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Dainty   /dˈeɪnti/   Listen
Dainty

adjective
(compar. daintier; superl. daintiest)
1.
Affectedly dainty or refined.  Synonyms: mincing, niminy-piminy, prim, twee.
2.
Delicately beautiful.  Synonym: exquisite.  "An exquisite cameo"
3.
Especially pleasing to the taste.
4.
Excessively fastidious and easily disgusted.  Synonyms: nice, overnice, prissy, squeamish.  "So squeamish he would only touch the toilet handle with his elbow"






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Dainty" Quotes from Famous Books



... slender and childlike. Too fine and dainty to hold the woe of a hell-ship, and, Heaven knew, what private sorrow besides. She did not know I was observing her, or else her great trouble caused her to forget my presence, for she suddenly buried her face in her hands, and her shoulders commenced to heave. ...
— The Blood Ship • Norman Springer

... vain Of idle hopes, which still do fly away Like empty shadows, did afflict my brain) Walk'd forth to ease my pain Along the shore of silver-streaming Thames; Whose rutty bank, the which his river hems, Was painted all with variable flowers, And all the meads adorn'd with dainty gems Fit to deck maidens' bowers, And crown their paramours Against the bridal day, which is not long: Sweet Thames! run softly, till I end ...
— The Golden Treasury - Of the Best Songs and Lyrical Poems in the English Language • Various

... long-promised evangel "burst upon the town" a month ago. The "Religio Scriptoris"—which a puzzler at Latin might render as "The Religion of a Scribbler"—made a dainty appearance. The title-page was in two colors, with a pretty arabesque border. The type throughout was neatly leaded, with a column for summaries in the old fashion, and a wide margin of imitation hand-made paper. The book ...
— Flowers of Freethought - (Second Series) • George W. Foote

... interesting. A dainty head, delicate features, yellow hair, blue eyes, and a gentle sadness of mien that touched my heart. Had she been ugly what a ...
— The Last American - A Fragment from The Journal of KHAN-LI, Prince of - Dimph-Yoo-Chur and Admiral in the Persian Navy • J. A. Mitchell

... passions to tatters, but Aubrey found the strong man of the jungle coming almost too close to his own imperious instincts. Was not he, too—he thought naively—a poor Tarzan of the advertising jungle, lost among the elephants and alligators of commerce, and sighing for this dainty and unattainable vision of girlhood that had burst upon his burning gaze! He stole a perilous side-glance at her profile, and saw the racing flicker of the screen reflected in tiny spangles of light that danced in her eyes. He was even so unknowing as to imagine that she ...
— The Haunted Bookshop • Christopher Morley

... larger one in which he had now and then dined. He could picture the wine, and lights, and costly dresses, the smiling faces of those who had at that time expected a great deal from him, and he saw the girl who usually sat at his side. She had a delicate beauty and a dainty mind, and he had sometimes fancied they might be drawn closer when he had made his mark, which in those days appeared a very probable thing. He wondered vaguely what she was doing then, or if she ever thought ...
— The Greater Power • Harold Bindloss

... sucking softly among his sedges; on this side and that lay the flat bottom through which he went—meadowland broken by rushes; his mare Cecily stepped along, now cracking the thin ice of the little pools with her dainty feet, now going gently over peaty ground, blowing thin clouds from her red nostrils, yet unencouraged by word or caress from her rider; who sat, heavy and all but slouching, staring with his blue eyes under puckered eyelids, ...
— Come Rack! Come Rope! • Robert Hugh Benson

... their task, advantage was taken of the opportunity for a hunting expedition in the nearest patch of forest, or for a party to go down to the lagoon, cross it to the reef, and spend the time with better or worse luck fishing with lines, or collecting the abundant molluscs which formed a dainty addition to ...
— Fire Island - Being the Adventures of Uncertain Naturalists in an Unknown Track • G. Manville Fenn

... hundred back yards, smaller bands of boys and girls were busy rolling huge balls into a mighty snow man with a broom for a gun and bits of purloined coal for eyes and nose, and making mock assaults upon it and upon one another, just as the dainty little darlings in curls and leggings were doing in the up-town streets, but with ever so much more zest in their play. Their screams of delight rose to the many windows in the tenements, from which the mothers were exchanging views with next-door neighbors as to the probable duration of ...
— Children of the Tenements • Jacob A. Riis

... the station was repeatedly attacked, and although it held out stanchly, fear and suspense and grief filled the stockade,—yet still there was space for Cupid to go swaggering hither and thither within the guarded gates, and aim his arrows with his old-time dainty skill, albeit his bow and quiver might seem somewhat archaic in these days of powder and lead. For Peninnah Penelope Anne Mivane spent much of her time in the moulding of bullets. Perhaps it was appropriate, since both she and her young pioneer lover dealt so largely ...
— The Frontiersmen • Charles Egbert Craddock

... deviated from the usual mode of representation. Your Magdalene is not a thoughtful virgin, but a lovely artless child rather, and yet she is such a marvellous child that hardly anybody else but Guido could have painted her. There is a unique charm in her dainty figure; you must have painted with inspiration; and, if I mistake not, the original of this Magdalene is alive and to be found in Rome. Come, confess, ...
— Weird Tales. Vol. I • E. T. A. Hoffmann

... that you take gifts with you for the children every time you go down to the village. This is pretty work here, and it must be a pleasant diversion for you." Muller had taken up a dainty little spinning-wheel which was almost completed. "Isn't it made from the wood of a red ...
— The Case of The Pool of Blood in the Pastor's Study • Grace Isabel Colbron and Augusta Groner

... The ground was made up of broken stone, and all that grew was a dry and stunted brush not more than six inches high, of which the poor animals took an occasional dainty bite, and seemed hardly ...
— Death Valley in '49 • William Lewis Manly

... noon train from the city puffed up to the little platform, Lucian Davlin was among the arrivals, and at the end of the depot platform stood the dainty phaeton of Mrs. John Arthur. That lady herself reined in her prancing ponies, and the whole formed an object of admiration for ...
— Madeline Payne, the Detective's Daughter • Lawrence L. Lynch

... burnt sacking, the debris of sandbags. Weapons and bits of weapons and pieces of human bodies are scattered through it like plums. The so-called trench may be no more than a yoked line of shell holes converted with dainty toil and loss to a more perpendicular angle. And the tangled pattern of craters is itself pocked with the smaller dents of bombs. There are three grades of holes—great mine craters that look like ...
— The Story of the Great War, Volume IV (of 8) • Francis J. (Francis Joseph) Reynolds, Allen L. (Allen Leon)

... be disgraced by her share in this Exhibition, but I forbear. Had we declined altogether the invitation to participate in this show, we certainly would have been discredited in the world's opinion, however unjustly; had we attempted to rival the costly tissues, dainty carvings, rich mosaics, and innumerable gewgaws of Europe, we should have shown equal bad taste and unsound judgment, and would have deservedly been laughed at. Our real error consists, not in neglecting to send articles to rival the rich fabrics and wares of this Continent, ...
— Glances at Europe - In a Series of Letters from Great Britain, France, Italy, - Switzerland, &c. During the Summer of 1851. • Horace Greeley

... ocean waves, While monsters from the unknown caves Make thee their prey, Escaping which the human knaves On thee lig way. No doubt thou was at first designed To suit the palates of mankind; Yet as I ponder now, I find Thy fame is gone, With dainty dish thou art behind ...
— Adventures and Recollections • Bill o'th' Hoylus End

... changes, to note her features mirror every varying emotion from tenderness to flippancy, from anger to delight, and, at his bidding, to see the pale cheeks glow with love's fire, the eyes grow heavy, the dainty lips invite kisses. Cherry was a perfect little spoiled animal, he reflected, ...
— The Spoilers • Rex Beach

... and some are wrong, Some too short and some too long, Some too loose and some too tight; Grimy smudges on the white, And a tiny spot of red, Where poor Polly's finger bled. Strange such pretty, dainty blocks— Bits of Polly's summer frocks— Should have proved so hard to sew, And the cause of ...
— The Jingle Book • Carolyn Wells

... words: "You are ordering me to my death." The Count, his weapon high in mid-air, suddenly swerved it from its course, for there appeared across the opening a woman's hand and arm, white and shapely, fleecy lace falling away in dainty folds from the rounded contour of the arm. The small, firm hand grasped bravely the almost severed chain and the next instant the door was drawn shut, the bolts clanking into their places. Count Herbert, paused, leaning on his sword, gazing ...
— The Strong Arm • Robert Barr

... her I would be even with her; and so I was. However, for that week she treated us as she said she would, and did it so very fine, and with such a profusion of all sorts of good things, that the greatest burthen to her was how to dispose of things that were left; for she never let anything, how dainty or however large, be so much as ...
— The Fortunate Mistress (Parts 1 and 2) • Daniel Defoe

... lay down at full length behind a snuffbox which was on the table; there he could easily watch the little dainty lady, who continued to stand on one leg ...
— The Junior Classics, Volume 1 • Willam Patten

... forlorn and discouraged. I sat on the bulwark, listening to the falling rain and the swish of the dark tide, and thinking of home. How far it seemed, and how impassable the gulf now between the "castle" with its refined ways, between her in her dainty girlhood and me sitting there, numbed with the cold that was slowly stealing away my senses with my courage. There was warmth and cheer where she was. Here—— An overpowering sense of desolation came upon me. I hitched a ...
— Stories of Achievement, Volume IV (of 6) - Authors and Journalists • Various

... them all, by the life of Pharaoh, there's an oath: how many water-bearers shall you hear swear such an oath? oh, I have a guest, (he teacheth me) he doth swear the best of any man christened. By Phoebus, By the life of Pharaoh, By the body of me, As I am gentleman, and a soldier: such dainty oaths; and withal he doth take this same filthy roguish tobacco, the finest and cleanliest; it would do a man good to see the fume come forth at his nostrils: well, he owes me forty shillings, (my wife lent him out of her purse; by sixpence a time,) besides his lodging; I would ...
— Every Man In His Humour • Ben Jonson

... boats put out upon the sun-kissed water the girls waved dainty handkerchiefs as long as they could see the fleet. Then a change of course shut out the fishing shack, where love had made a home for the planter in his hour ...
— Motor Boat Boys Down the Coast - or Through Storm and Stress to Florida • Louis Arundel

... twelve signs of the Zodiac, where the monarch was accustomed to sit on a golden throne, hearing causes and dispensing justice to his subjects. The treasury and the various apartments were full of gold and silver, of costly robes and precious stones, of jewelled arms and dainty carpets. The glass vases of the spice magazine contained an abundance of musk, camphor, amber, gums, drugs, and delicious perfumes. In one apartment was found a carpet of white brocade, 450 feet long and 90 broad, with a border ...
— The Seven Great Monarchies Of The Ancient Eastern World, Vol 7. (of 7): The Sassanian or New Persian Empire • George Rawlinson

... tenor Narrator pictures the return of the Peri with her gift, leading up to the Angel's solo ("Sweet is our welcome"), which preludes a brief choral passage for sixteen female voices. After the Narrator's declaration of her disappointment, the scene changes to Egypt, and in a dainty, delicate three-part chorus the Spirits of the Nile are invoked not to disturb the Peri. Her lament is heard ("O Eden, how longeth for thee my Heart!"), and the Spirits now weave a gentle, sympathetic ...
— The Standard Oratorios - Their Stories, Their Music, And Their Composers • George P. Upton

... and blue, sarvis berries, bear berries, mountain ash berries (also loved of bears), thimble berries, high bush cranberries, gooseberries—large and insipid—currants, wild cherries, choke cherries; many of these friends of old, others seen here for the first time, dainty picking in the autumn for deer, bears, foxes, squirrels and many birds. What particularly appealed to me was a wild apple, no larger than the eye of a hawk, but quite able to survive in a fierce contest for life, and with a pleasant, ...
— American Big Game in Its Haunts • Various

... I e'er The odor of the flowery fields inhale, Or perfume of the gardens of the town, That I recall thee not, as on that day, When in thy sumptuous rooms, so redolent Of all the fragrant flowers of the spring, Arrayed in robe of violet hue, thy form Angelic I beheld, as it reclined On dainty cushions languidly, and by An atmosphere voluptuous surrounded; When thou, a skilful Syren, didst imprint Upon thy children's round and rosy lips Resounding, fervent kisses, stretching forth Thy neck of snow, and with thy lovely ...
— The Poems of Giacomo Leopardi • Giacomo Leopardi

... house that afternoon I kind of hands it to myself that I've filled Vee's order. And there standing on the front veranda admirin' the lilacs is Lucy Lee in one of her plain little frocks—a pink and white check—lookin' as fresh and dainty and inexpensive as a prize exhibit from an ...
— Torchy and Vee • Sewell Ford

... effects in Whitman which are, I believe, inconsistent with the poetical law. Not to multiply instances, his grotesque word-inventions—"Me imperturbe!" "No dainty dolce affettuoso I," "the drape of the day"—his use of Greek and Latin and French terms, not correctly used and not even rightly spelt, his endless iterations, lists, catalogues, categories, things not clearly visualised ...
— Escape and Other Essays • Arthur Christopher Benson

... of Italy, the olives of Greece, or the palms of Morning Land? Are there not as much, or more vigor and raciness in the practical souls of the multitude and in their never-ending strife with Nature, as among the spoiled and dainty darlings of fortune and among the nerveless, mind-emasculated Victims of Society who sing us their endless Miserere from the Sistine chapels of fashionable novels? You know there is, and if you watch the time, you may see that it is the warm truth from real life, which is ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 3 No 2, February 1863 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... fellow took the well-shaped head in his arms, fondled the soft, dainty nose that nuzzled in his pocket for sugar, fed Chiquito a half-handful of the delicacy in his open palm, and put the pony through the repertoire of tricks he ...
— Gunsight Pass - How Oil Came to the Cattle Country and Brought a New West • William MacLeod Raine

... holiday suit and natty gloves, the unheard asides of the rival neighbours, the delight of the old 'mater,' the intelligence—"A ten-pound rise all at once from Antrobus, mater. Whad d'yer think of that?" or again, the first whispering of love, dainty and witty and tender, to the girl he served a few days ago with sateen, or a gallant rescue of generalised beauty in distress from truculent insult or ...
— The Wheels of Chance - A Bicycling Idyll • H. G. Wells

... good spirits and good temper, there is Dickens' royal gift of humour. As some actors have only to show their face and utter a word or two, in order to convulse an audience with merriment, so here does almost every sentence hold good and honest laughter. Not, perhaps, objects the superfine and too dainty critic, humour of the most delicate sort—not humour that for its rare and exquisite quality can be placed beside the masterpieces in that kind of Lamb, or Sterne, or Goldsmith, or Washington Irving. Granted freely; not humour of that ...
— Life of Charles Dickens • Frank Marzials

... a letter to the fair chatelaine at Meran, telling her that by dainty and skilful management of the paces, he was bringing on the intractable heroine of the Fifteenth, and was to be expected in about two or three days. The letter was entrusted to Wilhelm, who took the ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... allowed. He never had a friend who was not welcome to his purse. While he had no care whatever about his dress, and would frequently enter the drawing-room, even when company was there, with but one stocking on, or minus some other very necessary adjunct of dress, he was very dainty and neat about many things. The greasy, crumpled, Scotch one-pound notes annoyed him. He did his best to smooth and cleanse them, before parting with them, and he washed and polished shillings ...
— Home Life of Great Authors • Hattie Tyng Griswold

... not Doll Williamson, least she lay thee along on God's dear earth.—And you, sir [To Caveler], that allow such coarse cates to carpenters, whilst pigeons, which they pay for, must serve your dainty appetite, deliver them back to my husband again, or I'll call so many women to mine assistance as will not leave one inch untorn of thee: if our husbands must be bridled by law, and forced to bear your wrongs, their ...
— Sir Thomas More • William Shakespeare [Apocrypha]

... them better than the serious industry of castles and canals. Deliverance from shoes and stockings, the first thrill of pleasure and surprise at the cool touch of the water, the wild rush along the brim, the dainty advance till the sea covers the little ankles, the tremulous waiting with an air of defiance as the wave deepens round till it touches the knee, the firm line with which the dabblers grasp hand in hand and face the advancing ...
— Stray Studies from England and Italy • John Richard Green

... cheerful fountain with a garland for the weary head, and that lasses, "who more excell Than the sweet-voic'd Philomel," are ready to cluster round the Interesting captive, and lead him away in daisy-chains—what could be more consolatory! And we close the little dainty volume, with its delicate perfume of ...
— Gossip in a Library • Edmund Gosse

... itself exclusively, are fair and goodly creatures. Who lendeth nothing is an ugly and wicked creature, and an accursed imp of the infernal Old Nick. And there is made—what? Debts. A thing most precious and dainty, of great use and antiquity. Debts, I say, surmounting the number of syllables which may result from the combinations of all the consonants, with each of the vowels heretofore projected, reckoned, and calculated by the noble Xenocrates. ...
— Gargantua and Pantagruel, Complete. • Francois Rabelais

... other indignantly. "What right have hungry sailormen to be dainty? Don't I give them enough to eat? ...
— Sea Urchins • W. W. Jacobs

... picturesque pink clothing and round hats with pink feathers in them, but the apparel of the women was still more gorgeous and striking. Their dresses consisted of layer after layer of gauzy tuck and ruffles and laces, caught here and there with bows of dainty ribbon. The skirts—which of course were of many shades of pink—were so fluffy and light that they stuck out from the fat bodies of the Pinkie women like the skirts of ballet-dancers, displaying their chubby pink ankles and pink kid shoes. They wore rings ...
— Sky Island - Being the further exciting adventures of Trot and Cap'n - Bill after their visit to the sea fairies • L. Frank Baum

... water nymphs and Undines, lie beautiful lakelets. Angeline is but one of a dozen which sparkle like a chain of gems between Donner Lake and the snowy, overhanging peaks of Mount Stanford. The clefts and fissures of the towering granite cliffs are filled, in summer, with dainty ferns, clinging mosses, and the loveliest of mountain wild flowers, and the rims of the lakelets are bordered with grasses, shrubbery, and a wealth of wild blossoms. But in winter this region exhibits the very grandeur of desolation. No verdure is visible save the dwarfed ...
— History of the Donner Party • C.F. McGlashan

... represented by massive furniture in calamander, ebony, and satinwood, carved with the most elaborate devices, dainty laces made by the nimble fingers of village women, beautiful productions on tortoise shell and gold, heavily embroidered cloths of gold, and a large collection of the various curios for which the East is famous, besides a display of tanned hides and jewelry ...
— Final Report of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition Commission • Louisiana Purchase Exposition Commission

... black stove in the kitchen, but the most of the cooking was done out of doors, farther down the bank, in ovens shaped like swallows' nests. Here were baked delicious mud cakes, tempting currant tarts, and dainty custards. ...
— Little Prudy's Dotty Dimple • Sophie May

... up the bench and handed Luke fully three-quarters of the toothsome dainty. It pleased him to see the half-famished boy enjoy the feast. Luke poked a good-sized piece of the sake under the cage cover. There was ...
— Andy the Acrobat • Peter T. Harkness

... vast sums of money he lent the King to maintain the wars in France; and how at a great Feast, to which he invited the King, the Queen, and the Nobility, he generously burnt the writings and freely forgave his Majesty the whole Debt. Tune of 'Dainty, come thou to me.' London: Printed for R. Burton, at the Horse ...
— The History of Sir Richard Whittington • T. H.

... that lady was preparing for rest, with considerable elaboration of detail in the way of hair-brushing, and putting away of neck-ribbons and collars and trinkets in smart little boxes and handy little drawers, all more or less odorous from the presence of dainty satin-covered sachets. The sachets, and the drawers, and boxes, and trinkets were Mrs. Sheldon's best anchorage in this world. Such things as these were the things that made life worth endurance for this poor weak little woman; and ...
— Birds of Prey • M. E. Braddon

... Anything more sure and exquisite than the cultivation Virginia Balfour breathed he would have been hard put to it to conceive. That her gown and its accessories seemed to him merely the extension of a dainty personality was the highest compliment he could pay her charm, and an entirely ...
— Ridgway of Montana - (Story of To-Day, in Which the Hero Is Also the Villain) • William MacLeod Raine

... lifted the dainty mass of lace and chiffon from her bed with a sigh of satisfaction. "When you're on, then we'll be all ready. Guess I'll have to get Jane to do it up, though. I don't know just ...
— Lucile Triumphant • Elizabeth M. Duffield

... Elsie was sweet as honey and cuddlier than a kitten. He felt tempted to put a finger under her dainty up-tilted chin. ...
— Bloom of Cactus • Robert Ames Bennet

... would find! All the girls who had occupied the room since Warwick Hall had been a school! Blue eyes and brown, laughing faces and wistful ones, girls in gorgeous full dress, pluming themselves for some evening entertainment, girls in dainty undress and unbound hair, exchanging bed-time confidences as they prepared for the night, ambitious little saints and frivolous little sinners—they were all there, somewhere in the dim background of the ...
— The Little Colonel's Chum: Mary Ware • Annie Fellows Johnston

... portrait of Violet. She had been in the perfection of young beauty; she had had no capacity for deep feeling, really,—why did an aroma of sadness escape from that dainty colored shadow of her? Why, but because of the artist's yearning sense that beauty is transitory, and the loveliest girl subject to destiny, and the future full of pitfalls for the fragility ...
— Aurora the Magnificent • Gertrude Hall

... Scrope's, it was to find Gertrude arrayed in the clothes provided for her, and looking, save for her dainty prettiness, quite like a country girl come in with marketable wares. Such things of her own as she needed for her sojourn, together with Lady Scrope's precious box, were put into the barrow beneath the empty basket and sacks. Then with many affectionate farewells the pair started forth, ...
— The Sign Of The Red Cross • Evelyn Everett-Green

... bottom of the heap of rags, which she turned up for that purpose; together with a girl's cloak, quite worn out and very old; and the crushed remains of a bonnet that had probably been picked up from some ditch or dunghill. In this dainty raiment, she instructed Florence to dress herself; and as such preparation seemed a prelude to her release, the child complied ...
— Dombey and Son • Charles Dickens

... cry, my dainty little fairy. You have nothing to blame yourself for—except for being so bewitchingly sweet whether you are laughing or crying. You exhale sweetness like a flower. I want your influence to pervade every place where I am, to distract ...
— Three Comedies • Bjornstjerne M. Bjornson

... in his heart and memory beside his mother. His wife was Saskia van Ulenburg, the daughter of an aristocrat, refined and rich. He met her through her cousin, an art dealer, who had ordered Rembrandt to paint a portrait of his dainty cousin. Rembrandt could have been nothing but what was delightful and good, since he was loved by so ...
— Pictures Every Child Should Know • Dolores Bacon

... too, though it don't seem possible. It even seems more impossible when I tell ya that she looked more like of Cast Steel than ever. He an' the girl was a heap alike, 'cept that he was big an' raw-boned an' spare-featured; while she was as dainty as an antelope, an' as far as looks went, she was the Queen Bee of ...
— Happy Hawkins • Robert Alexander Wason

... into the spirit with zest, and being a clever saleswoman, she collected a wonderful assortment of dainty novelties and confections, while the manager of the store rubbed his hands together gleefully as he observed the correspondingly wonderful ...
— Traffic in Souls - A Novel of Crime and Its Cure • Eustace Hale Ball

... and are delighted therewith, as unclean birds and beasts are with stinking and dunghill filth as with dainties and delicacies: for the effluvia arising from their flesh fill the recesses of the mind with their dregs, and cause that the will, perceives nothing more dainty and desirable. It is these who after death become corporeal spirits, and from whom flow the unclean things of hell and the church, spoken of above n. ...
— The Delights of Wisdom Pertaining to Conjugial Love • Emanuel Swedenborg

... my acquaintances was of a very different type, a female Maryland yellow-throat. This lovely creature, a most exquisite, dainty bit of bird flesh, was in the Garden all by herself on the 6th of October, when the great majority of her relatives must have been already well on their way toward the sunny South. She appeared to be perfectly contented, ...
— Birds in the Bush • Bradford Torrey

... but life abounds in the pack, and the birds that came to visit the ship were a source of perpetual interest. The pleasantest and most constant of these visitors was the small snow petrel, with its dainty snow-white plumage relieved only by black beak and feet, and black, beady eye. These little birds abound in the pack-ice, but the blue-grey southern fulmar and the Antarctic petrel were also to be seen, and that unwholesome scavenger, the ...
— The Voyages of Captain Scott - Retold from 'The Voyage of the "Discovery"' and 'Scott's - Last Expedition' • Charles Turley

... wearer is no man-of-straw, lady; were I free, and you had ten thousand foes—horse, foot, and dragoons—how like a friend I could fight for you! Come, you have robbed me of my hair; let me rob your dainty hand of its price. ...
— Israel Potter • Herman Melville

... thaws, and the stream of speech, once more let loose, seeks out its old windings, or overflows musically in unpractised channels. The service which Spenser did to our literature by this exquisite sense of harmony is incalculable. His fine ear, abhorrent of barbarous dissonance, his dainty tongue that loves to prolong the relish of a musical phrase, made possible the transition from the cast-iron stiffness of "Ferrex and Porrex" to the Damascus pliancy of Fletcher and Shakespeare. ...
— Among My Books • James Russell Lowell

... reader to his pleasant journey to the lands of Djinns and Mantris and spells and mystic talismans. He will be entertained by the chrestomathy of Bokhari; he will be entranced by the story of the winsome and dainty Bidasari. ...
— Malayan Literature • Various Authors

... impoverished flesh of the legs. The cold, to which she paid no heed, turned her lips violet, and a sad smile, drawing up the corners of a sensitive mouth, showed teeth that were white as ivory and quite small,—pretty, transparent teeth, in keeping with the delicate ears, the rather sharp but dainty nose, and the general outline of her face, which, in spite of its roundness, was lovely. All the animation of this charming face was in the eyes, the iris of which, brown like Spanish tobacco and flecked with black, shone with golden reflections round pupils that were brilliant ...
— The Celibates - Includes: Pierrette, The Vicar of Tours, and The Two Brothers • Honore de Balzac

... thereafter she received with much apparent glee the dainty sealed letter addressed to herself, and dropped it in her writing-desk, but ere she turned the key there dropped a tear or two ...
— Ester Ried • Pansy (aka. Isabella M. Alden)

... white, next to that of the king, was seated the Lady of the Tournament, the Princess Louise, and her maids of honor, arrayed all in snowy garb, and, against the garish brilliancy of the general background, a pompous pageantry of colors, the decoration of this dainty nook shone in silvery contrast. A garland of flowers was the only crown the lady wore; no other adornment had her fair shoulders save their own argent beauty, of which the fashion of the day permitted a discernible suggestion. One arm hung languorously across ...
— Under the Rose • Frederic Stewart Isham

... he invited all the beasts, and among the rest, a sow. When all manner of costly dishes were set before the guests, the sow asked, "Have you no bran?" Even so, said he, we preachers set forth the most dainty dishes,—the forgiveness of sins, and the grace of God; but they turn up their snouts, and grub ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Ezekiel, Daniel, and the Minor Prophets. St Matthew Chapters I to VIII • Alexander Maclaren

... you, letting you have your own way. And maybe Mammy Lindy and I, in our anxiety that you should be well and strong, and sit the saddle like a Texas daughter should, haven't taught you always just the dainty little lady ways—that you ought to ...
— The Sunbridge Girls at Six Star Ranch • Eleanor H. (Eleanor Hodgman) Porter

... the infancy of both. Her father meanwhile was exchanging serious converse with her grandmother, and Giles finding himself left in the background, began: "Come hither, pretty coz, and I will tell thee of my Lady of Salisbury's dainty little hounds." ...
— The Armourer's Prentices • Charlotte Mary Yonge

... now thirty-five years old; but not only because she was so exceedingly slender, small, and dainty, did she seem like a girl of eighteen—her nature, too, was permeated by a rare spirit of youth; and when her eye rested, absorbed and contemplative, upon an object, it had the clearness and dreamy sweetness of the gaze ...
— The German Classics, v. 20 - Masterpieces of German Literature • Various

... dressed in white and her face looked fresh and cool under a large hat of Leghorn straw, with its black-velvet strings hanging loose upon her shoulders. Her short skirt showed her dainty ankles. She walked with a brisk step, using a tall, iron-shod stick, while her disengaged hand crumpled some flowers which she had gathered on the way and which she ...
— The Frontier • Maurice LeBlanc

... as they stood there talking of him, Mrs. Stannard's door opened and he came forth, the three ladies following. He did look well,—more than well, as he turned with extended hand to say good-by. "Dandy," his lithe-limbed sorrel, pricked up his dainty, pointed ears and whinnied eagerly as he heard his step on the piazza, giving himself a shake that threatened the dislocation of his burden of blankets, canteen, and saddle-bags. The ladies surrounded him at the gate. Mrs. Stannard's kind blue eyes were moistening. ...
— Marion's Faith. • Charles King

... painting their faces in white and vermillion preparatory to the evening's entertainment. Probably four-fifths of the filles de joie in Sandakan are Chinese, the others are products of Nippon—quaint, dainty, doll-like little women with faces so heavily enameled that they would be cracked by a smile. When a Chinese merchant wants a wife he usually visits a house of prostitution, selects one of the inmates, drives a hard bargain with the hard-eyed mistress of the establishment, ...
— Where the Strange Trails Go Down • E. Alexander Powell

... burning during the night. Isabel, cuddling in a large chair, watched Antonia, as she went softly about putting on the table such delicacies as she could find at that hour. Tamales and cold duck, sweet cake and the guava jelly that was Isabel's favorite dainty. There was a little comfort in the sight of these things; and also, in the bright silver teapot standing so cheerfully on the hearth, and diffusing through the room a warm perfume, at once ...
— Remember the Alamo • Amelia E. Barr

... and counter here; they lounge and sup: The fragrant smoke-cloud and the foaming cup Tickle their eager senses. What care these for the clock, whilst banter flows And dainty "snacks" and toothsome herring-roes The distant ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 98 January 11, 1890 • Various

... The foot-track, so dainty narrow, just like a sheep-track, led through long ferns that lodged. Fairy land at last, thought I; Una and her lamb dwell here. Truly, a small abode—mere palanquin, set down on the summit, in a pass between ...
— The Piazza Tales • Herman Melville

... it comes to a horse, a man's heart speaks for itself, and if he has sufficient knowledge of the king of beasts he will choose a sympathetic mount. A dainty woman loves a neat-stepping saddle-horse; a philosopher likes a nodding, stumble-footed nag which will jog all day long and care not a whit whether it ...
— Riders of the Silences • John Frederick

... heart. The rain still pours, driving everybody within doors. The heat is intense. The hall is crowded, and it frequently happens that partners cannot find her until near the end of their number on that dainty card. But every one has something to say about Phil Stanley and the universal regret at his absence. It is getting to be more than she can bear,—this prolonged striving to respond with proper appreciation and sympathy, yet not say too much,—not betray the secret that is now burning, ...
— Starlight Ranch - and Other Stories of Army Life on the Frontier • Charles King

... And these dainty stitches, set so exactly, assure me that the little girls for whom I write are not too young to embroider neatly. Will you let its two mottoes remind you that a few moments carefully used each day will make you as good needle-women as your ...
— Harper's Young People, October 26, 1880 - An Illustrated Weekly • Various

... rug of plain velvet carpeting; Dotty's rose pink and Dolly's moss green. Window curtains of Rajah silk fell over dainty white ones, and pretty light-shades of green and pink, respectively, gave the rooms a ...
— Two Little Women • Carolyn Wells

... so lovely, as she sway'd The rein with dainty finger-tips, A man had given all other bliss, And all his worldly worth for this, To waste his whole heart in one kiss ...
— The Wife of his Youth and Other Stories of the Color Line, and - Selected Essays • Charles Waddell Chesnutt

... nature glows, Let not the dollars that a churl denies Weigh like the shillings on a dead man's eyes! Or, if thou wilt, be more discreetly blind, Nor ask to see all wide extremes combined. Not in our wastes the dainty blossoms smile That crowd the gardens of thy scanty isle. There white-cheeked Luxury weaves a thousand charms; Here sun-browned Labor swings his naked arms. Long are the furrows he must trace between ...
— The Poetical Works of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Complete • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

... the pale butterfly, with its dainty spots of orange, he sees before him the stately halls of fair gold, with their slender saffron pillars, and is taught how the delicate drawing high upon the walls shall be traced in tender tones of orpiment, and repeated by the base in notes ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Volume 6 - Subtitle: Little Journeys to the Homes of Eminent Artists • Elbert Hubbard

... You are so little. So little and slender. When you had your armor on, to-day, it gave one a sort of notion of it; but in these pretty silks and velvets, you are only a dainty page, not a league-striding war-colossus, moving in clouds and darkness and breathing smoke and thunder. I would God I might see you at it and go tell your mother! That would help her sleep, poor thing! Here—teach me the arts of the soldier, that ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... did not lack clever and witty turns, especially in the description of the anxieties which the lovers had to endure as they stole by secret ways to their mistresses, and of how their apprehensions proved fatal to all the rapturous delights of love and to every dainty gallant adventure before it could even develop into blossom. If it be added that the poem was made to conclude with a magniloquent panegyric upon Louis XIV., the king could not fail to read it with visible signs of satisfaction. ...
— Weird Tales, Vol. II. • E. T. A. Hoffmann

... room, sparsely furnished yet dainty and homelike, for the small, deal table hid its bare nakedness beneath a dainty cloth; the two rickety armchairs veiled their faded tapestry under chintz covers, cunningly contrived and delicately tinted to match the cheap but soft-toned drugget on the floor and ...
— The Definite Object - A Romance of New York • Jeffery Farnol

... nightscape ever conceived by any artist. At day or dark it is incomparably subtle. By day it is a lane of crazy meat and vegetable stalls and tumbling houses, whose colours chime softly with their background. By night it is a dainty riot of flame and tousled stone, the gentle dusk of the near distance deepening imperceptibly to purple, and finally to haunting chaos. And—it is a beautiful thought—there are thousands and thousands of streets in London where similar ecstasy awaits ...
— Nights in London • Thomas Burke

... trail struck Rod, and for some moments he was at a loss to account for it. One of the girl's dainty feet left its moccasin imprint very distinctly; the mark of the other was no more than a formless blotch in the snow. Then the youth thought of the footprints that were leading on Mukoki and Wabigoon, and despite his desperate situation he could not repress a smile. He had been ...
— The Gold Hunters - A Story of Life and Adventure in the Hudson Bay Wilds • James Oliver Curwood

... called Laguio, very wretched and closely packed, and so poorly furnished that the very chest in which they kept their books was the table upon which they ate. Their only food for many days was rice boiled in water without salt, oil, meat, fish, or even an egg, or any other thing; sometimes as a dainty, they ...
— The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898: Volume XII, 1601-1604 • Edited by Blair and Robertson

... said quietly. "Isn't it lovely to see the hedges covered with the wild roses? I think they are almost my favourite flower—so dainty ...
— The Heart of Una Sackville • Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey

... Bello are not particularly dainty. I am sure I should starve there, for I could not consent to eat their food. What do you think of shovel-nosed sharks being sold in the markets, and guanas—which you know are lizards—being considered ...
— The World of Waters - A Peaceful Progress o'er the Unpathed Sea • Mrs. David Osborne

... River View one morning when Lord Chandos and Leone sat at a late breakfast-table, Leone looking like a radiant spring morning, her beautiful face, with its exquisite coloring, and her dainty dress ...
— A Mad Love • Bertha M. Clay

... reminded him and his visitors of home life in England. All this is in danger of becoming a shell-fretted wilderness now. "Long Tom" once having turned his attention in this direction continued to pound away until two shots struck the house itself, and, bursting inside, shattered the dainty contents of ...
— Four Months Besieged - The Story of Ladysmith • H. H. S. Pearse

... of eau-de-Cologne at Gibraltar when the Spanish merchants came aboard; she fetched it and bathed Mrs. Hetherington's aching head. All the time she was staring at her fascinating nightgown. It was the first dainty garment she had seen close to since her ...
— Captivity • M. Leonora Eyles

... shouting fierce alarms, Incontinent betook them to their arms; And thus it seemed a fight there must have been But that a horseman sudden spurred between— A blue-eyed youth with yellow, curling hair, Of slender shape, of face and feature fair, A dainty knight was he in very truth, A ...
— The Geste of Duke Jocelyn • Jeffery Farnol

... they might not be touched by the whitewash on each edge. Once outside, she straightened herself up with the lithe grace of a young willow, released her skirts, and balancing herself on the point of her parasol, closed the gate with her toe: she was too dainty to touch it. ...
— The Mettle of the Pasture • James Lane Allen

... down the room with a half-flowered foxglove in her hand. She carried it like a sabre at the slope, and her step was a burlesque of the cavalry stride. She issued military orders to an imaginary contingent of troops, and her contralto voice rang like a bell. Her upper lip was corked in two dainty black lines of moustache, and on her tumbled and untidy curls she had perched a shallow chip strawberry-pottle, which ...
— Despair's Last Journey • David Christie Murray

... the party, and as Dora, besides being exceedingly tasteful, was also neat, and handy with her needle, she was kept from school, stitching the livelong day upon the dainty fabric, a portion of which had been purchased with her hair! Occasionally, as Eugenia glanced at the swollen eyelids and shorn head, bending so uncomplainingly over the cloud of lace, her conscience smote her for what she had done; but one ...
— Dora Deane • Mary J. Holmes

... given them ten Roman crowns as before. I kissed Armelline's fair hands, and as she felt the contact of my lips her face was suffused by a vivid blush. Never had the lips of man touched more dainty hands before, and she looked quite astounded at the ardour ...
— The Memoires of Casanova, Complete • Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

... thy tragedy and sculptures done, From press and plates, in fleets do homeward come; And in ridiculous and humble pride, Their course in ballad-singers' baskets guide, Whose greasy twigs do all new beauties take, From the gay shows thy dainty sculptures make. Thy lines a mess of rhyming nonsense yield, A senseless tale, with flattering fustian fill'd. No grain of sense does in one line appear, Thy words big bulks of boist'rous bombast bear, With noise they move, and from play'rs' mouths rebound, When their tongues dance to thy words' ...
— Lives of the Poets, Vol. 1 • Samuel Johnson

... you or myself," I went on. "She's so dainty and sweet! She looks like a child who has never known an hour of rough usage in her life. They wouldn't leave her ...
— An Amiable Charlatan • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... account that the twisted figure, with queer contortions of face, yet delicate feet and hands, and dainty utterance, might have been expected to give, when Anne asked him, "Was it ...
— A Reputed Changeling • Charlotte M. Yonge

... up the chopsticks. "Even the chickens in this place are fine," she went on to add, pretending, she did not hear what was going on; "the eggs they lay are small, but so dainty! How very pretty they are! Let me ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book II • Cao Xueqin

... here—the women who never cried out when they let you go? Don't heart-break and black, black solitude count anything with you? You're building railroads, building up a great Dominion, but the waiting women are doing their part, too. And I'm thinking of others still, gilt-edged and dainty, 'way in the old country. I've seen a few. Where's the man from an English college that used to feel himself better after they talked to him? Is he here with the fire of bad whisky in him, betting against the banker to win a smile from ...
— Lorimer of the Northwest • Harold Bindloss

... yards or so we met somebody. Even thus early the road was thronged. By far the majority were the almost naked natives of the district, pleasant, brown-skinned people with good features. They carried things. These things varied from great loads balanced atop to dainty impromptu baskets woven of cocoa-leaves and containing each a single cocoanut. They smiled on us, returned our greeting, and stood completely aside to let us pass. Other wayfarers were of more importance. Small groups of bearded dignitaries, either upper-class Swahili or pure ...
— African Camp Fires • Stewart Edward White

... on the moist trail; her quick eyes missed nothing — not the dainty imprint of deer, fresh made, nor the sprawling insignia of rambling raccoons — nor the big barred owl huddled on a pine limb overhead, nor, where the swift gravelly reaches of the brook caught sunlight, ...
— The Flaming Jewel • Robert Chambers

... & Co. have just brought out a one-and-threepenny edition ("the threepence be demmed!") of the Yellowplush Papers, with a dainty canary-coloured Jeames on the cover. At the same time the same firm produce, in the same form, The Last Days of Pompeii, The Last Days of Palmyra, and The Last of the Mohicans. Odd, that the first issue of this new series should be nearly all "Lasts." The Yellowplush Papers might ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 99., September 20, 1890 • Various

... forgot each other. So she's the girl who's to marry the prince, is she?" Quentin's face was serious for the moment; a far-off look of real concern came into his eyes. He was recalling a sweet, dainty face, a girlish figure, ...
— Castle Craneycrow • George Barr McCutcheon

... young girl did not seem to heed them. She walked quickly along, looking defiantly before her, carrying her head erect, and stepping carefully from cobblestone to cobblestone, avoiding the mud, which could have dirtied her dainty shoes. ...
— I Will Repay • Baroness Emmuska Orczy

... whitewashed taverns, and the perfumed wines of Malaga, of Jerez, and of Manzanilla. (The rain pours down without stay in oblique long lines, the light is quickly failing, the street is sad and very cheerless.) I feel on my shoulder the touch of dainty hands, of little hands with tapering fingers, and on my mouth the kisses of red lips, and I hear a joyous laugh. I remember the voice that bade me farewell that last night in Seville, and the gleam of dark eyes and dark hair at the foot of the stairs, ...
— The Land of The Blessed Virgin; Sketches and Impressions in Andalusia • William Somerset Maugham

... were suspected of aiding the enemy. Though looting was strictly forbidden, some of the raiding parties returned with interesting souvenirs of their expeditions—sometimes in the form of corpulent turkey, squeaking sucking-pig, or other dainty with which to vary the monotony of camp fare. Good-nature prevailed among the troops, and the health of the men testified to the excellence of their feeding. Fair beef, occasional mutton, and beer were available, and with these at hand and the enemy in ...
— South Africa and the Transvaal War, Vol. 2 (of 6) - From the Commencement of the War to the Battle of Colenso, - 15th Dec. 1899 • Louis Creswicke

... and sweetness of voice.' Then I drew near the door, and began raising the curtain little by little, when lo! I beheld a damsel, white as a full moon when it mooneth on its fourteenth night, with joined eyebrows twain and languorous lids of eyne, breasts like pomegranates twin and dainty, lips like double carnelian, a mouth as it were the seal-of Solomon, and teeth ranged in a line that played with the reason of proser and rhymer, even ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 4 • Richard F. Burton

... has found that out, and is showing the way." He snatched at an illustrated magazine, fresh from the press, that had been placed upon his desk, and opened it at the first page. "Johnson's Blacking," he read out, "advertised by a dainty little minx, showing her ankles. Who's going to stop for a moment to read about somebody's blacking? If a saucy little minx isn't there to trip him up ...
— All Roads Lead to Calvary • Jerome K. Jerome

... attired, with a pleasant word for everyone he met and an eye that was perfectly cool and careless, would have been amazed could they have known the leap that his heart gave when he caught sight of Lady Pynsent's great scarlet parasol and trailing black laces, side by side with Nan's dainty white costume. The girl wore an embroidered muslin, with a yellow sash tied loosely round her slender waist; the graceful curve of her broad-brimmed hat, fastened high over one ear like a cavalier's, was softened by drooping white ostrich feathers; ...
— Name and Fame - A Novel • Adeline Sergeant

... middlin'," said Mrs. Mudge, "but it's mainly because he's too dainty to eat what's set before him. Why, only the first day he was here he turned up his nose at the bread and soup ...
— Paul Prescott's Charge • Horatio Alger

... while an ex-incumbent performed a dance which he described, I think, as Pyrrhic. He fell in the fire and used hideous language in Latin and French, but I do not know whether that was Pyrrhic also. Drink is the dainty harvester; no puny ears for him, no faint and bending stalks: he reaps the rathe corn, and there is only the choicest of the choice in his sheaves. That is what I want to fix on the minds of young people—and others; the more sense of power you ...
— The Ethics of Drink and Other Social Questions - Joints In Our Social Armour • James Runciman

... managed to blurt out, "Perhaps I can make one of them dainty enough to send to your mother ...
— The Booming of Acre Hill - And Other Reminiscences of Urban and Suburban Life • John Kendrick Bangs

... AT IT.—Dress up, spruce up, and be on the alert. Don't wait too long to get one much more perfect than you are; but settle on some one soon. Remember that your unsexed state renders you over-dainty, and easily disgusted. So contemplate only their ...
— Searchlights on Health - The Science of Eugenics • B. G. Jefferis and J. L. Nichols

... Walker was. It did not take long for Eloise to tell all she knew, while Jack listened thoughtfully, resolving to seek out Tom, and by thrashing, or threatening, or hiring, turn him from any plan he might have against this little girl, who seemed to him far too young and dainty to be thrown upon the mercy of the rabble he had seen by the school-house with Tom Walker ...
— The Cromptons • Mary J. Holmes

... her arms, and the baby, if it is young enough, will probably be in its bag. But unless you look closely you will take the bag for a long robe, it hangs so softly and seems so little in the mother's way. It will be as dainty as a robe too, and when people have the means as costly; for you can deck out your bag with ribbons and laces as easily as your robe. The objection to foster-mothers has reality behind it, but the evils of the system are well understood, ...
— Home Life in Germany • Mrs. Alfred Sidgwick

... had scholars learned of my retreat than they began to flock thither from all sides, leaving their towns and castles to dwell in the wilderness. In place of their spacious houses they built themselves huts; instead of dainty fare they lived on the herbs of the field and coarse bread; their soft beds they exchanged for heaps of straw and rushes, and their tables were piles of turf. In very truth you may well believe that they were ...
— Historia Calamitatum • Peter Abelard

... quite satisfied with his share in the provender, which he must have taken as a dainty addition to the vast quantities of jungle grass and leafage which formed his real support, the elephant swung off, bowing his huge head and muttering softly, to overtake his companions, while Peter gave his ...
— Trapped by Malays - A Tale of Bayonet and Kris • George Manville Fenn

... continued his journey until he came to a hill, upon which was perched a stately castle. Here he was received by Fadir (father) and Modir (mother), who, delicately nurtured and luxuriously clad, received him cordially, and set before him dainty meats ...
— Myths of the Norsemen - From the Eddas and Sagas • H. A. Guerber

... evening of this day, Grace and baby Elsie were fast asleep, the one in bed, the other in her dainty crib, at an early hour; and Violet bethought her of Lulu in connection with the expected assembling of a ...
— Elsie's Kith and Kin • Martha Finley

... A dainty little creature indeed is the Yellow-headed Bush Tit, or Verdin, being smaller than the largest North American Humming Bird, which inhabits southern Arizona and southward. It is a common bird in suitable localities throughout ...
— Birds Illustrated by Color Photography [December, 1897], Vol 2. No 6. • Various

... most iron-visaged of the old dames, "if we stripped Madam Hester's rich gown off her dainty shoulders; and as for the red letter, which she hath stitched so curiously, I'll bestow a rag of mine own rheumatic flannel, to make a ...
— The Scarlet Letter • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... jar, Whose East the cupbearer and West my thirsty mouth I feign. I'm jealous of the very clothes she dights upon her side, For that upon her body soft and delicate they've lain; And eke I'm envious of the cups that touch her dainty lips, When to the kissing-place she sets them ever and again. Think not that I in anywise with sword am done to death; 'Tis by the arrows of a glance, alack! that I am slain. Whenas we met again, I found her ...
— The Book Of The Thousand Nights And One Night, Volume III • Anonymous

... a man more humane, more tolerant, more dainty; incites to every natural piety, strengthens reverence; while it clears his brain of whatever dull fumes may have lodged there, stirs up all his senses to wary alertness, and actually quickens his vitality, like high pure air. It ...
— Figures of Several Centuries • Arthur Symons



Words linked to "Dainty" :   confection, sweet, alimentation, marrow, refined, ambrosia, gelatin, nutrition, nutriment, savory, aliment, sustenance, fastidious, nectar, bone marrow, choice morsel, victuals, savoury, tasty, delicate, daintiness, jelly, tidbit, titbit, nourishment



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