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Touchstone   Listen
noun
Touchstone  n.  
1.
(Min.) Lydian stone; basanite; so called because used to test the purity of gold and silver by the streak which is left upon the stone when it is rubbed by the metal. See Basanite.
2.
Fig.: Any test or criterion by which the qualities of a thing are tried. "The foregoing doctrine affords us also a touchstone for the trial of spirits."
Irish touchstone (Min.), basalt, the stone which composes the Giant's Causeway.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Touchstone" Quotes from Famous Books



... in which little or nothing is done for antiquarian decoration or for local colour; while in his criticism of Mrs. Radcliffe he uses the very term—'melodrama'—and the very distinction—melodrama as opposed to tragedy—which is the touchstone of the novelist. Whatever his success might be, there can be no doubt as to his intentions. He meant his novels, with their richer background and their larger measure of detail, to sacrifice nothing of dramatic truth. La Princesse de Cleves, a professedly ...
— Sir Walter Scott - A Lecture at the Sorbonne • William Paton Ker

... the "sugred" compliment worth the cruel wounds, the cleaving of the heart in twain, that seemed to Shakespear as natural and amusing a reaction as the burlesquing of his heroics by Pistol, his sermons by Falstaff, and his poems by Cloten and Touchstone. ...
— Dark Lady of the Sonnets • George Bernard Shaw

... to the children of the Queen of Spain. "Every difficulty would be removed if there were an appearance of more equality," wrote the Regent to Dubois on the 24th of January, 1718. "I am quite aware that my personal interest does not suffer from this inequality, and that it is a species of touchstone for discovering my friends as well at home as abroad. But I am Regent of France, and I ought to so behave myself that none may be able to reproach me with having thought of nothing but myself. I also owe some consideration to the Spaniards, ...
— A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times - Volume VI. of VI. • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

... profession. The Brentwoods were not rich, as riches are measured in millions; but they lived in their own house in the Back Bay wilderness, moved in Boston's older substantial circle, and, in a world where success, economic or other, is in some sort the touchstone, were many social planes above ...
— The Grafters • Francis Lynde

... thus made the touchstone of Balder's morality. He stood ready to abide by her decision. Her understanding of the case should first be made full; then, if condemned by her look, he would publish his crime to the world, and suffer its penalty. ...
— Idolatry - A Romance • Julian Hawthorne

... contains one of the most finished and beautiful, and at the same time one of the most overwhelming studies of passion in the literature of the world. The tremendous role of Phedre—which, as the final touchstone of great acting, holds the same place on the French stage as that of Hamlet on the English—dominates the piece, rising in intensity as act follows act, and 'horror on horror's head accumulates'. Here, too, Racine has poured out all the wealth of his poetic powers. He has performed the last miracle, ...
— Landmarks in French Literature • G. Lytton Strachey

... repeating to you, that his death was firm and manly, becoming the general tenor of his life, which, but for that gross act of traitorous ingratitude, had been fair and honourable. But what of that? The hypocrite is a saint, and the false traitor a man of honour, till opportunity, that faithful touchstone, proves their metal ...
— Peveril of the Peak • Sir Walter Scott

... suggestions for As You Like It in Thomas Lodge's contemporary novel Rosalynde, but Touchstone and Adam are ...
— Halleck's New English Literature • Reuben P. Halleck

... idiosyncrasies in Yankeedom, there is no doubt of it. We had a long drive to the cars, but there our close companionship, and our acquaintance, too, ended, except that the woman's husband—for she had a husband, some Touchstone, whose 'humor' it was to 'take that no other man would,' came to me, and asked me to put my window down, for his 'wife was sick.' But as I had just observed the good woman munching a bit of mince-pie, I thought that, coming ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 2 No 4, October, 1862 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... is why we conclude with the examination of his method. It is all contained in this: to accept nothing as true except what is evident; to accept as true all that is evident. Descartes therefore made evidence the touchstone of certainty. But mark well the profound meaning of this method: what is it that gives me the assurance of the evidence of such or such an idea? How shall I know that such an idea is really evident to me? Because I see it in perfect ...
— Initiation into Philosophy • Emile Faguet

... if you are not happy." She had many times opened the book in which her mother copied the poems written at intervals during the years, but always would come the feeling of their holding something at which it would be hard to look. To-night, with her new understanding, this wondrous new touchstone, she took them from her trunk with eagerness. She longed now to know the secret of her mother's life; she would know why happiness ...
— The Glory Of The Conquered • Susan Glaspell

... that elegance is inferior to virtue, that the first object of laudable ambition is to obtain a character as a human being, regardless of the distinction of sex; and that secondary views should be brought to this simple touchstone. ...
— A Vindication of the Rights of Woman - Title: Vindication of the Rights of Women • Mary Wollstonecraft [Godwin]

... touchstone of orthodoxy. And when, under the pressure of the evidences, we found ourselves obliged to acknowledge and assert the present and persistent power of God, in the maintenance and in the continued formation ...
— Darwin and Modern Science • A.C. Seward and Others

... name written. The memorandum may refer to some-one else. But that cannot be. Himself is meant. Why should he carry about with him a note of this kind respecting another? This betrayer of treachery, this touchstone of truth, shall off forthwith to Winthrop, and be the antidote to the bane of ...
— The Knight of the Golden Melice - A Historical Romance • John Turvill Adams

... the dog, we see a romantic and monogamous animal, once perhaps as delicate as the cat, at war with impossible conditions. Man has much to answer for; and the part he plays is yet more damnable and parlous than Corin's in the eyes of Touchstone. But his intervention has at least created an imperial situation for the rare surviving ladies. In that society they reign without a rival: conscious queens; and in the only instance of a canine wife-beater that has ever fallen under ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson, Volume 9 • Robert Louis Stevenson

... of the company nor any particular type or system furnishes an index to proper management, what then is the touchstone which indicates good ...
— Shop Management • Frederick Winslow Taylor

... had one positive recommendation;—this was a great appearance of religion. Whether his religion was real, or consisted only in appearance, I shall not presume to say, as I am not possessed of any touchstone which can distinguish the true ...
— The History of Tom Jones, a foundling • Henry Fielding

... The touchstone of that policy is the interest of the United States—the welfare and the freedom of the people of the United States. But nations sink when they see that interest only through a ...
— State of the Union Addresses of Lyndon B. Johnson • Lyndon B. Johnson

... "is an admirable discovery, for it is the most sensitive touchstone of souls, the most intolerable act which the Church has ever imposed on the ...
— En Route • J.-K. (Joris-Karl) Huysmans

... constellation which has gone before us and guided our steps through an age of revolution and reformation. The wisdom of our sages and blood of our heroes have been devoted to their attainment. They should be the creed of our political faith, the text of civic instruction, the touchstone by which to try the services of those we trust; and should we wander from them in moments of error or of alarm, let us hasten to retrace our steps and to regain the road which alone leads to ...
— United States Presidents' Inaugural Speeches - From Washington to George W. Bush • Various

... Socratic "conceptualism," and ready, like Protagoras, to show us how man is the measure of all things and how the individual is the measure of man. The ardour of his intellectual curiosity burns with a clear smokeless flame. He brings back to the touchstone of a sort of distinguished common sense, free from every species of superstition, all those great metaphysical and moral problems which have been too often monopolised by the acrid and technical pedantry of ...
— Suspended Judgments - Essays on Books and Sensations • John Cowper Powys

... I could find that camera!" he cried. "It's the touchstone of the whole thing, mark my words. If it's an accomplice who did this thing, he's got ...
— The Camera Fiend • E.W. Hornung

... on! If you only knew," her lifted eyebrows confessed the tedium of Calcutta small talk. "But why do you say you are lightly esteemed? Surely the public is a touchstone—and you hold the public in the hollow ...
— The Path of a Star • Mrs. Everard Cotes (AKA Sara Jeannette Duncan)

... letter of the text. Such an one is indeed "in a parlous state"; and any boy whose heart first begins to burn within him, who feels his blood kindle and his spirit dilate, his pulse leap and his eyes lighten, over a first study of Shakespeare, may say to such a teacher with better reason than Touchstone said to Corin, "Truly, thou art damned; like an ill-roasted egg, all on one side." Nor could charity itself hope much profit for him from the moving appeal and the pious prayer which temper that severity of sentence—"Wilt thou ...
— A Study of Shakespeare • Algernon Charles Swinburne

... enterprise, I remembered signing a certain business document which gave her a handsome pecuniary interest in my success, if I became Mrs. Armadale of Thorpe Ambrose. The chance of turning this mischievous morsel of paper to good account, in the capacity of a touchstone, was too tempting to be resisted. I asked my devout friend's permission to say one last word ...
— Armadale • Wilkie Collins

... Touchstone, with unfailing loyalty, follows his master with quip and quirk, into exile. When all, even his daughters, have forsaken King Lear, the fool bares himself to the storm and covers the shaking old man with his own cloak. And when in our own day we meet the avatars of Trinculo, ...
— Volume 12 of Brann The Iconoclast • William Cowper Brann

... would fence it up at each end, and turn it into a hog-lot." Here Brigadier Downright betrayed unequivocal signs of alarm. Drawing us aside, he vehemently demanded of the captain if he were mad, to berate in this unheard-of manner the touchstone of Bivouac sentiment, nationality, taste, and elegance! This street was never spoken of except by the use of superlatives; a usage, by the way, that Noah himself had by no means neglected. It was ...
— The Monikins • J. Fenimore Cooper

... disparagement to truth that can be, and a tacit acknowledgment that she lies under some disadvantage, and that there is less to be said for her than for error.'[225] 'Tis only things false and adulterate which shun the light and fear the touchstone.' He has left a beautiful prayer which his editor believed he was in the habit of using before he composed a sermon. In it he asks to be made impartial in his inquiry after truth, ready always to receive it in love, to practise it in his life, and to continue steadfast in it to the end. He adds, ...
— The English Church in the Eighteenth Century • Charles J. Abbey and John H. Overton

... far in order to illustrate the characteristic of Bentham's teaching. It was not the bare appeal to utility, but the attempt to follow the clue of utility systematically and unflinchingly into every part of the subject. This one doctrine gives the touchstone by which every proposed measure is to be tested; and which will give to his system not such unity as arises from the development of an abstract logical principle, but such as is introduced into the physical ...
— The English Utilitarians, Volume I. • Leslie Stephen

... hardly capable of measuring the common fate. You have had the touchstone of success, and the world has opened up before you. But what depress me and impress me are the sodden people whom I meet by the hundred; and I can't help reading my fate in the light of theirs. There are such millions of us, obscure and ...
— Jewel Weed • Alice Ames Winter

... fact, one may almost say, is just any fact at its best. Art, it is true, looks at its object through a medium, but it always seems its inmost meaning. In Lear, Othello, Hamlet, in Falstaff and Touchstone, there is a revelation of the inner truth of human life beyond the power of moral science to bestow. We do well to seek philosophy in the poets, for though they teach only by hints and parables, they nevertheless reflect the concrete truth of ...
— Browning as a Philosophical and Religious Teacher • Henry Jones

... an heiress to those who know and love you, so take heart, my girl, and hold fast to the faith that is in you. There is a touchstone for all these things, and whatever does not ring true, doubt and avoid. Test and try men and women as they come along, and I am sure conscience, instinct, and experience will keep you from any dire mistake," he said, with a protecting arm ...
— Rose in Bloom - A Sequel to "Eight Cousins" • Louisa May Alcott

... devotion to the cause of Labour led him to make the Factory Acts a touchstone of character. To the end of his days his view of public men was largely governed by the part which they had played in that great controversy. "Gladstone voted against me," was a stern sentence not seldom on his ...
— Collections and Recollections • George William Erskine Russell

... A mighty touchstone has been applied to these earthly orbs since then, and the power to discriminate has been given to my soul. As Gregory and Sabra were devils, I verily believe, so was Mabel one of Swedenborg's angels. Who shall gainsay me? Who knows more than I on this subtle subject? Not the wisest theologian ...
— Miriam Monfort - A Novel • Catherine A. Warfield

... lain stricken yet now dares to hope for the day of recovery. This was a law which did not denounce the world as illusion or enjoin a cloistral seclusion upon the mind, but rather proposed each and every appearance as a touchstone on which the quality of personality should be unceasingly tried. By the constant application of a high standard to life, it seemed to implant an incorrupt seed of manliness, and to create in its disciples that saner mood which holds in equal aversion a Heliogabalus and a Simeon Stylites. So persuaded, ...
— Apologia Diffidentis • W. Compton Leith

... to Pindar's doctrine: [Greek text]. The breakfast is the [Greek text] of the great work of the day. Chocolate, coffee, tea, cream, eggs, ham, tongue, cold fowl, all these are good, and bespeak good knowledge in him who sets them forth: but the touchstone is fish: anchovy is the first step, prawns and shrimps the second; and I laud him who reaches even to these: potted char and lampreys are the third, and a fine stretch of progression; but lobster is, indeed, matter for a May morning, and demands ...
— Crotchet Castle • Thomas Love Peacock

... to name one—that of money. This, considered in the abstract, is of little or no value; but, by the common consent of mankind, is erected into a general arbitrator, to fix a value upon all others: a medium through which every thing passes: a balance by which they must be weighed: a touchstone to which they must be applied to find their worth: though we can neither eat nor drink it, we can neither eat nor drink without it.—He that has none best knows ...
— An History of Birmingham (1783) • William Hutton

... went over his own share in the business again, lamenting, blaming himself. Yet what more natural, after all, than that he should have set his affections on the Clown? Chifney believed in the horse too—a five-year-old brother of Touchstone, resembling, in his black-brown skin and intelligent, white-reach face, that celebrated horse; and inheriting—less enviable distinction—the high shoulders and withers of his sire Camel. If the ...
— The History of Sir Richard Calmady - A Romance • Lucas Malet

... again the peculiarities of father and son came into conflict: for it was almost impossible for me to make use of a good, white, perfectly clean sheet of paper; gray old leaves, even if scribbled over on one side already, charmed me most, just as if my awkwardness had feared the touchstone of a white ground. Nor were any of my drawings quite finished; and how should I have executed a whole, which indeed I saw with my eyes, but did not comprehend, and how an individual object, which I had neither skill nor patience to follow out? My father's mode ...
— Autobiography • Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

... account only but also on behalf of those readers to whom this volume will open out so fair a prospect that they will long to pass further, this "cluster of grapes" being one of the "lures immortal" for the rapidly increasing number of discriminating lovers of the high poetry that is the touchstone of beauty. The finest lyric work of our day needs no further introduction; the poet is his own best interpreter; but it may be added, in anticipation of adventitious criticism of the limitations of these examples, that the capacity of the present volume and the absence ...
— A Cluster of Grapes - A Book of Twentieth Century Poetry • Various

... applicable—destroy its own end. In social life, for instance, it would do away with all those acts of faith, those instinctive judgments and feelings, which are the essence of life. But he thinks one may fairly desire a better touchstone for the purposes of God than human judgment or feeling; and that, if we cannot know them with scientific certainty, one must wish the balance of probability to lie clearly on ...
— A Handbook to the Works of Browning (6th ed.) • Mrs. Sutherland Orr

... wan, fond Lover" John Suckling Wishes to His Supposed Mistress Richard Crashaw Song, "Love in fantastic Triumph sate" Aphra Behn Les Amours Charles Cotton Rivals William Walsh I Lately Vowed, but 'Twas in Haste John Oldmixon The Touchstone Samuel Bishop Air, "I ne'er could any luster see" Richard Brinsley Sheridan "I Took a Hansom on Today" William Ernest Henley Da Capo Henry Cuyler Bunner Song Against Women Willard Huntington Wright Song of Thyrsis Philip Freneau The Test Walter Savage Landor "The Fault is not Mine" ...
— The Home Book of Verse, Vol. 1 (of 4) • Various

... I am in Arden. And I may say with Touchstone, "When I was at home I was in a better place,"[268] and yet this is not by any means to be complained of. Good apartments, the people civil and apparently attentive. No appearance of smoke, and absolute warrandice against my dreaded enemies, ...
— The Journal of Sir Walter Scott - From the Original Manuscript at Abbotsford • Walter Scott

... Hawthorne, we might call the former a "polite writer," and the latter a profound poet: as, indeed, I have called him in this essay, though with no intent to confuse the term with that given to poets who speak in verse. Pathos is the great touchstone of humor, and Irving's pathos is always a lamentable failure. Is it not very significant, that he should have made so little of the story of Rip Van Winkle? In his sketch, which has won so wide a fame and given a lasting association to the Kaatskills, there is not a suspicion of the immense ...
— A Study Of Hawthorne • George Parsons Lathrop

... spontaneous in any true sense of the word? This seems to be more factitious than usual. You seem to know a great deal about it; try it by the touchstone of subscriptions, a coarse but fairly trustworthy criterion, and there is scarcely the color of money in it. The delegates write from England that they are out of pocket for working expenses, railway fares, and stationery—the mere pasteboard and scaffolding ...
— The Works of Rudyard Kipling One Volume Edition • Rudyard Kipling

... a pretty fair touchstone to manners for both young and old. A man is himself in the presence of the unexpected. The automobile is so strange that it carries people off their equilibrium, and they say and do ...
— Two Thousand Miles On An Automobile • Arthur Jerome Eddy

... half nor the whole. The stage is ultimately the touchstone of dramatic excellence. But if it is to be such a touchstone, it must have an audience with a penetration of intelligence and a soundness of taste such as had long ceased to characterize Roman audiences. The Senecan drama has lost touch with the ...
— Post-Augustan Poetry - From Seneca to Juvenal • H.E. Butler

... weighed the thought. "You can't possibly mean that. The galaxy is filled with Truth, it's the touchstone of Life itself. It's the thing that separates Mankind ...
— The Ethical Engineer • Henry Maxwell Dempsey

... "but the rest of the ticket will receive its warm and hearty support." Then he paused. Kelly, standing in the background of the little group, seemed to shrink from the next step. Regularity was the touchstone of Tammany's creed. Indifference to ways and means gave no offence, but disobedience to the will of a caucus or convention admitted of no forgiveness. Would Kelly himself be the first to commit this unpardonable sin? He could invoke ...
— A Political History of the State of New York, Volumes 1-3 • DeAlva Stanwood Alexander

... may then regard himself as rubbish and expect to be carted away. A man is nothing now unless he has within him a full appreciation of the new era, an era in which it would seem that neither honesty nor truth is very desirable, but in which success is the only touchstone of merit. We must laugh at everything that is established. Let the joke be ever so bad, ever so untrue to the real principles of joking; nevertheless we must laugh—or else beware the cart. We must talk, think, and live up to the spirit of the times, and write up to it too, ...
— Barchester Towers • Anthony Trollope

... law, the law of opinion or reputation, called also philosophical, coincides on the whole, though not throughout, with the first, the divine law of nature, which is best expressed in Christianity, and which is the true touchstone of the moral character of actions. While Locke, in his polemic against innate ideas, had emphasized the diversity of moral judgments among individuals and nations (as a result of which an action is condemned in one place and praised as virtuous in another), he here gives prominence to the ...
— History Of Modern Philosophy - From Nicolas of Cusa to the Present Time • Richard Falckenberg

... sweet as that adapted by Chateaubriand to Ma soeur, te souvient-il encore), sung in this little town of the Brie district, must have been to the ears of a Breton maiden the touchstone of imperious memories, so faithfully does it picture the manners and customs, the surroundings and the heartiness of her noble old land, where a sort of melancholy reigns, hardly to be defined; caused, perhaps, by the aspect ...
— Pierrette • Honore de Balzac

... latter-day myth which goes by the name of "the Continuity Theory". It is difficult to us to realise how such a theory can possibly be held by thoughtful and earnest men and women who have even a moderate acquaintance with history. Bishop Vaughan applies more than one touchstone, which, one would imagine, ought to be sufficient to prove to any unprejudiced mind the falsity of that theory. Among these, what I may call the "pallium touchstone,"—which still bears its irrefragable testimony ...
— The Purpose of the Papacy • John S. Vaughan

... uncomprehending creature known as Orlando. Every line of Orlando should have sounded the knell of his fate in her ears. However, it must be remembered that Orlando was young and good-looking, and that, at least in the play, men of the right stamp seemed to be scarce. Of course, it is out of Touchstone that Shaw has evolved his ...
— The Merry-Go-Round • Carl Van Vechten

... in the natural course of things that modern criticism, ever aiming at a wider comprehension, a keener analysis, a greater independence of judgment and expression, should test itself anew on a subject affording so full a scope and so sure a touchstone as the life and writings of Rousseau. The character of Rousseau, with its strange blending of delicate beauty and repulsive infirmity, requires to be handled with the firm but tender and sympathetic touch which the nurse or the physician lays upon ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. XII, No. 29. August, 1873. • Various

... great moment. The response to this must be the touchstone of their lives. A—half dozen words might alter all the future, might be the watch word to the end of all things. Involuntarily her heart fashioned the response he ought to give—"I ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... to her as though she had at last found the touchstone of conduct. She perceived she had never really thought of any one but herself in all her acts and plans. Even Capes had been for her merely an excitant to passionate love—a mere idol at whose feet one could enjoy imaginative wallowings. She had set out to get a ...
— Ann Veronica • H. G. Wells

... Centre or the so-called Moderate Party, he is therefore on the side of Law and Order. He enters into the Cabinet with the determination to reform every abuse, to recast everything; to seek for honest men, to make merit and not faction, the touchstone of advancement. In short, to apply in his political life the glorious principles which—and the noble maxims that—He is only, however, forty-eight hours in office when he becomes quite demoralized, paralyzed and stultified for the rest of his ministerial life. It is the phenomenon ...
— His Excellency the Minister • Jules Claretie

... the thimble and examined it, weighed it, and submitted its metal to the test of the touchstone. It was a pretty thimble, though small, or it would not have fitted Adrienne's finger. This fact struck the woman of the shop, and she cast a suspicious glance at Adrienne's hand, the whiteness and size of which, however, satisfied ...
— Autobiography of a Pocket-Hankerchief • James Fenimore Cooper

... and often pulled this way and that by the selfish desires or aims of her children or other family belongings, becomes a mere domestic drudge or machine, with no higher aims than are contained in the general ordering of household business. Love,—the miraculous touchstone which turns everything to gold,—is driven out of the circle of Life with the result that Life itself grows weary of its present phase, and makes haste to seek another more congenial. Hence proceeds what ...
— The Life Everlasting: A Reality of Romance • Marie Corelli

... noblest and the meanest passions of the human bosom at contention, and the latter often so disguised, that the vile ambuscade is not even suspected till found within the heart of the fortress itself. We have, however, one veritable touchstone, that of the truest observation, "ye shall know a tree by its fruits." Let us look round, then, for those which bear "good fruits," wholesome to the taste as well as pleasant to the sight, whether they grow on high altitudes or in the humbler valleys of the earth; let us view men of all degrees ...
— Thaddeus of Warsaw • Jane Porter

... while the pledges of the government in regard to the church remained unredeemed. Mr. T. Duncombe bitterly reproached ministers for their supposed dereliction of principle; they might talk as they chose of their Irish tithe-bill and their appropriation clause, but English church reform would be the touchstone by which it would be tried whether they would retain the confidence of the country. On a division, Mr. Hume's amendment was rejected by a majority of one hundred and seventy-five against forty-four, ministers being supported by the conservatives, and generally by the Irish members. ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... river issuing from a mountain summit and flowing towards other regions. When the Understanding, withdrawn into the mind, succeeds in absorbing itself into contemplation that is free from attributes, it attains to a knowledge of Brahma like the touch of gold on a touchstone. The mind is the apprehender of the objects of the senses. It must first be extinguished (before Brahma can be attained). Dependent upon the attributes of objects that are before it, the mind can never ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 - Books 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 • Unknown

... on which he should become duly informed, and thus be prepared to act intelligently. For this preparation he needs light, which light the real working of things, properly set forth, would surely give. Experience is ever regarded as the best school-master, the proper touchstone to all ...
— The Prison Chaplaincy, And Its Experiences • Hosea Quinby

... testified by human nature itself, which, educated by Christianity, recognizes freely and personally the truth of the gospel. The natural faculty that performs this high office is reason, not feeling. Scripture is the touchstone of the Christianity of a conviction, but not of its truth. The Reformers very properly distinguished between a first and secondary authority, and allowed themselves complete liberty in their search after the origin of the books of Scripture. This was not a dangerous ...
— History of Rationalism Embracing a Survey of the Present State of Protestant Theology • John F. Hurst

... many higher motives in life, more elevated goals toward which struggling humanity should strive. If you examine the average mind, however, you will be pretty sure to find that success is the touchstone by which we judge our fellows and what, in our hearts, we admire the most. That is not to be wondered at, either, for we have done all we can to implant it there. From a child's first opening thought, it is impressed upon him that the great object of existence ...
— Worldly Ways and Byways • Eliot Gregory

... to them whose sorrows grow, Beneath its fruit of virtue bending low; Father to good men; virtue's touchstone he; The mirror of the learned; and the sea Where all the tides of character unite; A righteous man, whom pride could never blight; A treasure-house, with human virtues stored; Courtesy's essence, honor's precious hoard. He doth to life its fullest meaning give, So good is he; ...
— The Little Clay Cart - Mrcchakatika • (Attributed To) King Shudraka

... misunderstanding of the case. Because you neither play nor sing, it by no means follows that you are unmusical. If you love music and appreciate it, you may be more musical than many pianists and singers; or latent within you and only awaiting the touchstone of music there may be a deeper love and appreciation of the art than can be attributed to many virtuosos. For most of a virtuoso's love and appreciation is apt to be centered upon himself. And when you say, 'I cannot play,' you are mistaken. You are thinking of the ...
— The Pianolist - A Guide for Pianola Players • Gustav Kobb

... feet in height, that the leaves of the branches were newly fallen; from whence I inferred that the horse had touched them, and that he must therefore be five feet high. As to his bit, it must be gold of twenty-three carats, for he had rubbed its bosses against a stone which I knew to be a touchstone, and which I have tried. In a word, from the marks made by his shoes on flints of another kind, I concluded that he was shod with silver ...
— International Short Stories: French • Various

... the social art carried farther without suggestion of artifice. The fact that Don Egidio's amenities were mainly exercised on the mill-hands composing his parish proved the genuineness of his gift. It is easier to simulate gentility among gentlemen than among navvies; and the plain man is a touchstone who draws out all the alloy ...
— Crucial Instances • Edith Wharton

... costume of the Empire or the Revolution, but of an anxious woman concerned with the hardship and grime of our own day, "amid the dust and defilement of the city, on the highway, always in quest of lodgings, climbing to the fifth story, wounded on every angle." Only sympathy and a poetic touchstone could bring out the essence and sweetness of a nature so unhappily disguised; but Sainte-Beuve, discarding with a single gesture her penitential mask and hood, finds Madame Desbordes-Valmore "polished, gracious, and even hospitable, investing everything with a certain attractive and artistic ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, Volume 11, No. 26, May, 1873 • Various

... his "Bartholomew Fair" which I feel sure is meant as a skit upon the relations we find in the Sonnets. In Act V, scene iii, there is a puppet-show setting forth "the ancient modern history of Hero and Leander, otherwise called the Touchstone of true Love, with as true a trial of Friendship between Damon and Pythias, two faithful friends o' the Bankside." Hero is a "wench o' the Bankside," and Leander swims across the Thames to her. Damon and Pythias meet at her lodgings, and abuse ...
— The Man Shakespeare • Frank Harris

... "we set good breeding as the corner-stone of our edifice. We would have it ever present consciously or unconsciously in the minds of all as the central faith in which they should live and move and have their being, as the touchstone of all things whereby they may be known as good or evil according as they make for good breeding ...
— The Way of All Flesh • Samuel Butler

... morning (it was a FETE, and we had the day to ourselves) Frances said to me, with a suddenness peculiar to her when she had been thinking long on a subject, and at last, having come to a conclusion, wished to test its soundness by the touchstone of ...
— The Professor • (AKA Charlotte Bronte) Currer Bell

... 3rd S. v. 33, is given the following title-page of one of his books: '[Greek: Pharmako-Basauos]: or the Touchstone of Medicines, etc. By Sir John Floyer of the City of Litchfield, Kt., M.D., of Queen's College, Oxford. London: Printed for Michael Johnson, Bookseller, and are to be sold at his shops at Litchfield and Uttoxiter, in Staffordshire; ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 1 • Boswell

... to causation. The shepherd in the play, when asked by Touchstone, "Hast any philosophy in thee?" replies, "No more but that I know that the property of rain is to wet, and fire to burn; that good pasture makes fat sheep: and that a great cause of the night is lack of the sun," and upon the strength of this ...
— The Contemporary Review, January 1883 - Vol 43, No. 1 • Various

... people must determine what sort of government is fitted for them." "I am not here going into the distinctions of rights," he cries, "not attempting to mark their boundaries. I do not enter into these metaphysical distinctions. I hate the very sound of them. This is the true touchstone of all theories which regard man and the affairs of man: does it suit his nature in general?—does it suit his nature as modified by his habits?" He could not bear to think of having legislative or political arrangements shaped or vindicated by a delusive geometrical accuracy of deduction, instead ...
— Burke • John Morley

... digression or the culmination of his career as a collector might have remained doubtful were it not for the cross in Fourth Avenue. When he found it, hardly a week before he met Miriam Trent, he naturally did not take it for a touchstone. That it was in a manner such, may be inferred from the fact that the anxious morning before the wedding, he stopped at Novelli's for a last look, a ceremony strangely parodying the bachelor supper of more ordinary bridegrooms. After a ...
— The Collectors • Frank Jewett Mather

... is of rock crystal, the second of brass, the third of fine steel, the fourth of another kind of brass more valuable than the former and also than steel, the fifth of touchstone, the sixth of silver, and the seventh of massive gold. He has furnished these palaces most sumptuously, each in a manner corresponding to the materials of the structure. He has embellished the gardens ...
— The Arabian Nights Entertainments Complete • Anonymous

... entitled "The Beggars," may be taken, in fancy, as a touchstone of Mr. Wordsworth's merit. There is something about it that convinces us it is a favourite of the author's; though to us, we will confess, it appears to be a very paragon of silliness and affectation.... ...
— Famous Reviews • Editor: R. Brimley Johnson

... care not what. 'Contentment breeds Happiness'—That is a proposition with which you can hardly quarrel; sententious, sedate, obviously true; provoking delirious advocacy as little as controversial heat; in short a very fair touchstone. Now hear how the lyric treats it, in these lines ...
— On the Art of Writing - Lectures delivered in the University of Cambridge 1913-1914 • Arthur Quiller-Couch

... evenin's,—that—is, if so be she a'n't smart enough to finish up all her work in the daytime. Edoocation is the great business of the Institoot. Amoosements are objec's of a secondary natur', accordin' to my v'oo." [The unspellable pronunciation of this word is the touchstone of New ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... the full rush of mining, was the touchstone of Democracy; where, out of the chaos of blackguardism, through lynchings and vigilance committees, judge and jury were at work evolving ...
— The Life of the Rt. Hon. Sir Charles W. Dilke V1 • Stephen Gwynn

... imagination the essence of the beauty that environs us. It seems, at such a fortunate moment, as though we had been waiting for this revelation, although perchance the want of it had not been previously felt. Our sensations and perceptions test themselves at the touchstone of this living individuality. The keynote of the whole music dimly sounding in our ears is struck. A melody emerges, clear in form and excellent in rhythm. The landscapes we have painted on our brain, no longer lack their central figure. The life proper to the complex ...
— Sketches and Studies in Italy and Greece • John Addington Symonds

... physiological species. The test would be an admirable one, if, in the first place, it were always practicable to apply it, and if, in the second, it always yielded results susceptible of a definite interpretation. Unfortunately, in the great majority of cases, this touchstone for species is ...
— The Origin of Species - From 'The Westminster Review', April 1860 • Thomas H. Huxley

... clearly stated by the writer for his own guidance. It is, however, usually announced at the opening of the essay. Whether announced or not, it is most essential to the success of the essay. It is the touchstone by which the author tries all the material which he has collected. Not everything on the subject of patriotism should be admitted to an essay that has for its theme, "A real partisan cannot be a true patriot." It would save ...
— English: Composition and Literature • W. F. (William Franklin) Webster

... experimental, individual. Conscience will play a very useful role in spurring us to our recognized duty in the commoner situations, but for all the more delicate decisions we need a more ultimate touchstone. We must grasp the underlying principles of right conduct, and weigh the relative goods attainable by each possible act. A well-balanced and normal conscience will save us the recurrent reasoning out of typical perplexities, but it must be supplemented by an insight into the ...
— Problems of Conduct • Durant Drake

... constitution. Where arms were expected and not found, a very new mode of trial was instituted. The suspected or accused person was suspended by the neck until the process of strangulation was nearly completed. He was then let down, and if he was still pertinacious, the touchstone was again tried, until he either confessed or accused others. In other cases, it was ascertained what quantity of arms should be brought in by a certain village or district—if the full quantity could not be produced by the inhabitants, their habitations were reduced to ashes ...
— The Causes of the Rebellion in Ireland Disclosed • Anonymous

... Mrs. Clive, Mrs. Cibber, and Mrs. Pritchard were among the women who acted with Garrick. Macklin, by his revival of Shylock as a tragic character, Henderson by his impersonation of Falstaff, and John Palmer in secondary characters, as Iago, Mercutio, Touchstone, and Sir Toby, were his contemporaries most famous in ...
— The Facts About Shakespeare • William Allan Nielson

... defined philosophical pathos—And unexpectedly answers drop into my lap, a small hailstorm of ice and wisdom, of problems solved. Where am I? Bizet makes me productive. Everything that is good makes me productive. I have gratitude for nothing else, nor have I any other touchstone ...
— The Case Of Wagner, Nietzsche Contra Wagner, and Selected Aphorisms. • Friedrich Nietzsche.

... painters, and Roman prelates in Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Holland, and Turkey, which prompted Blumenbach to declare it would be difficult to meet with such in the French Academy; and yet, literature and learning have not settled the problem. No, the religion of Jesus Christ is the touchstone to settle all the problems of human life. More than nineteen hundred years ago, Christ gave solution when he said, "Ye are brethern," "Love is the fulfilling of the law," and "Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ...
— Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence - The Best Speeches Delivered by the Negro from the days of - Slavery to the Present Time • Various

... Stone is the foundation of the Absolute philosophy, the Supreme and unalterable Reason. Before thinking of the Metallic work, we must be firmly fixed on the Absolute principles of Wisdom; we must be in possession of this Reason, which is the touchstone of Truth. A man who is the slave of prejudices will never become the King of Nature and the Master of transmutations. The Philosophal Stone, therefore, is necessary above all things. How shall it be found? Hermes tells us, in his "Table of Emerald," we must separate the subtile from the fixed, ...
— Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry • Albert Pike

... touchstone and point of reference for every stage of the history of the Church must be the gospel of Jesus. But what was the gospel of Jesus? In what way did the very earliest Christians apprehend that gospel? This question is far more difficult for us to answer than ...
— Edward Caldwell Moore - Outline of the History of Christian Thought Since Kant • Edward Moore

... innocence as to purpose, and wickedness as to practice; neither incurring hatred by bad principle, or contempt by Cowardice, yet involved in circumstances productive of imputation in both; a butt and a wit, a humourist and a man of humour, a touchstone and a laughing stock, a jester and a jest, has Sir John Falstaff, taken at that period of his life in which we see him, become the most perfect Comic character ...
— Eighteenth Century Essays on Shakespeare • D. Nichol Smith

... necessity felt, rationalism on a necessity seen). And thus universal empiricism reveals itself as absolute scepticism. It is erroneous to attribute this in such an unqualified sense to Hume, * since he left at least one certain touchstone (which can only be found in a priori principles), although experience consists not only of feelings, ...
— The Critique of Practical Reason • Immanuel Kant

... Are they conventional characters, or do they have distinct personalities? Compare Touchstone ...
— Teachers' Outlines for Studies in English - Based on the Requirements for Admission to College • Gilbert Sykes Blakely

... glory, took up the management of her Inn with renewed vigor. She had found her touchstone. The flower of love, which she had scarcely understood to be indigenous to the soil of her own practical little garden, had suddenly lifted up its head there in fragrant, radiant bloom. She was so happy ...
— Outside Inn • Ethel M. Kelley

... to love Shakespeare and Milton, Coleridge and Keats, and no effort was required, in this circle of friends, to keep his reading upon this high level. Lycidas was always a special favourite of Tennyson's, and appreciation of it seemed to him a sure 'touchstone of poetic taste'. In conversation he did not tend to declaim or monopolize the talk. He was noted rather for short sayings and for criticisms tersely expressed. He had his moods, contemplative, genial ...
— Victorian Worthies - Sixteen Biographies • George Henry Blore

... were commonly of the simplest, not to say of the most childish, cast. Every sentence of Meres' critical effort—or, to be rigorously exact, every sentence but one—is built on "as" and "so"; but it reads like a parody—a schoolmaster's parody—of Touchstone's improvement on Orlando's verses in praise of Rosalind. Shakespeare is brought into line with Ovid, Elizabeth with Achilles, and Homer with William Warner. This, no doubt, is an extreme instance; but it is typical ...
— English literary criticism • Various

... Mary, who, throughout the story fondly regarding him, had remained as straight as a young pine. Now, with her rigidity suddenly become so pliant that it was a fluid thing mixed of indignation, fearlessness, and compelling sympathy, she sprang to his side. She knew the touchstone to her father's emotion. He did not want his cheek patted in that moment of agony. He wanted a stimulant; some justification ...
— Over the Pass • Frederick Palmer

... therefore, why it is impossible for certain pictures to be by Giorgione is, not that they are not good enough for him, but that they are not characteristic. I insist on this point, because in the matter of genuineness the touchstone of authenticity is so often to be looked for in an answer to the question: Is this or that characteristic? The personal equation is the all-important factor to be recognised; it is the connecting link which often unites apparently diverse phenomena, and explains what would ...
— Giorgione • Herbert Cook

... disadvantage lay in athletics, but as soon as he discovered that it was the touchstone of power and popularity at school, he began to make furious, persistent efforts to excel in the winter sports, and with his ankles aching and bending in spite of his efforts, he skated valiantly around the Lorelie rink every afternoon, wondering how soon he would be ...
— This Side of Paradise • F. Scott Fitzgerald

... to say me nay, without scruple or hesitation. I shall not require you to give your reasons, but shall bow, unreservedly, to your wishes. For you possess a touchstone in such questions as the one now troubling me, which, did I ever possess it, I lost, as do most men, rather lamentably early in my career. If you suffer me to do so, I will ask Darcy Faircloth to bring his mother here to me, this evening at dusk, when her coming will not challenge impertinent ...
— Deadham Hard • Lucas Malet

... wind of his fancy,—not one world but a thousand worlds, circling through the empyrean of his rhythmic splendor,—not one joy but a thousand joys, all quivering song-wise through the radiance of his clear illumined inspiration. The heart,—the human heart alone is the final touchstone of a poet's genius,—and when that responds, who shall deny his ...
— Ardath - The Story of a Dead Self • Marie Corelli

... position wakes her to. Alone, not confused, but seeking something to lean on, she grasps the Church, which proves a broken reed. No whit disheartened, she turns from one sect to another, trying each by the infallible touchstone of that clear, child-like conscience. The two old, lonely Quakers rest her foot awhile. But the eager soul must work, not rest in testimony. Coming North at last, she makes her own religion one of sacrifice and toil. Breaking away from, rising above, all forms, the dove floats ...
— The Bay State Monthly, Volume 3, No. 3 • Various

... no more useful help for discovering what poetry belongs to the class of the truly excellent, and can therefore do us most good, than to have always in one's mind lines and expressions of the great masters, and to apply them as a touchstone to other poetry. Of course we are not to require this other poetry to resemble them; it may be very dissimilar. But if we have any tact we shall find them, when we have lodged them well in our minds, an infallible touchstone for detecting the presence or absence of high poetic quality, and also ...
— Selections from the Prose Works of Matthew Arnold • Matthew Arnold

... the Kazi and the King; and akin to this is the exploit of Temal Ramakistnan, the Madrasi Tyl Eulenspiegel and Scogin who by means of a lady saves his life from the Rajah and the High Priest. Mr. G. H. Damant (pp. 357-360 of the "Indian Antiquary" of 1873) relates the "Tale of the Touchstone," a legend of Dinahpur, wherein a woman "sells" her four admirers. In the Persian Tales ascribed to the Dervish "Mokles" (Mukhlis) of Isfahan, the lady Aruya tricks and exposes a Kazi, a doctor and ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 6 • Richard F. Burton

... them—and of lessons unlearned. He could not be driven nor forced, and pedagogics a hundred years ago, it seemed, was largely a science of coercion. Mary Gray, a nurse and early teacher of Byron's, has told us that kindness was the unfailing touchstone with this boy; no other plan would work. But Harrow knew nothing of Froebel methods, and does ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Volume 5 (of 14) • Elbert Hubbard

... managerial ability of a high order. Failure to do this results in inability to maintain and keep in repair the equipment and to pay the ordinary returns to the passive investment, and financial failure follows. There is no touchstone for business talent, no way of selecting it with any certainty in advance of trial. This selection is made hard in cooeperative shops by jealousies and rivalries, and by politics among the workmen. A man selected by his fellows finds it difficult to enforce discipline. ...
— Modern Economic Problems - Economics Vol. II • Frank Albert Fetter

... countries, making morality an affair of latitude, and what is right and proper in one place wrong and improper in another. It must, however, be understood that, since all civilised nations appear to accept it as an axiom that ceremony is the touchstone of morality, there is, even according to our canons, nothing immoral about this Amahagger custom, seeing that the interchange of the embrace answers to our ceremony of marriage, which, as ...
— She • H. Rider Haggard

... to something like my normal interests in baseball and my classmates, but never again did I fall to the low level of Jack Harkaway. I now possessed a literary touchstone with which I tested the quality of other books and other minds, and my intellectual arrogance, I fear, sometimes made me an unpleasant companion. The fact that Ethel did not "like" Hawthorne, sank her to a ...
— A Son of the Middle Border • Hamlin Garland

... other departments, and brings to light a 'fidus Achates' and Antoninus. I believe that human nature is a curious amalgam of meanness, malice and magnanimity, and that an earnest, loving Christian charity is the only safe touchstone, and furnishes (if you will tolerate the simile) the only elective affinity in moral chemistry. Because ingots are not dug out of the earth, is it not equally unwise and ungrateful to ridicule and denounce ...
— St. Elmo • Augusta J. Evans

... have done, replied the Alferez, if the reality had corresponded with the appearance; but "All is not gold that glitters," and my fine things were only imitations, but so well made that nothing but the touchstone or the fire could have detected ...
— The Exemplary Novels of Cervantes • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... unfamiliar mental powers that seem miraculous. And clearly there are devilish miracles as well as divine. Miracles simply reveal a supernatural power, that is, a power above the ordinary workings of nature. Then one must apply a touchstone, a test, to ...
— Quiet Talks on John's Gospel • S. D. Gordon

... playfully under the arm of a small boy that was passing. That boy was named Johnny, and he took the paper home with him. His sister was named Gladys, and she had written to the beauty editor of the paper asking for the practicable touchstone of beauty. That was weeks ago, and she had ceased to look for an answer. Gladys was a pale girl, with dull eyes and a discontented expression. She was dressing to go up to the avenue to get some braid. Beneath her skirt she pinned two leaves ...
— Whirligigs • O. Henry

... Money is a touchstone which influences all social relations, especially when on one side there is a somewhat morbid susceptibility, and on the other a lack of good breeding and education. The Sparks, father and daughter, Americans of the lower ...
— Jacqueline, Complete • (Mme. Blanc) Th. Bentzon

... self-conceit common to all men, peculiarly prominent in myself, overrated both the power and the integrity of my mind (for the one is bootless without the other,) neither I nor the world can yet tell. "Time," says one of the fathers, "is the only touchstone which distinguishes the ...
— Pelham, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... existing things, and though it is less characteristic of men than of women, it is none the less supreme when men exhibit it. In days to come, when women can choose, as they should be able to choose to-day, they may well be counselled to use as a touchstone of their suitor's quality that line of Wordsworth, "Wisdom doth live with children round her knees." A man who thinks that "rot" is rot, or ...
— Woman and Womanhood - A Search for Principles • C. W. Saleeby

... ground of its being marvellous. The most ludicrous and inconceivable monstrosities find an easy place in his system. He does not attach any superstitious meaning to them; on the contrary, he ridicules the idea that omens or portents are sent by the gods, but he has no touchstone by which to test the rare but possible results of real experience as distinguished from the figments of the imagination or ordinary travellers' stories. In the zoological part he gives the reins to his love of the marvellous; all kinds of absurdities ...
— A History of Roman Literature - From the Earliest Period to the Death of Marcus Aurelius • Charles Thomas Cruttwell

... not upon sanctification, but upon justification. Hand all your accounts over to free grace. And if you have any bands of apprehension in your death, recollect that your apprehensions are not canonical.' And the dying man answered: 'There is nothing that I have done that can stand the touchstone of God's justice. Christ is my all, ...
— Samuel Rutherford - and some of his correspondents • Alexander Whyte

... misery forceth him, the dread Child of fore-scheming Woe! And help is vain; the fell desire within Is veiled not, but shineth bright like Sin: And as false gold will show Black where the touchstone trieth, so doth fade His honour in God's ordeal. Like a child, Forgetting all, he hath chased his winged bird, And planted amid his people a sharp thorn. And no God hears his prayer, or, have they heard, The man so base-beguiled They cast ...
— Agamemnon • Aeschylus

... who unites all that is great and admirable in intellect with the highest spiritual gifts. I am no contemptible judge of a man's acquirements, and I assure you I have tested Mr. Tryan's by questions which are a pretty severe touchstone. It is true, I sometimes carry him a little beyond the depth of the other listeners. Profound learning,' continued Miss Pratt, shutting her spectacles, and tapping them on the book before her, 'has not many ...
— Scenes of Clerical Life • George Eliot

... he resumed, "I am disposed to say that I never had the happiness of knowing any one whom I should consider so refreshingly responsible as yourself. You appear to me to be the very touchstone of responsibility. When I see you, my dear Miss Summerson, intent upon the perfect working of the whole little orderly system of which you are the centre, I feel inclined to say to myself—in fact I do say to myself very ...
— Bleak House • Charles Dickens

... Douay. Duhaut followed, a man of respectable birth and education; and Liotot, the surgeon of the party. At home, they might, perhaps, have lived and died with a fair repute; but the wilderness is a rude touchstone, which often reveals traits that would have lain buried and unsuspected in civilized life. The German Hiens, the ex-buccaneer, was also of the number. He had probably sailed with an English crew, for he was sometimes known as Gemme Anglais ...
— France and England in North America, a Series of Historical Narratives, Part Third • Francis Parkman

... overwhelmingly outweigh the things that are seen, that the solemn majesty of the eternal will make the temporal look to our awed eyes the contemptible unreality which it really is. They who humbly receive and faithfully use that engrafted word, have in it a sure touchstone against which their own sins and errors are shivered. It is for the Christian consciousness the true Ithuriel's spear, at the touch of which 'upstarts in his own shape the fiend' who has been pouring ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Ephesians; Epistles of St. Peter and St. John • Alexander Maclaren

... the Christian religion is its transforming or transmuting power. I speak not now of the regeneration which accomplishes in the individual soul, but of the change it works upon things without. It applies the touchstone to every fact of existence, and exposes its real value. Looking through the lens of spiritual observation, it throws the realities of life into a reverse perspective from that which is seen by the sensual eye. Objects which the world calls great it renders ...
— The Crown of Thorns - A Token for the Sorrowing • E. H. Chapin

... sponged her face and pinned on her hat, he said, in response to her beseeching eyes, which, as so often before, made the granting of this one request, a touchstone of his love for her: "Look here, Lulu, if I possibly can, I'll drop in at the end of the first act. Look out for ...
— Maurice Guest • Henry Handel Richardson

... under favorable conditions, sometimes comparatively late in the youthful period of life. In a symmetrical course of study calculated to bring into exercise every mental faculty, somewhere, as by a touchstone, the particular aptitude of the pupil may be discovered, the secret springs of power be opened; and the man, having discovered himself, leaps forward to pre-eminence among his fellows. Scores of such men and women are among the students in the schools for the colored people of the South. A ...
— The American Missionary - Volume 50, No. 6, June 1896 • Various

... very midst of the pinery region, and from it in every direction stretches the great pine forest. Near this center Allan Macdonald of Kingsburgh purchased of Caleb Touchstone a plantation embracing five hundred and fifty acres on which were a dwelling house and outhouses which were more pretentious than was then customary among Highland settlers. The sum paid, as set forth in the deed, was four hundred and sixty pounds. Here Flora established ...
— An Historical Account of the Settlements of Scotch Highlanders in America • J. P. MacLean

... of the most distinguished American and British historians would be even more calamitous than that of their Continental brethren. If the touchstone of impartiality were applied, Prescott might perhaps pass unscathed through the trial. But few will deny that Motley wrote his very attractive histories at a white heat of Republican and anti-Catholic fervour. He, as also Bancroft, ...
— Political and Literary essays, 1908-1913 • Evelyn Baring

... beautiful costume, which he had made two years previously when playing the part of Orlando in a production of "As You Like It" in Manchester, the Calvert Memorial performance; Miss Helen Faucit (Lady Martin), Rosalind; Herman Merivale, Touchstone; Tom Taylor, Adam; and other well-known celebrities assisting). Then he describes me: "A muffled creature of sinister aspect. Short, auburn-locked, extinguished by a portentous hat, tripping and stumbling over a cloak, or robe, in whose ...
— The Confessions of a Caricaturist, Vol. 1 (of 2) • Harry Furniss

... . . . Pardon me, but a thoroughly virtuous or a thoroughly amiable man is not worth twopence as a touchstone for a creed; he would convert even Mormonism to a thing of beauty. . . . Whereas the real test of any religion is—as I saw it excellently well put the other day—'not what form it takes in a virtuous mind, but what effects it ...
— Brother Copas • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... is, in Courbet's case, unusually difficult. We are all dreamers, more or less—in more or less desultory fashion—and can all appreciate that prismatic turn of what is real and actual into a position wherein it catches glints of the imagination. The imagination is a universal touchstone. The sense of reality is a special, an individual faculty. When one is poetizing in an amateur, a dilettante way, as most of us poetize, a picture of Courbet, which seems to flaunt and challenge the imagination ...
— French Art - Classic and Contemporary Painting and Sculpture • W. C. Brownell

... lecturers call, for no particular reason, the classical epoch. Nature—as, indeed, all the literature manuals testify—was in the remotest background then of human thought. The human mind, in a mood of the severest logic, brought everything to the touchstone of an orderly reason; the conception of "correctness" dominated all mortal affairs. For instance, one's natural hair with its vagaries of rat's tails, duck's tails, errant curls, and baldness, gave place to an ...
— Certain Personal Matters • H. G. Wells

... their teachers; and their teachers are tactfully ready to effect a compromise with them. But, before very long, our reiterated, "Your teacher knows; do as she says," has its effect. The teacher becomes the child's touchstone in relation to a considerable number of the "array of subjects" taught in a present-day school. School-teachers in America prepare themselves so carefully for their duties, train themselves to such a high order of skill in their performance, it is but just ...
— The American Child • Elizabeth McCracken

... numberless wrinkles. "This reason methinks is the true chimera, and never spawned anything but fables. Take these gold bars, which I cast in this form yesterday, after extracting the metal last week from some lead: there lies a touchstone; scratch it; and then tell me whether it ...
— The Old Man of the Mountain, The Lovecharm and Pietro of Abano - Tales from the German of Tieck • Ludwig Tieck

... steal to rendezvous by night Through darkness that a needle might divide, Show them the road with lightning-flashes bright As golden streaks upon the touchstone's side— But rain and thunder ...
— Translations of Shakuntala and Other Works • Kaalidaasa

... go. The attraction that held her was as yet too intangible to be definitely analyzed, but she could not deny its existence. She did not love the man—oh, surely she did not love him—for she did not want to marry him. She brought her feelings to that touchstone and it seemed that they were able to withstand the test. But neither did she want to cut herself finally adrift from all chance of contact with him. It would hurt her to go. Probably—almost certainly—she would wish herself back again. But, the question remained unanswered, ...
— The Lamp in the Desert • Ethel M. Dell

... vessel are bowers and groves, and within it is the Creator: Within this vessel are the seven oceans and the unnumbered stars. The touchstone and the jewel-appraiser are within; And within this vessel the Eternal soundeth, and the spring wells up. Kabr says: "Listen to me, my Friend! My beloved Lord ...
— Songs of Kabir • Rabindranath Tagore (trans.)

... entirely broken and disbanded, and every work they have thrown up be levelled with the ground. The disposition of public men to keep this corps together, and to act under it, or to co- operate with it, is a touchstone by which every Administration ought in future to be tried. There has not been one which has not sufficiently experienced the utter incompatibility of that faction with the public peace, and with all the ends of good Government; since, ...
— Thoughts on the Present Discontents - and Speeches • Edmund Burke

... educator except to the thick-skinned man, the man who has no sensitiveness, or who does not care for what others think of him. Nothing else so thoroughly discloses a man's weaknesses or shows up his limitations of thought, his poverty of speech, his narrow vocabulary. Nothing else is such a touchstone of the character and the extent of one's reading, the carefulness or carelessness ...
— Pushing to the Front • Orison Swett Marden

... not the best only, but the poorest, thinking, perhaps, as good a lesson as could come to the careless or the incapable would come from that sure touchstone of the value of any ...
— Miss Ashton's New Pupil - A School Girl's Story • Mrs. S. S. Robbins

... house-animal, and knows only the wants of a house-animal (like our cultured people of today, including the Christians of "cultured" Christianity), need neither be amazed nor even sad amid those ruins—the taste for the Old Testament is a touchstone with respect to "great" and "small": perhaps he will find that the New Testament, the book of grace, still appeals more to his heart (there is much of the odour of the genuine, tender, stupid beadsman and petty soul in it). To have bound up this New Testament (a kind of ROCOCO ...
— Beyond Good and Evil • Friedrich Nietzsche

... "It's from Lady Touchstone. I was at school with her niece. They live at Bell Hammer, a beautiful place about five miles from here. You're included, of course. I saw her last week, so she knows all about you. It's because of her niece's birthday. Only about eight couples, she ...
— Anthony Lyveden • Dornford Yates



Words linked to "Touchstone" :   medium of exchange, measure, grade point average, system of measurement, graduated table, gauge, standard of measurement, monetary system, procrustean rule, baseline, ordered series, procrustean bed, metric, era, scale of measurement, GPA, yardstick, earned run average, scale, benchmark, norm



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