Free Translator Free Translator
Translators Dictionaries Courses Other
Home
English Dictionary      examples: 'day', 'get rid of', 'New York Bay'




Abstruse   Listen
adjective
Abstruse  adj.  
1.
Concealed or hidden out of the way. (Obs.) "The eternal eye whose sight discerns Abstrusest thoughts."
2.
Remote from apprehension; difficult to be comprehended or understood; recondite; as, abstruse learning. "Profound and abstruse topics."






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








Advanced search
     Find words:
Starting with
Ending with
Containing
Matching a pattern  

Synonyms
Antonyms
Quotes
Words linked to  

only single words



Share |





"Abstruse" Quotes from Famous Books



... work on Chinese Metaphysics." It had need to be copious therefor, for it is a very large subject. Mr. Pickwick himself must have been very familiar with the Encyclopedia, for he at once objected that he was not aware that so abstruse a topic was dealt with in its pages. He had perhaps consulted the book, say, at Garraway's Coffee House, for, alas! the good man was not able to have a library of his own, living, as he did, in lodgings or at the "George ...
— Pickwickian Studies • Percy Fitzgerald

... book of antiquated philosophy, and the next day one that was ultra-modern, so that his head would be whirling with the conflict and contradiction of ideas. It was the same with the economists. On the one shelf at the library he found Karl Marx, Ricardo, Adam Smith, and Mill, and the abstruse formulas of the one gave no clew that the ideas of another were obsolete. He was bewildered, and yet he wanted to know. He had become interested, in a day, in economics, industry, and politics. Passing through the City Hall Park, he had noticed a group of men, in the centre of which ...
— Martin Eden • Jack London

... the same high authority say about Shakespeare? He had "a deep technical knowledge of the law," and an easy familiarity with "some of the most abstruse proceedings in English jurisprudence." And again: "Whenever he indulges this propensity he uniformly lays down good law." Of Henry IV., Part 2, he says: "If Lord Eldon could be supposed to have written the play, I do not see how he could be chargeable ...
— Is Shakespeare Dead? - from my Autobiography • Mark Twain

... clothing, something that has to be used by every one of us every day in the year. How often have I been discouraged as I have gone through the South, and into the homes of the people of my race, and have found women who could converse intelligently upon abstruse subjects, and yet could not tell how to improve the condition of the poorly cooked and still more poorly served bread and meat which they and their families were eating three times a day. It is discouraging to find a girl who can tell you the geographical location of any country ...
— The Negro Problem • Booker T. Washington, et al.

... day. For many hours he had hung his pendulums over the cliff, noted deflections, taken triangulations, and covered the surface of the smooth stone with X's, Y's, Z's, sines and cosines and abstruse formulae—all scrawled with charcoal, his ...
— Darkness and Dawn • George Allan England

... rate I came away from the meeting with a stronger personal interest in politics than I had ever felt in my life. Instead of seeming like an abstruse or vague issue it seemed to me pretty concrete and pretty vital. It concerned me and my immediate neighbors. Here was a man who was going to Congress not as a figurehead of his party but to make laws for Rafferty and for me. He was to be my congressman ...
— One Way Out - A Middle-class New-Englander Emigrates to America • William Carleton

... in childhood. They are very seldom aided by any instruction really adapted to the improvement of them; and we ought not to expect that such children can at all clearly distinguish a semblance from a reality in ideas so extremely abstruse as those relating to the logical connection between the premises and the conclusion in a ...
— Gentle Measures in the Management and Training of the Young • Jacob Abbott

... follows the invisible. Where the note of the audible reaches the unheard, even there he gathers the tremulous message. That mystery which lies behind the expressed, is the object of his questioning also; and he, in his scientific way, attempts to render its abstruse discoveries ...
— Sir Jagadis Chunder Bose - His Life and Speeches • Sir Jagadis Chunder Bose

... history." Here, however, the resemblance between counterpoint and mathematics ends, for the simplicity of genuine contrapuntal style is a simplicity of emotion as well as of principle; and if the style has a popular reputation of being severe and abstruse, this is largely because the popular conception of emotion is conventional and dependent upon an excessive ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 7, Slice 2 - "Constantine Pavlovich" to "Convention" • Various

... in six months had completed the work of seven grades. At the age of seven he had gone so far with his mathematical studies that his father, Professor Boris Sidis, could be of little assistance to him. He worked out the most abstruse and difficult problems with the greatest ease and invented new systems of computation which attracted much attention. When eight years old he entered the Brookline High School and in six weeks had completed the mathematical course and began ...
— Elementary Theosophy • L. W. Rogers

... his researches. He wanted a lawyer, he said, who was accustomed to weighing evidence. That was good sense, for evidence must always be judged by the same laws, and I suppose in the long-run the most abstruse business comes down to a fairly simple deduction from certain data. Anyhow, that was the way he used to talk, and I listened to him, for I liked the man, and had an enormous respect for his brains. At Eton he sluiced down all the mathematics they could give him, and he was an astonishing ...
— The Moon Endureth—Tales and Fancies • John Buchan

... pay his long-deferred visit to the mysterious Frenchman, from whose voice his Shadow had fled on that fateful evening with such sudden precipitancy. The Frenchman, he judged, must have been long on the island, and could probably give him some satisfactory solution of this abstruse problem. ...
— The Great Taboo • Grant Allen

... understanding be said to have five properties? How again, can the five senses be spoken of as properties (of the five elementary entities)? Expound to me, O grandsire, all this that seems to be very abstruse." ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 - Books 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 • Unknown

... convert so notable that this conversion might bring others in its train. Moreover the maiden herself interested him. But it was not so easy to go about it. Pocahontas's knowledge of English did not extend beyond the simplest expressions; and he found it necessary to translate the long and abstruse theological dogmas into familiar terms. He had almost despaired of making her comprehend until he recalled how his Master had taught in parables. So he retold the incidents of His life in stories which held the ...
— The Princess Pocahontas • Virginia Watson

... dealers in the city, after which he took occasion to stand a good deal at his shop door and accost such of his neighbours as chanced to pass. The conversation at such times invariably began with the interesting topic of the weather, on which abstruse subject Boone and his friends displayed a surprising profundity of knowledge, by stating not only what the weather was at the time being, and what it had been in time past, but what it was likely to be in time to come. ...
— Fighting the Flames • R.M. Ballantyne

... These investigations, while they have thrown much light on the matter, have by no means exhausted it, and it will be readily understood that the complete elucidation of a subject of such complexity, touching on so many of the most abstruse and difficult problems of chemistry and physiology, and in which the experiments are liable to be affected by disturbing causes, dependent on peculiarities of constitution of different animals, cannot be otherwise than ...
— Elements of Agricultural Chemistry • Thomas Anderson

... to be brought forward in her presence, if it had been. Sometimes, as a rare treat, when the lessons were well learned, a book was fetched from the library, not a story-book—that would have been a waste of time, according to this lady's rule—but a learned treatise on some abstruse science, which generally set Bessie and Bertram yawning, so that the reading was not much of a treat to them. Talking was not allowed from any one until the children's lessons were learned, and not ...
— Hayslope Grange - A Tale of the Civil War • Emma Leslie

... is no opening for a compliance even with popular language. Here, where there is no such stream of apparent phenomena running counter (as in astronomy) to the real phenomena, neither is there any popular language opposed to the scientific. The whole are abstruse speculations, even as regards their objects, not dreamed of as possibilities, either in their true aspects or their false aspects, till modern times. The Scriptures, therefore, nowhere allude to such sciences, either under the shape of histories, applied to processes current and in movement, ...
— Narrative And Miscellaneous Papers • Thomas De Quincey

... parthenogenesis." Apparently the propinquity of foreign pollen serves to stimulate a female cell into division, although the pollen cell retains fixed molecular identity, and does not fuse with the female cell. I need not bring up abstruse questions of chromatin ...
— Northern Nut Growers Association, Report of the Proceedings at the Seventh Annual Meeting • Various

... Bishop of Meaux that Margaret of Angouleme was first drawn into sympathy with the reformatory movement. Unsatisfied with herself and with the influences surrounding her, she sought in Briconnet a spiritual adviser and guide. The prelate, in the abstruse and almost unintelligible language of exaggerated mysticism, endeavored to fulfil the trust. His prolix correspondence still exists in manuscript in the National Library of Paris, together with the replies of his royal penitent. Its incomprehensibility ...
— The Rise of the Hugenots, Vol. 1 (of 2) • Henry Martyn Baird

... the overloading of children with verbal statements of abstruse doctrines, whether of religion or of science. Much less would I turn them into parrots, to repeat phrases to which they attach no meaning at all. But when it is demanded, on the other hand, that they shall learn nothing but what they understand, I ...
— In the School-Room - Chapters in the Philosophy of Education • John S. Hart

... the lines of Caleb's face, and his absorbed and dreamy manner, which would have sat well on some alchemist or abstruse student, were at first sight an odd contrast to his occupation, and the trivialities about him. But, trivial things, invented and pursued for bread, become very serious matters of fact; and, apart from this consideration, I am not at all prepared to say, myself, ...
— The Cricket on the Hearth • Charles Dickens

... to account for the instability of the atom. Perhaps the most thinkable of these to persons not specially trained in dealing with abstruse subjects is that of Professor Thompson. It has the additional merit, also, of coming from one of the best-known investigators in this particular field. According to this hypothesis the atom may be considered as a mass ...
— A History of Science, Volume 5(of 5) - Aspects Of Recent Science • Henry Smith Williams

... motion, and receives, As tribute, such a sumless journey brought Of incorporeal speed, her warmth and light; Speed, to describe whose swiftness number fails. So spake our sire, and by his countenance seemed Entering on studious thoughts abstruse; which Eve Perceiving, where she sat retired in sight, With lowliness majestick from her seat, And grace that won who saw to wish her stay, Rose, and went forth among her fruits and flowers, To visit how they prospered, bud and bloom, Her ...
— Paradise Lost • John Milton

... imagination and fancy have such a lively play, that the homeliest principles assume forms of beauty. In intellectual pursuits she is destined to excel by her fine sensibilities, her nice observations, and exquisite tastes, while man is appointed to investigate the laws of abstruse sciences, and perform in literature and art the bolder flights of genius. She may surpass him in representing life and manners, and in the composition of letters, memoirs, and moral tales, in descriptive ...
— The True Woman • Justin D. Fulton

... of concentrating all the powers of the mind on abstruse study!" Abishai muttered to himself as he descended the hill. "Hadassah is going mad; her judgment is ...
— Hebrew Heroes - A Tale Founded on Jewish History • AKA A.L.O.E. A.L.O.E., Charlotte Maria Tucker

... despair, caprice, hope, delicacy and startling vigor which they imperiously exact; as thorough master of the complicated instrument to which he devoted his best powers; as an erudite and experienced possessor of that abstruse and difficult science, music; as a composer of true, deep, and highly original genius,—this dedication ...
— Life of Chopin • Franz Liszt

... have received the most ingenious and elaborate elucidations, and have given rise to a process of reasoning, the results of which can scarcely yet be anticipated, but must bear in a very important degree upon some of the most abstruse points of what may be ...
— Thomas Henry Huxley; A Sketch Of His Life And Work • P. Chalmers Mitchell

... against him; but we soon discovered that under this unpromising exterior existed the kindest urbanity of temper; the warmest sympathies; the most enthusiastic benevolence. His mind was ingenious and acute. His reading had been various, but more abstruse than profound; his memory was stored, on all subjects, with facts, theories, and quotations, and crowded with crude materials for thinking. These, in a moment of excitement, would be, as it were, melted down, and poured forth in the lava of a heated ...
— The Crayon Papers • Washington Irving

... down by censure. For Huxley, Lyell, Hooker, Spencer, Wallace and Asa Gray he had a great and profound love—what they said affected him deeply, and their steadfast kindness at times touched him to tears. For the great, seething, outside world that had not thought along abstruse scientific lines, and could not, he ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great - Volume 12 - Little Journeys to the Homes of Great Scientists • Elbert Hubbard

... Egyptian hieroglyphics, then translated by him into Latin, and thence done into English blank verse by the same hand. It is a work of rare occurrence even in the English character, and is said to be deeply abstruse. Some extracts from it have been buried in, or have helped to bury, critical reviews. A copy of the Anglo-Gebir is, however, extant in the British Museum, and is said to have so puzzled the few philologists who have examined it, ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine - April 1843 • Various

... Darwin and others; so that the world may judge. All that can here be usefully attempted, is, by way of reminder, to reproduce some main topics on which no real answer has been given. These are selected, partly because they are less abstruse and difficult to follow than some which might be dealt with, partly because they are calculated to awaken our interest, and partly because the conclusion in favour of a continual Providence; working through organized ...
— Creation and Its Records • B.H. Baden-Powell

... by the Hindoo population with the greatest gratitude. The studies in the Mohammedan schools and colleges have hitherto been confined to Arabic, the Koran, and abstruse studies relating to their religion, having always shown a marked aversion to English literature. Since the publication of the Resolution they have at once determined to change their system in order to participate in the benefits held out to native ...
— The Letters of Queen Victoria, Vol 2 (of 3), 1844-1853 • Queen Victoria

... abolished by Act of Parliament. Upon this all the authorities I have consulted are perfectly agreed. What has grown up during the process of so many generations, cannot be now put on one side. This, gentlemen, is rather an abstruse part of the question, being one which recommends itself for consideration to the purely legal intellect. It is a matter, too, of high state policy which rises above the knowledge of the common herd. We may take it for granted, and pass on ...
— Wood Magic - A Fable • Richard Jefferies

... from his own sensitive nature in abstruse meditations, and delighted most in those subjects requiring the full exercise of his intellectual powers, which never seemed fatigued—and in his early life never did sun shine on ...
— The Life of Samuel Taylor Coleridge - 1838 • James Gillman

... amazed me to learn how much they are required to do. This is one fair sign of intellectuality. The ease too with which young Japan, educated in Occidental schools and introduced to Occidental systems of thought, acquires abstruse speculations, searching analyses, and generalized abstractions proves conclusively Japanese possession of the higher mental faculties, in spite of the long survival in their civilization of primitive puerility and superstitions and the lack ...
— Evolution Of The Japanese, Social And Psychic • Sidney L. Gulick

... the schoolroom he was quick to show gifts of mind almost phenomenal in one so young. Latin and Italian, mathematics and abstruse sciences came as easily to this scion of the Dudleys as reading and arithmetic to less-dowered boys. And with this precocity of mind he developed physical graces and skill no less remarkable until, by the time he was well in ...
— Love Romances of the Aristocracy • Thornton Hall

... odd to see you, smug and spruce, There at Chicago, burrowed in a Chair, Not made to measure and a deal too loose, And see you lift your little arm and swear Democracy shall be no more! If it's a fair And civil question, and not too abstruse, Were you elected as a "robber baron," Or as a Communist whose teeth ...
— Black Beetles in Amber • Ambrose Bierce

... against her principles. "Then you die," she says; and our principles are to gain more by death. She says, we are alive in them; but worse if we abandon them for the sake of living.—I am a little confused; she is very abstruse.—Because, that is the corruptible life, she says. I have found it quite impossible to argue with her; she has always a complete answer; wonderful. In case of Invasion, we are to lift our voices to the Lord; and the Lord's will shall be manifested. If we are robbed, we ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... persons in France—among them Blaise Pascal, a man of marvellous genius and depth of thought, and Racine, the chief French dramatic poet. Their chief director, the Abbot of St. Cyran, was however, a pupil of Jansen, a Dutch ecclesiastic, whose views on abstruse questions of grace were condemned by the Jesuits; and as the Port-Royalists would not disown the doctrines attributed to him, they were discouraged and persecuted throughout Louis's reign, more because he was jealous of what would not bend to his will than for ...
— History of France • Charlotte M. Yonge

... Otis's power lay in his adequate preparation for the life of an advocate. Bred to the law at a time long before the pathway had been smoothed by the multiplication of elementary works and other modern improvements, he yet fully mastered that abstruse science, which perhaps does more to quicken and invigorate the understanding than many of the other kinds of learning put together. As a sufficient foundation for his later legal studies he had pursued at Harvard, the foremost college ...
— James Otis The Pre-Revolutionist • John Clark Ridpath

... so—so cryptic—such a very abstruse problem. Sometimes I think I understand you better than you do yourself, and sometimes I am utterly lost; now, if you were younger I could read you easily for myself, and, if you were older, you would read yourself ...
— The Broad Highway • Jeffery Farnol

... united, the Protestants were shamefully divided upon the most trivial points of discipline, or upon abstruse questions in philosophy above the reach of mortal minds. It was as true then, as in the days of our Saviour, that "the children of this world are wiser in their generation than the children of light." Henry IV., of France, who had not then embraced the ...
— The Empire of Austria; Its Rise and Present Power • John S. C. Abbott

... it all,—partly because he could not hear everything distinctly, and partly because of certain limitations which nature had placed in the way of Jerry's understanding anything very difficult or abstruse. ...
— The Marrow of Tradition • Charles W. Chesnutt

... the science, and her fellow-students all agreed in declaring her by far the brightest member of the class. That there was no question of her ability was clearly shown at her examination. Judge Knight, although overflowing with gallantry, gave the lady no quarter. The most abstruse and erudite questions were propounded to the applicant, but not once did the judge catch the fair student tripping. Miss Barkaloo was about 22 years of age, of a fine figure, intelligent face and large, expressive eyes. The St. ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume III (of III) • Various

... Susie in, and he rose with a smile to greet her. She had been in Paris for some time, and they had seen much of one another. He basked in the gentle sympathy with which she interested herself in all the abstruse, quaint matters on which he spent his time; and, divining her love for Arthur, he admired the courage with which she effaced herself. They had got into the habit of eating many of their meals together in a quiet house opposite ...
— The Magician • Somerset Maugham

... Aurunci and Sicani, which have long become obsolete, and have been buried ages ago with the mother of Evander. And if you should pretend to have deliberately murdered your mother, they will promise you that there are many cases recorded in abstruse works which will secure your acquittal, if you are rich ...
— The Roman History of Ammianus Marcellinus • Ammianus Marcellinus

... much I do not understand! much I cannot grasp!" he exclaimed, a note of impatience in his voice, and the perplexing work was tossed somewhat irreverently upon the table. "It so radically reverses preconceived ideas and opinions; it seems so abstruse, vague and intangible, it irritates me. And yet, in the light of what Mrs. Minturn and her daughter have told me, I believe I have caught a glimpse, here and there, of the meaning of some of its statements. It is like trying to march through a tangled wilderness," he continued, ...
— Katherine's Sheaves • Mrs. Georgie Sheldon

... "Dichtung und Wahrheit," which stands as one of the most charming autobiographies of all times. Goethe's versatility as a writer and man was shown not only by his free use of all literary forms, but also by his essays on such abstruse subjects as astrology, optics, the theory of color, comparative anatomy and botany. Shortly before his death, the poet finished the greatest of his works, the tragedy "Faust." He died in the eighty-third year of his life, uttering ...
— A History of the Nineteenth Century, Year by Year - Volume Two (of Three) • Edwin Emerson

... tractable and obedient to his superiors; that he would keep his body pure; govern his tongue, and observe a passive obedience in receiving the doctrines and traditions of the Order; and the firmest secrecy in maintaining inviolable its hidden and abstruse mysteries. Then he was sprinkled with water (whence our baptism); certain words, now unknown, were whispered in his ear; and he was divested of his shoes, and made to go three times around the cavern. Hence our three circuits; hence we were neither barefoot nor shod: and the words ...
— Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry • Albert Pike

... these abstruse studies; take off that symbolic coat, that tinsel crown; wash, comb your hair, and ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. I, No. 1, Nov. 1857 • Various

... widely and deeply, Dante, too, was largely swayed. With the eye of his imagination he seized objects so distinctly that he could reproduce them in sharp outline. Thence we see before us the most abstruse and unusual, drawn, as it were, after nature." In recognition of the same characteristic, Coleridge says, "In picturesqueness Dante is beyond all other poets, ancient or modern, and more in the stern style of Pindar than ...
— Essays AEsthetical • George Calvert

... without missing a letter, and so legibly, that her aunts could read it without spectacles. She excelled in making little elegant good-for-nothing lady-like nicknacks of all kinds; was versed in the most abstruse dancing of the day; played a number of airs on the harp and guitar; and knew all the tender ballads of the ...
— Humorous Ghost Stories • Dorothy Scarborough

... blind side and knows that its children are but dust; even (though this is less probable) the heresies without the wives might have been ignored; but the combination was excessive. The cardinal had to go. Since then he has been living in this chteau, writing vast and abstruse works on theology and enjoying the loveliness of the scenery, the beauty of his house and garden, the amenities of such witty and scholarly society as he could collect around him, and the companionship of a lady whom he inaccurately ...
— Mystery at Geneva - An Improbable Tale of Singular Happenings • Rose Macaulay

... of so much praise and censure, was a native of Side in Pamphylia; and his genius, like that of Bacon, embraced as his own all the business and knowledge of the age. Tribonian composed, both in prose and verse, on a strange diversity of curious and abstruse subjects; a double panegyric of Justinian and the life of the philosopher Theodotus; the nature of happiness and the duties of government; Homer's catalogue and the four-and-twenty sorts of metre; the astronomical canon of Ptolemy; the changes of the months; the houses of the planets; and the ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 4 • Various

... the fortunes of Jansenism. He outlived his Cartesianism and became its most influential spokesman. His Provinciales (1656) rendered abstruse questions of theology more or less intelligible, and invited the general public to pronounce an opinion on them. His lucid exposition interested every one in the abstruse problem, Is man's freedom such as not to render grace superfluous? But Pascal perceived that casuistry ...
— The Idea of Progress - An Inquiry Into Its Origin And Growth • J. B. Bury

... compact philosophical treatise of modern time. It is worthy of note, that, writing in the desultory, fragmentary, and accidental way he did, he not only wrote with unexampled clearness on matters the most abstruse, but never, that we are aware, in all the variety of his communications, extending over so many years, contradicted himself. No philosopher is more intelligible, none ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. II, No. 8, June 1858 • Various

... made extensive researches in the British Museum into the history of Paracelsus, the great leader in sixteenth century medical science; but in the poem the facts are subordinated to a minute analysis of the spiritual history of Paracelsus. The poem was too abstruse in subject and style to bring Browning popularity, but his genius was recognized by important critics, and, though he was but twenty-three, he was admitted into the foremost literary circles of London. One of his most distinguished new friends was Mr. Macready, the great actor. ...
— Selections from the Poems and Plays of Robert Browning • Robert Browning

... of the work referred to is a curiosity in literature. It exemplifies forcibly the abstruse and mystical researches in which the literati of the seventeenth ...
— The Natural History of Wiltshire • John Aubrey

... always conspiring with a wild imagination for something to occupy my tune, led me at last to invade the field of invention. With appropriate contrariety, an unfamiliar and hitherto almost detested line of investigation now attracted me. Abstruse mathematical problems which had defied solution for centuries began to appear easy. To defy the State and its puny representatives had become mere child's play. So I forthwith decided to overcome no less a force ...
— A Mind That Found Itself - An Autobiography • Clifford Whittingham Beers

... the hates, affections, social needs, Of all to one another,—taught what sign Of visceral lightness, colored to a shade, May charm the genial gods, and what fair spots Commend the lung and liver. Burning so The limbs encased in fat, and the long chine, I led my mortals on to an art abstruse, And cleared their eyes to the image in the fire, Erst filmed in dark. Enough said now of this: For the other helps of man hid underground, The iron and the brass, silver and gold, Can any dare affirm he found them out Before me? None, I know, unless he choose To lie ...
— Story of Orestes - A Condensation of the Trilogy • Richard G. Moulton

... only by definition but by etymology a reasoned knowledge or theory of a God or gods, it becomes desirable, before we proceed further, to define the sense in which I understand and shall employ the word God. That sense is neither novel nor abstruse; it is simply the sense which I believe the generality of mankind attach to the term. By a God I understand a superhuman and supernatural being, of a spiritual and personal nature, who controls the world ...
— The Belief in Immortality and the Worship of the Dead, Volume I (of 3) • Sir James George Frazer

... this as in other things, that we find this President of the Royal Society bringing in a man to teach him the multiplication table. He has no great head for figures, and we find him listening to long lectures upon abstruse financial questions, not unlike the bimetallism discussions of our own day, which he finds so clear, while he is listening, that nothing could be clearer, but half an hour afterwards he does not know anything whatever ...
— Among Famous Books • John Kelman

... abandonment to sleepless fatigue that is even more mental than bodily. Once the subject of that book had been of an enthralling interest to him. To-night it bores him. He has found himself unequal to the solving of the abstruse arguments it contains. One thought seems to have dulled all others. He is leaving to-morrow! He is leaving her to-morrow! Oh! surely it is more than that curt pronoun can contain. He is leaving, in a few short ...
— April's Lady - A Novel • Margaret Wolfe Hungerford

... irresistible desire to lie back and doze off, if only for a few seconds. The exciting events of the day had tired him out, nor was the book he was reading one calculated to keep his wits stirring. It was a technical work of abstruse character. ...
— The Girl Aviators' Motor Butterfly • Margaret Burnham

... the candidates for our freshman classes write. Here, for an instance, is a paragraph intended to prove that the writer had a command of simple English, correct in sentence structure, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation. The subject is "The Value of Organized Athletics in Schools"—not an abstruse ...
— College Teaching - Studies in Methods of Teaching in the College • Paul Klapper

... was filled with wonder, and asked the babe of many abstruse things, receiving answers beyond his understanding. So, at last convinced, he put the ...
— The Sun King • Gaston Derreaux

... thirty volumes of science, art, and literature. He tried every style, and succeeded in all excepting the dramatic. He enlarged historical criticism by writing one of the finest national histories his country possesses. He wrote a poem, "The Primitive World," an abstruse, gloomy composition which is very much admired in Holland. He dealt with every possible question, confounding luminous truths with the strangest paradoxes. He even raised the national literature, which had fallen into decadence, and left a phalanx of chosen ...
— Holland, v. 1 (of 2) • Edmondo de Amicis

... inquiry than was open to a theological student even of a dissenting church. After a year at Hackney he withdrew to his father's home, where he found nothing more definite to do than to "solve some knotty point, or dip in some abstruse author, or look at the sky, or wander by the pebbled sea-side."[2] This was probably the period of his most extensive reading. He absorbed the English novelists and essayists; he saturated himself with the sentiment ...
— Hazlitt on English Literature - An Introduction to the Appreciation of Literature • Jacob Zeitlin

... and absorbed spectators at the Aztec Street inquiry was old Stephen Garrit. Stephen Garrit held a unique but quite inconspicuous position in the legal world at that time. He was a friend of judges, a specialist at various abstruse legal rulings, a man of remarkable memory, and yet—an amateur. He had never taken sick, never eaten the requisite dinners, never passed an examination in his life; but the law of evidence was meat and drink to him. He passed his life in the Temple, where he had chambers. Some of the most eminent ...
— The Best British Short Stories of 1922 • Various

... masculine power of mind, she learned to comprehend and to reverence the mighty masters whom Vanbrugh loved. He led her to those heights and depths which are rarely opened to a woman's ken. And she, following, applied herself to the most abstruse of Art-studies. Still, as he had said, there were bounds that she could not pass; but as far as in her lay, she sought to lift herself above her sex's weakness and want of perseverance; and by labour from which most women would have shrunk, to make herself ...
— Olive - A Novel • Dinah Maria Craik, (AKA Dinah Maria Mulock)

... particularly abstruse and consummately occult. The ancient philosophies were of two kinds,—exoteric, those that the philosophers themselves could partly understand, and esoteric, those that nobody could understand. It is the latter that have most profoundly affected modern thought and found greatest acceptance ...
— The Devil's Dictionary • Ambrose Bierce

... I will not dispute after the manner of the Academics by declamation; nor yet by numbers, as Pythagoras was wont to do, and as Picus de la Mirandula did of late at Rome. But I will dispute by signs only without speaking, for the matters are so abstruse, hard, and arduous, that words proceeding from the mouth of man will never be sufficient for unfolding of them to my liking. May it, therefore, please your magnificence to be there; it shall be at the great hall of Navarre at seven o'clock in the morning. When he had spoken these ...
— Gargantua and Pantagruel, Complete. • Francois Rabelais

... striking qualities which caught the public eye, he was a man of profound knowledge of our political history, of a sure literary taste, and of great capacity as an orator. He studied and worked out for himself very abstruse questions, on which he formed his own opinions, usually with great sagacity. How far he was affected in his position by the desire for public favor I will not undertake to say. I think the constitution of his mind was such that matters were apt to strike him in ...
— Autobiography of Seventy Years, Vol. 1-2 • George Hoar

... works of the ancients, which would otherwise have never, perhaps, been known to us, it is really surprising, that their language should be so little known in Europe. It is certainly very difficult and abstruse, (to learners particularly,) but this difficulty is rendered insurmountable by the European professors knowing it only as a dead language, and teaching it without due attention to the pronunciation of the before mentioned synonymous letters, ...
— An Account of Timbuctoo and Housa Territories in the Interior of Africa • Abd Salam Shabeeny

... Pandit Svamin Rama Misra Sastrin has rendered me frequent assistance in the earlier portion of my task. And to Mr. A. Venis, the learned Principal of the Benares Sanskrit College, I am indebted for most instructive notes on some passages of a peculiarly technical and abstruse character. Nor can I conclude without expressing my sense of obligation to Colonel G. A. Jacob, whose invaluable 'Concordance to the Principal Upanishads' lightens to an incalculable degree the task of any scholar who is engaged in work bearing ...
— The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Ramanuja - Sacred Books of the East, Volume 48 • Trans. George Thibaut

... and the palace which is called Huytal; but why it is called Huytal, I am sure I don't know." His researches in the English language had not enabled him to recognize the adjective and substantive out of which the abstruse ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... out his chin. "I can't be abstruse tonight. I know what I was made for, and I know what you were made for. That—anyway for tonight—is ...
— The Knave of Diamonds • Ethel May Dell

... Jukes on the value of his publication. Scientific without being abstruse, and picturesque without being extravagant, he has made his volumes a striking and graceful addition to our knowledge of countries, highly interesting in themselves, and, assuming hourly importance in the eyes of the people ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 62, Number 385. November, 1847. • Various

... "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," and feasting—like a starving, ship-wrecked mariner, on the food that was to sustain him—on truths which ages to come will appreciate, understand, and accept. Many of the theories which at first appear abstruse and obscure, at length become clear and lucid. The candle of intellect requires occasional snuffing to throw the clear light of ...
— Miscellaneous Writings, 1883-1896 • Mary Baker Eddy

... diversity of these, if we may so express them, "camp stools" of imagination, is worthy of remark, both as to their application and amplitude. For instance, after one line, and that if perused with attention, comparatively less abstruse than its fellows, the gifted poet satisfies himself with the insertion of three sonorous, but really simple syllables, they are invariably ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, Complete • Various

... also frequently exciting to ride a good horse in Africa? Then comes "Nationality in Drinks," a mere technical oddity without a gleam of philosophy; and after that those two entirely exquisite "Garden Fancies," the first of which is devoted to the abstruse thesis that a woman may be charming, and the second to the equally abstruse thesis that a book may be a bore. Then comes "The Soliloquy of the Spanish Cloister," from which the most ingenious "Browning student" cannot extract anything except that people ...
— Robert Browning • G. K. Chesterton

... you Aristotle's stone seats, and the shady walks which he was wont to frequent. It would appear that Alexander received from him not only his doctrines of Morals, and of Politics, but also something of those more abstruse and profound theories which these philosophers, by the very names they gave them, professed to reserve for oral communication to the initiated, and did not allow many to become acquainted with. For when he was in Asia, and heard Aristotle had published some treatises ...
— The Boys' and Girls' Plutarch - Being Parts of The "Lives" of Plutarch • Plutarch

... very reason, they say, the Pythagoreans bade that their precepts should not be committed to paper, but rather preserved in the living memories of those who were worthy to receive them; and when some of their out-of-the-way and abstruse geometrical processes had been divulged to an unworthy person, they said the gods threatened to punish this wickedness and profanity by a signal and wide-spreading calamity. With these several instances, concurring to show a similarity in the lives of ...
— Plutarch's Lives • A.H. Clough

... "These are abstruse matters," said Euphronius, "and I lament that your stay in Berytus will not be long enough to instruct me ...
— The Twilight of the Gods, and Other Tales • Richard Garnett

... familiarity. It is the duty of the composer so to express himself, to make his meaning so clear, that we can receive it with a minimum of mental friction if we can only get to know the music. All really good music corresponds to such a standard; that is, if it is needlessly involved, abstruse, diffuse, or turgid, it is in so far not music of the highest artistic worth. In this connection we must always remember that music does not "stay put," like a picture on the wall. We cannot walk through it, as is the case with a cathedral; turn back, as in a book; touch it, ...
— Music: An Art and a Language • Walter Raymond Spalding

... which—since all arts must be allowed which aid so holy a cause—have added very materially to the ardour with which these common people pursue the cult of the Gods. But for myself I could not free my mind to the necessary clearness for following these abstruse studies. During that voyage home from Yucatan I had communed with them with growing insight; but now my mind was not my own. Nais had a lien upon it, and refused to be ousted; and, in truth, her sweet trespass ...
— The Lost Continent • C. J. Cutcliffe Hyne

... some, through misunderstanding of the words they have received, and repeat by rote; by others, from intention to deceive by obscurity. And this is incident to none but those, that converse in questions of matters incomprehensible, as the Schoole-men; or in questions of abstruse Philosophy. The common sort of men seldome speak Insignificantly, and are therefore, by those other Egregious persons counted Idiots. But to be assured their words are without any thing correspondent to them in the mind, there would need some ...
— Leviathan • Thomas Hobbes

... and say that these general subdivisions are too closely inter-related to be labeled decisively—"this or that." There is justice in this criticism, but our answer is that it is better to be short on the long than long on the short. In such an abstruse art as music it is easy for one to point to this as substance and to that as manner. Some will hold and it is undeniable—in fact quite obvious—that manner has a great deal to do with the beauty of substance, and that to make a too arbitrary division, ...
— Essays Before a Sonata • Charles Ives

... that the Doctor was deeply interested in what we would call speculative philosophy. I say by degrees, for the experience I am now writing down embraces the winters of five or six years. Most of the books that composed his library were abstruse treatises on metaphysics, philosophy, and religion. I believe that in his collection could have been found the Bible of every religious faith. Sometimes he would read aloud a passage in the Bhagavadgita, of ...
— Who Goes There? • Blackwood Ketcham Benson

... which the doctor had for Amelia, Nature is forced to use a kind of logic which is no more understood by a bad man than Sir Isaac Newton's doctrine of colours is by one born blind. And yet in reality it contains nothing more abstruse than this, that an injury is the object of anger, danger of fear, and praise of vanity; for in the same simple manner it may be asserted that goodness is ...
— Amelia (Complete) • Henry Fielding

... me think that there is some animate principle behind such clocks is that they are so like a good many people one meets. There are persons who are packed with the most curiously inaccurate information on the most abstruse subjects, and they insist on imparting it to you. I have no ground to complain if I ask Jones what is the capital of Illinois and he says Chicago. The initiative was mine, and taken at my own peril, ...
— The Patient Observer - And His Friends • Simeon Strunsky

... kind of prologue to the bloody comedy of the Fronde, sharpened the malice and even fired the passions of the Parisians. This confusion was not displeasing to them. Indifferent to the causes of the quarrels which were abstruse for them, they were not so with regard to individuals, and already began to regard the party chiefs with affection or hatred, not on account of the interest which they supposed them to take in the welfare of their class, but simply because as ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... aghast at the intelligence. The grave young citizen, who had silently taken his part in life close by them in their daily lives—not mixing much with them, it was true, but looked up to, perhaps, all the more—the student of abstruse books on theology, fit to converse with the most learned ministers that ever came about those parts—was he the same with the man now pouring out wild words to Lois the witch, as if he and she were the only two present! A solution of ...
— Curious, if True - Strange Tales • Elizabeth Gaskell

... eloquent too, had even gone the length of quoting poetry; but he disconcerted her by his baffling twists and strange allusions (she always scented ridicule in the unknown), and the poets he quoted were esoteric and abstruse. Mr. Popple's rhetoric was drawn from more familiar sources, and abounded in favourite phrases and in moving reminiscences of the Fifth Reader. He was moreover as literary as he was artistic; possessing an unequalled ...
— The Custom of the Country • Edith Wharton

... herself for a few hours daily; when our lessons were over we always remained in the room with her, learning grammar, arithmetic, or some such plague of childhood. Any one who has plunged into the mazes of the higher branches of mathematics or other abstruse science, would probably feel no slight degree of irritation on being interrupted at a critical moment when the solution was almost within his grasp, by some childish question about tense or gender, or how much seven times seven made. My mother ...
— Personal Recollections, from Early Life to Old Age, of Mary Somerville • Mary Somerville

... of indignation, Mrs. Hanway-Harley burst in upon Senator Hanway. That ambitious gentleman was employed in abstruse calculations as to tariff schedules, and how far they might be expected to bear upon his chances in the coming National Convention. Senator Hanway was somewhat impressed by Mrs. Hanway-Harley's visit; his study had never been that lady's favorite lounge. Moreover, her face proclaimed her errand ...
— The President - A novel • Alfred Henry Lewis

... that no abstruse complicated psychological analysis was necessary here or in most cases. A man is "jarred" from light-hearted health to a grim discouraged state. This discouragement brings with it sleeplessness and loss of appetite, and there gradually ...
— The Foundations of Personality • Abraham Myerson

... vehicle; her well-stored brain was more than a match for the most learned men at Court, and she would leave an archbishop discomfited in a theological argument, to cross swords with Sully himself on some abstruse problem of statesmanship. When Sully had been brought to his knees, she would rush away, with mischief in her eyes, to take the lead in some merry escapade or practical joke, her silvery laughter echoing ...
— Love affairs of the Courts of Europe • Thornton Hall

... 426; hidden &c 528; latent &c 526. indefinite, garbled &c (indistinct) 447; perplexed &c. (confused) 59; undetermined, vague, loose, ambiguous; mysterious; mystic, mystical; acroamatic[obs3], acroamatical[obs3]; metempirical; transcendental; occult, recondite, abstruse, crabbed. inconceivable, inconceptible[obs3]; searchless[obs3]; above comprehension, beyond comprehension, past comprehension; beyond one's depth; unconceived. inexpressible, undefinable, incommunicable. ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... difficult as you might be led to imagine from the first hasty inspection of the characters. These characters, as anyone might readily guess, form a cipher—that is to say, they convey a meaning; but then from what is known of Kidd, I could not suppose him capable of constructing any of the more abstruse cryptographs. I made up my mind, at once, that this was of a simple species—such, however, as would appear, to the crude intellect of the sailor, absolutely insoluble without ...
— Stories by Modern American Authors • Julian Hawthorne

... and that cunning is intelligence and wickedness is wisdom. Everyone confirms his heresy. Volumes are filled with confirmations of the two heresies prevalent in Christendom. Assemble ten heresies, however abstruse, ask an ingenious man to confirm them, and he will confirm them all. If you regard them then solely from the confirmations of them, will you not be seeing falsities as truth? Since all that is false lights up in the ...
— Angelic Wisdom about Divine Providence • Emanuel Swedenborg

... Motley's "Dutch Republic," and of witnessing in her flushed cheeks and sparkling black eyes proof of an excitement all too great for one in her frail health. She had the unusual gift of relating in an easy, simple way what she read; and many a book far too abstruse and dull for my boyish taste became an absorbing story from her lips. One of her chief characteristics was the love of flowers. I can scarcely recall her when a flower of some kind, usually a rose, was not within her reach; and only periods of great feebleness kept her from their daily ...
— Taken Alive • E. P. Roe

... sauntering slowly down the road as I caught up with them. As usual, the little man was busy with some abstruse mental problem. ...
— The Man in Lower Ten • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... complex formula that may be misapplied." However, many readers undoubtedly read only the lead paragraph, sagely nodded their heads when they reached the word "fictitious," which confirmed their half-formed conviction that anything as abstruse as the Coriolis component could have no bearing upon a practical problem, and turned the page to the ...
— Kinematics of Mechanisms from the Time of Watt • Eugene S. Ferguson

... all-embracing mind was worthy to open the grand procession of modern poets. He had chosen his subject in a region remote from popular thought—too awful for it, too abstruse. He had accepted frankly the dogmatic limits of the Church, and thrown himself with even enthusiastic faith into her reasonings, at once so bold and so undoubting—her spirit of certainty, and her deep contemplations on ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 07 • Various

... Europe and the other on Asia, was influenced by her voluptuous climate in the choice of her marriage institutions; she received them from the East, where her philosophers, her legislators and her poets went to study the abstruse antiquities of Egypt and Chaldea. The absolute seclusion of women which was necessitated under the burning sun of Asia prevailed under the laws of Greece and Ionia. The women remained in confinement within the marbles of the gyneceum. The country ...
— Analytical Studies • Honore de Balzac

... promised enormous profits. In the setting forth of the method of extraction, Mr. Endicott was much aided by his wife, who overhearing him in earnest consultation with Mr. Tibbs bounded in and demanded to know what it was all about. Mr. Endicott demurred, saying it was an abstruse matter which should not burden so poetical a mind as hers. But Mr. Tibbs set it forth to her briefly. Having in her youth made much of the sciences of chemistry and physics, to the great amaze and ...
— The Strange Adventures of Mr. Middleton • Wardon Allan Curtis

... to adopt the contrary plan, seems somewhat like that of any one, who having to convince some untutored Indian of the truth of the Copernican system, instead of beginning with plain and simple propositions, and leading him on to what is more abstruse and remote, should state to him at the outset some astonishing problems, to which the understanding can only yield its slow assent, when constrained by the decisive force of demonstration. The novice, instead of lending himself to ...
— A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians, in the Middle and Higher Classes in this Country, Contrasted with Real Christianity. • William Wilberforce

... This, that should have taught them the forced, quaint, unnatural Tract they were in (and induce them to follow a more natural One), was the very Thing that kept them attach'd to it. The ostentatious Affectation of abstruse Learning, peculiar to that Time, the Love that Men naturally have to every Thing that looks like Mystery, fixed them down to this Habit of Obscurity. Thus became the Poetry of DONNE (tho' the wittiest Man of that Age) nothing but a continued ...
— Eighteenth Century Essays on Shakespeare • D. Nichol Smith

... Mexico for many years, came to the mill, and he agreed with Humphrey that California was very rich in gold. He, too, went to work, and, being an excellent prospector, he was of great service in teaching the newcomers the principles of prospecting and mining for gold—principles not abstruse, yet not likely to suggest themselves at first thought to men entirely ignorant of the business. Baptiste had been employed by Captain Sutter to saw lumber with a whipsaw, and had been at work for two years at a place, since called Weber, about ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Vol. 17 • Charles Francis Horne

... nearly covered his three score years, and it was no little tribute to his mental vigor that he should have determined at that age to master so abstruse a science as astronomy. But by degrees he gave himself up to its study with unusual zeal. His favorite method of studying this science was to lie out on the ground at night, gazing up at the heavens till the early hours of the morning. He then tried to restore his tired mind ...
— The Journal of Negro History, Volume 3, 1918 • Various

... Outwardly, indeed, he still had to keep up his offensive and defensive warfare. Beyond the circle of his immediate adherents, only the more enlightened of his contemporaries, such as Ruge, Hettner, and Theodor Vischer, perceived what he was aiming at, and his own public discussions were so abstruse and repellent that it is no wonder they were misunderstood. Grillparzer declared that he was groping in esthetic fog. Julian Schmidt recognized his power and the poetic charm of many of his passages, but thought him in danger of crossing the line which separates sense ...
— The German Classics of The Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Vol. IX - Friedrich Hebbel and Otto Ludwig • Various

... visibly at this suggestion. It would be distinctly more amusing to write for their own magazine than to cudgel their brains to produce a sheet full of ideas on the abstruse subjects suggested by Miss Drake. They edged a little nearer the fire, straightened their backs, ...
— Etheldreda the Ready - A School Story • Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey

... Greece, there being no caste of priests, philosophy embraced those studious minds addicted to a species of inquiry which rejected the poetical form, as well as the poetical spirit. It may be observed, that the more limited the reading public, the more abstruse are generally prose compositions; as readers increase, literature goes back to the fashion of oral communication; for if the reciter addressed the multitude in the earlier age, so the writer addresses a multitude in the later; literature, therefore, commences with ...
— Athens: Its Rise and Fall, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... esotericism, the speculations of western scholars will go for little. Why it should be kept esoteric, one can only guess; I think if it were known, the cycles and patterns of human history would cease to be so abstruse and hidden from us: we should know too much for our present moral or spiritual status. As usual, our own savants are avid to dwarf all dates, and bring everything within the scope of a few thousand years; as for the native authorities, they simply try confusions ...
— The Crest-Wave of Evolution • Kenneth Morris

... pretences on which men thus combine, meet, and act in concert, are manifest proofs of a social proclivity so strong as to create reasons for its indulgence where such reasons do not already exist. Even in science and in the most abstruse forms of erudition, men of learning seek mutual countenance and encouragement, and readily suspend their solitary research and study for the opportunity of intercommunication on the subjects and objects of ...
— A Manual of Moral Philosophy • Andrew Preston Peabody

... extending the little knowledge I had already acquired of the spoken language. This is by no means difficult to learn except in the nice intonations or inflexions of voice, but the written character is, perhaps of all others, the most abstruse and most perplexing both to the eye and to the memory. The length of time that is usually required by the Chinese, together with the intense study and stretch of the memory which they find necessary in order to obtain a very small proportion of the characters that form the language, are ...
— Travels in China, Containing Descriptions, Observations, and Comparisons, Made and Collected in the Course of a Short Residence at the Imperial Palace of Yuen-Min-Yuen, and on a Subsequent Journey thr • John Barrow

... creatures that stimulate them to effort. They read the Scriptures, not as honest inquirers after truth, but with a view of finding something that will give support to some preconceived opinion, doctrine, creed or ceremony. That will give support to some abstruse doctrine, form or ceremony, which has no direct reference, whatever, to their eternal interests, nor to their duty and obligations to their Creator, nor yet to their fellow creatures. Their motives and intentions are dishonest, their professions insincere ...
— A Review of Uncle Tom's Cabin - or, An Essay on Slavery • A. Woodward

... aspect in which Mr. Barlow perpetually insists on my sustaining the character of Tommy, which is more unendurable yet, on account of its extreme aggressiveness. For the purposes of a review or newspaper, he will get up an abstruse subject with definite pains, will Barlow, utterly regardless of the price of midnight oil, and indeed of everything else, save cramming ...
— The Uncommercial Traveller • Charles Dickens

... the games, which Mr. Spayth has adopted, is both clear and concise; and we are glad to see that our author has adhered to the old system of draught-notation, which is infinitely superior to any of the new plans. The condensation and clear presentation of Paterson's somewhat abstruse essay on "The Move and its Changes" is every way admirable, and many of the problems are remarkable for beauty ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 30, April, 1860 • Various



Words linked to "Abstruse" :   recondite, esoteric, deep, abstruseness, abstrusity



Copyright © 2018 Free-Translator.com