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Tangent   Listen
adjective
Tangent  adj.  Touching; touching at a single point; specifically (Geom.) Meeting a curve or surface at a point and having at that point the same direction as the curve or surface; said of a straight line, curve, or surface; as, a line tangent to a curve; a curve tangent to a surface; tangent surfaces.
Tangent plane (Geom.), a plane which touches a surface in a point or line.
Tangent scale (Gun.), a kind of breech sight for a cannon.
Tangent screw (Mach.), an endless screw; a worm.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Tangent" Quotes from Famous Books



... it was my fault," admitted Parmalee. "Mr. Drew accidentally knocked my cane out of my hand, and I flew off at a tangent and was nasty about ...
— Doubloons—and the Girl • John Maxwell Forbes

... a tangent. "By next winter, with everything hummin' an' shipshape, what's the matter with us makin' a visit to Carmel? It'll be slack time for you with the vegetables, an' I'll be ...
— The Valley of the Moon • Jack London

... to thank me and our suit, for our visit; not Countess Rudolf's kindness, as you may perhaps suppose)—"and a pretty old suit it is by this time! for I was young, a mere child, in fact, when it began, ha, ha!—By the way," she continued, flying off at a tangent, "they advised us to put an end to the suit by arranging a match between me and Karpathy. I was young then, as I have said—a mere child, ha, ha!—but I would not entertain the idea, ha, ha! I made a mistake, no doubt; for how rich should I not have been now, a good partie, eh!" (i.e. ...
— A Hungarian Nabob • Maurus Jokai

... tangent, "to see Peter Auber, at the India House," or, "could not wait an instant; they were to meet Josh: ...
— A Love Story • A Bushman

... should need some further diagrams to make it quite clear. Nor is it worth while to go into the description of various minor points of refinement about the gun mounting, such as the very exposed long tangent scale seen in the figure, by which the elevation or depression is read off, nor the still more exposed and rather ricketty arrangement by which the rear sight is arranged to rise and fall with the gun, and allowance for dispart avoided. The recoil of the gun ...
— Scientific American, Vol.22, No. 1, January 1, 1870 • Various

... conclusion the poet denies. The philosopher, to whom a sense-impression is a mere needle-prick, useful only as it starts his thoughts off on a tangent from it to the separate world of ideas, is not unnaturally misled by the poet's total absorption in the world of sense. But the poet is thus absorbed, not, as the philosopher implies, because he denies, or ignores, the existence of ideas, but because he cannot conceive of disembodied ideas. Walter ...
— The Poet's Poet • Elizabeth Atkins

... therefore, try to dodge the question at issue by leading their opponents off on a tangent. The real question, free-love, will, however, by no means be forgotten by us until the Socialists have been shown up thoroughly. Since the conspirators against family life are so fond of harping on the matter of prostitution, with a view to drawing critics away from attacking their doctrine of free-love, ...
— The Red Conspiracy • Joseph J. Mereto

... greater difficulty: the leader refuses the ribbon laid before him; the cut end makes him distrustful. Failing to see the regular, uninterrupted road, he slants off to the right or left, he escapes at a tangent. If I try to interfere and to bring him back to the path of my choosing, he persists in his refusal, shrivels up, does not budge, and soon the whole procession is in confusion. We will not insist: the method is a poor one, very wasteful of effort ...
— The Wonders of Instinct • J. H. Fabre

... of the curve, fig. 70, at a distance x [v.04 p.0556] from the vertex, the horizontal component of the resultant (tangent to the curve) will be unaltered; the vertical component V will be simply the sum of the loads between O and F, or wx. In the triangle FDC, let FD be tangent to the curve, FC vertical, and DC horizontal; ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Part 3 - "Brescia" to "Bulgaria" • Various

... flew past Morse and buried itself in a log. Next instant, clinging with both hands to Whaley's wrist, Jessie found herself being tossed to and fro as the man struggled to free his arm. Flung at a tangent against the wall, she fell at the foot of ...
— Man Size • William MacLeod Raine

... the points of the compass, P S and P R. Draw the circumscribing parallelogram, G L H E M, whose sides are respectively parallel to P S and P R. Join L M. By the conditions of this problem, the path must somewhere cut the circle E D F; and since L M cuts L H, which is a tangent to it, it is clear it must cut every path—such as a a, parallel to L H, or to P R—that cuts the circle. Similarly, the same line, L M, must cut every path parallel to P S, such as b b. Now if L M cuts every ...
— The Art of Travel - Shifts and Contrivances Available in Wild Countries • Francis Galton

... a tangent when I reached that point of my reflection. I had found myself involved in the Banks's drama, but what hope had I of ever seeing them again after the next day? What, moreover, was the great thing I was called upon to do? I had decided only an hour or two ...
— The Jervaise Comedy • J. D. Beresford

... low to avoid the bullets he sped at a tangent in the opposite direction, for the timber of Wheeling Hill. The Indians afoot could not catch him, no bullet caught him; he would make it—he would make it; there he goes, up the hill. ...
— Boys' Book of Frontier Fighters • Edwin L. Sabin

... wheel was then mounted on the driving-shaft of an Elbs gravity motor and set in motion. Electrical connections and interruptions were made by contact with the edge of a platinum slip placed at an inclination to the disc's tangent, and so as to bear lightly on the passing teeth or surfaces. The changes in form of a mercury globule, consequent on the adhesion of the liquid to the passing teeth, made it impossible to use the ...
— Harvard Psychological Studies, Volume 1 • Various

... believing that she could turn off so suddenly at a complete tangent, spoke to her once or twice but got no other answer than a long, contented sigh. He stood for a little while trying to make out her outline in the dim corner of the room. Then he tiptoed out to the hall, possessed himself of a warm motor-rug, returned with it and laid it gently ...
— Who Cares? • Cosmo Hamilton

... wriggling, sliding, and darting with incredible dexterity through each other's ranks; and the pattern was a cross, a tricolor. Then they wheeled round the circle that was and was not their goal, and did it all over again; but instead of intersecting at the center circle they struck off there at a tangent, and the pattern, blue by blue divided from white by white, and all red-flecked, was two wide V's set point to point, a pattern that ran away and vanished as each thread, returning, wheeled round the circle whence the other ...
— The Combined Maze • May Sinclair

... at least, I should admire them immensely," remonstrated Vixen, "if I could see them in their native country. But I don't know that I have ever thoroughly appreciated them in a hothouse, hanging from the roof, and tumbling on to one's nose, or shooting off their long sprays at a tangent into awkward corners. I'm afraid I like the bluebells and foxgloves in our enclosures ever so much better. I have seen the banks in New Park one sheet of vivid blue with hyacinths, one blaze of crimson with foxgloves; and then there are the long green ...
— Vixen, Volume II. • M. E. Braddon

... he could recover at this thunderbolt of Gallicism, Denys went triumphant off at a tangent, and stigmatized all monks as hypocrites. "Do but look at them, how they creep about and cannot eye ...
— The Cloister and the Hearth • Charles Reade

... all original. I claim the sole credit of it. Father and mother both saints. I am a moral tangent, flying off between them. Well, we are ...
— Ernest Linwood - or, The Inner Life of the Author • Caroline Lee Hentz

... trying to keep his health in a passable condition. I have had positions of some importance handed to me, which I discharged with eminent satisfaction to all concerned until I got ready to go off at some new tangent. If I did not imagine myself in the actual embrace of some grave physical or mental disease, I feared that something would in the near future attack me; and that brings me to the main topic of ...
— Confessions of a Neurasthenic • William Taylor Marrs

... pavimentis equitantes undique turmas? proh pudor! o mores, o tempora! forsitan olim exercens operam curvo Moderator aratro inveniet mixtis capitum fragmenta galeris relliquias pugnae, et mentem mortalia tangent. me sacer Aegidius Musarum fana colentem aegide defendit, perque ignea tela, per hostes incolumem vexitque ...
— Lyra Frivola • A. D. Godley

... displeasure as he saw Clarissa serving the first course, but he quickly concealed these emotions and proceeded to plunge into an animated conversation with his guests. Indeed, it assumed the character of a monologue in which he frequently adverted to the weather, to be off on a tangent the next moment on a discussion of finance, politics, sociology, on which subjects, however, he was far from showing the positiveness and fixed opinion that he did while descanting upon the weather. In all the subjects he touched upon, he exhibited a certain skill ...
— The Strange Adventures of Mr. Middleton • Wardon Allan Curtis

... of a tree that had torn father from the stern of the motor boat," continued Polly Jarley. "It may have been a big root of the same tree, under water, that had proved the finish of the boat. For nobody ever saw the Bright Eyes again. She just ran off at a tangent, into the middle of the lake, somewhere, we ...
— Wyn's Camping Days - or, The Outing of the Go-Ahead Club • Amy Bell Marlowe

... gusts of wind, or injuries, as possible. In a ship of war it should be below the lowest battery or gun-deck. Light should have access to the back of the tube, to admit of setting the index so as to have its lower edge a tangent to the surface of the mercury—the eye being on the same level, which is known by the back and front edges of the index being in one line with the mercury surface. White paper or card will reflect light for setting the vernier correctly. The height of the cistern above or below the ship's water-line ...
— Barometer and Weather Guide • Robert Fitzroy

... too great a temptation for my friend's temperament, and the very theater for the full display of his magnificent voice; and naturally, this afternoon, off he set at a tangent, interrupting the current of his sermon by extemporaneous bursts of warning, entreaty and exhortation. Here is something like his discourse—yet done by me in a subdued tone—as, I repeat, are most extravaganzas of the ecclesiastical and spiritual sort, ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume VII. (of X.) • Various

... generally known. As it was the instrument most used during the six centuries which followed, it is worthy of close study. In shape it much resembled a small square piano without frame or legs. The strings were of brass, struck by a wedge made of the same metal which was called a tangent. It was capable of soft tones only, but they were very sweet and melancholy. The elder Bach loved this instrument. He did not take kindly to the piano which was about to supplant his beloved clavichord. ...
— How the Piano Came to Be • Ellye Howell Glover

... conservative stock, and Beatrix and Bobby had been the first of the Danes to break down the barriers of their own exclusive set. To be sure, he realized that in a city like New York it was quite possible for circles of equal choiceness to exist tangent to each other, yet in mutual ignorance of one another; but his years abroad in slower-moving countries had not prepared him for the countless agile performers clambering up and down over the social trapeze. In his father's day, ...
— The Dominant Strain • Anna Chapin Ray

... that the factional difference, which had come to the surface to breathe in his own and Elmer Wiggins' remarks, might find over-heated expression in the mouth of his twin if once Tave's ire should be aroused. But his brother gave no heed and, much to Augustus' relief, went off at a tangent. ...
— Flamsted quarries • Mary E. Waller

... too terrific for these to hold to their connection. The laws of the universe forbade it. Napoleon Bonaparte de Neville lost his hold as she crashed into the sorghum patch. George Washington Marlborough tripped over an irrigation ditch, and soared away at a tangent, like a sputtering remnant of a burnt-out world. Don Juan San Diego went the wrong side of a mulberry tree, and the lasso parted with a snap. He never stopped until his momentum carried him through the slats of ...
— The Busted Ex-Texan and Other Stories • W. H. H. Murray

... I had decided had to be approached by a somewhat sharp curve in the line, and in laying this out with the theodolite I experienced considerable difficulty, as for some reason or other I could not make the last peg on the curve come anywhere near the tangent point where the curve should link up with the straight. I repeated the whole operation time after time, but always with the same result. Eventually I came to the conclusion that there must be some mistake ...
— The Man-eaters of Tsavo and Other East African Adventures • J. H. Patterson

... none in common arithmetic. After all, the imagination ought not to be startled any more at so many orders of infinites than at the so well-known proposition, viz., that curve lines may always be made to pass between a circle and a tangent; or at that other, namely, that matter is divisible in infinitum. These two truths have been demonstrated many years, and are no less incomprehensible than the things ...
— Letters on England • Voltaire

... to extremes, Mart. What can happen? Even if gravitation should be nullified, I would rise only slowly, heading south the angle of our latitude—that's thirty-nine degrees—away from the perpendicular. I couldn't shoot off on a tangent, as some of these hot-heads have been claiming. Inertia would make me keep pace, approximately, with the earth in its rotation. I would rise slowly—only as fast as the tangent departs from the curvature of the earth's surface. I haven't figured out how fast that is, but it must ...
— Skylark Three • Edward Elmer Smith

... as though suddenly endowed with life, start forward, and, glancing at the Fledgling, saw that she had made a tangent course to the wreck in order that the boat could be pulled outward from it and away. Dan knew in an instant that they had lashed the line to the stern bitts and had taken the desperate chance, the only chance, of making the tug pull her lifeboat from danger. Could the little line ...
— Dan Merrithew • Lawrence Perry

... She put her hands over her face, but there were no tears. "He kissed the earth, he was so happy. When did he stop being happy? What made him stop?... I wonder if there are any snakes here?—Oh, I must think what to do!" Again her mind flew off at so violent a tangent that she felt dizzy. "I didn't tell Mary what to have for dinner.... He gave her his coat, that time when the boat upset.... She was all painted, he said so." She picked three strands of grass and began to braid them ...
— The Vehement Flame • Margaret Wade Campbell Deland

... would be built. Some settlement is to be expected in almost any soil, and because of horizontal thrusts there is also a tendency for arch abutments to rotate. It is this tendency which opens up cracks in spandrels of arches, and makes the assumption of a fixed tangent at the springing line, commonly made by the elastic ...
— Some Mooted Questions in Reinforced Concrete Design • Edward Godfrey

... of skylight, the greatest stumbling-block has hitherto been, that, in accordance with the law of Brewster, which makes the index of refraction the tangent of the polarising angle, the reflection which produces perfect polarisation would require to be made in air upon air; and indeed this led many of our most eminent men, Brewster himself among the number, to entertain the idea of aerial molecular reflection. ...
— Fragments of science, V. 1-2 • John Tyndall

... at a tangent to a certain issue troubling his legal conscience. He had not wavered in the usual assumption of omniscience, but he was by no means sure that he had given right advice. Well! Without that power to decide and hold ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... not stop to describe the progress of the attack; suffice it that it was as successful as could have been wished, and that Seaforth was referred back again to the lady. The happy lover was off at a tangent; the botanical party was soon overtaken; and the arm of Caroline, whom a vain endeavor to spell out the Linnaean name of a daffy-down-dilly had detained a little in the rear of the others, was soon ...
— Humorous Ghost Stories • Dorothy Scarborough

... by-and-by it ceased altogether, and Jeff crept forward with a real or feigned uncertainty. Suddenly he stopped. A voice called, "Heigh, there!" and the boy turned and fled, crashing through the underbrush at a tangent, with his dog at ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... inside as well as out, a noble place—a house in which you incontinently lost yourself if ever you were so rash as to attempt to penetrate its mysteries alone; a house in which no one room had any sympathy with another, every chamber running off at a tangent into an inner chamber, and through that down some narrow staircase leading to a door which, in its turn, led back into that very part of the house from which you thought yourself the furthest; a house that could never have been planned by any mortal architect, ...
— Lady Audley's Secret • Mary Elizabeth Braddon

... screwed in and soldered, and the yoke, G, which receives the connecting rod pin, is screwed into the head. The connecting rod, H, is of steel with brass ends. The lower end, which receives the crank pin, is split, and provided with a tangent screw for taking up wear. The crank pin is secured in the crank disk, I, by a nut on the back. The eccentric rod, J, is of steel, screwed at its lower end into an eccentric strap of cast or wrought iron, which surrounds the ...
— Scientific American, Volume XLIII., No. 25, December 18, 1880 • Various

... perspective view of this apparatus is shown in the tangent galvanometer. (See Index.) The outside band, E, is made of thick paper, 1 in. wide, and with such a diameter that it just fits around the glass. In this model, the glass from an old alarm-clock was used, it being 4 in. in diameter. ...
— How Two Boys Made Their Own Electrical Apparatus • Thomas M. (Thomas Matthew) St. John

... clicks with the tongue, they rewarded me with a disconcerting stare, and then began dragging the plow. As long as I held the pole straight the share cut its way evenly through the mold, but occasionally, owing to my inadvertence, it would go off at a tangent or curve quite out of the ground; and whenever this happened the horses would stop, turn round and stare at me, then, touching their noses together seem to exchange ideas on the subject. When the first furrow was finished, they did not double back, as I expected, ...
— A Crystal Age • W. H. Hudson

... is afforded you, Virginia, for mental discipline. I can see that Miss Kingsley has taken a fancy to you. She is not a person who goes off at a tangent. She must have discerned capabilities for culture in you, or she would never have invited you to one of her entertainments. To you, who are accustomed to society fine speeches that mean nothing, it will probably occur that she is asking you on my account. ...
— A Romantic Young Lady • Robert Grant

... seeds is very neat. (Pat. 167,297.) See Fig. 32. That part of the machine with which we have to do consists essentially of a horizontal revolving disk. The mixed grains are cast on this disk, pass to the edge, and are hurled off at a tangent. Suppose at A. Each particle is immediately acted on by three forces. For all particles of the same size and having the same velocity the resistance of the air may be taken the same, that is, proportional to the area presented. The acceleration of gravity ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 613, October 1, 1887 • Various

... fly off at a tangent. It is a perfectly natural thing to speak of. Hardly anybody ...
— 'Laramie;' - or, The Queen of Bedlam. • Charles King

... was a peculiarity. Its central part was not timbered, but open, and covered only with a smooth sward of gramma-grass. It was, in fact, a glade, nearly circular in shape, and about a hundred yards in diameter. On one side of this glade the river impinged, its bank being almost a tangent line to it. Here there was a gap in the timber, so that out of the glade could be obtained a view of the bottom on the other side of the stream. Diametrically opposite to this gap another opening, of an avenue-like form, led out into the adjacent plain, so that the grove was in ...
— The White Chief - A Legend of Northern Mexico • Mayne Reid

... to the Second Law of Motion and the Parallelogram of Forces, instead of the earth going off at a tangent in the direction of A E, it will take a mean path in the direction of A B, its path being curved instead of being a ...
— Aether and Gravitation • William George Hooper

... WILL think about Sleep. I am determined to think (this is the way I went on) about Sleep. I must hold the word Sleep, tight and fast, or I shall be off at a tangent in half a second. I feel myself unaccountably straying, already, into Clare Market. Sleep. It would be curious, as illustrating the equality of sleep, to inquire how many of its phenomena are common to all classes, to all degrees ...
— Reprinted Pieces • Charles Dickens

... room to do this, and as he paused on the threshold there was a sudden crash. Part of the air pump seemed to fly off at a tangent, and a second later had smashed down on the Cardite motor. This stopped in an instant, and the projectile began falling. Fortunately it was but a short distance above the moon's surface, and came down with a jar, which did not ...
— Lost on the Moon - or In Quest Of The Field of Diamonds • Roy Rockwood

... holding a hand of Nancy between his cheek and the pillow—with intervals of silence and blithe speech. His disordered mind, it appeared, was still pursuing its unfortunate tangent. ...
— The Seeker • Harry Leon Wilson

... the Peel Administration of course lie outside the province of this monograph; they have already been told with insight and vigour in a companion volume, and the temptation to wander at a tangent into the history of the Queen's reign—especially with Lord John out of office—must be resisted in deference to the exigencies of space. In the Peel Cabinet the men who had revolted under Melbourne, with the exception of ...
— Lord John Russell • Stuart J. Reid

... to occupy my mind at Trenby—except soup jellies. So it would just go running round and round in circles—with the memory of all I've missed as the pivot of the circle. I'm sure Maryon will at least be able to stop me from thinking in circles. He's always flying off at a tangent—and naturally I shall have to go ...
— The Moon out of Reach • Margaret Pedler

... of age; and her father's small legacy gave her a measure of independence. But how could one set about getting married in the face of open opposition? And—how keep the truth from Roy? Or tone it down, so that he would not go off at a tangent straightaway? ...
— Far to Seek - A Romance of England and India • Maud Diver

... the course of the hunted fox had lain directly homeward, down the valley; but now the turnpike road making a sudden turn crossed his line at right angles, while another narrower road coming in at a tangent, went off to the south-westward in the direction of the bold projection, which I had learned to recognize as Rocky Hill; over the high fence into the road; well performed, gallant horses! And now they check for a moment, puzzling about on ...
— Warwick Woodlands - Things as they Were There Twenty Years Ago • Henry William Herbert (AKA Frank Forester)

... often did freakish things. There had been a man recently discharged from the General as convalescent, who had been shot in the shoulder, and the bullet, striking the collar-bone, had taken a curious tangent, following up the muscle of the neck and lodging just beneath the ear. In that case there had been the external evidence of the bullet's location. In this case there was no such evidence ...
— The Ridin' Kid from Powder River • Henry Herbert Knibbs

... kindness, said to me, "I could, from this moment, consider the examination at an end. I will, however, for my own pleasure, ask you two more questions. What are the relations of a curved line to the straight line that is a tangent to it?" I looked upon this question as a particular case of the theory of osculations which I had studied in Legrange's "Fonctions Analytiques." "Finally," said the examiner to me, "how do you determine the tension of the various cords of which a funicular machine is composed?" ...
— Biographies of Distinguished Scientific Men • Francois Arago

... all, for the vulgar, indistinguishable from other men. What's the most inveterate mark of men in general? Why the capacity to spend endless time with dull women—to spend it I won't say without being bored, but without minding that they are, without being driven off at a tangent by it; which comes to the same thing. I'm your dull woman, a part of the daily bread for which you pray at church. That covers your tracks more ...
— The Beast in the Jungle • Henry James

... was just well over the crack when she struck a patch of rough ice and yawed suddenly. There was a severe wrench. B.J. and Reddy were prepared for it; but Heady, before he knew what was the matter, had slid off the boat on to the ice and on a long tangent into the crack they had ...
— The Dozen from Lakerim • Rupert Hughes

... vigour; combines homeliness of soul with intensity of imagination; links a great dash of honest turbulence with an infinitude of deep earnestness; tells a man that if he is happy he may shout, that if under a shower of grace he may fly off at a tangent and sing; makes a sinner wince awfully when under the pang of repentance, and orders him to jump right out of his skin for joy the moment he finds peace; gives him a fierce cathartic during conversion, and a rapturous cataplasm in his "reconciliation." Primitive Methodism occupies the same ...
— Our Churches and Chapels • Atticus

... out of him in trying to keep pace with his wife's vagaries. Matrimony had not cured her love for side-streets, short cuts and chance acquaintances, and she was gradually making her husband travel at a similar tangent. When they started to go to church he would find, to his amazement, that they were in the Museum. If they journeyed with a Museum for an objective they were certain to pull up in the Botanic Gardens. A call on a friend ...
— Here are Ladies • James Stephens

... you're a Painted Lady, but you're so pretty!" she smiled, as the streets ran by. Downtown and still downtown the taxi sped, past the Washington Square district, which they had explored together, shooting off at a tangent into the kind of neighbourhood where Bambi had fallen sick at the sights and the filth. They drew up before an old-fashioned house, with dirty steps and windows and curtains. It looked like a better-class citizen on the down grade, beside the neighbouring ...
— Bambi • Marjorie Benton Cooke

... air had the effect of sending the old fellow off at a tangent. His bent was evidently discursive, and all thoughts of his late religious controversy seemed to ...
— Wolfville • Alfred Henry Lewis

... vertical angle, and multiply its natural tangent by the distance between instrument and foot of object; ...
— Getting Gold • J. C. F. Johnson

... their outward lot do not find in life sufficient enjoyment to make it valuable to them, the cause generally is, caring for nobody but themselves."] It is saner, less likely to be veered off on some tangent of morbid ...
— Problems of Conduct • Durant Drake

... away. "I 'ate to 'ear of anybody dyin'," she said. "I never been in a 'ouse before where it's 'appened, an' besides she's been good to me!" Her mind wandered off at a tangent "Any'ow," she said, wiping her eyes, "I done me best. No one can't never say I ain't done me best, an' the best can't ...
— Changing Winds - A Novel • St. John G. Ervine

... of the hospital sent her mind flying off at a tangent. Even the stage gave way for the moment to this new and all-absorbing occupation. Never in her life had she done anything so interesting. The escape from home, the personal contact with all those nice, ...
— Quin • Alice Hegan Rice

... made equal for the lines C and F. In the neighbourhood of 550 mm the tangent to the curve is parallel to the axis of wave-lengths; and the focal length varies least over a fairly large range of colour, therefore in this neighbourhood the colour union is at its best. Moreover, this region of the spectrum ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... you mention, youngster," said he, with a significant twinkle in his eye which made the other two chaplains grin, I could see, at some joke they had between them. "I'll try and call on your father, if I can find time before he leaves Portsmouth. Tell him when you get back, that old Tangent asked after ...
— Crown and Anchor - Under the Pen'ant • John Conroy Hutcheson

... swiftly upward, mile after mile; but the long tangent at which he had started to clear the summit of Katahdin did not prove sufficient, and by and by they found themselves within a very few yards of the ...
— On a Torn-Away World • Roy Rockwood

... and living power by right of Christ's institution and express promise, I go along with them; but I soon discover that by the church they meant the clergy, the hierarchy exclusively, and then I fly off from them in a tangent. ...
— The Christian Life - Its Course, Its Hindrances, And Its Helps • Thomas Arnold

... Sumatra. Between the Andamans and Cape Negrais intervene two small groups, Preparis and Cocos; between the Andamans and Sumatra lie the Nicobar Islands, the whole group stretching in a curve, to which the meridian forms a tangent between Cape Negrais and Sumatra; and though this curved line measures 700 m., the widest sea space is about 91 m. The extreme length of the Andaman group is 219 m. with an extreme width of 32 m. The main part of it consists of a band of five chief islands, ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... case of homogeneous bodies the critical elements have a simple, clear, and precise sense; the critical temperature is that of the single isothermal line which presents a point of inflexion at a horizontal tangent; the critical pressure and the critical volume are the two co-ordinates of this point ...
— The New Physics and Its Evolution • Lucien Poincare

... have done with the present arguments of MR. G. SHADBOLT. He says that the two pictures should have exactly the same range of vision. This I deny: for, were it so, there would be no stereoscopic effect. Let the object be a column: it is evident that a tangent to the left side of the column from the right eye, could not extend so far to the left as a tangent to the left side of the column from the left eye, and vice versa. And it is only by this difference in the two pictures (or, in other words, the range of vision) that our conceptions ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 203, September 17, 1853 • Various

... would as often answer with a pshaw!—and if the subject was started in the fields,—with a hop, skip, and a jump at the end of it; but if close pent up in the social chimney-corner, where the culprit was barricado'd in, with a table and a couple of arm-chairs, and could not so readily fly off in a tangent,—Eugenius would then go on with his lecture upon discretion in words to this purpose, though ...
— The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman • Laurence Sterne

... the coincidences of phrase and thought in Shakspere and Montaigne. Not that such coincidences are the main or the only results to be looked for; rather we may reasonably expect to find Shakspere's thought often diverging at a tangent from that of the writer he is reading, or even directly gainsaying it. But there can be no solid argument as to such indirect influence until we have fully established the direct influence, and this can only be done ...
— Montaigne and Shakspere • John M. Robertson

... arranged the matter peaceably, mollifying Miss Gallifer. Without explaining who Letty was she insisted on her right to remain. If Miss Gallifer was mystified, it was no more than Miss Towell was, or anyone else who touched the situation at a tangent. To that Barbara was indifferent, while Letty ...
— The Dust Flower • Basil King

... if the fact scarcely concerned her, and Lanfear drew a breath of relief in his surprise. He asked, at another tangent: "What made you think I ...
— Between The Dark And The Daylight • William Dean Howells

... tangential wheel (so called because the driving stream of water strikes the wheel at a tangent) is best adapted to situations where the amount of water is limited, and the head is large. Thus, a mountain brook supplying only seven cubic feet of water a minute—a stream less than two-and-a-half inches deep ...
— Electricity for the farm - Light, heat and power by inexpensive methods from the water - wheel or farm engine • Frederick Irving Anderson

... ran Market Street, a bias cut across the city that was to be. Market Street is about all that saved that city from making a checker-board of its ground-plan. Market Street flew off at a tangent and set all the south portion of the town at an angle that is rather a relief than anything else that I know of. Who wants to go on forever up one street and down another, and then across town at right angles, as if life were a treadmill and there were no hope of change until ...
— In the Footprints of the Padres • Charles Warren Stoddard

... his blood beginning to thrill with the anticipation of battle. "I'll give you half. I'm on duty from Fort Churchill, off on a tangent of my own." He did not take his eyes from the slit in the wall as he told Anderson in a hundred words what had happened since his meeting with Bram Johnson. "And with forty cartridges we'll give 'em a taste ...
— The Golden Snare • James Oliver Curwood

... set him off at a tangent. He wondered if this Patricia person could not (tactfully) be induced to take her bath after breakfast, as Agatha did? after he had his? Why, confound the girl, he was not responsible for there being only one bathroom in the house! It was necessary for him to have his bath and be at the Library ...
— The Rivet in Grandfather's Neck - A Comedy of Limitations • James Branch Cabell

... rope itself that he saw out of the corners of his eyes. It was the shadow that had lit upon the wife the year before, happily to lift forever; now it was settling upon the husband; and it rested with Langholm—if it did rest with him—and how could he be sure? His mind was off at a tangent. He was not listening to Steel; without ceremony he interrupted ...
— The Shadow of the Rope • E. W. Hornung

... a tangent for the dark shadow of the trees. At the edge of the timber ensued another long wait, with Rathburn uncommunicative, moodily pacing restlessly back and forth. The horses had another excellent opportunity to rest and the fagged ...
— The Coyote - A Western Story • James Roberts

... it. So he kept silent. Professor Razzler did indeed ask him straight across the table what he thought about the final breaking of the Hindenburg line. But he asked it with that same fierce look from under his bushy eyebrows with which he used to ask Tom to define the path of a tangent, and Tom was rattled at once. He answered something about being afraid that he was not well posted, owing to there being so little chance over there to ...
— The Hohenzollerns in America - With the Bolsheviks in Berlin and other impossibilities • Stephen Leacock

... round and round themselves in the same space of ground. Men who had noticed how very little David's heart had been in his work were amazed to see the reckless courage he displayed. Round and round the mill he flew, keeping the outside stock from flying off at a tangent, and soothing and quieting the beasts nearest to him with his voice. The "run" was over as suddenly as it commenced, and the men, breathless and exhausted, stood around the circle ...
— Winter Evening Tales • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr

... far more diffused than one's personal life. What a pity if this pure morality, in detaching itself impetuously from the earth, whose bright satellite it might be, should fly into the abyss at a tangent, and leave us as much in ...
— Winds Of Doctrine - Studies in Contemporary Opinion • George Santayana

... of oppositional lines has more variety and is therefore more picturesque than the tangent its equivalent. The simplest definition of picturesqueness is variety in unity. The lines of the long road in perspective offer easy conduct for the eye, but it finds a greater interest in threading its way over a track lost, then found, lost and found again. In time ...
— Pictorial Composition and the Critical Judgment of Pictures • Henry Rankin Poore

... jam non domus accipiet te laeta; neque uxor Optima, nec dulces occurrent oscula nati Praeripere, et tacita pectus dulcedine tangent." ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 69, February 22, 1851 • Various

... his occupation of the chair in silence, and the collector plodded off at a tangent in the direction of his next quarry. This appearing to be an old lady, he presently altered his course. With a caution bred of experience, he ...
— Anthony Lyveden • Dornford Yates

... tortures of the damned, and having said all he could about devils and pitchforks and caldrons, he came to a sudden pause—a blank look came into his face, and, looking round the church and seeing the sunlight streaming through the door, his thoughts went off at a tangent. "Now, boys," he said, "if this fine weather continues, I hope you'll be all out in the bog next ...
— The Lake • George Moore

... if it fall obliquely, or even with too great or too little force, drives it perilously wide of its mark. It can recover the safe track only by a sudden and often violent lunge of the opposing racket. The straight course is life, the tangent ...
— Preventable Diseases • Woods Hutchinson

... That is a wise proverb, 'Let well alone.' I hear she visits the sick, and some of them swear by her. If think I'd give her time to take root here; and then she will not be so ready to fly off in a tangent." ...
— Put Yourself in His Place • Charles Reade

... may be, or half completed; however it is, off goes one's brain at a tangent. Scene follows scene, one touching the other; the characters unconsciously fall into shape; the villain takes a ruddy hue; the hero dons a white robe; as for the heroine, who shall say what dyes from Olympia are not hers? A conversation suggests ...
— How I write my novels • Mrs. Hungerford

... own way of getting at things—generally more circuitous than now, though he struck on a tangent sufficiently ...
— The Fortune Hunter • Louis Joseph Vance

... Light Machines Unstable. The Application of Power. The Supporting Surfaces. Area not the Essential Thing. The Law of Gravity. Gravity. Indestructibility of Gravitation. Distance Reduces Gravitational Pull. How Motion Antagonizes Gravity. A Tangent. Tangential Motion Represents Centrifugal Pull. Equalizing the Two Motions. Lift and Drift. Normal Pressure. Head Resistance. Measuring Lift and Drift. Pressure at Different Angles. Difference Between Lift and Drift ...
— Aeroplanes • J. S. Zerbe***

... law doubtless not to be found in any code, nor yet binding through the stern behest of mechanical necessity, but a law which finds definition at every moment, and at every moment also marks a direction of progress, being as it were the shifting tangent to ...
— A New Philosophy: Henri Bergson • Edouard le Roy

... maundering, to a room where no light was. He kneeled before him with a lighted torch of bear's fat and the tendons of the deer, and waving it gently to and fro, sang the ancient rune, until the eye of the Idiot, following the torch at a tangent as it waved, suddenly became fixed upon the flame, when it ceased to move. And the words of the chant ran through Grah's ears, and pierced to the remote parts of his being; and a sickening trouble came upon his face, and the lips ceased ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... bucolic professors used to teach us the mysteries of the Spencerian System for a modest stipend. The humiliation of never knowing "how to hold your pen" did much to send many budding geniuses off on a tangent after grasshopper chirography, but those who endured unto the end acquired the "wrist movement." They all wrote alike. That is to say, they all wrote like the professor, who wrote just like all Spencerian professors. So write the girls in ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Volume 6 - Subtitle: Little Journeys to the Homes of Eminent Artists • Elbert Hubbard

... was done with her, I am much mistaken. Possibly, however, Shakspeare's sarcasm might bear a more general interpretation, and implies that women in an argument seldom meet the true issue presented to them, but are prone to go off at a tangent on some side quibble, and to repel the arguments of their antagonists by the subtlety of their inventions rather than by the cogency of their logic. I appeal to my friend, the sage of Cattaraugus, who has a large knowledge of the customs of the ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. III, No. V, May, 1863 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... shouts of applause wore sent down to them from the spectators on the Quai and the Pont Neuf. Not content with this, they seized on some luckless men who were descending the steps, and clasping them with their powerful right arms, spun them around like so many tops and sent them whizzing off at a tangent. Loud bursts of laughter greeted this performance, and the stout river maidens returned to their dance with ...
— Views a-foot • J. Bayard Taylor

... woman who tried to poison him, nobody but one man—this particular one man—has ever made any attempt to harm the boy. Fanatics, like those Cingalese, cleave to an idea to the end, Mr. Narkom; they don't cast it aside and go off at another tangent. You have heard what Lady Chepstow says the native women told her: the boy was sacred; their priests had commanded them to appease Buddha by doing homage to him until the tooth was found, and the tooth has not been found up to the present day! That means that nothing on earth could change their ...
— Cleek, the Master Detective • Thomas W. Hanshew

... held an enthusiastic debate as to whether the American soldiers should be known as "Sammies" or "Battling Christians." The thought gagged him. He dropped the newspaper, yawned, and let his mind drift off at a tangent. He wondered why Gloria had been late. It seemed so long ago already—he had a pang of illusive loneliness. He tried to imagine from what angle she would regard her new position, what place in her considerations he would continue to hold. The thought acted as a further ...
— The Beautiful and Damned • F. Scott Fitzgerald

... ball of fur in the crotch of a slim forest elm. Presently it uncurled, cautiously; a fluffy ringed tail unfolded; the rounded furry back humped up, and the animal, moving slowly into the tangent foliage of an enormous oak, vanished amid ...
— The Fighting Chance • Robert W. Chambers

... suppose it's what the general run of people think—and do. It's keeping to the rules. It's trotting on the course. It isn't going off at some tangent of your own." ...
— Old Crow • Alice Brown

... you—the balances in your hand. This unstable equilibrium rests upon scales that are in your hands. For the food of opinion, as I began by saying, is the news of the day. I have known many a man go off at a tangent on information that was not reliable. Indeed, that describes the majority of men. The world is held stable by the man who waits for the next day to find out whether the report was true ...
— New York Times Current History; The European War, Vol 2, No. 3, June, 1915 - April-September, 1915 • Various

... Egyptians also constructed pyramids of a certain slope by means of arithmetical calculations based on a certain ratio, se-qeṭ, namely the ratio of half the side of the base to the height, which is in fact equivalent to the co-tangent of the angle of slope. The use of this ratio implies the notion of similarity of figures, especially triangles. The Egyptians knew, too, that a triangle with its sides in the ratio of the numbers 3, 4, 5 is right-angled, and used the fact as a means of drawing right angles. ...
— The Legacy of Greece • Various

... manner in which I had picked up the Irish language, and drew from thence the conclusion that I was not fitted by nature to cut a respectable figure at an English university. "He will fly off in a tangent," said he, "and, when called upon to exhibit his skill in Greek, will be found proficient in Irish; I have observed the poor lad attentively, and really do not know what to make of him; but I am afraid he will never make a churchman!" And I have no doubt that my excellent father was right, both ...
— Lavengro - The Scholar, The Gypsy, The Priest • George Borrow

... points by means of which it was drawn in the first instance. We start with nothing but the ellipse itself. We have to find the points of sight and distance, the base, &c. Let us start with base AB, a horizontal tangent to the curve extending beyond it on either side. From A and B draw two other tangents so that they shall touch the curve at points such as TT' a little above the transverse diameter and on a level with each other. Produce these tangents till they meet at point ...
— The Theory and Practice of Perspective • George Adolphus Storey

... toward me. But he now appeared wholly incapable of that degree of intellectual concentration which could enable him to examine a subject to its close. He would begin to talk with me seriously enough, and with a due solemnity, about the suit against him; but, in a tangent, he would dart off to the consideration of some trifle, some household matter, or petty affair, of which, at any other time, he must have known that his hearers had no wish to hear. Poor Julia confirmed the conjectures ...
— Confession • W. Gilmore Simms

... but a theological tangent. A great artist has bequeathed us his beliefs,—drawn and painted in many works, with every patient, virile, expressive power at his command. There has been enough and to spare of shrieks or scoffs. A little humility and a little ...
— Holbein • Beatrice Fortescue

... ladies never fall in love with the persons they are expected to, but invariably go off on an unknown tangent of their own, in obedience to the same law of Nature, perhaps, which causes an unusually tall girl to lose her heart to a very diminutive—though generally ...
— A Queen's Error • Henry Curties

... the pink-and-silver morning Margaret went back to her work, Gardley riding by her side, and Bud riding at a discreet distance behind, now and then going off at a tangent after a stray cottontail. It was wonderful what good sense Bud seemed to have ...
— A Voice in the Wilderness • Grace Livingston Hill

... emotionality. The tone was produced by a blow against the string, delivered by a bit of brass set in the farther end of the key. The action was that of a direct lever, and the bit of brass, which was called the tangent, also acted as a bridge and measured off the segment of string whose vibration produced the desired tone. It was therefore necessary to keep the key pressed down so long as it was desired that the tone should sound, a fact which must be kept in mind if one would understand ...
— How to Listen to Music, 7th ed. - Hints and Suggestions to Untaught Lovers of the Art • Henry Edward Krehbiel

... of thoughts, that I never knew before existed. Portions of my being stirred that had never stirred before, and things ancient and inexplicable rose to the surface and beckoned me to follow. I felt as though I were about to fly off, at some immense tangent, into an outer space hitherto unknown even in dreams. And so singular was the result produced upon me that I was uncommonly glad to anchor my mind, as well as my eyes, upon the masterful personality of the doctor at my side, for there, I realised, I could draw always upon ...
— Three John Silence Stories • Algernon Blackwood

... TANGENT-SCALE. Fitted to the breech of a gun for admeasuring its elevation; it is a sliding pillar marked with degrees and their subdivisions (according to the distance between the sights on the gun), and bears a notch or other sight on its head. With rifled guns ...
— The Sailor's Word-Book • William Henry Smyth

... myself. I agree that man is pre-eminently a creative animal, predestined to strive consciously for an object and to engage in engineering—that is, incessantly and eternally to make new roads, WHEREVER THEY MAY LEAD. But the reason why he wants sometimes to go off at a tangent may just be that he is PREDESTINED to make the road, and perhaps, too, that however stupid the "direct" practical man may be, the thought sometimes will occur to him that the road almost always does lead SOMEWHERE, and that the destination it leads to is less ...
— Notes from the Underground • Feodor Dostoevsky

... I knew that I should be reproached with indolence and even cowardice. I knew that I should be supposed to be one of those consistently impracticable people who insist on going off at a tangent when the straight course lies before them. That I should be relegated to the class of persons who have failed in life through some deep-seated defect of will. The worst of a serious decision of the kind is that, whichever step one takes, one is sure to be blamed. ...
— From a College Window • Arthur Christopher Benson

... seizure of religious enthusiasm held sway over her. She spoke of endowing a hospital, of doing church work among the "slums" of the city. But no sooner had her friends readjusted their points of view to suit this new development than she was off upon another tangent, and was one afternoon seen at the races, with Mrs. Gretry, in her showiest victoria, wearing a great flaring hat and ...
— The Pit • Frank Norris

... kind of you—to run the risk of Senator Burleigh going off at a tangent," said Miss Carter, sharply. "By the way, you cannot deny that you have given him encouragement; you have neither eyes nor ears for any one ...
— Senator North • Gertrude Atherton

... legally speaking nolens volens. When my brothers and I emerged at last, we could just distinguish Flora waiting on the horizon of a braeland, her figure well thrown out against the sky, her pony curveting round and round, which was Flora's pet pony's way of keeping still. Away at a tangent from the proper line of march, Archie on his steed was being rapidly whirled. As soon as we came within sight of our sister, we observed her making signs in Archie's direction and concluded to follow. Having duly signalled her wishes, Flora disappeared ...
— Our Home in the Silver West - A Story of Struggle and Adventure • Gordon Stables

... the image of Victor Stott grew to a fearful grotesqueness. It loomed as a threat over the community and the church. Crashaw quoted, inaccurately, statistics of the growth of lunacy, and then went off at a tangent into the theory of possession by evil spirits. Since his rejection of science, he had lapsed into certain forms of mediaevalism, and he now began to dally with the theory of a malign incarnation which he elaborated until it became an article of ...
— The Wonder • J. D. Beresford

... the magnet of my heart was here," he answered half-playfully, half-tenderly. "When that is gone, I shall be likely to fly off in a tangent again." ...
— The Award of Justice - Told in the Rockies • A. Maynard Barbour

... on the rest so that the level is above the wood and the cutting edge is tangent to the circle or surface of the cylinder. The handle should ...
— A Course In Wood Turning • Archie S. Milton and Otto K. Wohlers

... philosophic breadth of view with which he regarded his subject at any time, and the desire of getting to the bottom of each subsidiary problem arising from it, that made him for many years seem constantly to spring aside from his own subject, to fly off at a tangent from the line in which he was assured of unrivalled success did he but devote to it his undivided powers. But he was prepared to endure the charge of desultoriness with equanimity. In part, he was still studying the whole field of biological ...
— The Life and Letters of Thomas Henry Huxley Volume 1 • Leonard Huxley

... the climbing grade, And coast on the tangent mile, While the Driver toys with the throttle-bar, And gathers the ...
— Behind the Arras - A Book of the Unseen • Bliss Carman

... we's all in a whirl down dar at de foot uf de hill, an' no lebel country—nothin' but a leanin'-ober river-bank forty foot high. "Burlman Rennuls, whar you gwine?" Don't know whar. But ober we pitches a-whirlin' [throwing out one of the revolving fists at a tangent]—down we draps into water full forty foot deep, kerslash; de rocks a-pitchin' in arter us thick as hail. [Audience: "Laws-a-marcy!" "Goodness gracious!" "Hoo-weep!" (with a whistle). After an impressive pause the speaker, with an impressive ...
— Burl • Morrison Heady

... enough for her. But what can you do with a girl who throws herself at the heads of ineligibles, and when one trots out an unexceptionable PARTI and does one's best to bring them together, goes off at a tangent and lets the whole thing drop through. You know how it was ...
— Lady Bridget in the Never-Never Land • Rosa Praed

... don't have to get ground up in the hopper like everybody else or shut the door of the industrial squirrel-cage on yourself in order not to starve. Perhaps that'll give some cleverer person the courage to start out on his own tangent." ...
— The Squirrel-Cage • Dorothy Canfield

... people grasped the truth of the appalling situation and awoke from their dream. In the line of the railroad survey that had led to Kingston as straight as you could draw a string, there was now a curve seven miles away, the tangent of which would carry it twelve miles east of the Company town ...
— The Winning of Barbara Worth • Harold B Wright

... bring any. If I had knowed I was coming, I'd 'a' done it. But, Lord! no one ever knows! And there! I have just remembered as I never took leave of that good soul, Miss Sibby! And whatever will she think of me, a-going off at a tangent in this onthankful manner?" meandered the woman, talking partly to her ...
— Her Mother's Secret • Emma D. E. N. Southworth

... it is more interesting, in some ways, not to have everything cut and dried from the start," she went on, striking off at a tangent, with an innate perversity incomprehensible to a mere man. "It prevents a headlong fall into the commonplace: and there is a certain excitement in looking on, so to speak, at one's own personal drama, without feeling quite sure of ...
— The Great Amulet • Maud Diver

... of the tent-poles, Pauthier's text has "trois coulombes de fust de pieces moult bien encuierees," etc. The G. T. has "de leing d'especies mout bien cures," etc. The Crusca, "di spezie molto belle," and Ramusio going off at a tangent, "di legno intagliate con grandissimo artificio e indorate." I believe the translation in the text to indicate the true reading. It might mean camphor-wood, or the like. The tent-covering of tiger-skins is illustrated by a passage in Sanang Setzen, which speaks of a tent covered ...
— The Travels of Marco Polo Volume 1 • Marco Polo and Rustichello of Pisa

... at a tangent, and our knight could not help smiling at the peculiar virulence of his disposition. Sir Launcelot then endeavoured to enter into conversation with his attendant, by asking how long Mr. Distich had resided in the house; but he might ...
— The Adventures of Sir Launcelot Greaves • Tobias Smollett

... needed watching himself." He viewed with some pain the Douglas departure over popular sovereignty; indeed he once declared that had he not been called away from the Senate for quite a time in 1856, Mr. Douglas would never have gone off on this tangent. When asked if Douglas were really a great man, Senator Toombs, in 1860, answered with characteristic heartiness and exaggeration, "There has been but one greater, ...
— Robert Toombs - Statesman, Speaker, Soldier, Sage • Pleasant A. Stovall

... day removes the orient vault, The rustic peasant leaves his humble home, And when the sun with fiercer tangent strikes, Fatigued and parched, he sits him in the shade; Then plods again with hard, laborious toil, Until black night the hemisphere enshrouds. And then he rests. But I must ever chafe At morning, noon-day, evening, and at night. These fiery rays Which stream from those ...
— The Heroic Enthusiasts,(1 of 2) (Gli Eroici Furori) - An Ethical Poem • Giordano Bruno

... first-class scare when the train drew up in the squalid station, where the branch line to Haifa meets the main Hedjaz railway and the two together touch a mean town at a tangent; for a French officer in uniform boarded the train and stalked down the corridors staring hard at everyone. He asked me for a passport, which was sheer bluff, so I asked him in turn for his own authority. He smiled and produced a rubber ...
— Affair in Araby • Talbot Mundy

... Europe, Ishmael? you and the judge? Well, Merlin did start off at a tangent yesterday from Tanglewood. I suppose he is pining after his child, and has taken a sudden freak to rush over and see her. And as you are the staff of his age, of course, he would not think of undertaking so long a journey without the support ...
— Self-Raised • Emma Dorothy Eliza Nevitte Southworth

... at a tangent, ten to one Miss Clare'll be down the next day and set all straight again," was the general verdict on ...
— The Princess of the School • Angela Brazil



Words linked to "Tangent" :   arc tangent, tangential, inverse tangent, straight line, tan, circular function



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