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Frivolous   Listen
adjective
Frivolous  adj.  
1.
Of little weight or importance; not worth notice; slight; as, a frivolous argument.
2.
Given to trifling; marked with unbecoming levity; silly; interested especially in trifling matters. "His personal tastes were low and frivolous."
Synonyms: Trifling; trivial; slight; petty; worthless.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Frivolous" Quotes from Famous Books



... bent and ambition. If Noah abstained from marriage for the reason which they assign, why did not all the other patriarchs, for the same reason, abstain from marriage and fatherhood? These comments of the rabbins are accordingly frivolous and nonsensical. Why do they not rather urge the real cause, that it was a special gift that Noah, a vigorous man, abstained from marriage for five hundred years? Throughout the course of time no instance of ...
— Commentary on Genesis, Vol. II - Luther on Sin and the Flood • Martin Luther

... situation. And even as he worked, and worked wisely and well, over the hated details of his principality, he was secretly maturing a plan by which to turn the situation. It was a scheme as pleasing to the man as it was dishonourable in the prince; in which his frivolous nature found and took vengeance for the gravity and burthen of the afternoon. He chuckled as he thought of it: and Greisengesang heard him with wonder, and attributed his lively spirits to the skirmish of ...
— Prince Otto • Robert Louis Stevenson

... to adore you alone upon my bended knees in some far hidden retreat, away from the frivolous world that passed ...
— Books and Habits from the Lectures of Lafcadio Hearn • Lafcadio Hearn

... of Aspern has converted him, and he thinks now that the generalissimo must remain at the head of the army. If so sagacious and eminent a man as Count Stadion allows success to mould his opinion, am I not right in not believing that the frivolous fellows whom you call 'the nations' have no ...
— Andreas Hofer • Lousia Muhlbach

... Jaques, but should have considered Mercutio a man of no feeling, and the clown a "very poor fool" indeed. In this frame of mind, the conversation appeared to me to have assumed such an essentially frivolous turn, that I soon ceased to take any share in it, and, turning over the leaves of a book of prints as an excuse for my silence, endeavoured to abstract my thoughts altogether from the scene around me, and employ them on some subject less dissonant to my present tone of ...
— Frank Fairlegh - Scenes From The Life Of A Private Pupil • Frank E. Smedley

... in the undignified position imposed on us by circumstances, we exchanged various frivolous remarks, not because we felt particularly gay, but because we had to do something to keep ourselves interested and to keep our courage up. Bulle resented this, and raised his head to look at me reproachfully over ...
— A Journal From Our Legation in Belgium • Hugh Gibson

... a file of the guard to fetch you to the orderly-room, by-and-by," said Robert, "for 'preferring frivolous complaints.'" And he departed to the farmyard to look at ...
— A Budget of Christmas Tales by Charles Dickens and Others • Various

... mind. But time crept on and a woman's penetrating comprehension came to her, and the dreams of youth shifted off into the realities of maturity, and she saw that many who came to pray were careless, frivolous people, and that the vergers did their work without more reverence than did the stablemen who cared for her father's horses. And once when twilight was veiling the choir, and all the worshipers had departed, she saw a curate strike a match on the cloister-wall, to light his pipe, and then with ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Vol. 2 of 14 - Little Journeys To the Homes of Famous Women • Elbert Hubbard

... the case with pious men, had a wayward child, the princess Dahut, who on one occasion while her father was sleeping gave a secret banquet to her lover, in which the pair, excited with wine, committed folly after folly, until at last it occurred to the frivolous girl to open the sluice-gate. Stealing noiselessly into her sleeping father's chamber she detached from his girdle the key he guarded so jealously and opened the gate. The water immediately rushed in and submerged ...
— Legends & Romances of Brittany • Lewis Spence

... manner thereof. Then he further determineth it, by adjoining a peculiar quality thereof, unprofitableness, or impertinency; [Greek] (which are not pertinent), or conducible to any good purpose: whence may be collected that it is a frivolous and idle sort ...
— Sermons on Evil-Speaking • Isaac Barrow

... sure that it was just my own frivolous streak that called out the frivolous in Polk, Jane dear," I answered with trepidation, hoping and praying that the inquisition would not go much further, and trying to remember just what I had written her ...
— The Tinder-Box • Maria Thompson Daviess

... in every object; it made everything but itself irrelevant and tasteless. It remained, in a word, a conscious watchful presence, active on its own side, for ever to be reckoned with, in face of which the effort at detachment was scarcely less futile than frivolous. Kate had come to him; it was only once—and this not from any failure of their need, but from such impossibilities, for bravery alike and for subtlety, as there was at the last no blinking; yet she had come, that once, to stay, as people called ...
— The Wings of the Dove, Volume II • Henry James

... saw a loo-table, and get the modes three months too late! And you are laughing at me, but see I am a poor frivolous being, not sufficient to myself like your daughters! They say Aurelia was as sprightly as a spring butterfly all the time she was shut up at Bowstead with no company save the children ...
— Love and Life • Charlotte M. Yonge

... pick strange ladies up bodily and bear them out of a pandemonium of waltzing cab-horses. I'd never noticed before that cab-horses are so frivolous and hysterical." ...
— The Spenders - A Tale of the Third Generation • Harry Leon Wilson

... the more incumbent on him to remain at his post. Normanby will probably do much better, for though he has nothing like the natural abilities of his predecessor, he has the knack of succeeding in whatever he undertakes; he has application, courage, and sense, and all this in spite of a frivolous exterior. In Ireland, however obnoxious to the Orangemen, his government has been successful, and I know of no error that he has committed, except that of too often releasing prisoners and commuting punishments ...
— The Greville Memoirs (Second Part) - A Journal of the Reign of Queen Victoria from 1837 to 1852 - (Volume 1 of 3) • Charles C. F. Greville

... nineteenth century cannot wear ignoble pinchbeck buttons. These are little innocent toys, which make me considered a millionaire. I have created the sect of the 'Cannophiles' in the world of fashion, and every one thinks me utterly frivolous. This amuses me!" Certainly Balzac was not wrong when he told his correspondent that there was much of the child ...
— Honore de Balzac, His Life and Writings • Mary F. Sandars

... said, so unnatural a movement of the human mind had infused fresh life into the vestiges of the Court of Louis XIV, and replaced the customary coldness and stiffness by a sort of quarrelsome vivacity. It had also introduced certain serious forms into the frivolous manners of the regency, and lent them an appearance of depth. The pure but colourless life of Louis XVI counted for nothing, and influenced nobody. Never had there been such serious chatter, so many flimsy maxims, such an affectation of wisdom, so much inconsistency between words and ...
— Mauprat • George Sand

... entrusted for the last year with the breaking of a colt, and the care of a cast of young hawks which his father had received from Lundy Isle, he had been profiting much, by the means of those coarse and frivolous amusements, in perseverance, thoughtfulness, and the habit of keeping his temper; and though he had never had a single "object lesson," or been taught to "use his intellectual powers," he knew the names and ways of every ...
— Westward Ho! • Charles Kingsley

... Burke met him without a trace in her voice, face, or manner of the resentful indignation she had shown on the previous night. She talked, as she had talked on many a morning at the breakfast-table, with an uninterrupted flow of chatter, inconsequential, airy, frivolous. She met his eyes openly, frankly, without a glimmer to show she noticed the lines which furrowed his face. Yet they were so marked that when Brennan drove out for him later, he glanced at his superior officer ...
— The Rider of Waroona • Firth Scott

... whites revealed in the light of the street door. And this Lily Cardew lived in state, bowed to by flunkeys in livery, dressed and undressed—his Scotch sense of decorum resented this—by serving women. This Lily Cardew would wear frivolous ball-gowns, such things as he saw in the shop windows, considered money only as a thing of exchange, and had traveled all over Europe a ...
— A Poor Wise Man • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... last night set a halo about Rose in the man's mind. He had known for years that he had not loved miladi as a man could love, but he also questioned whether such a light, frivolous nature could have appreciated the strong, earnest affection. Her great effort to keep herself young had led to a meretricious childishness. She had a vain, narrow soul, and this had dwarfed it still more. Many a night he had watched over her, pained ...
— A Little Girl in Old Quebec • Amanda Millie Douglas

... transport of frivolous egotism was suddenly checked, as she saw her sister, with her long dark tresses hanging dishevelled around her, kneeling in front of an image of the Madonna. Giving way to a feeling of reproach, she also knelt down and mingled her prayers with those of Gertrudis, while the alarm-bell continued to ...
— The Tiger Hunter • Mayne Reid

... Charterhouse; and my Hebrew lectures with the mild-spoken Dr. Pusey, afterwards so notorious; and I know not whatever else is memorable, unless one condescended to what goes without saying about Hall and Chapel, and Examinations: however, some frivolous larks in the Waterford days, wherewith I need not say the present scribe had nothing to do, may amuse. Here are three I remember; 1. An edict had gone out from the authorities against hunting in pink,—and next morning the Dean's and the Canons' ...
— My Life as an Author • Martin Farquhar Tupper

... established his reputation as one of the foremost writers of Denmark. There were even those who in their enthusiasm compared him with the revered Oehlenschlaeger. A satirical poem, "The Masquerade Ball of Denmark," inspired by the frivolous indifference with which many people had reacted to the English bombardment of Copenhagen in 1807, showed his power of burning ...
— Hymns and Hymnwriters of Denmark • Jens Christian Aaberg

... hence he does not much care whether it is logical or even within the bounds of probability. The play-goers, I think, care even less. They go to hear the songs, see the dances, laugh at the dialogues, and indulge in frivolous frivolities; what do they want with a plot, much less a moral? Chinese vaudeville takes the form of clever tumbling tricks which I think are much preferable to the sensuous, curious, and self-revealing dances one sees in ...
— America Through the Spectacles of an Oriental Diplomat • Wu Tingfang

... it was an understood thing that in the interval between supper and "set recreation" visits might be paid to other dormitories, and that so long as no noise reached the ears of the prefects, anybody disposed to be frivolous might indulge in ...
— The Jolliest School of All • Angela Brazil

... Asia.... There was in him a sophist and a theologian, or, if you choose, a Greek and a Chaldean.' The Athenians could never pardon one of their great leaders, all of whom fell victims in one shape or another to a temper frivolous as that of a child, ferocious as that of men,—'espece de moutons enrages, toujours menes par la nature, et toujours par nature devorant leurs bergers.' As for their oratory, 'the tribune of Athens would have been the disgrace ...
— Critical Miscellanies (Vol. 2 of 3) - Essay 4: Joseph de Maistre • John Morley

... cross-streets, Princess Split told her plan—with reservations. She was not prepared to admit to so humble a worshiper the secret of her birth, but the magnanimous self-sacrifice of a beautiful nature, the heroine concealed beneath a frivolous exterior—these she was willing Jack Cody ...
— The Madigans • Miriam Michelson

... concluded amidst profound silence. The relatives went forward first to take farewell of the corpse. Then followed the numerous guests, who had come to render the last homage to her who for so many years had been a participator in their frivolous amusements. After these followed the members of the Countess's household. The last of these was an old woman of the same age as the deceased. Two young women led her forward by the hand. She had not strength enough to bow down to the ground—she merely shed ...
— Best Russian Short Stories • Various

... people talked about the daughter because of her mother, for she looked it fully! But then a girl couldn't help having a foolish mother! She was to be pitied more than blamed if she seemed silly and frivolous now and then. ...
— The Witness • Grace Livingston Hill Lutz

... even you must be tired with such levities: the spirit of the age is no longer frivolous; and I dare say as the march of gravity proceeds, we shall get rid of galas altogether." The queen said this with an air of inconceivable wisdom, for the "Society for the Diffusion of General Stupefaction" had been recently established among ...
— The Pilgrims Of The Rhine • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... "performed the ceremony," and "solemnized." While restricted in the facts that he may give, he must try to present the same old facts in new and interesting ways—he may even resort to a moderate use of "fine writing," if he does not become florid or frivolous. ...
— Newspaper Reporting and Correspondence - A Manual for Reporters, Correspondents, and Students of - Newspaper Writing • Grant Milnor Hyde

... intriguers on the Council of Regency, what a formidable weapon it must place in the hands of Principal Souza and his partisans. In itself this was enough to trouble a man in O'Moy's position. But there was more. Lieutenant Butler happened to be his brother-in-law, own brother to O'Moy's lovely, frivolous wife. Irresponsibility ran strongly in that branch ...
— The Snare • Rafael Sabatini

... Concert-Room,"—a superb apartment, but a losing speculation. There, too, were three highly respectable persons, of a serious turn of mind, who came to suggest doubts whether an entertainment of so frivolous a nature was not injurious to the morality of Gatesboro'. Besides these notables, there were loungers and gossips, with no particular object except that of ascertaining who Mr. Chapman was by birth and parentage, and suggesting the expediency of a deputation, ...
— What Will He Do With It, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... drawing along a beam of quick and dazzling light, and now dying away softly and insensibly into cool shade again. All the phenomena of reflected lights, half lights, and broken lights are brought in and attuned to the great daedal melody of the edifice. The antiquities of Attica afford nothing frivolous or capricious or merely fanciful, no playful extravagances or wanton meanderings of line; but ever loyal to the purity of a high Ideal, they present to us, even from their ruins, a wonderful and very evident Unity of expression, pervading and governing every possible mood and manner of thought. ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 7, No. 44, June, 1861 • Various

... I'm not coming. I am very happy here, and so tired of the frivolous life I lead in town, that I have decided to try a better one," and Sophie's mirror reflected a face ...
— Kitty's Class Day And Other Stories • Louisa M. Alcott

... have—that was where the bitterness of death came in. It was nearly as consoling as sending white flowers to his funeral. Of course I wrote and told my aunt that they were the one thing that had been wanting to make existence blossom like a rose; I am afraid she thought me frivolous—she comes from the North, where they live in the fear of Heaven and the Earl of Durham. (Reginald affects an exhaustive knowledge of things political, which furnishes an excellent excuse for not discussing them.) Aunts with a dash of foreign ...
— Reginald • Saki

... himself in hand that he was not as other men, and then gives thanks to God for this: But the conclusion was most vilely false, and therefore the praise for it could not but be foolish, vain, and frivolous. Whence I infer, that if to use such language in prayer is dangerous, then to affect the use thereof is yet more dangerous: Prayer must be made with humble hearts, and sensible words, and of that we have treated before, wherefore high, ...
— The Works of John Bunyan • John Bunyan

... death-agony of the Jewish kingdom has come to an end. The frivolous levity, which fed itself on illusions and would not be sobered by facts, has been finally crushed out of the wretched people. The dreary succession of incompetent kings—now a puppet set up by Egypt, now another puppet set up by Babylon, has ended ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Isaiah and Jeremiah • Alexander Maclaren

... her breath. So she was a mere frivolous, inconsequential butterfly, after all. Why try longer to lend the Helping Hand—why not cut things short and be satisfied with the Social Triumph and let it go at that? "I was meaning to ask you to dine with me some evening ...
— Under the Skylights • Henry Blake Fuller

... of Nantes in 1685 sent French Protestant refugees swarming across the channel to find some sort of living in England. Therefore the spirit of acquisitiveness dwindled and died down, in the absence of any strong need to study abroad, and an idle, frivolous, darting, capricious spirit controlled the aristocratic tourist. Horace Walpole on his travels spent his time in a way that would have been censured by the Elizabethans. He rushed everywhere, played cards, danced through the streets of Rheims before the ladies' coaches, ...
— English Travellers of the Renaissance • Clare Howard

... your letter this evening, and could not help laughing at it. It was not right in the people at Mayence to have acted thus, but since the thing has occurred, it does not signify. Our epoch requires strong minds to scourge those frivolous, contemptible, malicious beings, repulsive as it is to my feelings to cause pain to any man. Besides, I intended a mere jest, and it was far from my intention to let such ...
— Beethoven's Letters 1790-1826 Vol. 2 • Lady Wallace

... supporters on the Continent. James and John Bernouilli, Varignon, author of the "Theory of Variations," and the Marquis de l'Hopital, were the first to appreciate it; but soon it attracted the attention of the scientific world to such a degree that the frivolous populace of Paris had even a well-known song with the burden, "Des infiniment petits." Neither were opponents wanting. Wrong-headed men and thick-headed men are unfortunately too numerous in all times and places. ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 3, No. 20, June, 1859 • Various

... to this frivolous suggestion. He was gazing over the wide landscape gravely and with apparent inattention. He invariably saw game before I did, and was off his horse and crouched among the sage while I was still getting my left foot clear of the stirrup. I succeeded in killing an antelope, and we rode home with the ...
— The Virginian - A Horseman Of The Plains • Owen Wister

... for his pleasures, taking them with a calculated moderation that he might preserve the power to enjoy; she, the etiolated, the subtle, the earnest follower of art, she who seemed always a little too earnest and conventional for that group of the frivolous and unconventional rich—people had wondered for years how there could be anything between them. These two alone understood that the bond was of the mind, not of the flesh or the spirit. She but thought, and he thought with ...
— The Readjustment • Will Irwin

... "How frivolous! How unfeeling!" No, nothing of the sort; how truly sad and human, for to be human is to be sad. That men and women should be so warped and twisted by the pressure of the years out of semblance to themselves; that circumstances should so wall in their ...
— Amaryllis at the Fair • Richard Jefferies

... Perpignan, Agde was the very antithesis of the gay and frivolous Catalan city. The aspect of its purple-brown architecture, the bridge-piers crossing the Herault, and the very pavements themselves were a colour-scheme quite unlike anything we had seen elsewhere. Brilliant and warm as a painting ...
— The Automobilist Abroad • M. F. (Milburg Francisco) Mansfield

... such a union might give an alien house to a vast estate in France; the confiscated property of the Constable of Dubrois. And—but the other reason is but babble, malice—what you will." And Caillette's manner quickly changed from grave to frivolous. "Now, au revoir; I'm off to Fools' hall," he concluded. "Whenever it becomes dull for you, seek some of your old comrades there." ...
— Under the Rose • Frederic Stewart Isham

... quoted are too capacious for schools and systems. Without noise, without ostentation, without mystery, not quarrelsome, not captious, not frivolous, their lives were commentaries on their doctrine. Never evaporating into mist, never stagnating into mire, their limpid and broad morality runs parallel with the lofty ...
— Imaginary Conversations and Poems - A Selection • Walter Savage Landor

... its last word. During this period the grammatical and rational study of the word of God fell Into more and more neglect, and its real meaning became Increasingly obscured. The place of a serious and sincere exegesis was taken by frivolous combinations, subtle comparisons, and mystical interpretations carried out according to preconceived notions and based on the slightest accident of form in the text. Rashi had many ...
— Rashi • Maurice Liber

... on as in Indian literature. Whatever subject is started, the rule is that the argument should begin with the purvapaksha, with all that can be said against a certain opinion. Every possible objection is welcome, if only it is not altogether frivolous and absurd, and then only follows the uttarapaksha, with all that can be said against these objections and in support of the original opinion. Only when this process has been fully gone through is it allowed to represent an opinion as siddhanta, ...
— India: What can it teach us? - A Course of Lectures Delivered before the University Of Cambridge • F. Max Mueller

... from it! They have no relation to each other. You mistake the occasion for the cause, the means for the motive. Your alphabet is in fault. Such a set of vain, frivolous, dishonest, mean, hypocritical, and insufferably vulgar letters would be turned out of any respectable, well-bred spelling-book. Vanity, frivolity, dishonesty, meanness, hypocrisy, and vulgarity can be exhibited in all the affairs of life, not excepting those ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 4, No. 24, Oct. 1859 • Various

... cats. But you sinned then. However, my cousin has her eye upon us, so we must be distinctly frivolous. Is there any especially peaceful subject ...
— On the Firing Line • Anna Chapin Ray and Hamilton Brock Fuller

... frivolous, Mr. Lennox," he said, "and this is not a time for light talk. I don't know what you mean, but it seems to me you don't appreciate the dire nature of your peril. I liked you and your comrades when I met you in Quebec and ...
— The Masters of the Peaks - A Story of the Great North Woods • Joseph A. Altsheler

... fit of laughter, and said, This is one of the oddest things that I ever heard: Is it possible, my son, that your quarrel should rise so high about an imaginary marriage? I am sorry you fell out with your elder brother upon such a frivolous matter; but I find he is in the wrong to be angry at what you only spoke in jest, and I ought to thank Heaven for that difference which has procured me such a son-in-law. But, said the old gentleman, it is late, and time for you to retire; go to your bride, my son; she expects ...
— The Arabian Nights Entertainments Volume 1 • Anonymous

... It costs too much to maintain a home if you measure it by the personal advantages of parents. What hope is there for useful and happy family life if the newly wedded youth have both been educated in selfishness, habituated to frivolous pleasures, and guided by ideals of success in terms of garish display? Yet what definite program for any other training does society provide? Do the schools and colleges, Sunday schools and churches teach youth ...
— Religious Education in the Family • Henry F. Cope

... involved compliment, and finally left me a free field. We returned to the house. The bell rang, and I was invited to dinner. As we came up to the house, a grave and silent couple, Juliette stole a glance at us. Not a little surprised to find her husband contriving some frivolous excuse for leaving us together, she stopped short, giving me a glance—such a glance as women only can give you. In that look of hers there was the pardonable curiosity of the mistress of the house confronted with ...
— The Message • Honore de Balzac

... fond of?" queried Mr. Marshall, with the patient air of a man who overlooks the frivolous ...
— Kilmeny of the Orchard • Lucy Maud Montgomery

... states to the Queen-mother in France: 'He was used ill, not in his entertainment, but in their frivolous delayes, and in the unreasonable conditions which they propounded and pressed upon the advantage they had of ...
— A History of England Principally in the Seventeenth Century, Volume I (of 6) • Leopold von Ranke

... down in the recesses of Mrs. Wade's timid heart which she had kept to herself, and indeed would have tearfully resented had it been offered by another. The late Mr. Wade had been, in fact, a singular example of this kind of frivolous existence carried to a man-like excess. Besides being a patron of amusements, Mr. Wade gambled, raced, and drank. He was often home late, and sometimes not at all. Not that this conduct was exceptional in the "roaring days" of Heavy Tree Hill, but it ...
— Under the Redwoods • Bret Harte

... is, that they will be now no less acceptable unto you to read after your serious affairs and studies than they have been lately delightful for many of you to see when the same were shewed in London upon stages. I have purposely omitted and left out some fond [3] and frivolous gestures, digressing, and, in my poor opinion, far unmeet for the matter, which I thought might seem more tedious unto the wise than any way else to be regarded, though haply they have been of some vain-conceited ...
— Tamburlaine the Great, Part I. • Christopher Marlowe

... describes the Poles in language still more harsh; in his opinion they are vain in fortune, cringing in misfortune, capable of anything for the sake of money, spendthrifts, frivolous, without judgment, always ready to join or abandon a party without cause. No doubt there is much exaggeration in these statements; but that there is also much truth in them, is proved by the accounts of many writers, native and foreign, who cannot be accused of being prejudiced against Poland. ...
— Frederick Chopin as a Man and Musician - Volume 1-2, Complete • Frederick Niecks

... the impalpable throng that people the state galleries is Marie Antoinette, and her spirit shows us many faces. It is charming, haughty, considerate, headstrong, frivolous, thoughtful, degraded, dignified, in quick succession. We see her arrive at the Palace amid the tumultuous adoration of the crowd, and leave amidst its execrations. Sometimes she is richly apparelled, as befits a queen; anon she sports the motley trappings of a mountebank. The courtyard that ...
— A Versailles Christmas-Tide • Mary Stuart Boyd

... resolved to go to this ministerial reunion. Had I not been at Mr. King's literary gathering, which lifted me, as it were, out of a frivolous, fashionable life into the purely intellectual, and now, should I refuse to bathe my soul in the purer element of high Christian fervor? No, ...
— Phemie Frost's Experiences • Ann S. Stephens

... the curiosity of the two magistrates, conjointly, who did not fail, during the time that he remained, both to press hire to eat and drink, in spite of all denials and remonstrances, and to torment him with questions, many of them frivolous in the extreme, not only concerning the events in which he had been lately engaged, but also in regard to everything that was taking place ...
— The King's Highway • G. P. R. James

... of them in five years, and dates events by them instead of in the regular way by the consulships: "Let me see. That was in the year in which I was married to So-and-So." There is Asinia, whose selfishness is so great, and her affection so frivolous, that she will weep over a sparrow and "let her husband die to save her lap-dog's life." All these women are most likely childless, and many a noble Roman house ...
— Life in the Roman World of Nero and St. Paul • T. G. Tucker

... jongleurs inutiles, frivoles joueurs de luth!". . . Useless jugglers, frivolous players on the lute! Must we so describe ourselves, we, the producers, season by season, of so many hundreds of "remarkable" works of fiction?—for though, when we take up the remarkable works of ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... the neighbouring towns, for it is almost as quick as going by rail, and much cheaper; and half-an-hour later we rumbled out of the Porta San Lorenzo, and I had entered upon the strange journey to find Hedwig von Lira, concerning which frivolous people have laughed so unkindly. And you may call me a foolish old man if you like. I did it ...
— A Roman Singer • F. Marion Crawford

... sometimes; but that is only when you embody him in a police force or convert him into cavalry. The atomic disembodied villager has no notion of rioting, ca-ira singing, or any of the tomfooleries of revolution. These pastimes are for men who are both idle and frivolous. When our villager wants to realise a political idea, he dies of famine. This has about it a certain air of seriousness. A man will not die of famine ...
— Twenty-One Days in India; and, the Teapot Series • George Robert Aberigh-Mackay

... Wally shook his head. "I don't do frivolous things like that. But I heard Jim wheedling blue ribbon out of Norah this morning, and I don't fancy he has much use for it ordinarily. You'd ...
— Back To Billabong • Mary Grant Bruce

... chosen and special band of men and women, selected out of the mass, to attain to a higher standing than your fellows, in those acquirements which make life noble and useful. It is not for you to join in the follies of frivolous pleasure-seekers, or to sacrifice the true culture of your minds and hearts to the mere pursuit of gain. Your aims are higher, and require isolation from the outer world, and self-denial, in the hope that what you are now sowing ...
— McGill and its Story, 1821-1921 • Cyrus Macmillan

... to us make us. The family made out of my oldest brother Tom counselor and wise judge; out of my sister Lucy chief cook and general-manager; out of me butterfly and ornament. In the eyes of the family I have always been frivolous and worldly, and though they criticize these qualities of mine, underneath their righteous veneer I discover them marveling. They disparage my extravagance in dressing, and then admire my frocks. In one breath they ridicule social ambition, and in the ...
— The Fifth Wheel - A Novel • Olive Higgins Prouty

... improve, or encourage the reader. On the one hand, the Hebrew psalms are the only religious poetry on earth; yet they contain sallies that savour rankly of the man of blood. On the other hand, Alfred de Musset had a poisoned and a contorted nature; I am only quoting that generous and frivolous giant, old Dumas, when I accuse him of a bad heart; yet, when the impulse under which he wrote was purely creative, he could give us works like Carmosine or Fantasio, in which the last note of the romantic comedy seems to have been found again to touch and ...
— The Art of Writing and Other Essays • Robert Louis Stevenson

... Lucy rose and brought her the new novel. Mrs. Bazalgette took it and sat down to it, but she could not fix her attention long on it. Ladies whose hearts are in dress have no taste for books, however frivolous; can't sit them for above a second or two. Mrs. Bazalgette fidgeted and fidgeted, and at last rose and left the room, book in hand. "How unkind I ...
— Love Me Little, Love Me Long • Charles Reade

... Pigalle. He was a big fellow of fifty with broad shoulders and a full, bearded face. His most disagreeable characteristic was the narrow dogmatic pedantry which he had acquired at the Ecole Normale, and had never since been able to shake off. All his herculean efforts to be sceptical and frivolous, and the twenty years he had spent in Paris mingling with every section of society, had failed to rid him of it. Magister he was, and magister he remained, even in his most strenuous flights of imagination and audacity. From the moment of his arrival ...
— The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete - Lourdes, Rome and Paris • Emile Zola

... to view a dimple. There are worse things than a dimple. Distinctly so, indeed. When ladies of fifteen possess dimples, mere man becomes but as a piece of damp blotting-paper. Pringle was seventeen and a half, and consequently too old to take note of such frivolous attributes; but all the same he had a sort of vague, sketchy impression that it would be pleasanter to run up a lively century against the O.B.s with Miss Lorimer as a spectator than in her absence. He felt ...
— A Prefect's Uncle • P. G. Wodehouse

... naturally inserted many particulars relating to their own local interests and concerns; which, so far from invalidating the general history, render it more interesting and valuable. It would be a vain and frivolous attempt ascribe these latter compilations to particular persons (31), where there were evidently so many contributors; but that they were successively furnished by contemporary writers, many of whom were eye-witnesses of the events and transactions which they relate, there is abundance ...
— The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle • Unknown

... and pure as the notes of a flute; white faille, soft draperies of tulle, garlands of white lilac, sprays of white heather, delicate and resonant as the treble voices of children singing carols in dewy English woods; berthas, flounces, plumes, stomachers, lappets, veils, frivolous as the strains of a German ...
— Muslin • George Moore

... which was also written on the same subject, it is said that Crofton should have left his wife to chastise the maid. Crofton published two pamphlets, one under his own name and one under that of Alethes Noctroff (1657), in which he elaborately dealt with the charge as both false and frivolous. In one passage he offers a qualified defense of such an act: "I cannot but bewail the exceeding rudeness of our times to suffer such foolery to be prosecuted as of some high and notorious crime. Suppose it were (as it is ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 3 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... can leave your place to-morrow and begin something else; you might study law or diplomacy, or go into civil service. Nobody had docketed and pigeon-holed you, in fact. Take advantage of your social maiden fame to walk alone and grasp honors. Enjoy all pleasures gladly, even frivolous pleasures. I wish you luck, Lucien; I shall enjoy your success; you will be like a second self for me. Yes, in my own thoughts I shall live your life. You shall have the holiday life, in the glare of the world and among the swift working springs of intrigue. I will lead the work-a-day ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... influence of this blessed day that makes the usually frivolous and thoughtless prefer a work of charity to the ...
— The Pedler of Dust Sticks • Eliza Lee Follen

... care of an immortal soul whose eternal future may quite well be conditioned on the way in which you fulfil your trust. It would be well as a preliminary to marriage to take a little of the time ordinarily given to its frivolous accompaniments and seriously meditate upon the words of our Lord which seem wholly appropriate to the circumstance: "Whoso shall cause to stumble one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he ...
— Our Lady Saint Mary • J. G. H. Barry

... difference," continued Mrs. Peedles, whose object appeared to be an impartial statement of the whole case. "There may have been incompatability of temperament, as they say. Myself, I have always been of a playful disposition—frivolous, some ...
— Paul Kelver • Jerome Klapka, AKA Jerome K. Jerome

... their vision was clear. Their view was not cut off or circumscribed by the frivolous and ofttimes vicious amusements that stand as a wall around life's outlook in the town. Their view and their hope were as wide as the wilderness and the sea, rugged and stern but mighty and majestic ...
— Bobby of the Labrador • Dillon Wallace

... literature at all know that for patriotism and friendship mottoes are not far to seek, but during the war I felt as I had never felt before the meaning of many a classic sentence. The motto came from Ovid, whom many call a frivolous poet; but the frivolous Roman was after all a Roman, and he was young when he wrote the line,—too young not to feel the generous swell of true feeling. It was written of the ...
— The Creed of the Old South 1865-1915 • Basil L. Gildersleeve

... taken place at Spithead, Sir Harry sent our delegates on board her, that they might explain the real state of affairs. The disgust of our men was very great when they were informed that fresh demands had been made by the crews of the North Sea fleet, of so frivolous a nature that it was not probable they would be granted. Our men, in spite of the character of delegates, which had been forced on them, could not help showing their indignation, and expressing themselves ...
— Tales of the Sea - And of our Jack Tars • W.H.G. Kingston

... for this. The Empress Eugenie used often to say with a laugh that she was the only true royalist at the imperial court of France. That was well enough for her in her days of flightiness and frivolity. No one, however, accused Queen Victoria of being frivolous, and she was not supposed to have a strong sense of humor. None the less, after listening to the skirling of the bagpipes and to the romantic ballads which were sung in Scotland she is said to have remarked ...
— Famous Affinities of History, Vol 1-4, Complete - The Romance of Devotion • Lyndon Orr

... were always in strict keeping with that assumption. For the pride of ancestry he had a supreme contempt. In his "My Own Times," published a few years before his death, he said: "I regard the whole subject of ancestry and descent as utterly frivolous and unworthy of ...
— Something of Men I Have Known - With Some Papers of a General Nature, Political, Historical, and Retrospective • Adlai E. Stevenson

... timidly replied. "A good name," said Nodier. "At the same time, while you give fair play to your genius, don't give up the manufacture of periwigs, for this is an honest trade, while verse-making might prove only a frivolous distraction." ...
— Jasmin: Barber, Poet, Philanthropist • Samuel Smiles

... very fast. But the heat did not quite die down and other thoughts surged up in spite of his desire to keep his head and be reasonably calm. There had been a certain narrowness in the tragic separation of two happy children if the only reason for it had been that the mother of one was a pretty, frivolous, much gossiped about woman belonging to a rather too rapid set. And if it had been a reason then, how would it present itself now? What would happen to an untouched dream if argument and disapproval crashed into it? If his first intensely passionate impulse had been his ...
— Robin • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... quite shy this time. Her companion was silent, afraid to speak lest her laughter break forth. The contrast between Auntie Jinit's staid, middle-aged appearance, and the gay, naughty glance of her eye was almost too much for a frivolous ...
— 'Lizbeth of the Dale • Marian Keith

... frivolous, Mrs. Buck. We are here on a serious errand. It ought to interest you vitally because of the position you occupy in the world of business. We are launching a campaign against the extravagant, ridiculous, and oftentimes indecent dress of ...
— Emma McChesney & Co. • Edna Ferber

... many acquaintances among the middle and even higher ranks of society; went out and entertained a great deal, and gave the most charming dances and musical evenings. Varvara Pavlovna attracted guests as a fire attracts moths. Fedor Ivanitch did not altogether like such a frivolous life. His wife advised him to take some office under government; but from old association with his father, and also through his own ideas, he was unwilling to enter government service, still he remained in Petersburg for Varvara Pavlovna's pleasure. ...
— A House of Gentlefolk • Ivan Turgenev

... pleasure, sent in an odor of white lilac. By all the rules Champers should have preferred hollyhocks and red peonies, if he had cared for flowers at all. It was for the memory of the old mother, whom he would not turn adrift to please a frivolous wife, that he grew the white blossoms she had loved. But as he never spoke of her, nor seemed to see any other ...
— Winning the Wilderness • Margaret Hill McCarter

... on, I sat listening by her dim bed-side to her murmuring trances! At last my expert ear could detect the sense of her faintest sigh. I heard the "Decline and Fall" from beginning to end. Some of her reports were the most frivolous nonsense: over others I have hung in a horror of interest. Certainly, my friend, I have heard some amazing words proceed from those wan lips of Mary Wilson. Sometimes I could hitch her repeatedly to any scene or subject that I chose by the mere exercise of my will; at others, ...
— The Purple Cloud • M.P. Shiel

... Spirit is ever going about seeking whom he may devour, he tempts men to commit sin; and then so blinds their minds, that they can no longer form a right judgment, even to save themselves from the detection of their fellow men. His temptations, also, are so weak and frivolous, when viewed in their proper light, that, did not one know the folly of man, one would be surprised that he could venture to make use of them. His baits are always of a tinselly or shadowy nature, either worthless when caught, or altogether illusions, ...
— Salt Water - The Sea Life and Adventures of Neil D'Arcy the Midshipman • W. H. G. Kingston

... on for years before it was generally discovered that the telephone is not an ear, but a nerve system; and that such an experiment as a duplicate nerve system has never been attempted by Nature, even in her most frivolous moods. Most people fancied that a telephone system was practically the same as a gas or electric light system, which can often be duplicated with the result of cheaper rates and better service. They did not for years discover that two telephone companies ...
— The History of the Telephone • Herbert N. Casson

... years (it is nearly certain that he must have been twenty already) weakened by fever, but nevertheless resolute and sensible in refusing. He has persuaded his brother to fly with him and to go to a university. The one guardian is a narrow-minded tyrant, the other, Winckel's brother, a merchant, a frivolous coaxer. Peter, the elder of the youths, yields first and enters the monastery of Sion, near Delft (of the order of the regular Augustinian canons), where the guardian had found a place for him. Erasmus resisted longer. Only after ...
— Erasmus and the Age of Reformation • Johan Huizinga

... was with me; for I had a sister much older than myself, [2] from whose modesty and goodness, which were great, I learned nothing; and learned every evil from a relative who was often in the house. She was so light and frivolous, that my mother took great pains to keep her out of the house, as if she foresaw the evil I should learn from her; but she could not succeed, there being so many reasons for her coming. I was very fond of this person's company, gossiped and ...
— The Life of St. Teresa of Jesus • Teresa of Avila

... understood the look, which seemed to pierce into the very depths of her frivolous little soul, and flushed angrily as she moved away with Mr Bellthorp and mentally determined to be even with Vandeloup on the ...
— Madame Midas • Fergus Hume

... speeches to her, as nine men out of ten would have done. He had been so used to Priscilla, that it never occurred to him that a girl so young as this one could be a woman. And, after all, his blindness had not been the result of any frivolous lack of thought. A sharp experience had made him as thoroughly a man of the world as a man may be; but it had not made him callous or indifferent to the beauties of life. No one would ever have called him emotional, or prone to enthusiasms of ...
— Theo - A Sprightly Love Story • Mrs. Frances Hodgson Burnett

... be in a bad way if we ALL of us spent our time in chanting dirges for Italy. I should think the neighbourhood of our host of this evening and his wife would make anybody frivolous, in self-defence. Oh, yes, I know what you're going to say; you are perfectly right, but they are both so deliciously funny with their patriotism.—Are you going in already? It is so nice ...
— The Gadfly • E. L. Voynich

... said approvingly; "but pray, don't repeat my speech to Lady Wolfer; she would think me exceedingly frivolous, and I spend my time in the endeavor to convince her of ...
— Nell, of Shorne Mills - or, One Heart's Burden • Charles Garvice

... circumstances it is an unwise experiment to transgress established rules; and in a woman, however rarely she may be gifted, it is a rash and hazardous thing to defy public opinion. Wearying and frivolous as many of society's conventionalities are, there is much wisdom in them; they are indispensible links in the chain binding together "all sorts of people," and she who breaks them knowingly, sins against one of her ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXII. No. 5. May 1848 • Various

... so literary. Here I am among the Philistines, spending my mornings so pleasantly, as books, only books, can make them, and sitting at evening the silent spectator of card playing and dancing. The English here unite the spirit of commerce, with the frivolous amusements of high life. One of them who plays every night (Sundays are not excepted here) will tell you how closely he attends to profit. 'I never pay a porter for bringing a burthen till the next day,' says he, 'for while the fellow feels his back ache with the weight, ...
— Reminiscences of Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey • Joseph Cottle

... "I might have enjoyed that experience, but I was feeling depressed at the time; a lot of the depression went under the influence of frivolous talk, military music, and champagne. Yet, all the same, do these things really count for much? I felt just ...
— Robert Orange - Being a Continuation of the History of Robert Orange • John Oliver Hobbes

... go into the house of the Lord." I was anxious for my time to come to tell how good Jesus was to me. When I met my neighbors I would be heavy- hearted, because they talked of servants, house cleaning, the new fashions, and these seemed so vain, so frivolous. I liked to direct their minds to speak of the Scriptures, and of the ways of doing work for God. I soon found out I was not welcome, I was looked upon as an intruder, was often avoided, I could see the ...
— The Use and Need of the Life of Carry A. Nation • Carry A. Nation

... a dispute only about patronage, the dispute is with me of so little concern that I should not take the pains to utter an affirmative or negative to any proposition in it. If it be only for a theoretical amusement that they are to propose a bill, the thing is at best frivolous and unnecessary. But if the Company's government is not only full of abuse, but is one of the most corrupt and destructive tyrannies that probably ever existed in the world, (as I am sure it is,) what a cruel ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. II. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... was solemn; whilst that in comedy, Cordax, was frivolous, and the siccinis, or dance of Satyrs, was often obscene. They danced to the music of the pipes, the tambour, the harp, castanets, cymbals, etc. ...
— The Dance (by An Antiquary) - Historic Illustrations of Dancing from 3300 B.C. to 1911 A.D. • Anonymous

... this popular governor, and confined until such fees as he was pleased to exact were paid him: bribes from felons and traitors were accepted to savour their escape from the hands of justice: plantations were forcibly taken possession of, upon pretences the most frivolous and unjust, and planters were compelled to give bonds for large sums of money, to procure from him liberty to remain in posession of their property. These, and many more acts of the like atrocious nature, did this rapacious governor commit, during ...
— An Historical Account Of The Rise And Progress Of The Colonies Of South Carolina And Georgia, Volume 1 • Alexander Hewatt

... of this," she added, "because of the intention you expressed to abandon the frivolous life you complained ...
— The Brotherhood of Consolation • Honore de Balzac

... bandied about in the most frivolous and gay of places, and that also when the little toiler was bemoaning her narrow lot, which was almost inseparable from the early stages of this, ...
— Sister Carrie • Theodore Dreiser

... anecdotes recounted of the room in which I stood by Monsieur Carmaignac returned vaguely upon my mind, drowning in sudden shadows the gaiety of the more frivolous stories with which he had followed them. I looked round me on the room that lay in ominous gloom, with an almost disagreeable sensation. I took my pistols now with an undefined apprehension that they might be really ...
— The Room in the Dragon Volant • J. Sheridan Le Fanu

... thoughts busy elsewhere. He quite recognized the type of man with whom he had to do—light-hearted, careless, frivolous even up to a certain point, but beyond that immovable. To question further would be useless, and almost in violation of the strange code of honour which permitted unscrupulous violence but respected the right of reticence in an equal—in an equal, be it observed; ...
— The Justice of the King • Hamilton Drummond

... long thought and even lectured, and if neither Dr. Anderson nor the Earl of Buchan has any fault to find with the correctness of Amicus's report of them, Smith cannot be considered to be any way wronged. The Earl complains too of the matter of the letter being "such frivolous matter"; but it is not so frivolous, and, if it were, is it not Smith himself who used to say to his class at Glasgow, as we are informed by Boswell, that there was nothing too frivolous to be learnt about a great man, and that, ...
— Life of Adam Smith • John Rae

... those two MSS.; and it has volunteered the avowal that an older MS. than itself—the Codex from which it was copied—was furnished with those very Verses which you wish me to believe that some older MS. still must needs have been without. What else can be said, then, of your method but that it is frivolous? and of your charge, but that it is contradicted by the evidence to which you ...
— The Last Twelve Verses of the Gospel According to S. Mark • John Burgon

... frequent interviews with the officers of the military associations, with the foreign merchant companies, with the guilds of "Rhetoric." The chambers of the "Violet" and the "Marigold" were not too frivolous or fantastic to be consulted by one who knew human nature and the constitution of Netherland society so well as did the Prince. Night and day he labored with all classes of citizens to bring about a better understanding, ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... his nature has got to be changed before he amounts to much that is good. I hope, David, you will not let this frivolous young man lead you away from the ...
— The Inglises - How the Way Opened • Margaret Murray Robertson

... horns—dancing was an inexhaustible pleasure. At her dancing-parties, of which she gave three or four a season, her husband would show himself below for a few moments for civility's sake, and then retire to a remote den on an upper floor, well shut out from the sounds of his wife's frivolous measures, but accessible to a few habitues of age and tastes approximating ...
— On the Stairs • Henry B. Fuller

... probable? Supposing him to be attached to me, would my refusing to accept his hand make him wish to bestow it on his cousin? Allow me to say, Lady Catherine, that the arguments with which you have supported this extraordinary application have been as frivolous as the application was ill-judged. You have widely mistaken my character, if you think I can be worked on by such persuasions as these. How far your nephew might approve of your interference in his affairs, I cannot tell; but you have certainly no right ...
— Persuasion • Jane Austen

... entered into the constitution of the people who lived it. If there were not the leisure and culture of the present day, neither were there the mental indolence and dissipation. Ames's Almanac was a joyless sort of light literature, but at least it did not reduce intellectual recreation to a mere frivolous indulgence of the mental faculties. A fine picture could be drawn of Webster on the one side, extracting what juice he could from the chippy leaves of the almanac and "Courant," and of a youth of this year, entering a public library with his card, and ...
— Noah Webster - American Men of Letters • Horace E. Scudder

... Christ and the apostles. But they have this peculiar advantage above us, that they can confirm their faith by continual miracles even to this day. But the truth is, they allege miracles which are calculated to unsettle a mind otherwise well established, they are so frivolous and ridiculous, or vain and false. Nor, if they were ever so preternatural, ought they to have any weight in opposition to the truth of God, since the name of God ought to be sanctified in all places ...
— Prefaces and Prologues to Famous Books - with Introductions, Notes and Illustrations • Charles W. Eliot

... alone, dear friends! will give calmness. What else is there, brethren! for a man fronting that vague future, from whose weltering sea such black, sharp-toothed rocks protrude? Shall we bow before some stern Fate, as its lord, and try to be as stern as It? Shall we think of some frivolous Chance, as tossing its unguided waves, and try to be as frivolous as It? Shall we try to be content with an animal limitation to the present, and heighten the bright colour of the little to-day by the black background that surrounds it, saying, 'Let us eat ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... Art Building seemed to stand guard against the improprieties of civilization. To the far south, a line of thin trees marked the outer desert of the prairie. Behind, in the west, were straggling flat-buildings, mammoth deserted hotels, one of which was crowned with a spidery steel tower. Nearer, a frivolous Grecian temple had been wheeled to the confines of the park, and dumped by the roadside to serve ...
— The Web of Life • Robert Herrick

... never real gay, But built on a sour-face plan; Bill wouldn't laugh, whatever you'd say; Looks like a love-poisoned man. "Grin, ye hyenas," he'll say as he smokes; "I ain't a frivolous guy—" "Thinkin' of all of the pain you caused folks While learnin' to play?" ...
— With the Colors - Songs of the American Service • Everard Jack Appleton

... proud of her father's position and what it brought her. In the revelation that his own directors had availed themselves of that father's methods, and the ignoble character of his present mission, he felt a stirring of self-reproach. What would become of her? Of course, frivolous as she was, she would not feel the keenness of this misfortune like another, nor yet rise superior to it. She would succumb for the present, to revive another season in a dimmer glory elsewhere. His critical, ...
— From Sand Hill to Pine • Bret Harte

... or hardening his heart, it certainly could have had none in improving a character originally worthless and unfeeling. He knew, moreover, that his wealthy cousin was gifted with a great deal of that small cunning which is available for masking the little scheming of frivolous and worldly men; and that Sir Wynston never took trouble of any kind without a sufficient purpose, having its center in his ...
— The Evil Guest • J. Sheridan Le Fanu

... places, with a low roof and a sunken flooring, all downhill from the door, and a descent of two steps on the inside so exquisitely unexpected, that strangers, despite the most elaborate cautioning, usually dived in head first, as into a plunging-bath. It was none of your frivolous and preposterously bright bedrooms, where nobody can close an eye with any kind of propriety or decent regard to the association of ideas; but it was a good, dull, leaden, drowsy place, where every article of furniture reminded you that ...
— Life And Adventures Of Martin Chuzzlewit • Charles Dickens

... was thinking that she had the same manner as some of your friends this evening, only more pronounced. She stopped to speak to some one just in front of the house, so I could observe her. I should think she was frivolous, but fascinating. That must be the New York manner, and, consequently, she may be ...
— Unleavened Bread • Robert Grant

... The frivolous comment on Roy's lips was checked by the look in his partner's eyes. Impossible not to wonder if Lance had actually ...
— Far to Seek - A Romance of England and India • Maud Diver

... acquaintance. Most of the young men with whom she had hitherto associated having lived from youth to manhood amongst those fashionable assemblies where individuality is absorbed in the general mass of insipidity, she saw they were frivolous, though obsequious to her, or, at the best, warped in taste, if not in principle; and the fascinations she called forth to subdue them were suited to their objects—her beauty, her thoughtless, or her caprice. But, ...
— Thaddeus of Warsaw • Jane Porter

... falsehood for the purpose of slander and imposition;" Chancellor Livingston, "a capricious, visionary theorist," was "lamentably deficient in the practical knowledge of a politician, and heedless of important and laborious pursuits, at which his frivolous mind revolted." ...
— A Political History of the State of New York, Volumes 1-3 • DeAlva Stanwood Alexander

... persons. I think that however a thoughtful man may suffer from the defects and absurdities of his company, he cannot without affectation deny to any set of men and women a sensibility to extraordinary merit. The coarse and frivolous have an instinct of superiority, if they have not a sympathy, and honor it in their blind capricious way ...
— Essays, Second Series • Ralph Waldo Emerson

... into the shameful times, when women bear rule over men; and make the toilet a tribunal before which the most gigantic minds must plead. Hence the stunted spirit of our poets; hence the dwarf products of their imagination; hence the frivolous witticism, the heartless sentiment, crippled and ricketed by soups, ragouts and sweetmeats, which you ...
— The Life of Friedrich Schiller - Comprehending an Examination of His Works • Thomas Carlyle

... frivolous woman, jealously tenacious of her position as one of the oligarchs of le beau monde, and his fragile sister had from childhood been the victim of rheumatism that frequently rendered her entirely helpless. ...
— Vashti - or, Until Death Us Do Part • Augusta J. Evans Wilson

... here. I didn't know you went in for frivolity of this sort—if you call it frivolous dining in solitary state. Come over and join us. We're just having a bite before the show. You ...
— The Dark House • I. A. R. Wylie

... similar tokens to the tongues of butterflies, while the cypripedium speeds its parting guest with a sticking-plaster smeared all over its back. And so we might continue almost indefinitely. From the stand-point of frivolous human etiquette we smile, perhaps, at customs apparently so whimsical and unusual, forgetting that such a smile may partake somewhat of irreverence. For what are they all but the divinely imposed conditions of interassociation? ...
— My Studio Neighbors • William Hamilton Gibson

... believe in the fidelity of the inhabitants of Berlin, your majesty," sighed the countess, "they are a frivolous, fickle people, who revile those to-day whom they admired ...
— Napoleon and the Queen of Prussia • L. Muhlbach

... main an effective effort has been made to bring to trial and punishment all violators of the law, but at the same time care has been taken that frivolous and technical offenses should not be used to swell the fees of officers or to harass well-disposed citizens. Especial attention is called to the facts connected with the prosecution of violations of the election laws and of offenses against United States officers. The number ...
— A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents, Volume IX. • Benjamin Harrison

... the certainty of pardon. Every deep heart-experience amongst men has felt the necessity of having a clear certainty and knowledge about forgiveness. Men do not feel it always. A man can skate over the surface of the great deeps that lie beneath the most frivolous life, and may suppose, in his superficial way of looking at things, that there is no need for any definite teaching about sin and the mode of dealing with it. But once bring that man face to face, in a quiet hour, with the facts of his life and of a divine law, and all that superficial ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture: Romans Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V) • Alexander Maclaren

... the peace, so that process might be entered and writs obtained most partially. The crown lawyer is allowed nearly seven pounds sterling for every criminal prosecution! an inducement to listen to trifling complaints, and prefer frivolous indictments, when, if power was gratified and independence harassed, it was a sufficient excuse for an inflated contingent account." The author of this scathing philippic against petty oppression proceeds ...
— The Story of the Upper Canada Rebellion, Volume 1 • John Charles Dent

... that they were frivolous, but like most other lads in the army, they had grown into the habit of teasing one another, which was often a relief to ...
— The Sword of Antietam • Joseph A. Altsheler

... we are quite old enough now to do them alone, and I suppose we are. But we can't express ourselves in the same way time after time, and it is so difficult to think of new things to say that are interesting and not frivolous,—for aunt Lindsay wouldn't permit that. Sometimes we really get low-spirited over our efforts, and I'd be ashamed to tell how many sheets of paper and envelopes are spoilt in the undertaking. Once, in a fit of desperation, Felix bought ...
— We Ten - Or, The Story of the Roses • Lyda Farrington Kraus

... Bob was light-hearted. Yet he could be serious at times, and it is well that that was the case, for Joy's mother was a gay, frivolous young woman, who loved to go to parties and there were times when Joy might have been neglected had it not ...
— The Merriweather Girls and the Mystery of the Queen's Fan • Lizette M. Edholm

... the Roman world, all humanity was held in miniature. Petronius must be credited with the great merit of having introduced realism into the novel. By an inspiration of genius, he saw that the framework of frivolous and licentious novels could be enlarged until it took in contemporary custom and environment. It is that which assures for him an eminent place, not in Roman literature alone, but in the ...
— The Satyricon, Complete • Petronius Arbiter

... fragments of coloured glass, the only part of the costly workmanship that has come down to us. Around this shrine the preceding members of the procession had taken their places. Archbishop Boniface of Savoy was there, old age ennobling a countenance that once had been light and frivolous, and all his bishops in the splendour of their richest copes, solidly embroidered with absolute scenes and portraits in embroidery, with tall mitres worked with gold wire and jewels, and crosiers of beauteous workmanship in gold, ivory, and enamel. Mitred abbots, no less glorious in array, stood ...
— The Prince and the Page • Charlotte M. Yonge

... what he might, Michael could not in this instance leave it alone. He cast about incessantly for some device by which he could break his son loose from the girl. It was all in vain. She might be frivolous, but there was nothing against her character, and he saw evident signs that if he attempted any exercise of authority he would lose Robert altogether in open revolt. For Robert, it must be remembered, had never scattered his strength in loose love. He had grown up to manhood in perfect innocence, ...
— Miriam's Schooling and Other Papers - Gideon; Samuel; Saul; Miriam's Schooling; and Michael Trevanion • Mark Rutherford

... between your fortune and mine. It always seemed to me we were equally well off. And that I have been deceitful in little things, that . . . of course, is true. My life has hitherto been arranged in such a frivolous way that it has somehow been impossible to get on without paltry lying. It weighs on me, too, now. . . . Let us leave off talking ...
— The Party and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... The Italians atoned for this loss by their subject-matter. They are joyous poets, full of the gladness of life. They are secular, not religious poets; the best of the Spanish-Hebrew poetry was devotional, and the best of the Italian so secular that it was condemned by pietists as too frivolous and too much "disfigured ...
— Chapters on Jewish Literature • Israel Abrahams

... ever be the festival of the human soul. Even those who do not clearly understand or fully accept its meaning in history and religion,—even children and ignorant folk and doubters and unbelievers,—yes, even frivolous people and sullen people, feel that there is something in this festival which meets the need and longing of their hearts. It is a day of joy and gladness, a day of liberation and promise, a day for flowers to ...
— What Peace Means • Henry van Dyke

... and excommunication for the simple crime of offering shelter to an excommunicated neighbour; and thus offence begot offence, guilt spread like a contagion through the influence of natural humanity, and a single refusal of obedience to a frivolous citation might involve entire families in ...
— The Reign of Henry the Eighth, Volume 1 (of 3) • James Anthony Froude

... When the loose but gifted Byron lay in his Venetian exile he observed that, if it could be granted him to go back and live his misspent life over again, he would give his lucid and unintoxicated intervals to the composition, not of frivolous rhymes, but of essays upon political economy. Washington loved this exquisite science; such names as Baker, Beckwith, Judson, Smith, are imperishably linked with it; and even imperial Homer, in the ninth book ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain



Words linked to "Frivolous" :   frivolity, flippant, giddy, serious, serious-mindedness, head-in-the-clouds, empty-headed, dizzy, frivolousness, light, trivial, flyaway, idle, sincerity, light-minded, lightheaded, flighty, silly, scatterbrained, airheaded, featherbrained, light-headed, earnestness, seriousness, superficial



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