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Artlessness   Listen
noun
Artlessness  n.  The quality of being artless, or void of art or guile; simplicity; sincerity.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Artlessness" Quotes from Famous Books



... man in London society was more generally liked than Anthony Trollope. There was something pathetic in his attitude as above indicated; and a fresh and boyish quality always invested him. His artlessness was boyish, and so were his acuteness and his transparent but somewhat belated good-sense. He was one of those rare persons who not only have no reserves, but who can afford to dispense with them. After ...
— Confessions and Criticisms • Julian Hawthorne

... one another and smiled, as age and experience smile at the artlessness of youth. It was an interchange of mutual understanding, a flash of closer intimacy, and as such lifted the ...
— Treasure and Trouble Therewith - A Tale of California • Geraldine Bonner

... of the ladies in the hairdressers' windows?" she asked with assumed artlessness. "Can't you say a kind word for them, good gentleman, and heaven ...
— The Guest of Quesnay • Booth Tarkington

... same symphony was performed in Leipzig. "There is a resistless and audacious energy in the thoughts, a stormy bold progression, and yet withal a maidenly artlessness in the expression of the main motives that lead me to hope for much from the composer;" so wrote Laube, with whom Wagner had shortly before become acquainted. Here again we recognize the stormy, restless activity of the time, which ...
— Life of Wagner - Biographies of Musicians • Louis Nohl

... the artist in words, who wrestles for the exact nuance, and will not let a sentence go till he has obtained its blessing. Consequently he is never finicking in his phraseology, and seldom final. The subtle artfulness of Stevenson is beyond him; but he has a rarer quality—that subtler artlessness which has belonged in some measure to all the greater writers of sentiment. It is a quality independent of the mechanics of writing; whether the author echoes the syntax of Addison or the diction of Goldsmith is an indifferent question. All that we know is that, through his use of words or in spite ...
— Washington Irving • Henry W. Boynton

... sanguinary and dejected look; often an aquiline nose, or, in other words, a hooked one like a bird of prey, always large; the jaws are large, ears long, hair woolly, abundant and rich (dark); beard rare, canine teeth, very large; the lips are thin. A large number of swindlers and forgers have an artlessness, and something clerical in their manner, which gives confidence to their victims. Some have a haggard look, very small eyes, crooked nose, and the face of an old woman." (Dr ...
— A Plea for the Criminal • James Leslie Allan Kayll

... the hope that any but Delvile could have written it? in secret she could not cherish two, and that Delvile was cherished most fondly, the artlessness of her character unfitted her ...
— Cecilia vol. 2 - Memoirs of an Heiress • Frances (Fanny) Burney (Madame d'Arblay)

... the ritual gestures of the infatuated picture-lover, he praised the artlessness of the clear, wide eyes, the delightful freshness of the complexion, and the charming candour ...
— General Bramble • Andre Maurois

... abundantly makes up in good cheer. Not at all retiring, though never bold, it chooses some conspicuous perch on a bush or tree to deliver its outburst of song, and sings away with serene unconsciousness. Its artlessness is charming. Thoreau writes in his "Summer" that the country girls in Massachusetts hear the bird say: "Maids, maids, maids, hang on your teakettle, teakettle-ettle-ettle." The call-note, a metallic chip, is equally characteristic of the bird's irrepressible ...
— Bird Neighbors • Neltje Blanchan

... river, we had frequently come to anchor opposite this little town, and never omitted to supply ourselves with fresh bread from this bakery, and enjoy a friendly chat with the three charming sisters. They were very affable, and there was an artlessness about them, combined with self-respect, which was very fascinating. In his daily visits to supply the captain's larder, and probably in part on account of like nationality, Charley Reck lost his heart. Louise, the youngest daughter, ...
— The New England Magazine Volume 1, No. 6, June, 1886, Bay State Monthly Volume 4, No. 6, June, 1886 • Various

... observe also that absolute artlessness, to men in any kind of moral health, is impossible; they have always, at least, the art by which they live—agriculture or seamanship; and in these industries, skilfully practised, you will find the law of their moral training; while, whatever the adversity of circumstances, ...
— Selections From the Works of John Ruskin • John Ruskin

... and she was vain. Much of her apparent artlessness was assumed. She was pleased to be admired, and felt gratified to see the effect of her glance, as she favoured one with a languishing look, and another with a haughty stare, or a wicked, sparkling, mischief loving gleam,—transient ...
— Yorkshire Tales. Third Series - Amusing sketches of Yorkshire Life in the Yorkshire Dialect • John Hartley

... face one loved to gaze upon, For calm serenity of thought was there. The eyes were soft and gentle in their glance, And looked with trusting artlessness in yours. Placid her mien, like that of lofty souls That after storm ...
— Eventide - A Series of Tales and Poems • Effie Afton

... civilized child of her age, and believed that she had a horror of melodrama, looking upon it as a degraded form of art, or artlessness, which pleased people whom she occasionally saw but would never know. But this evening some part of her almost desired it, not as a spectacle, but as something in which she could take an active part. In this town she felt adventurous. It was difficult to look at this crowd without thinking ...
— The Way of Ambition • Robert Hichens

... blind fanatic, however. I admit that artlessness is a charming idea. I admit that it is sometimes charming as a reality. I applaud it (all the more heartily because it is rare) in children. But then, children, like the young of all animals whatsoever, have a natural ...
— Yet Again • Max Beerbohm

... thoughtless animal life, provoking indulgent smiles at a great distance. His usual discourses treated of trotting horses, wine-parties in expensive restaurants, and the merits of persons of easy virtue, with a disarming artlessness of outlook. He pounced upon Razumov about midday, somewhat less uproariously than his habit was, and led ...
— Under Western Eyes • Joseph Conrad

... was allied in Lord John with a curious artlessness of disposition which made it impossible for him to feign a cordiality he did not feel. Once, at a concert at Buckingham Palace, he was seen to get up suddenly, turn his back on the Duchess of Sutherland, by whom he had been sitting, walk to the remotest part of the room, ...
— Collections and Recollections • George William Erskine Russell

... ideas of gentlemanship from Jim Dyckman. She knew that he had lineage and heritage and equipage and all that sort of thing, and he must be great because he knew great people. His careless simplicity, artlessness, shyness, all the things that distressed her at first, were now accepted as the standards of ...
— We Can't Have Everything • Rupert Hughes

... discovering miracles; and women, even though they have disliked each other, begin to cry when they meet, deploring and remembering the time when they last quarrelled. So, in a word, Briggs told all her history, and Becky gave a narrative of her own life, with her usual artlessness ...
— Vanity Fair • William Makepeace Thackeray

... dared to say a word to her of what her entertainer was, or what her part should be. Premeditation might throw her out of balance, conscious art might exhibit her a scheming courtesan; just in her artlessness lay all her magic. No, no; he trusted her. She was still adorably English—witness her on the ship! He could see how she would do, how the sight would ravish him, lover as he was; for the rest, he must trust to his early calculations. ...
— Little Novels of Italy • Maurice Henry Hewlett

... the character in every fibre of its being, and she embodied it with the affluent vitality of splendid health and buoyant temperament—presenting a creature radiant with goodness and happiness, exquisite in natural refinement, piquant with archness, soft, innocent, and tender in confiding artlessness, and, while gleeful and triumphant in beautiful youth, gently touched with an intuitive pitying sense of the thorny aspects of this troubled world. The giving of the flowers completely bewitched her auditors. ...
— Shadows of the Stage • William Winter

... independent manners, insolent yet winning, he was a type of the brilliant Bohemian of the Boulevard de Gand; so much so, that Madame de la Baudraye, basing her information on points furnished her by Nathan, one day drew a picture of him, writing a description in which artificiality and artlessness were combined. In this were many interesting touches: La Palferine's contempt shown at all times for the bourgeois class and forms of government; the request for the return of his toothbrush, then in the ...
— Repertory Of The Comedie Humaine, Complete, A — Z • Anatole Cerfberr and Jules Franois Christophe

... or Palice, about fifty verses of which are printed in Larousse's 'Grand Dictionnaire Universel du XIXme Siecle', x. p. 179. It is there stated to have originated in some dozen stanzas suggested to la Monnoye ('v. supra', p. 193) by the extreme artlessness of a military quatrain dating from the battle of Pavia, and the death upon that occasion of the famous French captain, Jacques de Chabannes, ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Oliver Goldsmith • Oliver Goldsmith

... the reason that his desperate cast for fortune included no well-wrought-out plan of escape. But since he was at once both wiser and less cunning than the practised bank robber, he threw his pursuers off the scent by an expedient in which artlessness and daring quite beyond the gifts of the journeyman criminal played ...
— The Price • Francis Lynde

... blushing deeply, told him the whole story in a way which quite captivated the listener by its artlessness. ...
— Follow My leader - The Boys of Templeton • Talbot Baines Reed

... mind: so that a man of business often has all the air, the distraction and restlessness and hurry of feeling of a criminal. A knowledge of the world takes away the freedom and simplicity of thought as effectually as the contagion of its example. The artlessness and candour of our early years are open to all impressions alike, because the mind is not clogged and preoccupied with other objects. Our pleasures and our pains come single, make room for one another, and the spring of the mind is fresh and unbroken, its ...
— Table-Talk - Essays on Men and Manners • William Hazlitt

... girls of their generation were so little regarded that they are rarely mentioned in song or story. When they are, we are afforded glimpses of a curious attitude of aloofness or of harshness. Nowhere do we meet the artlessness of childhood. In a footnote here, in a marginal gloss there, such references as appear point to torture and cruelty, to distress and tears. In the early legends of the Christians, in the pagan ballads of the olden time, what there is of child life ...
— Library Work with Children • Alice I. Hazeltine

... believe that folk-lorists would discover in the character of the older myths, intrinsic evidence of immense antiquity.—Chinese influence is discernible in both works; yet certain parts have a particular quality not to be found, I imagine, in anything Chinese,—a primeval artlessness, a weirdness, and a strangeness [112] having nothing in common with other mythical literature. For example, we have, in the story of Izanagi, the world-maker, visiting the shades to recall his dead spouse, a myth that seems to be purely Japanese. The archaic naivete of the recital must impress ...
— Japan: An Attempt at Interpretation • Lafcadio Hearn

... like to live with you, sir." Maltravers started, and half smiled, and coloured. But looking on her eyes, which were fixed earnestly on his, there was so much artlessness in their soft, unconscious gaze, that he saw she was wholly ignorant of the interpretation that might be put upon ...
— Ernest Maltravers, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... particularly valued, while listening idly to her prattle. The curve of her cheek and sweep of her eyelashes delighted his artistic love of beauty, so that though he had plumbed the shallow depths of her mind at the start, he was still entertained by such superficialities as artlessness ...
— Banked Fires • E. W. (Ethel Winifred) Savi

... mask with innocence their smile), The (artful) artlessness of all your ways, Your kiss-provoking mouth, its lure, its guile - All these have had my fond and frequent praise. And something more than praise to you I gave - Something which made you ...
— Poems of Purpose • Ella Wheeler Wilcox

... with perfect artlessness, ignorant of a world other than her own, innocent of a moral code other than that which ...
— Max • Katherine Cecil Thurston

... plainness &c. adj.; plain speaking; expression; showing &c. v.; exposition, demonstration; exhibition, production; display, show; showing off; premonstration|. exhibit[Thing shown]. indication &c. (calling attention to) 457. publicity &c. 531; disclosure &c. 529; openness &c. (honesty) 543, (artlessness) 703; panchement. evidence &c. 467. V. make manifest, render manifest &c. adj.; bring forth, bring forward, bring to the front, bring into view; give notice; express; represent, set forth, exhibit; show, show up ; expose; produce; ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... amazement to this singular profession of rascality. The apparent artlessness of this political swindler prevented ...
— Bureaucracy • Honore de Balzac



Words linked to "Artlessness" :   innocency, naiveness, naivete, artfulness



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