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Dead weight   /dɛd weɪt/   Listen
Dead weight

noun
1.
An oppressive encumbrance.
2.
A heavy motionless weight.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Dead weight" Quotes from Famous Books



... it seemed a leviathan dead weight in the path of traffic. If it could not move of itself, the only way for traffic to pass was to build a road around it. Then there was a rumbling noise within its body which sounded like some unnatural ...
— My Second Year of the War • Frederick Palmer

... I suppose, Master Shirley," said Pat, striving to be facetious; "but please yourself, you are a dear, good young gentleman, and must have your own way;" and, unable to keep his legs any longer, Lary sunk down, a dead weight, into his seat. ...
— The Little Quaker - or, the Triumph of Virtue. A Tale for the Instruction of Youth • Susan Moodie

... can only get some dead weight over the frigate's side, it will lessen her way you see, and the wind may lull enough before morning to give the little craft ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIII No. 5 November 1848 • Various

... fell from the Earl's hand, and dropped a dead weight on the rushes at his feet. He was a heart-wrecked man, and life had to ...
— A Forgotten Hero - Not for Him • Emily Sarah Holt

... he must get up presently and go down to the office. Presently—when he could open his eyes. Just now there was a dead weight on them; he tried one after another in vain. The effort set him weakly trembling, and he wanted to cry again. Nonsense! He must get ...
— The Custom of the Country • Edith Wharton

... were always the dead weight upon the king's affairs, having no more work to do in the north, were, at the Parliament's desire, advanced southward, and then ordered away towards South Wales, and were set down to the siege of Hereford. Here this famous ...
— Memoirs of a Cavalier • Daniel Defoe

... to raise my hand to take hers, but it lay there like a great dead weight, and I could scarcely move it. I know not what it was, but at the sight of her standing there so strong and brave and sweet, and the thought of myself so weak and helpless, the tears started from my eyes and rolled down my cheeks in two tiny rivulets. She seemed to understand ...
— A Soldier of Virginia • Burton Egbert Stevenson

... industrial achievements, but we have not hitherto stopped thoughtfully enough to count the human cost, the cost of lives snuffed out, of energies overtaxed and broken, the fearful physical and spiritual cost to the men and women and children upon whom the dead weight and burden of it all has fallen pitilessly the years through. The groans and agony of it all had not yet reached our ears, the solemn, moving undertone of our life, coming up out of the mines and factories, and ...
— U.S. Presidential Inaugural Addresses • Various

... detailed. A further reduction of this charge may result from the exposition if exhibitors from Europe succeed in explaining to our engineers and machinists how they manage to lighten their cars, and thereby avoid carrying the excess of dead weight which contributes so much to the annihilation of ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. XVII. No. 101. May, 1876. • Various

... have tried to teach, and that they who need it most are so slow to learn! Young men starting out in life want to carry as little ballast as possible. They are enterprising, ambitious. They are anxious to go fast, and take as much cargo as they can. Old-fashioned principles are regarded as dead weight. It does not pay to heed them, and they thrown overboard. Good home habits are abandoned in order to be popular with the gay and worldly. The Bible is not read, the Sabbath is not kept holy, prayer is neglected, and lo! some day, when all the sails are spread, a sudden ...
— Stories Worth Rereading • Various

... the vain babble of home. After his wife's death, during his year of mortal solitude, it awoke again as an echo of far-off things—far-off, very far-off, because he felt then not ten but twenty years older. That was by reason simply of the dead weight with which his load of debt had settled—the persistence of his misery dragging itself out. With all that had come and gone the bench of desolation was still there, just as the immortal flush of the westward sky kept hanging its indestructible curtain. ...
— The Finer Grain • Henry James

... of prophecy intoxicated Savonarola. His fiery temperament, strained to the utmost by the dead weight of Florentine affairs that pressed upon him, became more irritable day by day. Vision succeeded vision; trance followed upon trance; agonies of dejection were suddenly transformed into outbursts of magnificent and soul-sustaining enthusiasm. It was no wonder if, passing as he ...
— Renaissance in Italy, Volume 1 (of 7) • John Addington Symonds

... looking north, Rudolph Pelz, by the holding-aside of a dead weight of pink brocade and filet lace, could gaze upon a sweep of Hudson River that flowed majestically between the great flank of the city and the ...
— Humoresque - A Laugh On Life With A Tear Behind It • Fannie Hurst

... One at least of them maintained stoutly that nevertheless he was going to stick to the old view, however indefensible. Such men are not free intellectually to follow the movements of religious revival. They are immobilised by the dead weight of Biblical literalism. ...
— Thoughts on religion at the front • Neville Stuart Talbot

... proudly, "do not repeat the insult! The interview is ended. I know what you desire, and I do not intend to disappoint you! I will not be a dead weight upon my friends, nor raise the slightest objection to the abandonment of the treaty that allies me with Austria, if such be the wish of the Emperor Francis. I shall tomorrow repeat this to you in writing and in due form. Now we are through—farewell!" He turned his back on Count Metternich, ...
— NAPOLEON AND BLUCHER • L. Muhlbach

... happy-go-lucky, but, on the whole, comfortable." He was silent a while, and then in a cautious whisper said, "I'll explain to you, Bruce. I might have made Jane's life easier if I had worked. I know that. I know our friends look on me as a lazy, selfish dog, a dead weight on the child. But—you are the first person to whom I have ever told this—I have had for many years a disorder, an ailment, which must in any case make my life a short one. Confinement and continued exertion would bring on a crisis at once. My physician told me that ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 20, August 1877 • Various

... shrieks from the whistle of the engine, answered and blended with that of another. Before Maurice could realize what the outburst meant, there followed a horrible shock which seemed to dislocate every joint in his body. Berenice was thrown violently into his arms, flung as a dead weight, and shrieking as she fell against his breast. Instinctively he clasped her, and in the terror of the moment it was for a brief instant no more to him that his embrace enfolded her than if she had been the veriest stranger. A hideous din of yells, of crashing wood and rending ...
— The Puritans • Arlo Bates

... accomplished, whether the head was racked with pain, and the frame was consumed by fever, or not; but the day came at length when poor Harriet could work no more. The sting of the lash had no power to rouse her now, and the new master finding her a dead weight on his hands, returned the useless piece of property to him who was called her "owner." And while she lay there helpless, this man was bringing other men to look at her, and offering her for sale at the lowest possible price; at the same time setting forth her capabilities, if ...
— Harriet, The Moses of Her People • Sarah H. Bradford

... much forgotten himself. The issue might have been disastrous, had not Helen, in the crisis of the affair, lost consciousness, and fallen a dead weight in his arms. He laid her gently on the bench, fumbled for a moment in the bosom of her dress, and drew out the diamond ring. Just then is heard the solid step of Thor, striding and whistling along the path. Manetho snaps the golden chain, and vanishes with his talisman; ...
— Idolatry - A Romance • Julian Hawthorne

... them," I do not doubt, sooner or later, as it has been imposed upon certain missionaries and others who regard the Divine command as practical and sensible men should do: "Go ye and teach all nations." All cannot go to the ends of the earth; but all might cease to hinder by the dead weight of their indifference, and their contempt of all men of colour. Dr. Livingstone rebuked the Boers for contemptuously calling all coloured men Kaffirs, to whatever race they belonged. Englishmen deserve still more such a rebuke for their habit of including all the inhabitants of India, East and West, ...
— Native Races and the War • Josephine Elizabeth Butler

... side, at which signal of unqualified surrender, the younger guide threw himself half way down the slope, worked his way to the thorn-bush, hung for a moment perilously over the parapet, secured the lasso, and then began to pull away at his lovely burden. Miss Alice was no dead weight, however, but steadily half-scrambled on her hands and knees to within a foot or two of her rescuer. At this too familiar proximity, she stood up, and leaned a little stiffly against the line, causing the guide to give an extra pull, which had the lamentable effect of landing her almost ...
— The Twins of Table Mountain and Other Stories • Bret Harte

... arguments to show the folly and danger of innovation. If the Utilitarian appeals to facts, common sense, and experience, so also does the Conservative; and until public opinion is decidedly for progress the dead weight prevails. Not for a day did Bentham relax his strenuous exertions, but he changed his tactics; he turned from his mechanical workshop to the study of political dynamics, and he found what he wanted in the rising radicalism—'his principal occupation, in a word, was to provide political ...
— Studies in Literature and History • Sir Alfred Comyn Lyall

... that the dead weight in the boat hinders the progress of the Church of God? Up and down the country we hear of those who hinder the work—members of society, and sometimes office-bearers, who if they were in heaven would help more, or, at least, hinder less than ...
— Broken Bread - from an Evangelist's Wallet • Thomas Champness

... consolation in his sincerity, in his sympathy, in his entire belief in what he was saying, and it was with difficulty that she repressed an outburst of her sullen sorrow. "Yes," her mouth worked, "I am unhappy, and I won't be, I won't be. I never was before. It is all in here, like a dead weight, a drag, a cold hand clutching me." She pressed both hands to her heart. Then she drew back as if furious at having so far ...
— The Black Pearl • Mrs. Wilson Woodrow

... to attribute it to the dead weight of instinct which he could not step over, again through weakness and meanness. He looked at his fellow prisoners and was amazed to see how they all loved life and prized it. It seemed to him that they loved and valued life more ...
— Crime and Punishment • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... instead of regular tackle, and you use multiple hooks that go down to the bottom where the big red ones are. There's no real thrill to it, as the one-day anglers find out quickly. A snapper puts up no more fight than a catfish and the biggest job is to haul out his dead weight once you've ...
— To Remember Charlie By • Roger Dee

... speaking, he had risen from bed with great difficulty, holding to my shoulder with a grip that almost made me cry out, and moving his legs like so much dead weight. His words, spirited as they were in meaning, contrasted sadly with the weakness of the voice in which they were uttered. He paused when he had got into a sitting position ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 6 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... hour with a great bunch of yellow bananas, a calabash of goats'-milk, and a young kid, showing no signs of weariness for all her toil. Those bananas, growing with an upward curve against the stem to relieve the dead weight on the branch as they grew, were just then a finer sight than the most magnificent scenery, and the travellers made a great feast, which done, they stretched themselves out on the clean dry sand up there in the clean, crisp air, and slept till the sun next ...
— In Search of the Okapi - A Story of Adventure in Central Africa • Ernest Glanville

... the means of his welfare. To common-sense,—which frequently "divines" truths that it cannot prove, and, like ballast in a ship, has often given steadiness to human progress although it is only a dead weight,—the assertion that man knows nothing is as incredible as that he knows all things. If it is replied, that the "things" which we seem to dominate by the means of knowledge are themselves only phenomena, the question arises, what then are the real things to ...
— Browning as a Philosophical and Religious Teacher • Henry Jones

... that lay on the path. It was plainly, in fact, some poor, half-frozen fellow-man, who lay coiled together there, perishing of cold in that bitter night. The rector tried to raise the poor wretch from the ground, but the body hung like a dead weight upon him. ...
— Frank Oldfield - Lost and Found • T.P. Wilson

... Perkins Overcome by the Dead Weight of the Machine - Movement Against His Re-election Failed for Want of Leadership - Proceedings Without ...
— Story of the Session of the California Legislature of 1909 • Franklin Hichborn

... The whole dead weight of my growing fear fell upon me and shook me. Then I burst out laughing too. It was the only thing to do: and the sound of my own laughter also made me understand his. The strain of psychical pressure caused it—this explosion of unnatural laughter ...
— Famous Modern Ghost Stories • Various

... pretend to rest give up entirely to the bed, a dead weight,—letting the bed hold them, instead of trying to hold themselves on the bed. Watch, and unless you are an exceptional case (of which happily there are a few), you will be surprised to see how you are holding ...
— Power Through Repose • Annie Payson Call

... pressed down under her canvas, and every spar was groaning and quivering, while the ship went bodily to leeward." And next, "how she seemed to come to herself, as it were, with a long staggering roll, and to spring to windward as if relieved of a dead weight; for the gale had broken, and the foam-belt along the cliffs grew dimmer and dimmer, and the land fainter and fainter. And then," he said, "to hear the fo'castle-talk, you would have said that never was such a ship, such spars, such a captain, such seamanship, and such luck, since Father Jason ...
— The Atlantic Monthly , Volume 2, No. 14, December 1858 • Various

... A dead weight fell upon the maiden's heart as she arose and went on deck by the side of Mr. Emerson. She had noticed his sudden pause and glance across the cabin at the instant she was holding her breath for his next words, but did not observe the object, ...
— After the Storm • T. S. Arthur

... liked the Version better than any one else, wished it to be reprinted. So I took it in hand, boiled it down to three-fourths of what it originally was, and (as you see) clapt it on the back of Omar, where I still believed it would hang somewhat of a dead weight; but that was Quaritch's look-out, not mine. I have never heard of any notice taken of it, but just now from you: and I believe that, say what you would, people would rather have the old Sinner alone. Therefore it is that I write all this to you. I doubt not that any of your Editors ...
— Letters of Edward FitzGerald in Two Volumes - Vol. II • Edward FitzGerald

... permit himself for a moment to imagine the existence of anything that was prejudicial to her truth and affection. At the same time he felt it impossible to prevent himself from experiencing a strong sense of anxiety, or perhaps we should say, a feeling of involuntary pain, which lay like a dead weight upon his heart and spirits. In truth, do what he might and reason as he would, he could not expel from his mind the new and painful principle which disturbed it. And thus he went on, sometimes triumphantly defending Mary from all ungenerous suspicion, ...
— Valentine M'Clutchy, The Irish Agent - The Works of William Carleton, Volume Two • William Carleton

... thought, "if not a fractional flight? If I had two flat surfaces, one on either side, and a motor behind me, it seems to me that I should continue to go upward; and the best rudder would be the man riding it, with his flexible body, his springy back: a live weight is less heavy than a dead weight. How many hundred volts does pluck stand for ... or skill ... ...
— The Bill-Toppers • Andre Castaigne

... few moments at a time and could not walk across the floor without excruciating pain. There was no sleep, no rest, and after a week and even more, would pass during which I would never close my eyes in sleep, even when morphine, opium and chloral, were administered. My body seemed a dead weight, while my mind was alive to all my sufferings. There seemed to be a burning pressure about my head all ...
— The People's Common Sense Medical Adviser in Plain English • R. V. Pierce

... then, the purpose was to give the children an education. But this was not all. In their vision, a far greater opening presented itself. Heretofore the deaf had been outcasts from society, had no place among civilized beings, and were a dead weight in the community. Now all was to be changed. Eyes saw a glorious transformation: the deaf were to be restored to society, and education was the magic by which it was to be done. In full measure were the founders thrilled with this ...
— The Deaf - Their Position in Society and the Provision for Their - Education in the United States • Harry Best

... idealists, bent on giving it a grander name, call pure feeling, absolute consciousness, or metaphysical will. These phrases are all used improperly to stand for the existence or presence of things apart from their character, or for the mere strain and dead weight of being. Matter is a far better term to use in the premises, for it suggests the method as well as the fact of brute existence. The surd in experience—its non-ideal element—is not an indifferent vehicle ...
— The Life of Reason • George Santayana

... fully as much intemperance in food as in drink, and with at least equally ruinous consequences as to capacity, character, health, and life,—with this difference only, that gluttony stupefies and stultifies, while drunkenness maddens; and that the glutton is merely a dead weight on the community, while the drunkard is an active instrument of annoyance and peril. There are probably fewer who sink into an absolutely beastly condition by intemperance in food than by intemperance in drink; but of persons who ...
— A Manual of Moral Philosophy • Andrew Preston Peabody

... strange intelligent eyes, holding herself motionless and rigid with complete confidence in this master who had never failed her before. Fabian dug his heels into the ice, but could not hang on. The drowning horse was more than a dead weight. Presently it became a question of letting go or being dragged into the lake on top of the animals. With a sob the little Frenchman relinquished his hold. The water seemed slowly to rise and over-film the troubled look of ...
— The Blazed Trail • Stewart Edward White

... heaps, but finally they swarmed forward with the bayonet and threw all their weight of numbers upon us. We gave them one terrible volley, but nothing could have stopped the ferocious impetus of their attack. For one terrible moment our ranks bent under the dead weight, but the Germans, too, wavered, and in that moment we gave them the bayonet, and hurled them back in disorder. It was then I got a bayonet thrust, but as I fell I heard our boys cheering and I knew we had ...
— Tommy Atkins at War - As Told in His Own Letters • James Alexander Kilpatrick

... formalities, which ended by the horrible sentence of the traitor being pronounced on the whole two hundred and seventy-eight. Poor little Jasper woke for an interval from the sense of present discomfort to hear it, he seemed to stiffen all over with the shock of horror, and then hung a dead weight on Stephen's arm. It would have dragged him down, but there was no room to fall, and the wretchedness of the lad against whom he staggered found vent in a surly imprecation, which was lost among the cries and the entreaties of some of the others. The London magistracy ...
— The Armourer's Prentices • Charlotte Mary Yonge

... unarmed as he was, would have sprung forward to die with his prince, but was impeded by the senseless burden now lying a dead weight in his arms. At the king's blow the page had uttered a faint cry; and as the first of those murderous weapons were plunged in the breast of her youthful lover, she fell to the earth like a stone, or would have done, but that Paul flung his ...
— In the Wars of the Roses - A Story for the Young • Evelyn Everett-Green

... of by his admirers he was generally described by such panegyrical periphrases as 'soul of the country,' 'foundation of the State,' 'the only real, and true, and substantial being;' while, on the other hand, those who presumed to differ from those sentiments were in the habit of styling him 'the dead weight,' 'the vampire,' 'the night-mare,' and other titles equally complimentary. They also maintained that, instead of being either real or substantial, he was, in fact, the most flimsy and fictitious personage in the whole island; and then, lashing themselves up into metaphor, they would call ...
— The Voyage of Captain Popanilla • Benjamin Disraeli

... decay of the country, he said. Its burden of taxation grew greater each year. The masses sweated and toiled, to carry on their backs the dead weight of the aristocracy and the throne. The iron hand of the Chancellor held everything; an old King who would die, was dying now, and after that a boy, nominal ruler only, while the Chancellor continued his hard rule. And now, as ...
— Long Live the King • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... first place, the body floats more naturally and much easier on the back. In the breast stroke, which is the first one taught by most instructors, the head has to be kept out of the water and must be supported as dead weight by the rest of the body, as explained later on. On the contrary, in the back stroke, or swimming on the back, the head rests on the water and needs no support from any other member ...
— Swimming Scientifically Taught - A Practical Manual for Young and Old • Frank Eugen Dalton and Louis C. Dalton

... of his tackle to lift even the dead weight of the fish, and much more to meet his despairing rally, he happily saw a little shallow gut, or back-water, where a small spring ran out. Into this by a dexterous turn he rather led than pulled the fish, who was ready to rest for a minute or two; then he stuck his rod into the bank, ran down stream, ...
— Library Of The World's Best Literature, Ancient And Modern, Vol. 5 • Various

... himself no illusions about her now; he understood just what she was, and what she would always be; the many conflicting impulses of her nature lay bare to him. But he loved her, loved her: all the dead weight of his physical craving for her was on him again, confounding, overmastering. None the less, she had left him; she had no need for him; and the hours would come, oftener and oftener, when she could do without him, when, as now, she voluntarily sought the company of other ...
— Maurice Guest • Henry Handel Richardson

... there was no frost, although for a fortnight threatening; and I was too young to know the meaning of the way the dead leaves hung, and the worm-casts prickling like women's combs, and the leaden tone upon everything, and the dead weight of the sky. Will Watcombe, the old man at Lynmouth, who had been half over the world almost, and who talked so much of the Gulf-stream, had (as I afterwards called to mind) foretold a very bitter winter ...
— Lorna Doone - A Romance of Exmoor • R. D. Blackmore

... eyes closed again, and his head fell back a dead weight. One would have supposed that he had yielded ...
— The Honor of the Name • Emile Gaboriau

... some form of power by means of which we can live in plenty, with only slight and pleasurable exertion? In that case we can hardly return to our fellow-men in work as much as we take from them in enjoyment and luxury. We shall be part of that dead weight which has always bent the back of the poor. Is that an honorable ambition? Or do we propose to enter the working team of humanity and to hold up our end? Our end ought to be heavier than the average because we have had longer and better training. "To whomsoever ...
— The Social Principles of Jesus • Walter Rauschenbusch

... wildly as she turned to meet him, then suddenly stopped, seeming a dead weight in her breast, as her ...
— That Mainwaring Affair • Maynard Barbour

... the Rhode Island; ropes were flung over her side, and caught with a death-grip. Some lost their hold, were washed away, and again dragged in by the boat's crew. What chance had one whose right arm hung a dead weight, when strong men with their two hands went down before him? He caught at a rope, found it impossible to save himself alone, and then for the first time said,—"I am injured; can any one aid me?" Ensign Taylor, at the risk of his own life, brought ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 11, No. 65, March, 1863 • Various

... summonses by day, and dreaming of clocks run down by night. My head was ever whizzing with dislocated cog-wheels and broken main-springs; my whole mind (and my credit) was running upon tick, and everything pressing on me like a dead weight. ...
— A Unique Story of a Marvellous Career. Life of Hon. Phineas T. • Joel Benton

... carelessly round for somebody to put her up. David stepped hastily forward, his heart beating, seized her foot, never waited for her to spring, but went to work at once, and with a powerful and sustained effort raised her slowly and carefully like a dead weight, and settled her in the saddle. His gripe hurt her foot. She bore it like a Spartan sooner than lose the amusement of his simplicity and enormous strength, so drolly and unnecessarily exerted. It cost her ...
— Love Me Little, Love Me Long • Charles Reade

... likely," Horlock pronounced. "Dartrey is a fine fellow, although he is not a great politician. He is out to make a radical and solid change in the government of this country and he knows very well that Miller's gang will only be a dead weight around his neck. He'd rather wait until he has weaned away a few more votes—even get rid of Miller if he can—and stick ...
— Nobody's Man • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... Some of the officers declared subsequently, that when left alone, and the eyes of the keepers were taken off of them, they came near swooning. It was not the apprehension of hardship or harsh treatment that was so horrible; it was the stifling sense of close cramped confinement. The dead weight of the huge stone prison seemed resting on our breasts. On the next day we were taken out to undergo some of the "usual prison discipline," and were subjected to a sort of dress-parade. We were first placed man by man, in big hogsheads filled with water (of which there ...
— History of Morgan's Cavalry • Basil W. Duke

... with greater hope and fear than that one. Every bank of cloud that gathered in the west seemed to sit like a dead weight on Libby Anne's heart, for it might bring hail, and a hailed-out crop meant that they could not go home, and that was—outer darkness. Perhaps it was the child's wordless prayers that stayed the hail and the ...
— The Second Chance • Nellie L. McClung

... pounds of dead weight, Blizzard lengthened his stride and took new courage. He was overhauling Stacy now ...
— Kid Wolf of Texas - A Western Story • Ward M. Stevens

... feeble-minded and epileptic—amounts practically to less than sixty-five thousand, an insignificant number compared to the total population, our eyes should be opened to the terrific cost to the community of this dead weight of human waste. ...
— The Pivot of Civilization • Margaret Sanger

... street; but I knew that the so doing would have cracked every bone in her body, and the glory of my bravery would thus have been worse than lost. I persevered, therefore, though I was fit to fall down under the dead weight, she not being able to help herself, and having a deal of beef in her skin for an old woman of eighty; but I got a lean, by squeezing her a wee between me and ...
— The Life of Mansie Wauch - Tailor in Dalkeith, written by himself • David Macbeth Moir

... certainly complicated every thing; that she was there like a dead weight; that she must be got rid off; and Europe must be divided into two empires: that the Danube, from the Black Sea to Passau, the mountains of Bohemia to Koenigsgratz, and the Elbe to the Baltic, should be their lines of demarcation. ...
— History of the Expedition to Russia - Undertaken by the Emperor Napoleon in the Year 1812 • Count Philip de Segur

... the Elephant heard. He heard nothing more but he could feel. He could feel himself a stone; that is a dreadful thing to feel. It was a heavy, crushing feeling; a dead weight always bearing him down. He could not lift it; he could not throw it off. It was forever crushing him down, down,—though he never really sank. But it was the same thing to him; he ...
— Seven Little People and their Friends • Horace Elisha Scudder

... head was aching because she was so bad-tempered; he implored her not to eat too much cake, and promised to call again another day, when he hoped to find her better. So he left her, and went home with a dead weight ...
— Audrey Craven • May Sinclair

... disposable for many other applications; and therefore, as the inference from the whole, that not any slight or hasty, but a most intense and determinate effort should be made to substitute some technical artifices for blank pulls against a dead weight of facts, to substitute fictions, or artificial imitations of logical arrangement, wherever that is possible, for blind arrangements of chance; and finally, in a process which requires every assistance from compromise and accommodation constantly to surrender the rigour of superstitious accuracy, ...
— The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. II (2 vols) • Thomas De Quincey

... her arms, gently drawing her up, up, till her head lay against his shoulder. Then she became a dead weight. She had fainted. He lifted her up in his strong arms ...
— Half a Rogue • Harold MacGrath

... pleasure to say that I finished my poem about a fortnight ago. I had looked forward to the day as a most happy one; ... But it was not a happy day for me; I was dejected on many accounts: when I looked back upon the performance, it seemed to have a dead weight about it,—the reality so far short of the expectation. It was the first long labour that I had finished; and the doubt whether I should ever live to write 'The Recluse', and the sense which I had of this poem being so far ...
— The Poetical Works of William Wordsworth, Vol. III • William Wordsworth

... cheerful laugh. "It is that kind of strength you like in Sylvie," he made answer. "She will always spur a man up to his best. Her well-trained ear is quick to detect a false note in honor, ambition, or love. She will never be any kind of dead weight, and yet she is so deliciously womanly. There was a time—don't be vexed, Fred,"—in a tender, pleading tone,—"when I thought you were not going to be worthy of her. ...
— Hope Mills - or Between Friend and Sweetheart • Amanda M. Douglas

... continuous trip from Stettin over the Baltic to Upsala in Sweden, thence across the Baltic again to Riga in the Gulf of Finland, where it doubled and sailed back to Stettin. This was a journey of 976 miles. The airship had a complement of twenty-five men and five tons of dead weight. It traveled under severe weather conditions, the month being March, and snow-storms, hail and rain occurring throughout the voyage. The significance of this flight can be easily understood if you consider ...
— The Secrets of the German War Office • Dr. Armgaard Karl Graves

... silent guests Sat pallid as their dinner vests. A moment more and, root and branch, That mansion fell in avalanche, Story on story, floor on floor, Roof, wall and window, joist and door, Dead weight of damnable disaster, A ...
— Moral Emblems • Robert Louis Stevenson

... remain in office a day, or would I retain it any longer than I could render it a means of strength to our system of government as well as of good to the country. I would rather break stones on the street than be a dead weight to any ...
— The Story of My Life - Being Reminiscences of Sixty Years' Public Service in Canada • Egerton Ryerson

... yet at last Down sank Excalibar to rise no more. This is not well. In truth, it vexes me. Instead of whistling to the steeds of Time, To make them jog on merrily with life's burden, Like a dead weight thou hangest on the wheels. Thou art too young, too full of lusty health To ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

... are equally true of every other human being. It is in degree, and not in kind, that one man differs from another. In this, the poet is but the type of what every human being must be, if he would be anything better than a dead weight in society, incapable of success ...
— The Elements of Character • Mary G. Chandler

... there was a woman in the world like you," Ward said irrelevantly and looked into the fire. "I thought women were just soft things a man had to take care of and carry along through life, a dead weight when they weren't worse. I never knew a woman could be a friend—the kind of friend a man can be." He threw his cigarette into the fire and watched the paper shrivel swiftly and the tobacco turn ...
— The Ranch at the Wolverine • B. M. Bower

... traditional system in the interests of the few? In neither case do the reformers desire to suppress the study of the old culture-giving language; rather it is hoped that the interests of scholarly and liberal learning will benefit by being freed from the dead weight of grammar grinders, whose mechanical performance and monkey antics are merely a dodge to catch a copper from ...
— International Language - Past, Present and Future: With Specimens of Esperanto and Grammar • Walter J. Clark

... thought to be the most natural, is in this sense the least so, because it appeals almost exclusively to one of these faculties, our sensibility. The tragedies of Moore and Lillo, for this reason, however affecting at the time, oppress and lie like a dead weight upon the mind, a load of misery which it is unable to throw off: the tragedy of Shakspeare, which is true poetry, stirs our inmost affections; abstracts evil from itself by combining it with all the forms of imagination, and with the deepest workings of the heart, ...
— Hazlitt on English Literature - An Introduction to the Appreciation of Literature • Jacob Zeitlin

... both arms about him, and, gently but powerfully lifting his dead weight of head and shoulders, drew him to her heart. She held him to her warm bosom, rocking him to and fro. "Oh, my beloved!" she murmured, "if you will live, I will be ...
— The Bread-winners - A Social Study • John Hay

... I sat one day in the chair beside his, wondering as usual. I had felt heavy of late, with a soreness and languor in my bones, as if a dead weight hung continually on my shoulders, and another rested on my heart. A warmer colour in the Stranger's cheek caught my attention; and I bent forward, peering under the pendulous lids. His eyes were livelier and less profound. The melancholy was passing from them as ...
— Noughts and Crosses • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... figures, the oars were jerked in, and Winn, leaning over the side, seized the girl's arm. At the same moment the man grasped the gunwale of the skiff. It was no slight task for Winn to get the girl into the boat, for she was unconscious, and formed a dead weight, that was made heavier by her soaked clothing. He finally succeeded; and as he laid the limp form in the bottom of the skiff and took his first good look at her face, he uttered a cry of amazement, and doubted the evidence ...
— Raftmates - A Story of the Great River • Kirk Munroe

... plays it. You see—each slide from one tone to the next, a break—a rosary of lurches! How can there be a round, harmonious tone when the fingers progress by jerks? Shifting position must not be a continuous movement of effort, but a continuous movement in which effort and relaxation—that of dead weight—alternate. As an illustration, when we walk we do not consciously set down one foot, and then swing forward the other foot and leg with a jerk. The forward movement is smooth, unconscious, coordinated: in putting the foot ...
— Violin Mastery - Talks with Master Violinists and Teachers • Frederick H. Martens

... child, for he always took as much pains to amuse me, and to inform me on anything I wished to know, as ho could have done to the greatest person in the land. I have heard him express great disgust towards those people who, lively and agreeable abroad, are a dead weight in the family circle. I think the remarkable clearness of his style proceeds in some measure from the habit of conversing with very young people, to whom he has a great deal to explain ...
— Life and Letters of Lord Macaulay • George Otto Trevelyan

... the pushbuttons and the pile of papers in that neutral-toned room which was chilling in its monotony of color. And though Jack was almost boyishly penitent, in the manner of one who comes before parental authority after he has been in mischief, still John Wingfield, Sr. could not escape the dead weight of an impression that he was speaking to a stranger and not to his own flesh and blood. He wished now that he had shown affection on Jack's entrance. He had a desire to grip the brown hand that was on the edge of the desk fingering the rose ...
— Over the Pass • Frederick Palmer

... Starcross Moor—it seems so long ago. Listen yet. I meant never to have told you until I had won the right to do so, and had something to offer the heiress of Carrington, and I fought hard for it, toiling late and early, with a dead weight of adverse fortune against me; but all that was little when every blow was struck for your sweet sake. And, if you had chosen another, I should have kept my secret, and prayed that you might be happy. Now when, so far as ...
— Lorimer of the Northwest • Harold Bindloss

... very first thing you ought to learn is to be cheerful. You don't want to be a dead weight on anybody, do you? Well, you will be if you can't look ahead at all to anything bright. You and I are going to work and mend the family fortunes. Then we're going back to Fairacres and do all the good we can ...
— Reels and Spindles - A Story of Mill Life • Evelyn Raymond

... I knowed it—I jest did; I knowed if she was turned out in de snow-storm this night she'd freeze to death! Ole mist'ess aint no better dan a she-bearess!" grumbled the old man, as he rooted his arms under the cold dead weight of the unfortunate girl, and with much ...
— Ishmael - In the Depths • Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth

... Sahwah, taking in the situation at a glance, "you'll have to get out. You're dead weight. Jump and swim back to the island. The ...
— The Campfire Girls at Camp Keewaydin • Hildegard G. Frey

... difficult matter for a farmer when selling fat cattle direct to the butcher, to compete with him in a correct estimate of the weight, and it is therefore advisable to sell at a price per pound of the dead weight when dressed; this, however, is not always feasible, and a very close estimate can be arrived at by measurement of the girth and length of the live animal, following rules laid down in the handbooks on the subject of fat stock. It ...
— Grain and Chaff from an English Manor • Arthur H. Savory

... any mother's heart must have been proud of them. But to-day she felt herself singularly dissatisfied with them. She said to herself that she hated Sundays, of all the days of the week. Other days had their duties: music, studies, riding, tennis, or walks, but on Sundays the girls were a dead weight upon her. Somehow, they were not in the current of good times that the other girls and boys of their ages were having. If she suggested brightly that they go over to the Parmalees' or the Morans' and see if the young people were playing ...
— The Heart of Rachael • Kathleen Norris

... shaft-bottom, twelve feet below. There he could tie a bit of string to the emergency switch, watch the first movement of the descending cage, and shut off the current at the right moment. That would mean that the descending cage, robbed of its power, would hang a dead weight in its steel channel, the safety brake would automatically apply itself, and anybody within the cage would remain locked and imprisoned there, halfway between floors, helpless to descend or ascend, hemmed in by the four ...
— Phantom Wires - A Novel • Arthur Stringer

... stretched black as ink against the sky, making the midnight clouds above it light by contrast. Here Brendon saw evidences that the dead weight dragged from beneath had remained still a while, and he observed an impress near it on the herbage, where doubtless a living man had rested after his exertions. There were clots of blood on the grass near this spot, but no other sign visible in the present ...
— The Red Redmaynes • Eden Phillpotts

... through the debauchery. For him, the battle waged on between love and desire, his love for her—his one inspiration, while desire was constantly reenforced by the taunts of his godless fatalism and the dead weight of his hopelessness. ...
— Our Nervous Friends - Illustrating the Mastery of Nervousness • Robert S. Carroll

... kind of goods than for another without a corresponding difference in the cost. When reasonably understood, this proposition does not apply to a higher charge for goods of greater bulk, as more per pound for feathers than for iron, the "dead weight" of car being much greater in one case than in the other. It does not apply where there is a difference in risk, as between bricks and powder, or coal and crockery; nor where there is a difference in trouble, as between live stock and wheat. Any difference that can reasonably ...
— Modern Economic Problems - Economics Vol. II • Frank Albert Fetter

... in a very unsettled state all the week; and we have heard whispers of a large breakage in one of the wholesale houses. This is caused by the dead weight of the packing-cases, to which every house in the trade is liable. In the fruit market, there is positively nothing doing; and the growers, who are every day becoming less, complain bitterly. Raspberries were very slack, at 2-1/2d. per pottle; but dry goods still brought their prices. We have ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 1, August 7, 1841 • Various

... court, or by direct contributions to party funds, by valuable services rendered, or by mere length of service. This new nobility, anxious about their status, satisfied to have arrived, jealous of rivals, are the dead weight which ties Germany fast to bureaucratic government and to a policy of no change. They represent, even in educated Germany, a complacent mediocrity; indignant at rebuke, indifferent to progress, heedless of experience, impatient of criticism, haters of haste, and jealous of superiority. ...
— Germany and the Germans - From an American Point of View (1913) • Price Collier

... of satisfaction at the prospect of reaching Kui-kiang before the appearance of old age rises from zero-level to a quite flattering height, as I find the pathways more than half ridable after delivering myself of the dead weight of native "assistance." Twelve miles farther and I am approaching the grim high walls of a large city that instinctively impresses me as being Kan-tchou-foo. The confused babel of noises within the teeming wall-encompassed city reaches my ears in the form of an "ominous buzz," ...
— Around the World on a Bicycle Volume II. - From Teheran To Yokohama • Thomas Stevens

... a person I had occasionally met at sporting-dinners. He came to look after a Suffolk Punch, the best horse, by the bye, that anybody can purchase to drive, it being the only animal of the horse kind in England that will pull twice at a dead weight. I told him that I had none at that time that I could recommend; in fact, that every horse in my stable was sick. He then invited me to dine with him at an inn close by, and I was glad to go with him, in the hope of getting rid of unpleasant thoughts. After dinner, ...
— The Romany Rye • George Borrow

... me to mingle mine with yours so," she objected. "And it was wrong and selfish. I can't fasten this dead weight of my troubles on you and drag you back. I can't do ...
— Claim Number One • George W. (George Washington) Ogden

... which was vastly increased by a dead weight of some hundred tons of shots and shell that formed a part of its lading, became so great about half-past eleven or twelve o'clock, that our main chains were thrown by every lurch considerably under water; and the best cleated articles of furniture in the cabins and the cuddy ...
— The Loss of the Kent, East Indiaman, in the Bay of Biscay - Narrated in a Letter to a Friend • Duncan McGregor

... snake-like roots. A sudden tug brought the body down a squirming mass. With rough-shod heel, I fulfilled the letter of the law, bruising the battered head, and then were revealed the bosses by which, with the tail, the snake had sustained its dead weight. ...
— Tropic Days • E. J. Banfield

... edition. Upon the sale of a few copies the omission was remarked; the fact became known to the bishop of the church; the book was pronounced defective, and the ecclesiastical authorities prohibited its circulation. The whole edition fell a dead weight upon the hands of the well-meaning publisher. I had this anecdote from Mr. Kirk himself, years ago, and he repeated it to me not long prior to ...
— The International Monthly Magazine - Volume V - No II • Various

... Lord, lately growing heavy and pensive in his affairs, which for some late years have mortify'd his mind.... This lately manifestly appeared in his change of complexion; his face fallen less; his colour and eyes turned yellow to a great degree; his stomach wasted and gone; and a dead weight presses continually, without sign of relief, on ...
— English Book Collectors • William Younger Fletcher

... beginning to despair. An icy dread was at her heart. He lay so lifeless, so terribly inert. She had attempted to lift him, but the dead weight was too much for her. She could only rest his head against her, and wipe away the blood that trickled persistently from that dreadful, sneering mouth. Would he ever speak again, she asked herself? Were the fiery eyes fast shut for ever? Was ...
— The Knave of Diamonds • Ethel May Dell

... he consented to allow these strangers to carry him home by turns, but as he refused to hold on to such new acquaintances he was a dead weight, and most exhausting. ...
— Five Children and It • E. Nesbit

... came over the gunwale without any resistance; then he had to surge against the sag of a dead weight. The fish had either given up the ghost or ...
— Jim Spurling, Fisherman - or Making Good • Albert Walter Tolman

... other poets merely by meanness of language and inanity of thought; had they indeed contained nothing more than what is found in the parodies and pretended imitations of them; they must have sunk at once, a dead weight, into the slough of oblivion, and have dragged the preface along with them. But year after year increased the number of Mr. Wordsworth's admirers. They were found too not in the lower classes of the reading public, but chiefly among young men of strong sensibility and meditative minds; and ...
— Biographia Literaria • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... consciousness of the divine presence and began to think and to act as if Christ were indeed absent and would not return again for thousands of years. The presence of gigantic evils in the world with no apparent available means of redressing them, the dead weight of heathenism, and the disturbing influences of speculative Oriental philosophies impressed upon the conscience of the world a despairing pessimism. In the midst of this trial there was a revival of the Platonic philosophy. The treatise of Plato that ...
— The Last Reformation • F. G. [Frederick George] Smith

... if it become impetus, (living instead of dead weight) is just what gives value to custom, when it works with ...
— The Crown of Wild Olive • John Ruskin

... of concrete as a liquid at some amount which it is considered will also cover the weight of men, barrows, runways and current construction materials. The assumed weights vary. One prominent engineering firm assumes the load to be the dead weight of concrete as a liquid and the load due to placing and specifies that the forms shall be designed to carry this load without deflection. Mr. W. J. Douglas, Engineer of Bridges, Washington, D. C, assumes for lateral ...
— Concrete Construction - Methods and Costs • Halbert P. Gillette

... Lord forgive me! I was so excited over Major Goddard that I never thought, never suspected. I had pushed Captain Lloyd up in bed by that time in my efforts to rouse him. To my unutterable horror, he fell back in my arms a dead weight, and my hand accidentally touched his cold face. I quickly unbuttoned his shirt and placed my ear over his heart, but could detect no action there, nor any pulse when I clutched ...
— The Lost Despatch • Natalie Sumner Lincoln

... 21,1862, I found the place dead; no business doing, the stores closed, churches, schools, and every thing shut up. The people were all more or less in sympathy with our enemies, and there was a strong prospect that the whole civil population would become a dead weight on our hands. Inasmuch as the Mississippi River was then in our possession northward, and steamboats were freely plying with passengers and freight, I caused all the stores to be opened, churches, schools, theatres, and places of amusement, to be reestablished, and very ...
— Memoirs of Three Civil War Generals, Complete • U. S. Grant, W. T. Sherman, P. H. Sheridan

... hemp cables, used to be whether it was safer to ride with three anchors down, or with one only, having to it three cables, bent together, so as to form one of thrice the usual length. The balance of opinion leaned to the latter; the dead weight of so much hemp held the ship without transmitting the strain to the anchor itself. She "rode to the bight," as the expression was; that is, to the cable, curved by its own weight and length, lying even in part on the bottom, ...
— From Sail to Steam, Recollections of Naval Life • Captain A. T. Mahan

... dog who had dropped to shot; "Fetch!" And, signalling the boy behind, he relieved the dog of his burden and tossed the dead weight of ruffled plumage toward him. Then he broke his gun, and, as the empty shells flew rattling backward, slipped in fresh cartridges, locked the barrels, and walked forward, the flush of excitement still staining his ...
— The Fighting Chance • Robert W. Chambers

... is wonderful on account of the greatness of the enemy that it does battle with. To lift dead weight; to overcome length of languid space; to multiply or systematize a given force; this we may see done by the bar, or beam, or wheel, without wonder. But to war with that living fury of waters, to bare ...
— The Harbours of England • John Ruskin

... eyes. So he settled his grasp upon his collar, held his head above the water and strove with all his might to get beyond the reach of the cruel sea. Had he been alone he could have reached the land with ease, but the slaver pulled upon him almost a dead weight. ...
— The Sun Of Quebec - A Story of a Great Crisis • Joseph A. Altsheler

... the cave at sundown, he with the ripe Jinny hanging a dead weight on his arm, to find tea spread in the private parlour. The table was all but invisible under its load; and their hostess looked as though she had been parboiled on her own kitchen fire. She sat and fanned herself with a sheet of newspaper while, time and again, undaunted ...
— Australia Felix • Henry Handel Richardson

... their goods bear no price, and the poor cannot find work; but their weak reasonings never carry them to the hatred, and contempt, borne us by our neighbours, and brethren, without the least grounds of provocation, who rejoice at our sufferings, although sometimes to their own disadvantage; of the dead weight upon every beneficial branch of our trade;[6] of half our revenues sent annually to England, and many other grievances peculiar to this unhappy kingdom, excepted for our sins, which keep us from enjoying the common benefits of mankind, as you and some other lovers ...
— The Prose Works of Jonathan Swift, D. D., Volume IX; • Jonathan Swift

... fishing vessels, offshore oil rigs, etc. This entry contains information in four fields - total, ships by type, foreign-owned, and registered in other countries. Total includes the number of ships (1,000 GRT or over), total DWT for those ships, and total GRT for those ships. DWT or dead weight tonnage is the total weight of cargo, plus bunkers, stores, etc., that a ship can carry when immersed to the appropriate load line. GRT or gross register tonnage is a figure obtained by measuring the entire sheltered volume of a ship available for cargo and passengers and converting ...
— The 2005 CIA World Factbook • United States. Central Intelligence Agency

... Gering, and they pushed on. The two ruffians were running hard, but it had been an unequal race at the best, and Jessica lay unconscious in Bucklaw's arms, a dead weight. Presently they plunged into the bushes and disappeared. Iberville and Gering passed through the bushes also, but could neither see nor hear the quarry. Gering was wild with excitement and lost his presence ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... does she constantly drawl out her time, without either profit or satisfaction; and, while I see my neighbours' wives helping in the shop, and almost earning as much as their husbands, I have the mortification to find that mine is nothing but a dead weight upon me. In short, I do not know any greater misfortune can happen to a plain hard-working tradesman, as I am, than to be joined to such a woman, who is rather a clog than a ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes - Volume IV: The Adventurer; The Idler • Samuel Johnson

... feelings. But the teaching in this book did coincide with her feelings. Could she follow it? That was the point. Could she live without a lover? Owen thought not. She laughed and then walked about the room, unable to shake off a dead weight of melancholy. Though the Church was all wrong, and there was no God, she was still leading a life which she felt to be wrong; and if the Church were right, and there was a resurrection, her soul was lost. She took up the book and read till her fears became ...
— Evelyn Innes • George Moore

... had achieved a triumph, and were accordingly jubilant; but they soon found that the mere control of the Assembly signified very little in the absence of Executive responsibility. The Legislative Council interposed its dead weight, and vetoed one bill after another sent up by ...
— The Story of the Upper Canada Rebellion, Volume 1 • John Charles Dent

... she did need help! She was putting forth all her strength, but to her agonized fancy she was not going forward at all. Amy's almost dead weight dragging at her shoulder seemed a nightmare. Yet she dreaded beyond anything else to be relieved of the weight for that would mean—. She refused to put the awful thought into words, merely driving herself on more ...
— The Outdoor Girls at Bluff Point - Or a Wreck and a Rescue • Laura Lee Hope

... boots; indeed, upon second thought, he knew he had not done so. But there they stood upon the floor. Ladd and Lash must have taken them off when he was so exhausted and sleepy that he could not tell what was happening. He felt a dead weight of complete lassitude, and he did not want to move. A sudden pain in his hand caused him to hold it up. It was black and blue, swollen to almost twice its normal size, and stiff as a board. The knuckles were skinned and crusted with dry blood. Dick soliloquized that it was the worst-looking hand ...
— Desert Gold • Zane Grey

... hours the sea had almost gone down. The floating anchor was hauled up and unlashed, the masts were stepped, the large sail hoisted, and, free from the dead weight that had hitherto checked her speed, the little craft sped along gaily before the gentle wind, Godfrey keeping her as near as possible dead before it, on the chance that they might catch sight of ...
— Condemned as a Nihilist - A Story of Escape from Siberia • George Alfred Henty

... is less galling by its weight than one which does not fit, for the latter must either drag from the shoulders with a dead weight or press upon some other part of the body, and so it becomes troublesome and uncomfortable; but that which fits, having its weight distributed partly along the collar-bone and shoulder-blade, partly over the shoulders and chest, and partly the back and belly, ...
— The Memorabilia - Recollections of Socrates • Xenophon

... bounds. It will not be by arithmetical, but by geometrical progression, that the union will count their increases, for it is the masses of unskilled, unorganized, ill-paid women and girl workers today, who in so many trades today increase the difficulties of the men tenfold. That dead weight removed, they could make better terms for themselves and enroll far more men into their ranks. What increase of power, what new and untried forces women may bring with them into the common store, just ...
— The Trade Union Woman • Alice Henry

... real as it is, and dead weight as it lies upon the soul of the nation, often breeds the very forces which destroy it. In other words, the reaction against one type of romance produces inevitably another type of romance, other aspects of wonder, terror, and beauty. Following the romance of ...
— The American Mind - The E. T. Earl Lectures • Bliss Perry

... seemed very angry that Johnson was going to be a traveller; said 'he would be a dead weight for me to carry, and that I should never be able to lug him along through the Highlands and Hebrides.' Nor would he patiently allow me to enlarge upon Johnson's wonderful abilities; but exclaimed, ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 2 • Boswell



Words linked to "Dead weight" :   encumbrance, load, onus, burden, weight, incumbrance



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