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Infirm   Listen
adjective
Infirm  adj.  
1.
Not firm or sound; weak; feeble; as, an infirm body; an infirm constitution. "A poor, infirm, weak, and despised old man."
2.
Weak of mind or will; irresolute; vacillating. "An infirm judgment." "Infirm of purpose!"
3.
Not solid or stable; insecure; precarious. "He who fixes on false principles treads or infirm ground."
Synonyms: Debilitated; sickly; feeble; decrepit; weak; enfeebled; irresolute; vacillating; imbecile.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Infirm" Quotes from Famous Books



... have been so severely exercised by fortune, I begin to distrust this opinion; and sometimes even to dread the weakness and frailty of human nature, for I am afraid lest, when nature had given us infirm bodies, and had joined to them incurable diseases and intolerable pains, she perhaps also gave us minds participating in these bodily pains, and harassed also with troubles and uneasinesses, peculiarly their own. But here I correct myself for forming ...
— Cicero's Tusculan Disputations - Also, Treatises On The Nature Of The Gods, And On The Commonwealth • Marcus Tullius Cicero

... indignantly. "Can't you see that I'm perfectly sober? It was the merest temporary fit, and I've shaken it off. Don't you see?" He got upon his feet, staggered, but shook himself like a dog coming out of the water, and came to the door with infirm steps. ...
— The Two Vanrevels • Booth Tarkington

... he was run into by a man who came rushing out of the yard, in a state of violent agitation. In this man's hand was something that glittered, and though the encounter nearly upset them both, he had not stopped to utter an apology, but stumbled away out of sight with a hasty but infirm step, which showed he was neither young nor active. The minister had failed to see his face, but noticed the ends of a long beard blowing over his shoulder as he ...
— Agatha Webb • Anna Katharine Green

... aroused. He alighted, and dipping his hand into the spring, found to his surprise that the water was very hot. Thus Charlemagne, as the legend records, discovered the hot spring which was to become the salvation of many thousands of ill and infirm people. ...
— Legends of the Rhine • Wilhelm Ruland

... rather a narrow platform to work upon; but, limited as it was, she would not transcend it in either direction. When, however, she could find revival work within reach among her own people she ever gave such calls the preference; and from their arrival in the new country down to the retirement of infirm old age, more than a quarter of a century, "Sister Arnold" was known for many miles around as ...
— Elizabeth: The Disinherited Daugheter • E. Ben Ez-er

... Praiseworthy's Infirmary;" and immediately below this, in small letters, was the significant notice, "Planters having the cholera and other prevailing diseases upon their plantations will please take notice that I am prepared to pay the highest price for the infirm and other negroes attacked with the disease. Offers will be made for the most ...
— Our World, or, The Slaveholders Daughter • F. Colburn Adams

... soldier's death. For a moment the garrison and the able-bodied citizens resolved to advance from the gates in a solid column, to cut their way through the enemy's camp, or to perish on the field. It was thought that the helpless and the infirm, who would alone be left in the city, might be treated with indulgence after the fighting men had all been slain. At any rate, by remaining the strong could neither protect nor comfort them. As soon, however, as this resolve ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... heritage, he was proud that he had a Pennington for a grandson. Thus I am sure that it was his will that I should have the Barton for my own. But during the last few years he had been very feeble and infirm, and thus in the hands of a clever lawyer he could easily be deceived as ...
— The Birthright • Joseph Hocking

... too dull or too ill to feel her own position. She moves as though in a dream—a dream undisturbed, for the buyers have almost ceased to regard her. Finally she is sold for forty-three dollars to a very old and infirm man. ...
— Morocco • S.L. Bensusan

... could write a bit; and would prize the means of writing as a very rare treasure and pleasure. And with fingers that almost trembled with delight, I wrote down paper and pens and a bottle of ink for Darry. Next, I heard of an old woman at the quarters, who was ailing and infirm, and I am afraid ill-treated, who at all events was in need of comfort, and had nothing but straw and the floor to rest her poor bones on at night. A soft pallet for her went down instantly on my list; my ink and tears mingled together as I wrote; and I soon found that my purse ...
— Daisy • Elizabeth Wetherell

... Jonathan Sewell; that Jonathan Sewell had advised the arrest of Messrs. Bedard, Blanchet and Taschereau, upon an unfounded pretext; that Jonathan Sewell had instigated the oppression of the old and infirm Francois Corbeil, by which the old man lost his life; that Jonathan Sewell had instigated Sir James Henry Craig to issue a proclamation causing the public to believe that Mr. Bedard had been guilty of treason, and that the province was in a state approaching to open rebellion; that Jonathan ...
— The Rise of Canada, from Barbarism to Wealth and Civilisation - Volume 1 • Charles Roger

... again as before. The reports from sub-commissioners nearest that locality show that the blacks are in a much worse state than ever before, the able-bodied being kept at work under the lash, and the young and infirm driven off to care for themselves. As to protection from the civil authorities, there is no such thing outside of this city." (Accompanying document ...
— Report on the Condition of the South • Carl Schurz

... their capital. The late events seemed to have no other effect than to harden them in error; and the Spanish government saw with alarm the pernicious influence of their example and persuasion, in shaking the infirm faith of the ...
— The History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella The Catholic, V2 • William H. Prescott

... with me that carriages were only for the slow, the stupid, and the infirm," he recalled. "It's a glorious night. Would you ...
— David Dunne - A Romance of the Middle West • Belle Kanaris Maniates

... my arrival at the Greyhound, Bath, I have been confined to my bed-room, almost to my bed. Pray for my recovery, and request Mr. Roberts's[89] prayers, for my infirm, wicked heart; that Christ may mediate to the Father, to lead me to Christ, and give me a living instead of a reasoning faith! and for my health, so far only as it may be the condition of my improvement, ...
— Reminiscences of Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey • Joseph Cottle

... bestowed on him a dress of honour. Then he bade his troops don their richest apparel and sally forth in grand procession, with banners flying, to meet the princess and her company and do them honour, and let cry throughout the city that neither cloistered damsel nor honoured lady nor infirm old woman should fail to go forth to meet the bride. So they all went out to meet her and the chiefest of them vied in doing her service, meaning to bring her to the King's palace by night. Moreover, the grandees agreed to decorate the road and stand ...
— The Book Of The Thousand Nights And One Night, Volume II • Anonymous

... frolicsome. Dander, to saunter. Danders, cinders. Daurna, dare not. Deave, to deafen. Denty, dainty. Dirdum, vigour. Disjaskit, worn out, disreputable-looking. Doer, law agent. Dour, hard. Drumlie, dark. Dunting, knocking. Dwaibly, infirm, rickety. Dule-tree, the ...
— Weir of Hermiston • Robert Louis Stevenson

... were also said by a Pharisee: I saw that a great company came to Jesus from Galilee and Judea, and the sea-cost, and many countries about Jordan; and many infirm persons came to him, and he ...
— The Forbidden Gospels and Epistles, Complete • Archbishop Wake

... their leader in battle,—their utmost Head of affairs. Progress has demolished this ideal, with many others equally fine and inspiring; and now all kings are so, by right of descent merely. Whether they be infirm or palsied, weak or wise, sane or crazed, still are they as of old elected; only no more as the Strongest, but simply as the Sign-posts of a traditional bygone authority. This King however, here written of, was not deficient in either mental or physical attributes. His outward ...
— Temporal Power • Marie Corelli

... his eyes stuck out. "John," he said, and the restraint he put upon his voice rippled it, "John, don't tamper with the affections of an old and infirm man. Drive me off the bayou plantation, compel me to acknowledge and to feel that I am a hypercrite and a liar, but don't whet a sentiment and then cut my throat with it. Be merciful unto a ...
— An Arkansas Planter • Opie Percival Read

... has his price, I still believed thy end was just and free; And yet, even yet believe it—spite of thee. Even though thy mouth impure has dared disclaim, Urged by the wretched impotence of shame, Whatever filial cares thy zeal had paid To laws infirm, and liberty decayed; Has begged Ambition to forgive the show; Has told Corruption thou wert ne'er her foe; Has boasted in thy country's awful ear, Her gross delusion when she held thee dear; How tame she followed thy tempestuous ...
— Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern, Vol. 1 • Charles Dudley Warner

... the passion of their children and their present gratification. Don't fear the power of a father: it is kind to passion to give it time to cool. But their censures sometimes make me smile,—sometimes, for I am very infirm, make me angry: ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. VII. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... to hurry on with the work and to make a large group. I asked Meusnier if he knew any tall, bony old woman, and he sent me two, neither of whom suited me. Then I asked all my painter and sculptor friends, and during eight days all sorts of old and infirm women came for my inspection. I fixed at last on a charwoman who was about sixty years old. She was very tall, and had very sharp-cut features. When she came in I felt a slight sentiment of fear. The idea of remaining alone with this female gendarme ...
— My Double Life - The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt • Sarah Bernhardt

... The infirm old man was instantly summoned to Rome. His friends pleaded his age—he was now seventy—his ill-health, the time of year, the state of the roads, the quarantine existing on account of the plague. It was all of no avail, to Rome he must go, and ...
— Pioneers of Science • Oliver Lodge

... the walls, in case those of Tiberias should come hither, at once. Then let one or two able fellows embark on board each of the boats and vessels in the port, taking with them two or three of the infirm and aged men. Send a fast galley across to Hippos; and bid the fishermen set out, at once, with all their boats, and join us off Tiberias. We will not approach close enough to the city for the people to see how feebly we are manned ...
— For the Temple - A Tale of the Fall of Jerusalem • G. A. Henty

... Lodge, Penzance, Cornwall; he said he was in London for a few days only on business connected with his wife's property; described her as a shrew, though a woman of kind disposition; and depicted his father as a Cornish squire, in an infirm state of health, at whose death he hoped for something handsome, when he promised richly to reward the admirable protector of his child, and to provide for the boy. 'And by Gad, sir,' he said to me in his strange ...
— Henry Esmond; The English Humourists; The Four Georges • William Makepeace Thackeray

... his hand, yet with his pilgrim's staff he did good service in the armies of the Christians; and it pleased God that he escaped unhurt, though he was present in many battles, and his courage inspired the men with the same. At last a truce was made with the Saracens, and Rinaldo, now old and infirm, wishing to see his native land again before he died, took ship and sailed for France. When he arrived he shunned to go to the resorts of the great, and preferred to live among the humble folk, where he was unknown. He did country work, and lived on milk and bread, drank water, and ...
— Bulfinch's Mythology • Thomas Bulfinch

... sweet-briar with the other. Porthos had laid hold of some peas which were twined round poles stuck into the ground, and ate, or rather browsed upon them, shells and all; and Planchet was busily engaged trying to wake up an old and infirm peasant, who was fast asleep in a shed, lying on a bed of moss, and dressed in an old stable suit of clothes. The peasant, recognizing Planchet, called him "the master" to the grocer's great satisfaction. "Stable the horses well, ...
— The Vicomte de Bragelonne - Or Ten Years Later being the completion of "The Three - Musketeers" And "Twenty Years After" • Alexandre Dumas

... abandon an intended visit to Corinth. The miserable crew of antagonists, who yelped at his heels all his life, seized this change of purpose as the occasion for a double-barrelled charge. They said he was either fickle and infirm of purpose, or insincere, and saying 'Yea' with one side of his mouth and 'Nay' with the other. He rebuts this accusation with apparently quite disproportionate vehemence and great solemnity. He points in the context to the faithfulness of God, to the ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture: Romans Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V) • Alexander Maclaren

... happiness to all. In all parts of His Word we discover evidences of the strongest character, which go to prove that such is the nature and activity of the Lord. There could have been no seeking of His own glory, when he assumed a material body, and an infirm human principle, in which were direful hereditary evils, that he might redeem man from the corruptions of his own fallen nature, and from the influence and power of hell. Little glory was ascribed to him ...
— The Last Penny and Other Stories • T. S. Arthur

... priest is conveyed. Numerous bands of music accompany the cavalcade, which is escorted by a strong detachment of troops. Every time that the priest descends from the carriage to enter the house of some infirm person, the soldiers perform those military honours which already have been described, and during the performance the band plays the royal march. In some parishes, the proprietor of the carriage, or one of his principal people, assumes, pro hac ...
— Roman Catholicism in Spain • Anonymous

... showing reluctance to accept the challenge, the stranger sternly demanded compliance with the laws of the game. The card soon turned up which decided the ruin of the banker. 'Heaven!' exclaimed an old infirm Austrian officer, who had sat next to the stranger—'the twentieth part of your gains would make me the happiest man in the universe!' The stranger briskly answered—'You shall have it, then;' and quitted the room. A servant speedily returned, and presented the officer with the twentieth part of ...
— The Gaming Table: Its Votaries and Victims - Volume I (of II) • Andrew Steinmetz

... crouches and blushes, Absconds and conceals; He creepeth and peepeth, He palters and steals; Infirm, melancholy, Jealous glancing around, An oaf, an accomplice, He poisons ...
— Poems - Household Edition • Ralph Waldo Emerson

... absurd, Kitty," he said. "I simply won't allow that poor, infirm, old man to be got out of his bed for such a ridiculous reason. Who cares whether the gates ...
— The Honorable Miss - A Story of an Old-Fashioned Town • L. T. Meade

... intervals of three years, or even more, and are generally composed of farmers, presided over by the legal agent of the lord of the manor. The tenants of the manor attend to pay their quit rent for the preceding years, and it often happens that if the cottager has been ill, or is weak and infirm, the farmers composing the court subscribe and pay the ...
— The Toilers of the Field • Richard Jefferies

... declares the husband the head of the family and he must support the wife by his separate property or labor, but if he has not deserted her, and has no separate property, and is too infirm to support her by his labor, the wife must support him and their children out of her separate property or in other ways to the extent of her ability. An act of Feb. 21, 1896, makes the wife liable for necessaries for the family purchased ...
— The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume IV • Various

... come back at all. When the rent fell due, Madame Joseph in her turn took herself off. And then came the end. Euphrasie had to be removed to the hospital of La Salpetriere, the last refuge of the aged and the infirm; while the children, henceforth without a home in name, were driven into the gutter. The boy never turned up again; it was as if he had been swallowed by some sewer. One of the twin girls, found in the streets, died in a hospital ...
— Fruitfulness - Fecondite • Emile Zola

... "Is to-day an infirm old woman, a worthy object of the compassion of charitable people," continued M. Moriaz, heedless of this last interruption. "Mlle. Moriaz allows her a pension, with which I find no fault; but Mlle. Galet—I mistake, Mlle. Galard—has retained from her former calling her passion ...
— Samuel Brohl & Company • Victor Cherbuliez

... short time to discover in Miss Mallory a hunger for society which seemed to be the natural result of long starvation. With her neighbors the Roughsedges she was already on the friendliest terms. To Dr. Roughsedge, who was infirm, and often a prisoner to his library, she paid many small attentions which soon won the heart of an old student. She was in love with Mrs. Roughsedge's gray curls and motherly ways; and would consult her about servants and tradesmen with an eager ...
— The Testing of Diana Mallory • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... guards, when he was asked to show his orders. The executions were numerous in Higher and Lower Normandy, and the Parliament received the wages of its tardiness. All the members of the body, even the most aged and infirm, were obliged to leave Rouen. A commission of fifteen councillors of the Parliament of Paris came to replace provisionally the interdicted Parliament of Normandy; and, when the magistrates were empowered at last to resume their sitting, it was only ...
— A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times - Volume V. of VI. • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

... had gone for Andrew were much too infirm to get close to "The Falcon." For with the daylight her work had begun, and she was surrounded on all sides by a melee of fishing-boats. Some were discharging their boxes of fish; others were struggling to get some point of vantage; others again fighting to ...
— A Knight of the Nets • Amelia E. Barr

... dead—you will find them as you yourselves have met and passed them, it may have been countless times, on your streets of Yaque—not young and beautiful as when they left you, but men and women of incredible age. Withered, shaken by palsy, infirm, they creep upon their lonely ways or go at will to drag themselves unrecognized along your highways, as helpless as the dead themselves. They number scores, and they are those who have displeased your prince by some little ...
— Romance Island • Zona Gale

... short of the matter was this. The Willie-Goat had, for eighteen year, belonged to a dragoon marching regiment, and, in its better days, had seen a power of service abroad; till, being now old and infirm, it had fallen off one of the baggage-carts, and got its leg broken on the road to Piershill, where it was sold to Cursecowl, by a corporal, for half-a-crown and a dram. The four quarters he had managed to sell for mutton, like lightning—this one buying a jigget, that ...
— The Life of Mansie Wauch - Tailor in Dalkeith, written by himself • David Macbeth Moir

... be dismayed by poverty; she was a tranquil and loving woman, who had never married; but who, as if to compensate her for the absence of nearer ties, had a simple and wholesome love of all created things. She was infirm now, but was quite content, when it was fine, to sit for long hours idle for very love, and look about her with a peaceful and smiling air; she prayed much, or rather held a sweet converse in her heart with God; she thought ...
— Paul the Minstrel and Other Stories - Reprinted from The Hill of Trouble and The Isles of Sunset • Arthur Christopher Benson

... guidance of reason (IV. xxiv.): now he, that acts under the guidance of reason, must necessarily know that he so acts (II. xliii.). Therefore he who is in extreme ignorance of himself, and consequently of all virtues, acts least in obedience to virtue; in other words (IV. Def. viii.), is most infirm of spirit. Thus extreme pride or dejection indicates extreme infirmity ...
— The Ethics • Benedict de Spinoza

... little way into the island, I saw an old man who appeared very weak and infirm. He was sitting on the bank of a stream, and at first I took him to be one who had been shipwrecked like myself. I went towards him and saluted him, but he only slightly bowed his head. I asked ...
— The Children's Hour, v 5. Stories From Seven Old Favorites • Eva March Tappan

... his master's interest had raised him above the dead level of black servitude, and given him the management of the plantation; and the rear structure spoke pleasantly of the time when old Deborah, disabled by age from longer service at 'the great house,' and too infirm to clamber up the steep ladder which led to Joe's attic bedrooms, had come to doze away the remainder of her days under ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol 3 No 3, March 1863 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... the name of Richard. His wife followed him up to the block, and when they had bid him up to seventy or eighty dollars one of the bidders asked Mr. Young what he could do, as he looked very old and infirm? Mr. Young replied by saying, "he is not able to accomplish much manual labor, from his extreme age and hard labor in early life. Yet I would rather have him than many of those who are young and vigorous; who are able to perform twice as much labor—because I know him to be faithful ...
— Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, an American Slave, Written by Himself • Henry Bibb

... came in balancing themselves with different movements, one canting to the right, while the other canted to the left. And three worthy women showed themselves, limping, dragging their legs behind them, crippled by illness and deformed through old age, three infirm old women, past service, the only three pensioners in the establishment which Sister Saint-Benedict managed, who ...
— The Works of Guy de Maupassant, Vol. 1 (of 8) - Boule de Suif and Other Stories • Guy de Maupassant

... upon us was enough money annually to get a new "critter," that is, a mule. With a certain lack of ingenuity the mule was reported each Christmas as having passed away, or at least as having become so infirm as to necessitate a successor—a solemn fiction which neither deceived nor was intended to deceive, but which furnished a gauge for the size of ...
— Theodore Roosevelt - An Autobiography by Theodore Roosevelt • Theodore Roosevelt

... extraordinary to James I, and he remained in close professional relations to the royal family until the close of the Civil War, being present at the battle of Edgehill. By mandate of Charles I, he was, for a short time, Warden of Merton College, Oxford (1645-6), and, when he was too infirm to undertake the duties, he was offered the Presidency of the College of Physicians. He died ...
— The Harvard Classics Volume 38 - Scientific Papers (Physiology, Medicine, Surgery, Geology) • Various

... he, 'I am indebted to you for your proffered kindness; but I need not the service of anyone. I am somewhat advanced in life, but not yet, by the blessing of God, infirm; or what Doctor Johnson would call "superfluous;" and you may recollect what old Adam says in the play of "As ...
— Life and Public Services of John Quincy Adams - Sixth President of the Unied States • William H. Seward

... ferryman and his wife, she said they were accustomed to give her a day of their labour in digging peats, in common with others, and in that manner she was provided with fuel, and, by like voluntary contributions, with other necessaries. While this infirm old woman was relating her story in a tremulous voice, I could not but think of the changes of things, and the days of her youth, when the shrill fife, sounding from the walls of the Garrison, made a merry noise through the echoing hills. I asked myself, if she were to be carried again ...
— Recollections of a Tour Made in Scotland A.D. 1803 • Dorothy Wordsworth

... though an aged, infirm, tottering man, we heard him descending the steps. How different from the step that carried him up! We, conscience-stricken, sat within, with doors closed. He was off. He has again mounted his horse, and the broken-hearted man, hardly less cruel than the ...
— A Confederate Girl's Diary • Sarah Morgan Dawson

... beer—gave occasion for offence; but really, beyond a scrimmage, a hat broken, a coat or two torn or bespattered with mud, a cockade rudely snatched from the wearer, little harm was done. The voters knew each other, and had come to vote, and had stayed to see the fun. For the timid, the infirm, the old, the day was a trying one; but there was an excitement and a life about the affair one misses now that the ballot has come into play, and has made the voter less of a man than ever. Of course the shops were shut up. All ...
— East Anglia - Personal Recollections and Historical Associations • J. Ewing Ritchie

... said Elsie, and very infirm. No one knows her exact age, but she cannot be much, if any younger than Aunt Wealthy, who has just passed her hundredth birthday; and I believe her to ...
— The Two Elsies - A Sequel to Elsie at Nantucket, Book 10 • Martha Finley

... PETITES-MAISONS. The old Maladrerie de Saint-Germain, which in 1554 became the Hopital Saint-Germain, later known as les Petites-Maisons, on account of the great number of cells into which it was divided. It was used to house infirm old men and women, who received a small weekly dole, lunatics, and patients suffering from loathsome diseases. The name became synonymous with either a mad-house or a hospital for certain diseases: it was changed in 1801 to les Petits-Menages, the insane having then been transferred, the ...
— A Selection from the Comedies of Marivaux • Pierre Carlet de Chamblain de Marivaux

... he was promoted to the see of Salisbury, over which he presided for twelve years, prosecuting his benevolent designs with unwearied industry. As at St David's, so at Salisbury, he founded a Church Union Society for the assistance of infirm and distressed clergymen. He strenuously opposed both Unitarianism and Catholic emancipation. He died on the 19th ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Part 4 - "Bulgaria" to "Calgary" • Various

... occasion, when there was a great play at the principal theater in Athens, the seats set apart for strangers were filled with Spartan boys; and other seats, not far distant, were filled with Athenian youth. The theater was crowded, when an old man, infirm, and leaning on a staff, entered. There was no seat for him. The Athenian youth called to the old man to come to them, and with great difficulty he picked his way to their benches; but not a boy rose and offered him a seat. Seeing this, ...
— The True Citizen, How To Become One • W. F. Markwick, D. D. and W. A. Smith, A. B.

... eyes to hers. "You?" he asked. And then he tried to approach her, but he had become too infirm. "I cannot!" ...
— Everychild - A Story Which The Old May Interpret to the Young and Which the Young May Interpret to the Old • Louis Dodge

... Stirling hills, where he was late an indweller, a motley gathering of kinsfolk mourn his loss—"me, his wife, two Small helpless Children, an Aged Mother who is Blind, an Aged Man who is lame and unfit for work, his father in Law, and a sister Insane, with his Mother in Law who is Infirm." [Footnote: Admiralty Records 1. 1454—The Humble Petition of Jullions Thomson, Spouse to Lachlan M'Quarry, 2 May 1812.] The fact is attested by the minister and elders of the parish, being otherwise unbelievable; and Lachlan is doubtless proportionately grieved to find himself at sea. Men ...
— The Press-Gang Afloat and Ashore • John R. Hutchinson

... lucky man—that is to be seen," Thorstan said then. "And he has no great knowledge of the sea, and is moreover infirm. It would come to this, that he would hurt himself, and you would have the care of him as you did upon the rock out beyond ...
— Gudrid the Fair - A Tale of the Discovery of America • Maurice Hewlett

... be got into a place, or got abroad. And, as if she had then said, 'Chorus, ladies!' all the Skirmishers struck up to the same purpose. We left them, thereupon, and began a long walk among the women who were simply old and infirm; but whenever, in the course of this same walk, I looked out of any high window that commanded the yard, I saw Oakum Head and all the other Refractories looking out at their low window for me, and never failing to catch me, the ...
— The Uncommercial Traveller • Charles Dickens

... consumption. Wolfius relates "that a country bumpkin, called Brunsellius, by chance seeing a woman asleep at a sermon fall off her seat, was so taken that he laughed for three days, which weakened him so that he continued for a long time afterwards in an infirm state." ...
— History of English Humour, Vol. 1 (of 2) - With an Introduction upon Ancient Humour • Alfred Guy Kingan L'Estrange

... peace. At a settlement some twenty miles distant, a quantity of powder was discovered, after the men had left for Machias. What was to be done, was the immediate question. Every able-bodied man had already left, only small boys and men too aged or too infirm for battle having remained at home. Upon that powder reaching them the defeat of the British, might depend. In this emergency the heroism of woman was shown. Two young girls, Hannah and Rebecca Weston, volunteered their services. It was no holiday ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume I • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... for he did not know that anybody was near. But beside him stood an old woman, with a ragged mantle over her head, leaning on a staff, the top of which was carved into the shape of a cuckoo. She looked very aged and wrinkled and infirm; and yet her eyes, which were as brown as those of an ox, were so extremely large and beautiful that when they were fixed on Jason's eyes he could see nothing else but them. The old woman had a pomegranate in her hand, although the fruit was then ...
— Myths and Legends of All Nations • Various

... presence in the house would, in Clara's opinion, prove a bulwark against all dangers; but, although evil tongues might be silenced by the fact of her presence, the old lady was singularly useless in the capacity of chaperon. She was infirm, a little deaf, and very shy; but her presence in the house was supposed to be a sop to Cerberus, in the person of Mrs. Grundy, and Clara was less afraid for her friend than she had been before Mrs. Alison was ...
— Name and Fame - A Novel • Adeline Sergeant

... written over sixty years before, was not so easily met. First came the assurance that its spelling was hideous, its writing bad and dimmed by time, and the sheets tattered and torn. Later followed the disclosure that an aged and infirm mother of the grandmother owned it, and that she had some time before compelled its return to the private drawer from which the relic-loving daughter had abstracted it. Still later came a letter saying that since the attorney was so ...
— Strange True Stories of Louisiana • George Washington Cable

... pushed and panted and grunted up the bank, mumbling, "Respect the aged and infirm!" and all the time his little eyes burned like coals under the heavy, horny eyelids on the top of his triangular head, as he shoved his bloated barrel-body along between his crutched legs. Then he settled down, and, accustomed ...
— The Second Jungle Book • Rudyard Kipling

... were told to the duke by Lady Glencora and Madame Goesler in the recesses of his grace's private room; for the duke was now infirm, and did not dine in company unless the day was very auspicious to him. But in the evening he would creep into the drawing-room, and on this occasion he had a word to say about the Eustace diamonds to every one in the room. It ...
— The Eustace Diamonds • Anthony Trollope

... they may die and be buried there. If possible, these wishes are always complied with by the relatives and friends. Parents will point out the spot where they were born, so that when they become old and infirm, their children may know where they wish their bodies to be disposed of."[249] Again, some tribes in the north and north-east of Victoria "are said to be more than ordinarily scrupulous in interring the dead. If practicable, they will bury the corpse near the spot where, as a ...
— The Belief in Immortality and the Worship of the Dead, Volume I (of 3) • Sir James George Frazer

... innocence. The yoke will not be laid on your necks, nor the rod of persecution. But if you are taken hence, and mingle among the Gentiles, you may learn the works of them, and having begun in the spirit you may be consumed in the flesh. And there may be others among us whose hearts are still infirm. If these mix again with the world, I fear how it may be with them; and what shall I say, and what shall I do, if I cannot save those whom God has ...
— History of England from the Fall of Wolsey to the Death of Elizabeth. Vol. II. • James Anthony Froude

... indeed the name that's upon me," said Mat, with rather an infirm voice, whilst his face got as pale ...
— The Hedge School; The Midnight Mass; The Donagh • William Carleton

... grew more daring and outrageous. Hawkesbury and Harris left the rest of us presently, and, unrestrained even by their more sober demeanour, we chose the most crowded thoroughfares and the most harmless victims for our operations. Once we all of us trooped into a poor old man's shop who was too infirm to come from behind the counter to prevent our turning his whole stock upside down. Another time we considered it gentlemanly sport to upset an orange barrow, or to capture a mild-looking doctor's boy and hustle him along in front of us for a ...
— My Friend Smith - A Story of School and City Life • Talbot Baines Reed

... so numerous as to be within easy reach of every voter, and no expenses of conveyance, at the cost of the candidate, should be tolerated under any pretext. The infirm, and they only on medical certificate, should have the right of claiming suitable carriage conveyance at the cost of the state or of the locality. Hustings, poll clerks, and all the necessary machinery of elections, should be at the public ...
— Considerations on Representative Government • John Stuart Mill

... 1840, Lord William Russell, infirm, deaf, and aged, being in his seventy-third year, was murdered in his bed. He was a widower, living at No. 14 Norfolk Street, Park Lane, London, a small house, occupied by only himself and three servants,—Courvoisier, a young Swiss valet, and ...
— An Essay on Professional Ethics - Second Edition • George Sharswood

... I was I spose I should holler versiffrusly in the streets at nite and go home to Betsy Jane smellen of coal ile and gin, in the mornin. I should go to the Poles arly. I should stay there all day. I should see to it that my nabers was thar. I should git carriges to take the kripples, the infirm and the indignant thar. I should be on guard agin frauds and sich. I should be on the look out for the infamus lise of the enemy, got up jest be4 elecshun for perlitical effeck. When all was over and my candydate was elected, I should move ...
— The Complete Works of Artemus Ward, Part 1 • Charles Farrar Browne

... huge greatcoat threadbare and patched itself, yet carefully so disposed and secured by what buttons remain, and many supplementary pins, as to conceal the still more infirm state of his under garments. The shoes and stockings of a ploughman were, however, seen to meet at his knees with a pair of brownish, blackish breeches; a rusty-coloured handkerchief, that has been black ...
— Redgauntlet • Sir Walter Scott

... was over he had made up his mind to take his L300 a year and be silent. The Marquis, he now found, was not so infirm as he had thought, nor the Marchioness quite so full of fears. He must give it up, and take his pittance. But in doing so he continued to assure himself that he was greatly injured, and did not cease to accuse Lord Kingsbury of sordid ...
— Marion Fay • Anthony Trollope

... him. Now it is that I begin to perceive the difficulty of the task which I have undertaken; but it would be weakness to shrink from it. My blood is congealed: and my fingers are palsied when I call up his image. Shame upon my cowardly and infirm heart! Hitherto I have proceeded with some degree of composure, but now I must pause. I mean not that dire remembrance shall subdue my courage or baffle my design, but this weakness cannot be immediately conquered. I must desist for ...
— Wieland; or The Transformation - An American Tale • Charles Brockden Brown

... Grandfather, Friedrich I. (the first King of Prussia),—for, as we intimate, he was still alive, and not very old, though now infirm enough, and laden beyond his strength with sad reminiscences, disappointments and chagrins,—had taken much to Wilhelmina, as she tells us; [ Memoires de Frederique Sophie Wilhelmine de Prusse, Margrave de Bareith, Soeur d Frederic-le-Grand (London, 1812), i. 5.] and would amuse himself whole ...
— History Of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. I. (of XXI.) - Frederick The Great—Birth And Parentage.—1712. • Thomas Carlyle

... ere it went Down his strain'd throat, that open sepulchre. Amphibious monsters haunted the lagoon; The hippopotamus, amidst the flood, Flexile and active as the smallest swimmer; But on the bank, ill balanced and infirm, He grazed the herbage, with huge, head declined, Or lean'd to rest against some ancient tree. The crocodile, the dragon of the waters, In iron panoply, fell as the plague, And merciless as famine, cranch'd ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 10, - Issue 286, December 8, 1827 • Various

... and burghers of Suabia were now assembling at Ulm. Scarce a man could be seen between the Danube and the Lake of Constance: mothers were working in the fields, with their children about them, and here and there some old or infirm vassal was seated at his cabin door. Little did the Lady Margaret dream, as she gazed from her lattice over the beautiful country, dipping down into the river, dotted all over with thriving cottages, from which the quiet smoke ...
— The Truce of God - A Tale of the Eleventh Century • George Henry Miles

... woman, whose name was Drusilla Elliott, to live with them as servant and companion; she was a converted person, worshipping with a kindred sect, the Bible Christians. I remember being much interested in hearing how Bess, before her marriage, became converted. Mary Grace, on account of her infirm health, slept alone in one room; in another, of vast size, stood a family fourposter, where Ann slept with Drusilla Elliott, and another bed in the same room took Bess. The sisters and their friend had been constantly praying that Bess might 'find peace', for she was still a ...
— Father and Son • Edmund Gosse

... were dry. Her heart beat in her ears. Yet she was in no degree unnerved. Seldom indeed had she been more mistress of her powers, self-realized and vigilant. Nor did she feel tired any more, infirm of will and spent. Rather was she consciously resolute to encounter and withstand events—of what order she did not know as yet but events of moment and far-reaching result, already on the road, journeying toward her hotfoot. They were designed to test and try ...
— Deadham Hard • Lucas Malet

... some interesting but not agitating distraction from certain ideas which, however admirable and transcendently important, are nevertheless too high and profound to permit their constant contemplation with impunity to our infirm natures. Besides," he added, in a lower, but still distinct tone, "I was myself unwilling to visit in a mere casual manner the scene of what I must consider the greatest event ...
— Lothair • Benjamin Disraeli

... up-stairs, at her request; and, entering an ill-furnished chamber, found, seated in an arm-chair, a lady seemingly in years, pale, and visibly infirm. The lines of her countenance were far from laying claim to my reverence. It was too ...
— Arthur Mervyn - Or, Memoirs of the Year 1793 • Charles Brockden Brown

... granted thy prayer, and I have spared the soul of Trajan for thy sake; but because thou hast supplicated for one whom the justice of God had already condemned, thou shalt choose one of two things: either thou shalt endure for two days the fires of Purgatory, or thou shalt be sick and infirm for the remainder of thy life.' Gregory chose the latter, which sufficiently accounts for the grievous pains and infirmities to which this great and good man was subjected, even to the ...
— Purgatory • Mary Anne Madden Sadlier

... visiting or in business conference, their fingers occupied with watermelon seeds or with packages of cooked snails. Along the pathway leading to the pagoda beggars had distributed themselves, one in a place, at intervals of two or three hundred feet, asking alms, most of them infirm with age or in some other way physically disabled. We saw but one who appeared capable of ...
— Farmers of Forty Centuries - or, Permanent Agriculture in China, Korea and Japan • F. H. King

... uncommon, indeed I may say it is a very common thing, for the old pensioners, as they gradually decay, to have their health quite perfect when the faculties are partly gone; and there is a helpless ward established for that very reason, where those who are infirm and feeble, without disease, or have lost their faculties while their bodily energies remain, are sent to, and there they pass a quiet, easy life, well attended, until they sink into the grave. Such ...
— Poor Jack • Frederick Marryat

... to biting the rosebuds now, and tearing them away from his teeth with a hand that trembled like an infirm old man's. After one exceedingly observant look at him, his companion relapsed into his ...
— Hard Times • Charles Dickens*

... ward it off. Others climbed little twigs or tufts of grass and scanned the surrounding country from these elevated and commanding positions. Others hurried up the laggards and stragglers, and even carried the weak and infirm. ...
— The Dawn of Reason - or, Mental Traits in the Lower Animals • James Weir

... tone of the mind may be unfavourable to taste a work properly, and we have had many erroneous criticisms from great men, which may often be attributed to this circumstance. The mind communicates its infirm dispositions to the book, and an author has not only his own defects to account for, but also those of his reader. There is something in composition like the game of shuttlecock, where if the reader do not quickly rebound the feathered cock to the author, the game is destroyed, and the ...
— Literary Character of Men of Genius - Drawn from Their Own Feelings and Confessions • Isaac D'Israeli

... presentation should have taken place in the drawing-room, but by some mistake Mrs. Fry was conducted to the Egyptian Hall, where a number of school-children were waiting to be examined. Mrs. Fry occupied a post near the platform; and after a little time the Queen, now aged and infirm, perceived her. As soon as the examination of the children was over she advanced to Mrs. Fry. Her Majesty's small figure, her dress blazing with diamonds, her courtesy and kindness as she spoke to the now celebrated Quakeress, who stood outwardly calm ...
— Elizabeth Fry • Mrs. E. R. Pitman

... or cottage surrounded by a garden. The word ipure has the same signification.) A narrow path leads from the hill of San Francisco across the forest to the hospital of the Capuchins, a very agreeable country-house, which the Aragonese monks have built as a retreat for old infirm missionaries, who can no longer fulfil the duties of their ministry. As we advance to the west, the trees of the forest become more vigorous, and we meet with a few monkeys,* (* The common machi, or weeping monkey.) ...
— Equinoctial Regions of America • Alexander von Humboldt

... Khan, kept him concealed in the palace, so that no person was allowed to see him. The prince and the people had recourse to arms, in order to force these tyrants to admit them into the kings presence; on which they persuaded the infirm king that the prince wished to depose him, so that the king went to war against the prince, and defeated him with great slaughter, upon which the Moguls were called in to their assistance, and used the opportunity to plunder the country ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume VI - Early English Voyages Of Discovery To America • Robert Kerr

... "and there is nothing to prevent you from keeping your post as long as you like, even if you become infirm and have to appoint a deputy—but if there were any serious cause of complaint, like this extraordinary ...
— In The Palace Of The King - A Love Story Of Old Madrid • F. Marion Crawford

... temple at that place, agreeably to an ancient and respected custom, which has ever been religiously conformed to, and tenaciously held by the Lagos people. But Adooley displayed at the same time another beautiful trait of piety and filial tenderness. At the period of his defeat, he had an aged and infirm mother living, and her he determined to take with him, let the consequences be what they might. With his accustomed foresight, he had previously made a kind of cage or box, in case there should be a necessity ...
— Lander's Travels - The Travels of Richard Lander into the Interior of Africa • Robert Huish

... recovery of her dowry; on her own responsibility if she was sui iuris, otherwise with the help of her father.[103] But even the woman still under guardianship could act by herself if her father was too sick or infirm or if she had no other agent to act for her.[104] For the offence of adultery a husband had to pay back the dowry at once; for lesser guilt he might return it in instalments at intervals of six months.[105] If, now, the divorce was clearly the fault of the woman, her husband could retain ...
— A Short History of Women's Rights • Eugene A. Hecker

... close to the churchyard is the site of a Hospital, founded, in the time of Richard I., who endowed it, by Bishop Glanville of Rochester. This place must have been known to Chaucer and his pilgrims. It was dedicated in honour of Our Lady and cared for "the poor, weak, infirm and impotent as well as neighbouring inhabitants or travellers from distant places, until they die or depart healed." Those who served it followed the Benedictine Rule. A singular example of the hatred ...
— England of My Heart—Spring • Edward Hutton

... Brother Yves Milbeau, "my Lord the Duke of Brittany, our liege lord, is disposed to proffer his service to the King. He cannot come in person for he is sorely infirm. But he is to send his ...
— The Life of Joan of Arc, Vol. 1 and 2 (of 2) • Anatole France

... thou proceedest by counsel; for all thy external works are the works of the whole Trinity, and their hand is to every action. How much more must I apprehend that all you blessed and glorious persons of the Trinity are in consultation now, what you will do with this infirm body, with this leprous soul, that attends guiltily, but yet comfortably, your determination upon it. I offer not to counsel them who meet in consultation for my body now, but I open my infirmities, I anatomize my body to ...
— Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions - Together with Death's Duel • John Donne

... himself in contriving some plan to gratify his curiosity, in despite of the sedulous caution of Janet and the old Highland janizary, for he had never seen the young fellow since the first morning. At length, upon accurate examination, the infirm state of his wooden prison-house appeared to supply the means of gratifying his curiosity, for out of a spot which was somewhat decayed he was able to extract a nail. Through this minute aperture he could perceive ...
— Waverley, Or 'Tis Sixty Years Hence, Complete • Sir Walter Scott

... far into the snare of this Moabitish woman?—hast thou bartered thy name, thy allegiance, thy knightly oath, thy duty to thy parents, thy country, and thy God, for a feigned tear, or a sickly smile, from lips which flattered the infirm Francis—lured to death the idiot Darnley—read luscious poetry with the minion Chastelar—mingled in the lays of love which were sung by the beggar Rizzio—and which were joined in rapture to those of the ...
— The Abbot • Sir Walter Scott

... as infirm of purpose," he murmured. "Alas! that a name derived from old Roman ancestors should be borne by one so little qualified to do it honour! Had it pleased Heaven to preserve to me the child stolen in his infancy by the Moslem, how different would have been ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXLII. Vol. LV. April, 1844 • Various

... which we shall give account hereafter. In most of the Venetian cases the parapets which surround roofing are very sufficient for protection, except that the stones of which they are composed appear loose and infirm: but their purpose is entirely decorative; every wall, whether detached or roofed, being indiscriminately fringed with Arabic forms of parapet, more or less Gothicised, according to ...
— The Stones of Venice, Volume I (of 3) • John Ruskin

... for his cross-examination by the other party. The testimony of witnesses whose attendance cannot be had, which may include any living out of the State (or, in the federal courts, over one hundred miles from the place of trial), or who are infirm or sick, may be secured by previously taking it down out of court in the form of a written deposition, under oath, before a magistrate. In such case the adverse party must have such notice as to ...
— The American Judiciary • Simeon E. Baldwin, LLD

... the whole, this salutary virtue of the water, which might be medicinal by nature, seems to be so regulated by God, as at the same time to afford the jews a token of his presence. But the power of Christ, administered to this infirm man, a more noble remedy than that water, his evil-chasing[103] word. And this power was the more seasonable in this case, because the disease was of so many years standing, that it could not be removed by a natural remedy: whence ...
— Medica Sacra - or a Commentary on on the Most Remarkable Diseases Mentioned - in the Holy Scriptures • Richard Mead

... acting at Buxton. He and Kemble had no parts in one of our plays, so they amused themselves during their "off" night by hiring bath-chairs and pretending to be paralytics! We were acting in a hall, and the most infirm of the invalids visiting the place to take the waters were wheeled in at the back, and up the center aisle. In the middle of a very pathetic scene I caught sight of Kemble and Brookfield in their bath-chairs, and could not speak for ...
— The Story of My Life - Recollections and Reflections • Ellen Terry

... in her old age. As it was, she arose before light, made the fire, cooked their breakfast and labored in and about the house all day until they returned from the fields. But she was getting old and at last became bedridden and infirm. She could no longer cook the meals, and the boys had to shift for themselves. Moreover, instead of finding her standing at the door with a smile on her wrinkled face, welcoming them to supper on their return, ...
— True Stories of Crime From the District Attorney's Office • Arthur Train

... Gordon's house, carrying Count Fersen with me. We drove to Mrs St John's, only a few doors distant, who had likewise a large party on that evening. When I had introduced him to various persons there, I said to him, 'Count Fersen, I am an old woman and infirm, who always go home to bed at eleven. You will, I hope, amuse yourself. Goodnight.' Having thus done the honours as well as I could to a stranger who had been so highly recommended to me, I withdrew into the ante-chamber ...
— Devon, Its Moorlands, Streams and Coasts • Rosalind Northcote

... with his Holiness against such a cruel thing, considering Galileo's age, infirmities, and fame,—all to no avail. He was obliged to obey the summons. At the age of seventy this venerated philosopher, infirm, in precarious health, appeared before the Inquisition of cardinals, not one of whom had any familiarity with abstruse ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume VI • John Lord

... into the cottage of an old man, in the village of which I am curate, and finding him about to cut up some wood, and he being very infirm, I undertook the task for him, and chopped up a fagot ...
— Notes and Queries, Issue No. 61, December 28, 1850 • Various

... are not idle days either, for with Sunday-school, church service, and prayer meetings, our day is pretty well filled. Some of our girls are doing real missionary work by going out into the neighborhood, to relieve the sick, read to the old and infirm, and to carry food where it is needed. This they seem to enjoy, and it will, perhaps, prepare them for usefulness as they go out to ...
— American Missionary, Volume 43, No. 10, October, 1889 • Various

... death, in his absence, at the Assizes Court of La Drome, for having murdered five people, and was cast off by his own faction. For some time his wife, who was infirm and deformed, might be seen going from house to house asking alms for him, who had been for two months the arbiter of civil war and assassination. Then came a day when she ceased her quest, and was seen sitting, her head covered by a black rag: Pointu was dead, but it was never ...
— Massacres Of The South (1551-1815) - Celebrated Crimes • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... which I the rather mention, because it is of undoubted credit, as the late Venetian ambassador, who was of the same family, attested more than once in conversation, when he resided in England. Cornaro, who was the author of the little treatise I am mentioning, was of an infirm constitution, till about forty, when, by obstinately persisting in an exact course of temperance, he recovered a perfect state of health; insomuch that at fourscore he published his book, which has been translated into English, under the title of, Sure and certain methods ...
— The Young Gentleman and Lady's Monitor, and English Teacher's Assistant • John Hamilton Moore

... slept, as quietly as he did everything else, for an hour or two more. Then he rose, shaved and dressed, took such breakfast as Mrs. Persimmon could give him; mounted his grey again, and was off to a house at some distance where there was a sick child, and another house where there dwelt an infirm old man. Between these two the hours were spent till he rode home ...
— Diana • Susan Warner

... the sick went to pass the night in the temple of the Soteri, who appeared to them in dreams. It was the same in a temple in Sardinia. So also in one of Ino in Laconia. In the Cheronese, the goddess Hemithaea worked the same miracles as did Isis. She appeared in dream to the infirm and prescribed the manner in which they might be healed. In the Charonion of Nyssa it was the priest who consulted the gods in dream. In the temple of AEsculapius near Citheraea, a bed was always ready for incubation. Christianity could not uproot ...
— Castles and Cave Dwellings of Europe • Sabine Baring-Gould

... his first enthusiasm at the penitence of the sinner. The Carmelites had persecuted him in his youth, and in the end the prior had driven him to secularize himself. The prior was still alive, old but implacable; infirm, and withdrawn from the world, but strong in his hatred, and his passion for intrigue. The abbe could not hear his name without shuddering, and he begged me to act ...
— Mauprat • George Sand

... which was guided by others, to trace his name, and he fell back—a corpse! If there is any pressing reason for it, that is, if any particular person would be relieved from a state of harassing uncertainty or materially benefited by their making a will, the old and infirm (who do not like to be put out of their way) generally make this an excuse to themselves for putting it off to the very last moment, probably till it is too late; or where this is sure to make ...
— Table-Talk - Essays on Men and Manners • William Hazlitt

... secretly and silently cherishing a new faith in her bosom, amid a throng, lax and infirm of purpose, and wonderment gave way to another emotion, as his mind leaped from that past, with its covert, inner life, to the untrammeled moment when she had thrown off the mask in the solitude of the forest. Had some deeper chord of his nature been struck then? Their aspirations ...
— Under the Rose • Frederic Stewart Isham

... they sentenced the old and infirm philosopher—this band of infallibles!—they bade him abjure and detest the said errors and heresies. They decreed his book to the flames, and they condemned him for life to the dungeons of the Inquisition, bidding him recite, "once a week, seven ...
— Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Volume 1, No. 3, August, 1850. • Various

... the bay, having been deserted by their crews, who had gone to the same point of attraction, and new arrivals were constantly swelling the tide of gold-seekers. Here Will Osten found his father's agent—a staid old gentleman of Spanish extraction, who, being infirm as well as old, was fever-proof. Being somewhat taciturn, however, and rendered irritable by the upheavings of social life which were going on around him, he only vouchsafed the information that the estate which belonged to the late Mr Osten was near the goldfields; ...
— Over the Rocky Mountains - Wandering Will in the Land of the Redskin • R.M. Ballantyne

... his brother in 1364. Six years before he died—namely, in 1377—he was reported to be feeble and infirm, and it seems most probable from the above inquisition that his Inn was occupied by clerks. Maude, the heiress of Thomas de Neville, married John Talbot, Lord Strange of Blackmere, who was summoned to Parliament as Lord Furnival ...
— Memorials of Old London - Volume I • Various

... city crouched some miserable specimens of humanity: old men and women, haggard, shrivelled, and naked. These unfortunates, I afterwards learned, were the aged and infirm, too feeble to perform their share of the work of the tribe and condemned to remain at the gateway, dependent for food upon such charity as might be given them. On entering the town we passed a number of warriors, all fine, athletic men, ...
— Adventures in Southern Seas - A Tale of the Sixteenth Century • George Forbes

... Nature mean This pleasing call the herald of a lie, To hide the shame of discord and disease, And win each fond admirer into snares, Foil'd, baffled? No; with better providence 410 The general mother, conscious how infirm Her offspring tread the paths of good and ill, Thus, to the choice of credulous desire, Doth objects the completest of their tribe Distinguish and commend. Yon flowery bank Clothed in the soft magnificence of Spring, Will not the flocks approve it? will they ask The ...
— Poetical Works of Akenside - [Edited by George Gilfillan] • Mark Akenside

... relatives at Kingsmill. His father and mother both lived; the latter very infirm, unable to leave the house; the former a man of seventy, twisted with rheumatism, his face rugged as a countenance picked out by fancy on the trunk of a big old oak, his hands scarred and deformed with labour. Their old age was ...
— Born in Exile • George Gissing

... drove on in high spirits. We stopped at Dunbarton, and though the approach to the castle there is very steep, Dr Johnson ascended it with alacrity, and surveyed all that was to be seen. During the whole of our tour he shewed uncommon spirit, could not bear to be treated like an old or infirm man, and was very unwilling to accept of any assistance, insomuch that, at our landing at Icolmkill, when Sir Allan McLean and I submitted to be carried on men's shoulders from the boat to the shore, as it could not be brought quite close to land, ...
— The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides with Samuel Johnson, LL.D. • James Boswell

... forbidden doors to our will or passion leaves a stain on the hand, that may not be so dark as blood, but that will not out; Hamlet, that all the noblest gifts of person, temperament, and mind slip like sand through the grasp of an infirm purpose; Othello, that the perpetual silt of some one weakness, the eddies of a suspicious temper depositing their one impalpable layer after another, may build up a shoal on which an heroic life and an otherwise magnanimous nature may bilge and go to pieces. All this we ...
— Among My Books - First Series • James Russell Lowell

... preparations, which we understood from having seen the same thing in Lisdara. There are wee villages and solitary cabins so far from chapel that the priests establish 'stations' for confession. A certain house is selected, and all the old, infirm, and feeble ones come there to confess and hear Mass. The priest afterwards eats breakfast with the family; and there is great pride in this function, and great rivalry in the humble arrangements. Mrs. Odevaine often lends a linen cloth ...
— Penelope's Irish Experiences • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... Beggars, and infirm or indigent hadjys, often entreat the passengers in the streets of Mekka for a draught of sweet water; they particularly surround the water-stands, which are seen in every corner, and where, for two paras in the time of the Hadj, and for one para, at other times, as much water may be ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 358 - Vol. XIII, No. 358., Saturday, February 28, 1829 • Various

... was taking place in the court-yard of the prison, while without the prison stood the usual armed soldier, about two dozen trucks for the baggage, and the infirm convicts, and on the corner a crowd of relatives and friends of the convicts, waiting for a chance to see the exiles as they emerged from the prison, and, if possible, to have a last few words with them, or deliver some things they had brought for them. Nekhludoff ...
— The Awakening - The Resurrection • Leo Nikoleyevich Tolstoy

... infirm. Some attribute his weakness to a fall from a horse, others declare him to have been poisoned by one of his wives. [30] I judged him consumptive. Shortly after my departure he was upon the point of death, and ...
— First footsteps in East Africa • Richard F. Burton

... young fisher-lads when they took to dram-drinking. One of the two remarked: "I wonder now what folly we two old men would commit if we chanced to get intoxicated, say at a funeral." "Well," said the other hoary-headed and infirm octogenarian, "I have no idea what you would do, but I am certain of this, that if I ever got the least bit touched, I would go and make love to the lasses at once." Thereupon the two feeble old fellows skirled a wicked laugh, and nearly gasped out their slim ...
— Literary Tours in The Highlands and Islands of Scotland • Daniel Turner Holmes

... between the repetitions of lovely Peg, on the night when Brogley the broker was paid out. The Captain himself was punctual in his attendance at a church in his own neighbourhood, which hoisted the Union Jack every Sunday morning; and where he was good enough—the lawful beadle being infirm—to keep an eye upon the boys, over whom he exercised great power, in virtue of his mysterious hook. Knowing the regularity of the Captain's habits, Walter made all the haste he could, that he might anticipate his going out; and he made such good speed, that he had the pleasure, on ...
— Dombey and Son • Charles Dickens

... the house a very kind and civil person. Before being an innkeeper he had been in some other line of business, but, on the death of the former proprietor of the inn had married his widow, who was still alive, but being somewhat infirm, lived in a retired part of the house. I have said that he was kind and civil; he was, however, not one of those people who suffer themselves to be made fools of by anybody; he knew his customers, and had a calm clear eye, which would look through a man without seeming to do so. The accommodation ...
— The Romany Rye - A Sequel to 'Lavengro' • George Borrow

... the autumn of the year 1828, that an elderly and infirm gentleman was slowly pacing up and down in a large dining-room. He had apparently finished his dinner, although it was not yet five o'clock, and the descending sun shone bright and warm through the ...
— The Mission; or Scenes in Africa • Captain Frederick Marryat

... controuled; and the fainter that cruel comparison becomes betwixt our own subjection, and the freedom, or even dominion of another." But, at best, the comforts of slaves must be precarious. Here it is not uncommon to give a slave his freedom, when he is too old or too infirm to work; that is, to turn him out of doors to beg or starve. A few days ago, as a party of gentlemen were returning from a pic nic, they found a poor negro woman lying in a dying state, by the side of the road. The English gentlemen applied to their Portuguese companions ...
— Journal of a Voyage to Brazil - And Residence There During Part of the Years 1821, 1822, 1823 • Maria Graham

... composed of a bamboo lance, a bow of the palm tree, and poisoned arrows. Their food consists of roots, of fruits, and of the products of the chase; the flesh they eat nearly raw; and they live in tribes composed of from fifty to sixty individuals. During the day, the old men, the infirm, and the children, remain near a large fire, while the others are engaged in hunting; when they have a sufficiency of food to last for some days, they remain round their fire, and sleep pell-mell ...
— Adventures in the Philippine Islands • Paul P. de La Gironiere

... Mr. Balfour in his letter of recommendation had condescended on a great deal of particulars, and never a word of any sister in the case. I could see my Dutchman was extremely suspicious; and viewing me over the rims of a great pair of spectacles—he was a poor, frail body, and reminded me of an infirm rabbit—he began ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 11 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... disgruntled military chiefs found a willing leader in the minister of war, General Desiderio Arias, a chronic revolutionist from Monte Cristi, who had for years used the popularity of Jimenez as a cloak for his own aspirations. The president, aged and infirm, was unable to meet the situation with energy, and disinclined ...
— Santo Domingo - A Country With A Future • Otto Schoenrich

... But surely Olympia and Mrs. Sprague must be able to tell, and tell decisively, the circumstances in the tragedy. She would go to them. She owed this to the living; she owed it still more imperatively to the dead. She had not seen Olympia since her return. Mrs. Sprague had been too infirm to see her when she called. But she would not heed rebuffs now. In such a cause, on such a mission, she would have stood at the Sprague door a suppliant until even the obstinacy of her father would have relented. On her way across the square she saw Merry coming from the post. She ...
— The Iron Game - A Tale of the War • Henry Francis Keenan

... Lord Macaulay has reproduced the charges, but reversed, most unjustly, the acquittals. His record occupies a large space in American history, and he is reverenced for having established a great colony on the basis of brotherly love. Poor and infirm, he ...
— English Literature, Considered as an Interpreter of English History - Designed as a Manual of Instruction • Henry Coppee

... one on each side of the house. Their father's elder brother had been a man-at-arms, having preferred a stirring life to the Forest, and had fought in the last surges of the Wars of the Roses. Having become disabled and infirm, he had taken advantage of a corrody, or right of maintenance, as being of kin to a benefactor of Hyde Abbey at Winchester, to which Birkenholt some generations back had presented a few roods of land, in right of which, one descendant at a time might be maintained in the Abbey. ...
— The Armourer's Prentices • Charlotte M. Yonge

... them. Savage declared that they should trust, also, to such common sense as the Lord had given them. From his certain knowledge, the company, containing as it did so large a number of the aged and infirm, of women and children, could not cross the mountains thus late in the season without much suffering, sickness, and death. He was overruled and rebuked for want of faith. “Brethren and sisters,” he replied, “what I have said I know ...
— The Great Salt Lake Trail • Colonel Henry Inman

... sun shone in brightly upon a room, in one of those pleasant villas which abound in the suburbs of London. A party were assembled at breakfast—an old, infirm man, and his son and daughter. The old man was Mr. Leicester, and the other two were Raymond and Madge. Their father had come back to them, broken down in health and spirits. Raymond met him accidentally ...
— The Boy Artist. - A Tale for the Young • F.M. S.

... as my brother Eldred and Earl Algar and their brave companions died at their posts in the field of battle, so I am prepared to die here where God has placed me. I shall retain here with me only a few of the most aged and infirm monks, too old to fly or to support the hardships of the life of a hunted fugitive in the fens; together with some of the children who have fled here, and who, too, could not support such a life. It may be that when the fierce Danes arrive and find ...
— The Dragon and the Raven - or, The Days of King Alfred • G. A. Henty

... Scaevola filled successively most of the important offices of the State, and was for many years, and until death, a member of the college of Augurs. He was eminent for his legal learning, and to a late and infirm old age was still consulted in questions of law, never refusing to receive clients at any moment after daylight. But while he was regarded as foremost among the jurists of his time, he professed himself less thoroughly versed in the laws relating to mortgages than two of his coevals, to whom he ...
— De Amicitia, Scipio's Dream • Marcus Tullius Ciceronis

... amid the glorious scenery of my father-land? The hope alone of a happier future, which would have been mine but for this affliction! Oh! I could span the world were I only free from this! I feel that my youth is only now commencing. Have I not always been an infirm creature? For some time past my bodily strength has been increasing, and it is the same with my mental powers. I feel, though I cannot describe it, that I daily approach the object I have in view, in which alone can your Beethoven live. No rest for him!—I know of none but in sleep, and I do grudge ...
— Beethoven's Letters 1790-1826, Volume 1 of 2 • Lady Wallace

... pages. Adonais is an elegy after the manner of Moschus, on a foolish young man, who, after writing some volumes of very weak, and, in the greater part, of very indecent poetry, died some time since of a consumption: the breaking down of an infirm constitution having, in all probability, been accelerated by the discarding his neck cloth, a practice of the cockney poets, who look upon it as essential to genius, inasmuch as neither Michael Angelo, Raphael or Tasso are supposed to have worn those antispiritual ...
— Early Reviews of English Poets • John Louis Haney

... beggars to be seen about the streets in Paris, and when the chaise stopped for fresh horses, only two or three old and infirm people surrounded it and solicited charity, whereas formerly the beggars used to assemble in hundreds. I did not see a single pair of sabots (wooden-shoes) in France this time. The table of the peasants is also better supplied than it was ...
— A Trip to Paris in July and August 1792 • Richard Twiss

... New England states with their so-called "missions for the deaf." These are associations, composed in great part of the deaf and engaged in various forms of mission work, and to them state funds are granted to aid the aged, infirm and helpless deaf. By this plan Maine is said to have been without a deaf-mute pauper in ten years. The amounts allowed, however, for this purpose are not large, being $200 a year in Maine and $150 in New Hampshire.[85] ...
— The Deaf - Their Position in Society and the Provision for Their - Education in the United States • Harry Best

... do," said Mrs. Grimes. "If we kept a carriage I would never ride up alone from the station or for pleasure. I would always find some poor or infirm person to go with me. How people can be so mean about their horses and carriages as some rich people are ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume IX (of X) • Various



Words linked to "Infirm" :   decrepit, rickety, infirmity, feeble, weakly, sapless, frail, irresolute, debile



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