century Negro Literature - Or, A Cyclopedia of Thought on the Vital Topics Relating - to the American Negro • Various

... incoming people began to lessen, and finally ceased altogether. The last passenger passed through on to the platform, and the officials locked the waiting-room doors. We had missed ...
— The Recipe for Diamonds • Charles John Cutcliffe Wright Hyne

... mention has doubtless its use in the world; I do not desire it to be diminished, nor would I endeavor to lessen it in any man. But I wish it were more productive of good works than I have generally seen it. I mean real good works,—works of kindness, charity, mercy, and public spirit; not holiday-keeping, sermon reading or hearing, performing church ceremonies, or making long prayers, filled with flatteries ...
— Benjamin Franklin • John Torrey Morse, Jr.

... art like the sun, that on its way, Across the cloudless distance of the skies Gives pleasure to us all—no rivalries Lessen'ng the love we bear it—as a day Of shower-glad April or the month of May, Thou that art cheerful—see yon youth that lies Weeping for want of sunshine from thine eyes, And hope that thou canst only give him—say: ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Vol. 19, Issue 550, June 2, 1832 • Various

... right up. Dat's whut I'm telephonin' yu 'bout—to ast yu please sen' a wagon to hitch up to dis yer mule. She ain' gwine budge lessen ...
— More Toasts • Marion Dix Mosher

... the hands being magnified. It has been found that a person with a freckly face can have as fine, fair, and clear an impression as the most perfect complexion; this may be done by the subject rubbing the face until it is very red. The effect is to lessen the contrast, by giving the freckles and skin the same color and the photogenic intensity of the red and yellow being nearly the same, an impression ...
— American Handbook of the Daguerrotype • Samuel D. Humphrey

... perspiration by heat either of clothes, or of fire, contributes much to emaciate the body; as is well known to jockeys, who, when they are a stone or two too heavy for riding, find the quickest way to lessen their weight is by sweating themselves between blankets in a warm room; but this likewise is a practice by no means to be recommended, as it weakens the system by the excess of so general a stimulus, brings on a premature old age, and shortens the span of life; as may be further ...
— Zoonomia, Vol. II - Or, the Laws of Organic Life • Erasmus Darwin

... usually done broadcast by hand on all small areas, the sower going both ways (at right angles) across the area to lessen the likelihood of missing any part. Steep banks are sometimes sown with seed that is mixed in mold or earth to which water is added until the material will just run through the spout of a watering-can; the material is then poured on the surface, ...
— Manual of Gardening (Second Edition) • L. H. Bailey

... case there can be no data outside those furnished by the government-owned railways of the British colonies, and such data negative these assertions; and the advocates of national ownership are justified in asserting that such ownership would materially lessen the cost, as any expert can readily point out many ways in which the enormous costs of corporate management would be lessened. With those familiar with present methods, and not interested in their perpetuation, this ...
— The Railroad Question - A historical and practical treatise on railroads, and - remedies for their abuses • William Larrabee

... laughed Sue. "'Cause it isn't any fun teetering and tautering all by yourself. You stay down on the ground all the while, lessen you jump yourself up, and then you don't stay—you ...
— Bunny Brown and His Sister Sue at Christmas Tree Cove • Laura Lee Hope

... with albumen of meat instead of egg. The advantages of this method are that the soup is strengthened and the flavor improved, while clearing with whites of eggs in the usual way, though greatly improving the appearance, tends to lessen the flavor ...
— Choice Cookery • Catherine Owen

... that there should be some enthusiasts. I grant that it would be an unpleasant world if we were all enthusiasts, but the sight of a man like him throwing his whole life and energy into his work, and wearing himself out trying to lessen the evils he sees around him, ought to do good to us all. Look at these boys," and he apostrophized Wilson and Richards, as they appeared together at the door. "What do they think of but amusing themselves and shirking their duties ...
— Rujub, the Juggler • G. A. Henty

... out nice an' plain what th' Mex's in for, lessen he speaks up. This hombre, Rennie thinks maybe he don't run regular with Kitchell—more'n likely he came up from th' south, could be to guide th' gang back there some place. Iffen th' Mex can prove that, ...
— Rebel Spurs • Andre Norton

... said the Bostonian, glancing at the English lads. "For my own part I'll be better pleased if Mr. Moose manages to keep a whole skin. Our grand game is getting scarce enough; I don't want to lessen it. I once saw the last persecuted deer in a county, after it had been badgered and wounded by men and dogs, limp off to die alone in its native haunts. The sight ...
— Camp and Trail - A Story of the Maine Woods • Isabel Hornibrook

... itself, to irritate the temper and sap the resolve and foster a self-centring egotism, by a power that is literally irresistible. Before such experiences as this one thought rises: it is part of mankind's business to lessen, and so far as possible to extirpate, these maladies. The individual sufferer must meet as best he can the conditions thrust upon him, but to prevent such conditions from arising is the lesson for the rest of us. We are ...
— The Chief End of Man • George S. Merriam

... her own character, and he would not, by a vain attempt to restore what never would be restored, be affording his sanction to vice, or in seeking to lessen its disgrace, be anywise accessory to introducing such misery in another man's family, as he had ...
— Jane Austen, Her Life and Letters - A Family Record • William Austen-Leigh and Richard Arthur Austen-Leigh

... freshness about everything which comes after a sudden summer shower. The blue of the sky seemed clearer and more flawless than it had ever seemed before, in contrast with the depressing sultriness of the morning, and even the sun, shining down without the thinnest veil to lessen its fiery strength, seemed to look with a less ...
— In the Musgrave Ranges • Jim Bushman

... red deserts; narrow strips of green vegetation; shrunken, blue oceans; silvery lines of rivers, passed in fascinating panorama beneath his eyes. The rate of the planet's spinning seemed continually to lessen, with the changing of his own sense ...
— The Pygmy Planet • John Stewart Williamson

... Valentinian was a man of undisguised ferocity, he nevertheless, at the beginning of his reign, in order to lessen the opinion of his cruelty, took all possible pains to restrain the fierce impetuosity of his disposition. But this defect increasing gradually, from having been checked for some time, presently broke out more unrestrained to the ruin of many persons; and his severity was increased by the vehemence ...
— The Roman History of Ammianus Marcellinus • Ammianus Marcellinus

... revenue must impose. The check lately given to importations of articles subject to duties, the derangements in the operations of internal trade, and especially the reduction gradually taking place in our tariff of duties, all tend materially to lessen our receipts; indeed, it is probable that the diminution resulting from the last cause alone will not fall short of $5,000,000 in the year 1842, as the final reduction of all duties to 20 per cent then ...
— State of the Union Addresses of Martin van Buren • Martin van Buren

... bombastic works that ever saw print. But as regards this battle, none of them are as bad as even such British historians as Alison; the exact reverse being the case in many other battles, notably Lake Erie. The devices each author adopts to lessen the seeming force of his side are generally of much the same character. For instance, Latour says that 800 of Jackson's men were employed on works at the rear, on guard duty, etc., and deducts them; James, for precisely similar reasons, deducts 853 men: by such means one reduces Jackson's ...
— The Naval War of 1812 • Theodore Roosevelt

... nomination:—"I have formed no intimate friendship during my whole life, except one—I can be said to know the heart of no man, except the heart of Dorriforth. After knowing his, I never sought acquaintance with another—I did not wish to lessen the exalted estimation of human nature which he had inspired. In this moment of trembling apprehension for every thought which darts across my mind, and more for every action which I must soon be called to answer for; all worldly views ...
— A Simple Story • Mrs. Inchbald

... nineteen, and contains a unique collection of clever and sparkling sentences, displaying the highest powers of acuteness and assimilation, if not much profound and original insight or genius. This poem suggests the wish that more of our critics would write in verse. The music might lessen the malice, and set off the commonplace to advantage, so that if there were no "reason," there might be at least "rhyme." His "Lines to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady" are too elaborate and artificial for the theme. It is a tale of intrigue, murder, and suicide, set to a musical snuff-box! ...
— Poetical Works of Pope, Vol. II • Alexander Pope

... threatened him with his finger. "Poor Carlo, has it already come to this?" said he. "You are jealous of our delight in Corilla, and would lessen her fame, that you may ...
— The Daughter of an Empress • Louise Muhlbach

... clearly, how soon many of these exiles 'for conscience sake' forgot to practice those principles of religious liberty and toleration, for the preservation and enjoyment of which they had themselves abandoned home and kindred, and the church of their forefathers; and they tend to lessen the feelings of respect and admiration with which their piety, and their disinterested spirit, must necessarily inspire us. We cannot but regret to find how early, in many of the Puritan communities, that piety became tinged with fanaticism, and that free spirit degenerated ...
— The Pilgrims of New England - A Tale Of The Early American Settlers • Mrs. J. B. Webb

... your ingenuity and application in some more useful and lofty work, than that which you suffered me to glance at in your library; and moreover, as the great object of him who would perfect his mind, is first to strengthen the faculties of his body, would it not be prudent in you to lessen for a time your devotion to books; to exercise yourself in the fresh air—to relax the bow, by loosing the string; to mix more with the living, and impart to men in conversation, as well as in writing, whatever the incessant labour of many years may have hoarded? Come, if not to town, ...
— Pelham, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... with troops and guns, which my father passed in review at Castelnaudary. This spectacle, which a few days earlier would have delighted me, now failed to lessen the anxiety which I felt about the teachers in whose presence I was ...
— The Memoirs of General the Baron de Marbot, Translated by - Oliver C. Colt • Baron de Marbot

... the crystalline ray. Nothing remotely resembling it existed in the universe he knew. Then his attention was concentrated solely upon perils of the moment The Ptomenite commander was not able to stop the rapid descent. He could only lessen it slightly and Mike held Doree tight in his arms when ...
— Before Egypt • E. K. Jarvis

... last year which seemed trivial at the time, but have had big results, while other things which seemed events have turned out to be only incidents, and very small ones. Thus, a careless remark of mine resulted in a quarrel between Terry and me which did not lessen with time, but grew larger and larger, until now the relations of us two idyllic lovers are anything but pleasant. And a very serious attack of love from which I suffered last summer has passed as ...
— An Anarchist Woman • Hutchins Hapgood

... suffering from the injuries to their trade that the Dutch have inflicted, and from the ruinous expenses caused by their wars with these persistent enemies. No less do the Indians suffer from the exactions levied upon them for the public works and defense; but the home government attempts to lessen these burdens, and protect the natives from oppression. The missions of the Jesuits are reported as making rapid progress; and statistics of the work conducted by them and by the other religious orders give a view of the general missionary field. The Dominicans begin their ...
— The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898: Volume XVII, 1609-1616 • Various

... and the two seas is to be obtained. For at this point the North Island is so narrow, that Manukau harbour on the west side comes close up to Auckland, and at one point the distance across is only a mile and a half. There has been a project mooted to cut through the narrow isthmus, and thus lessen the journey to Sydney by about 300 miles, but all the harbours of New Zealand lie towards the Pacific, not towards Australia, and there is a formidable bar at the entrance to Manukau harbour, so that after all the expense would probably be too great. ...
— Six Letters From the Colonies • Robert Seaton

... syringe. Enough water is never given at any one time to penetrate through the casing into the manure below or the spawn in the manure. But rather than make a practice of watering the beds, Mr. Gardner finds it is better to maintain a moist atmosphere, and thus lessen the necessity ...
— Mushrooms: how to grow them - a practical treatise on mushroom culture for profit and pleasure • William Falconer

... when he was out in the field. He hoed and plowed. He was the leader of the gang. He never got a chance to make no money for hisself before the war. Nope, the colored people didn't have no money 'tall lessen ...
— Slave Narratives: Arkansas Narratives - Arkansas Narratives, Part 6 • Works Projects Administration

... word even for the Dock. They say that a Dock leaf wrapped round the part stung by a nettle will lessen the pain; others advise us to rub the part with Dock seed. I do not think myself that either remedy has much effect; but the leaves of the Sorrel, which is a relative of the Dock, will lessen the pain of nettle stings. Mrs. Hammond always uses Dock leaves to wrap round the pats of ...
— Wildflowers of the Farm • Arthur Owens Cooke

... mid all o's try to spend Our passen time to zome good end, An' zoo vrom day to day teaeke heed, By mind, an' han', by word or deed; To lessen evil, and increase The growth o' righteousness an' peaece, A-speaken words o' loven-kindness, Openen the eyes o' blindness; Helpen helpless striver's weakness, Cheeren hopeless grievers' meekness, Meaeken friends at every meeten, Veel the happier vor their greeten; Zoo that ...
— Poems of Rural Life in the Dorset Dialect • William Barnes

... man's desk should always be facing him and it should not be tricked out with any of the patent devices except those sanctioned by the company. Most of them lessen instead of increase efficiency. A woman in her home where calls are infrequent may hide her telephone behind a lacquered screen or cover it with pink taffeta ruffles, but in a business office it is best to make no attempts to beautify it. It is when it is unadorned that the ugly ...
— The Book of Business Etiquette • Nella Henney

... owing to the delinquency of the broker who for several years past has negotiated the city loans, and I have been, since the discovery of this fact, and still am occupied in endeavoring to avert or lessen the loss with which the city is threatened. I am, very ...
— The Financier • Theodore Dreiser

... incidentally this alternative: either a clearstory had been added to the nave before the building of the new chancel or tower was in contemplation, or, when the huge tower was built it was felt necessary to raise the nave roof so as to lessen the disproportion. But, if we adopt the latter alternative we must accept too the improbability that this expense should have been incurred when the inadequacy of the old narrow nave of 151/2 feet compared with a chancel of 33 feet must have been so ...
— Bell's Cathedrals: The Churches of Coventry - A Short History of the City and Its Medieval Remains • Frederic W. Woodhouse

... responsive gaze of radiant saints and of old familiar friends! What their feelings, and what their song, as they gaze forward, and with "far-stretching views into eternity" see no limit to their "fulness of joy;" knowing that nothing can lessen it, but that everything must increase it through eternal ages;—that the body can never more suffer pain, or be weakened by decay;—that the intellect can never more be dimmed by age, nor marred by ignorance;—that the spirit can never more be darkened by even a passing ...
— Parish Papers • Norman Macleod

... which had a depressing effect on me, I answered sadly: "Every day I feel my deficiencies more keenly, and wish more ardently to lessen the great distance between us; but now—sweet mother, forgive me for saying it!—your words ...
— A Crystal Age • W. H. Hudson

... you, sir; I know of none. She has her notions on religion, and—I think it would lessen her sorrow to hear that ...
— Homeward Bound - or, The Chase • James Fenimore Cooper

... would have been impossible for Ryley to breathe without irritating his employer, and the fact that his plebeian cousin's son was probably the most reliable underling to be got in the Five Towns did not in the slightest degree lessen Stanway's dislike of him; it ...
— Leonora • Arnold Bennett

... business, John," returned his brother, frankly; "but 'Least said, soonest mended.' Only remember this, nothing must ever lessen our common regard. What I am going to ...
— Children of the Mist • Eden Phillpotts

... scarcity; and by these means, this your island, which seemed as to this particular the happiest in the world, will suffer much by the cursed avarice of a few persons: besides this, the rising of corn makes all people lessen their families as much as they can; and what can those who are dismissed by them do but either beg or rob? And to this last a man of a great mind is much sooner drawn than to the former. Luxury likewise breaks in apace upon you to set forward your poverty and misery; there is an excessive ...
— Utopia • Thomas More

... I have written, that some little art has been made use of: but it was with a generous design (if thou'lt allow me the word on such an occasion) in order to lessen the too-quick sense she was likely to have of what she was to suffer. A contrivance I never had occasion for before, and had not thought of now, if Mrs. Sinclair had not proposed it to me: to whom I left the management of it: and I have done nothing but curse her ever since, lest the quantity ...
— Clarissa, Volume 6 (of 9) - The History Of A Young Lady • Samuel Richardson

... evidently of some days' standing, but it was enough to add energy to the efforts made in having the waggons dragged up close to a mass of rock where they could form part of the protection needed and lessen the necessary labour in shutting in ...
— Dead Man's Land - Being the Voyage to Zimbambangwe of certain and uncertain • George Manville Fenn

... lightning into every home. The unanimous veto of the county board had been in vain; Lars Hogstad's influence had proved stronger. This was what his absence meant, this was his work! It was involuntary on the part of the people that admiration of the man and his dogged persistency should lessen dissatisfaction at their own defeat; and the more they talked of the matter the more reconciled they seemed to become: for whatever has once been settled beyond all change develops in itself, little by little, reasons why it is so, which we ...
— Stories by Foreign Authors • Various

... did not lessen his vigilance. He caught up Anubis, who had bounded beside him during the entire time, and running back to Rachel, turned into the ...
— The Yoke - A Romance of the Days when the Lord Redeemed the Children - of Israel from the Bondage of Egypt • Elizabeth Miller

... lash. But she never lost her courage, and Gibbie, though he could not hearten her with words, was so ready with smile and laugh, was so cheerful—even merry, so fearless, so free from doubt and anxiety, while doing everything he could think of to lessen her toil and pain, that she hardly felt in his silence any lack; while often, to rest her body, and withdraw her mind from her sufferings, he made her stop and look back on the strange scene behind them. It was getting dark ...
— Sir Gibbie • George MacDonald

... corporations dispensed their favors. The only way to kill this monster is to put the instruments of transportation under such control as only national ownership can give. Laws and agreements between the corporations have been proven, time and again, wholly ineffective even to lessen this great and ...
— The Arena - Volume 4, No. 21, August, 1891 • Various

... seventy-three regiments of 410 men each, divided into eight companies, with two companies en second. In 1789 the number of companies per regiment was fixed at ten, without any companies en second. Now the Secretary at War, Sir Charles Yonge, proposed further reductions, which, with those of 1789, would lessen each regiment by seventy privates, and save the country the sum of L51,000. No diminution was proposed in the number of officers; and this gave Fox a handle for an attack. He said that the natural plan would be to reduce ...
— William Pitt and the Great War • John Holland Rose

... coast of the Pacific is, in fact, bordered with an alluvial plain, varying in breadth, which tends still more to lessen the breadth of the high lands in every quarter. Between the bottom of the Gulf of Papagayo to Lake Nicaragua, the distance, the alluvial strip included, is, (see Journal R. G. S. vol. vi.), only 29,880 English yards, nearly 15 geographical miles. The highest point of land that intervenes, is ...
— A General Plan for a Mail Communication by Steam, Between Great Britain and the Eastern and Western Parts of the World • James MacQueen

... graceful deeds. For, since the course Of things external acts in different ways On human apprehensions, as the hand Of Nature temper'd to a different frame Peculiar minds; so haply where the powers Of Fancy [Endnote X] neither lessen nor enlarge The images of things, but paint in all 20 Their genuine hues, the features which they wore In Nature; there Opinion will be true, And Action right. For Action treads the path In which Opinion says he follows good, Or flies from ...
— Poetical Works of Akenside - [Edited by George Gilfillan] • Mark Akenside

... little honesty as the husband, had traced them to the place of rendezvous on the very first night of their disappearance; where, whilst they lay overcome with sleep and the influence of the rosy god, she contrived to lessen her husband of the pocketbook which he had helped himself to from his master's escritoire, with the exception, simply, of the papers in question, which, not being money, possessed in her eyes but little ...
— The Black Baronet; or, The Chronicles Of Ballytrain - The Works of William Carleton, Volume One • William Carleton

... degree of indulgence, and applied his mind to the management of his affairs. This may account for his being stripped no otherwise than of his armour, having retired to his tent in order to repose himself upon his bed, and lessen the fatigues of the preceding day. See him then hastily rising, at dead of night, in the utmost horror from his own thoughts, being terrified in his sleep by the dreadful phantoms of an affrighted imagination, seizing on his sword, by way of defence against the foe ...
— The Works of William Hogarth: In a Series of Engravings - With Descriptions, and a Comment on Their Moral Tendency • John Trusler

... country which rejoiced in the extinction of Baden, and which still shudders at the name of Monaco—that he was ready to let his pretty cottage for no longer a term than one month certain; and he even allowed the elderly lady, who drove the hardest of hard bargains with him, to lessen by one guinea the house-rent paid for each week. He took his revenge by means of an ironical compliment, addressed to Mrs. Presty. "What a saving it would be to the country, ma'am, if you were Chancellor of the Exchequer!" With perfect gravity Mrs. Presty ...
— The Evil Genius • Wilkie Collins

... of course the opulent of the nation, they oppose us. You observe in Caffre-land, as elsewhere, it is 'hard for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven.' I have asked the chiefs why they will not come to church, and their reply has been, 'The great word is calculated to lessen our pleasures and diminish the number of our wives; to ...
— The Mission; or Scenes in Africa • Captain Frederick Marryat

... moment of receiving it we seem not so greatly to suffer. And unquestionably as Dickie sat there, on his handsome horse, hat in hand, looking down at the lady of the cigarette, the hurt of that lately received scratch began quite sensibly to lessen. For her eyes, their first unsparing scrutiny accomplished, rested on his with a strangely ...
— The History of Sir Richard Calmady - A Romance • Lucas Malet

... this rebellious questioning was justified, but this did not lessen his astonishment at the fact that the human soul could claim a right to decide, by its own intuitions, what was just and what was unjust, and could accuse the Eternal Lord of Life of not showing it enough of the problem for it to be able to acquiesce in the design, as it desired ...
— Beside Still Waters • Arthur Christopher Benson

... that examined in all its particular parts, one may also be struck with the disproportion that exists between them; the nave is not in harmony with the dimensions of the tower, the chancel and transept still less so: but although this want of uniformity may lessen the symmetry of the monument, the impression it at first produces is no less extraordinary. And besides, have not those different styles a particular interest for those who study the history of architecture? In the Cathedral are, as it were, brought together ...
— Historical Sketch of the Cathedral of Strasburg • Anonymous

... lessen their numbers, but in doing it He will pick out the best. The men are encamped on the hillsides overlooking a valley. Across the valley to the north lay the encamped armies of three nations. They were a vast host. They were spread out as thick as the ...
— Quiet Talks on Service • S. D. Gordon



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