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Desolate   /dˈɛsələt/  /dˈɛzələt/  /dˈɛsəlˌeɪt/   Listen
Desolate

adjective
1.
Providing no shelter or sustenance.  Synonyms: bare, barren, bleak, stark.  "Barren lands" , "The bleak treeless regions of the high Andes" , "The desolate surface of the moon" , "A stark landscape"
2.
Crushed by grief.  "A low desolate wail"






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Desolate" Quotes from Famous Books



... Antonelli entered Corona's house. She received him in the great drawing-room. There was an air of solemnity about the meeting. The room itself, divested of a thousand trifles which had already been sent into the country, looked desolate and formal; the heavy curtains admitted but little light; there was no fire on the hearth; Corona stood all in black—a very incarnation of mourning—as her visitor trod softly across the dark carpet ...
— Saracinesca • F. Marion Crawford

... kyng wes dede, That Scotland had to stere{1} and lede, The land sex yhere and mayr perfay{2} Wes desolate efftyr his day. The barnage{3} off Scotland, at the last, Assemblyd thame, and fandyt{4} fast To chess{5} a kyng, thare land to stere, That off awncestry cummyn were Off kyngis that aucht{6} that reawt{'e}{7}, And mast{8} had rycht ...
— English Dialects From the Eighth Century to the Present Day • Walter W. Skeat

... grey square desolate courts of the old palaces, where in cobwebbed galleries and silent chambers the Flemish ...
— Wisdom, Wit, and Pathos of Ouida - Selected from the Works of Ouida • Ouida

... beholders, into my boots! literal fact, and it kept my feet comfortable all night long. And so, wrapped all in double clothing, sped I my rapid way, varying what I had before seen by passing through desolate Bodmin, and its neighbourhood of rock, moor, and sand: hot coffee at Liskeard, morning broke soon after, then the glorious sun over the sea. Hamoaze, the ferry, and Devonport at 1/2 past 8. Much as I longed to get home, I went forthwith into a hot bath at 102, to boil ...
— My Life as an Author • Martin Farquhar Tupper

... love as the Pathian said. More, thy love shall bring his blood upon thy hands, nor mayest thou follow him to the grave. For I will show thee the Source of Life and thou shalt drink of it to make thyself more fair even than thou art and thus outpace thy rival, and when thy lover is dead, in a desolate place thou shalt wait in grief and solitude till he is born again and ...
— She and Allan • H. Rider Haggard

... lost. The unfortunate Caribs, however, who comprised about one hundred families, dwelt in this ungenial and unproductive district, and were driven from their homes to find elsewhere and nearer to the habitations of the whites, some desolate spot, shunned by all others, where they could again set ...
— Jack in the Forecastle • John Sherburne Sleeper

... forward another good stage before evening. Therefore after a short rest I pressed forward, and I soon came into a country that was well tilled, and the land was divided by hedges like our lanes in England. I was ill pleased indeed, when well forward on these desolate roads, to hear the same trot behind me that I heard before on my road from ...
— The Fall Of The Grand Sarrasin • William J. Ferrar

... came to be selected the site of the little cantonment, which since has sent forth generations of steel-bred warriors to keep bright the ancient flame; a small oasis, rescued by rough but kindly hands from the dry and desolate desert, and which the leisure of sixty years has served to turn into the beautiful and cherished ...
— The Story of the Guides • G. J. Younghusband

... sand and gravel of the Snake here and there is a thin and scanty herbage, insufficient for the horse or the buffalo. Indeed, these treeless wastes between the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific are even more desolate and barren than the naked, upper prairies on the Atlantic side; they present vast desert tracts that must ever defy cultivation, and interpose dreary and thirsty wilds between the habitations of ...
— Trail Tales • James David Gillilan

... she watched Mr. Poynter break camp. It was very simple. Ras, yawning prodigiously, heaved a variety of unnecessary provisions overboard from the seat pantry, abandoned the ice-cream freezer to a desolate fate by the ashes of the camp fire and peeled the hay-bed. Philip slipped a small tin plate, a collapsible tin cup, a wooden knife, fork and spoon into his pocket. Ras put his in his hat, which immediately took on a somewhat bloated appearance. Having climbed languidly ...
— Diane of the Green Van • Leona Dalrymple

... on the plains of Thibet (A desolate region of snow) Has for centuries made it a nursery pet, And surely the Tartar ...
— Bad Child's Book of Beasts • Hilaire Belloc

... sled lying in the moonlight. But the change that can be wrought in a man's heart upon sight of a human sign! it may be idle to speak of that to any but those who have travelled the desolate ways of ...
— The Magnetic North • Elizabeth Robins (C. E. Raimond)

... stranger more than the 'mouth honour' which fear compels.(3) I who have conversed viva voce et propria persona with those whose recollections could run back so far as the times previous to the confiscations which followed the Revolution of 1688—whose memory could repeople halls long roofless and desolate, and point out the places where greatness once had been, may feel all this more strongly, and with a more vivid interest, than can those whose sympathies are awakened by the feebler influence of what may be called the PICTURESQUE effects ...
— The Purcell Papers - Volume I. (of III.) • Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu

... that it was pitiful to see. Her sorrow was all for papa; she did not realize as yet the loss which had fallen on herself; but it would have been hard to find in the world a little girl left in a more desolate position. In losing papa she lost every thing that she had—home, protection, support. Nobody wanted her; she belonged to nobody. She could not stay on the island; she could not go back to Tunxet; there was no one in ...
— Eyebright - A Story • Susan Coolidge

... this good brother, it was believed, himself longed for a death so glorious. "And being thus slain," Fray Antonio in a moment continued, "the mission stations which they had established were left desolate, with what they held—save such few things as might be cared for by the savage murderers—remaining there within them. In later times, as the conquering Spaniards overspread the land, many of these stations were found, with nothing to tell save nameless ...
— The Aztec Treasure-House • Thomas Allibone Janvier

... he was only a man facing eternity. But that was what gave him strength to endure. Somehow he was a part of it all, some atom in that vastness, somehow necessary to an inscrutable purpose, something indestructible in that desolate world of ruin and death and decay, something perishable and changeable and growing under all the fixity of heaven. In that endless, silent hall of desert there was a spirit; and Cameron felt hovering near him what he imagined to be phantoms ...
— Desert Gold • Zane Grey

... himself the many places, lovely and desolate, the hill sides and farm yards and tree-tops and meadows, over which it had blown on its way to "The Mound." As he danced he grew more and more delighted with the motion and the wind. His feet grew stronger and his body lighter. At length, it seemed ...
— At the Back of the North Wind • Elizabeth Lewis and George MacDonald

... sunrise, O Mael, you will summon the people together on the hill in front of the desolate moor that extends to the Coast of Shadows, and you will take care that no man of the Penguins remains less than five hundred paces from those rocks so that he may not be poisoned by the monster's breath. And the dragon will come out of the rocks and I will put my girdle round his neck ...
— Penguin Island • Anatole France

... circles which recall to children so many charmed legends, and are fresh and frequent in that month—the Fairy Rings! They thought, poor boys! that it was a good omen, and half fancied that the Fairies protected them, as in the old time they had often protected the desolate ...
— Night and Morning, Volume 2 • Edward Bulwer Lytton

... for whose reclamation water is available, if properly conserved. There are about two hundred and thirty million acres from which the forests have been cut but which have never yet been cleared for the plow and which lie waste and desolate. These lie scattered all over the Union. And there are nearly eighty million acres of land that lie under swamps or subject to periodical overflow or too wet for anything but grazing, which it is perfectly feasible to drain and protect and redeem. The Congress ...
— State of the Union Addresses of Woodrow Wilson • Woodrow Wilson

... to which she listened, which she surveyed. As she folded her arms she folded her bright coloured old shawl about her, and seemed to gather within its folds all warmth of colour, all warmth of feeling, that was in that wild, desolate place. ...
— What Necessity Knows • Lily Dougall

... and in their use of cattle. The second cut represents a small portion of the large burying-ground at Fort Berthold. The wigwams in the third cut are mostly of skin, but generally canvas furnished by the Government is now used. The arrangement of poles and the desolate appearance of the tents scattered here and there are true to life. In the sixth cut the heavy earrings and necklace are of wampum and very valuable. The dress, while cut in Indian fashion, is, like nearly all that the Indians now wear, furnished ...
— The American Missionary — Volume 38, No. 06, June, 1884 • Various

... calls; so we left Pitache and John Flint together, out in the birdhaunted, sweet-scented, sun-dappled garden, in the golden morning hours. No one can be quite heartless in a green garden, quite hopeless in the spring, or quite desolate when there's a dog's friendly nose to be thrust into ...
— Slippy McGee, Sometimes Known as the Butterfly Man • Marie Conway Oemler

... WILD DUCK.—In many parts of England the wild duck is to be found, especially in those desolate fenny parts where water abounds. In Lincolnshire they are plentiful, and are annually taken in the decoys, which consist of ponds situate in the marshes, and surrounded with wood or reeds to prevent the birds which frequent ...
— The Book of Household Management • Mrs. Isabella Beeton

... silence in the room as the lad finished with a weary sigh; and though it was a bright morning in September, each of the elder personages seemed to conjure up the scenes the invalid portrayed, and thought of him lying back there in the desolate London winter, miserable in spirit, and ill at ease ...
— Yussuf the Guide - The Mountain Bandits; Strange Adventure in Asia Minor • George Manville Fenn

... pioneer of the period; but his ax sank deeper than other men's, and the plaster cast of his great sinewy hand, at Washington, embodies the training of these frontier railsplitters, in the days when Fort Dearborn, on the site of Chicago, was but a military outpost in a desolate country. While the hard woods of Illinois were being entered, the pioneer movement passed also into the Missouri Valley. The French lead miners had already opened the southeastern section, and Southern mountaineers had pushed up the Missouri; but ...
— The Frontier in American History • Frederick Jackson Turner

... not doubting that the man must have a right to go there, but questioning very much his right to shut him out. When he reached the door, however, he found it bolted; and outside he had to stay all alone, in the desolate remainder of the house, till ...
— Robert Falconer • George MacDonald

... near us lay, Deep nestled in the grass untrod By aught save wild beasts of the wood— Great, massive, squared, and chisel'd stone, Like columns that had toppled down From temple dome or tower crown, Along some drifted, silent way Of desolate and desert town Built by ...
— The Lake of the Sky • George Wharton James

... lonely, desolate country, treeless, a barren waste; but Jean loved it. He said the land was better ...
— The Rider in Khaki - A Novel • Nat Gould

... her on fire! That daughter of the Huguenot, Let's burn her up, and let her ashes rot." Then violent cries were heard. Howls of "Ay! Ay! the wretch! Now let her meet her fate! She is the cause of all, 'tis plain! Once she has made us desolate, But ...
— Jasmin: Barber, Poet, Philanthropist • Samuel Smiles

... it, with the disturbance of the house. However, I can only leave you to manage these things as you think best—or feel pleasantest to yourself. I am saddened by another kind of disorder, France is in everything so fallen back, so desolate and comfortless, compared to what it was twenty years ago—the people so much rougher, clumsier, more uncivil—everything they do, vulgar and base. Remnants of the old nature come out when they begin to know you. I am drawing ...
— The Life of John Ruskin • W. G. Collingwood

... the whirlwind. It is painful to be compelled to inscribe upon such a shield the word "Desdichado." It is painful to remember how much misery must have passed through that heart, and how many sweat drops of agony must have stood, in desolate state, upon that brow. And it is most painful of all to feel that guilt, as well as misery, has been here, and that the sowing of the wind preceded ...
— Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Volume 1, No. 2, July, 1850. • Various

... resumed their march on June 29, over a desolate country, travelling seventeen miles without finding grass or water, until they made their night camp on the Big Sandy. There they encountered clouds of mosquitoes, which made more than one subsequent camping-place ...
— The Story of the Mormons: • William Alexander Linn

... was a composite of many odors as in a drug shop. All this—the colors, the glitter, the sounds and odors—pressed on the eyes and invaded the breast with each inhalation. It forced out live sensations, and filled the desolate ...
— Mother • Maxim Gorky

... dead, outstretched Upon their faces: on their heads they cast Dust, and their wailing went up to the sky. As when men drive away the tender lambs Out of the fleecy flock, to feast thereon, And round the desolate pens the mothers leap Ceaselessly bleating, so o'er Aias rang That day a very great and bitter cry. Wild echoes pealed from Ida forest-palled, And from the plain, the ships, ...
— The Fall of Troy • Smyrnaeus Quintus

... faced directly toward the spot indicated by the driver's whip. Nothing but the bare, bleak, rectangular outlines of the cabin of the Man on the Beach met their eyes. All else was a desolate expanse, unrelieved by any structure higher than the tussocks of scant beach grass that clothed it. They were so utterly helpless that the driver's derisive laughter gave way at last to good humor and ...
— Drift from Two Shores • Bret Harte

... envy and revenge The dauntless and the good, who dare to hurl Defiance at his throne, girt tho' it be 315 With Death's omnipotence. Thou hast beheld His empire, o'er the present and the past; It was a desolate sight—now gaze on mine, Futurity. Thou hoary giant Time, Render thou up thy half-devoured babes,— 320 And from the cradles of eternity, Where millions lie lulled to their portioned sleep By the deep murmuring stream of passing things, Tear thou that gloomy ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Percy Bysshe Shelley Volume I • Percy Bysshe Shelley

... tell me," she said, "are you quite immortal? Can death never touch you? And are you too great an enchanter ever to feel human suffering?" "It is true," he said, "that I am not as others. Far, far away, hundreds of thousands of miles from this, there lies a desolate country covered with thick jungle. In the midst of the jungle grows a circle of palm trees, and in the centre of the circle stand six chattees full of water, piled one above another: below the sixth chattee is a small cage, which contains a little green parrot;—on the life of the parrot ...
— The Golden Bough - A study of magic and religion • Sir James George Frazer

... deg. N. lat. and 173 deg. E. long., flows through the Chukchi country, at first south-west and then east, and enters the Gulf of Anadyr after a course of about 500 m. The country through which it passes is thinly populated, barren and desolate. For nine months of the year the ground is covered with snow. Reindeer, upon which the inhabitants subsist, are found in ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... rain fell around him. Mechanically he quickened his pace. He came at length down the steep cliff-path to the gate that led to the village. And here to his surprise a shuffling footstep told him of the presence of another human being out in the desolate darkness. Dimly he discerned a bulky ...
— The Obstacle Race • Ethel M. Dell

... makes them so charming. If they mourn a man, he was the most generous, most punctilious, and most respected of Venetian citizens. His word was inviolable; as a husband and father he was something a little more than perfection, and his sorrowing and desolate widow and his eight children, two of them the merest bambini, will have the greatest difficulty in dragging through the tedious hours that must intervene before they are reunited to him in the paradise which his presence is now adorning. If they mourn a woman, ...
— A Wanderer in Venice • E.V. Lucas

... old servant Katoda came out, and bowing himself to the ground before his master, poured out the long tale of wrong, telling him all that had happened, and how it was that he found his daughter in such a wild and desolate spot with only two old servants to ...
— Japanese Fairy Tales • Yei Theodora Ozaki

... The Fen monasteries remained desolate for 100 years. During that period the lands were constantly being seized by different intruders. It was not till the time of Alfred the Great, who came to the throne in 871, that the invasions of the Danes were finally checked, and tranquillity restored ...
— The Cathedral Church of Peterborough - A Description Of Its Fabric And A Brief History Of The Episcopal See • W.D. Sweeting

... of sand, stretching out in the distant horizon, without one object to mark its extensive surface, white and desolate in its vastness—such is the scene which proclaims the fearful desert of Sahara to the eye of the wanderer who has lost himself in these frightful regions. In this also it resembles the sea, that it casts up waves, and often a misty vapor bangs over its surface. But there is not the ...
— The Two Captains • Friedrich de La Motte-Fouque

... oration, as in the defense of Cluentius, Caelius, Milo, and Flaccus; the most striking instances of which are the poetical bursts of feeling with which he addresses his client, Plaucius, and his picture of the desolate condition of the vestal Fonteia, should her brother be condemned. At other times his peroration contains more heroic and elevated sentiments, as in the invocation of the Alban Altars, and in his defense of Sextius, and that on liberty at the close ...
— The Old Roman World • John Lord

... sword, sword! How horrible thou art! Thou art a terrible thing to have come among men. How many eyes shall look upon gardens no more because of thee? How many fields must go empty that might have been fair with cottages, white cottages with children all about them? How many valleys must go desolate that might have nursed warm hamlets, because thou hast slain long since the men that might have built them? I hear the wind crying against thee, thou sword! It comes from the empty valleys. It comes over the bare fields. There are children's voices ...
— The Sword of Welleran and Other Stories • Lord Dunsany

... so clearly did he prove the criminality of our supineness in the cause of God." The text was Isaiah's (liv. 2, 3) vision of the widowed church's tent stretching forth till her children inherited the nations and peopled the desolate cities, and the application to the reluctant brethren was couched in these two great maxims written ever since on the banners of the ...
— The Life of William Carey • George Smith

... church continued ruined and desolate, and without all divine offices for a time; till at length by the favour of a great person in the neighbourhood, it was repaired and restored to some degrees of decency again; and out of the ashes of a late cathedral, ...
— The New Guide to Peterborough Cathedral • George S. Phillips

... and need, Agnes; the sun does not shine on a more desolate man than I am,—one more utterly alone in the world; there is no one left to love me. Agnes, can you not love me a little?—let it be ever so ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 8, No. 47, September, 1861 • Various

... Holland was a wild desolate place in the midst of seas and lakes, with here and there a forest of trees. The first people to settle here were some German tribes, and a hard time they had of it. First of all they had to build strong dykes or embankments round the place in which ...
— Little Folks (November 1884) - A Magazine for the Young • Various

... disposition, and took him into the house. First, they entered a fine large hall, magnificently furnished; they then passed through several spacious rooms, in the same style of grandeur; but all appeared forsaken and desolate. A long gallery came next, it was very dark, just light enough to show that instead of a wall on one side, there was a grating of iron which parted off a dismal dungeon, from whence issued the groans of those victims whom the ...
— Children's Literature - A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes • Charles Madison Curry

... told her she must give him everything, everything, everything! I told her I should be thankful to come second. But why, when everything's turned out just as one always hoped it would turn out, why then can one do nothing but cry, nothing but feel a desolate old woman whose life's been a failure, and now is nearly over, and age is so cruel? But Katharine said to me, 'I am happy. I'm very happy.' And then I thought, though it all seemed so desperately dismal at the time, Katharine had said she was happy, and I should have ...
— Night and Day • Virginia Woolf

... who, back in the Middlewestern mud and rain, had longed for purple mountains and cherry blossoms and the sea. But she cast out the wish, and lifted her eyes to mountains across the sound—not purple mountains, but sheer silver streaked with black, like frozen surf on a desolate northern shore—the Olympics, two-score ...
— Free Air • Sinclair Lewis

... James from the throne discredited his measures, but the twenty years of war with France which the Revolution brought in its train proved the wisdom of his policy. When Indian massacres inspired at Quebec made a desolate waste of the New England frontier, while Boston and New York merchants filled their pockets by supplying the enemy with munitions of war, the inadequacy of the colonial system for defense, as well as all the worst evils of illicit trade, stood clearly revealed. Until ...
— Beginnings of the American People • Carl Lotus Becker

... can find amusement in this desolate region but the sportsman; and he may live in continual enjoyment, and slay wild ducks and snipes in abundance; a number of buffaloes are to be seen grazing on the marshes. They are not to be met with to the North of Rome. They resemble ...
— After Waterloo: Reminiscences of European Travel 1815-1819 • Major W. E Frye

... I had thought over during my wakeful hours: the tale of the ashes, the desolate ashes! The war had not prevented my parents from sending me to school and college, but here the old had seen the young grow up starved of what their fathers had given them, and the young had looked to the old ...
— Lady Baltimore • Owen Wister

... the horses' hoofs upon the sun-baked earth was a fitting accompaniment to his mood. The sigh of the night breezes through the trees was no less desolate than his heart. Nor was the darkness one whit more dark than the stream of thought which ...
— The Forfeit • Ridgwell Cullum

... down the tree-darkened lane that led to the main street of the village. Beneath a forest oak, where the desolate town cow and the stray sheep had come to seek freedom from the annoyances of the day, he halted and looked back. The few remaining lanterns were like fire-flies in a growth of giant grass. The members of the "string-band" were singing a negro melody. The notes ...
— Old Ebenezer • Opie Read

... there would never again be any magic sound there to penetrate to her imprisoned hearing. The aprons hanging from the ceiling near the door flapped in the cold wind, and she thought they were like grey bats in a cave. The breeze blew out the open lantern. Ah, how desolate, how desolate.... ...
— Living Alone • Stella Benson

... loan, In time it will return us two for one. Rich robes themselves and others do adorn; Neither themselves nor others, if not worn. Who builds a palace and rams up the gate Shall see it ruinous and desolate. Ah, simple Hero, learn thyself to cherish. Lone women like to empty houses perish. Less sins the poor rich man that starves himself In heaping up a mass of drossy pelf, Than such as you. His golden earth remains Which, after his decease, some other gains. But this fair ...
— Hero and Leander • Christopher Marlowe

... unusually severe and biting, even for that angry month. There had been snow in the morning, and it lay white and dreary in various ridges along the street. But the wind was not still in the keen but quiet sharpness of frost; on the contrary, it howled almost like a hurricane through the desolate thoroughfares, and the lamps flickered unsteadily in the turbulent gusts. Perhaps it was the blasts which increased the haggardness of aspect in the young man I have mentioned. His hair, which was much longer than is commonly worn, was tossed wildly from cheeks preternaturally shrunken, hollow, ...
— Ernest Maltravers, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... London! Many years afterward, in the days of his social elevation, he startled a polite circle at Sir Joshua Reynolds' by humorously dating an anecdote about the time he "lived among the beggars of Axe Lane." Such may have been the desolate quarters with which he was fain to content himself when thus adrift upon the town, with but a few half-pence ...
— Oliver Goldsmith • Washington Irving

... commonly convert the hides into a loose outer garment that covers the whole of their bodies, hanging down to the knees; and it proves a sufficient protection against the lowest temperature of the cold and desolate region which they inhabit. It furnishes at once a cloak by day and a ...
— Delineations of the Ox Tribe • George Vasey

... of evening were closing in upon a stormy March day; rain and sleet falling fast while a blustering northeast wind sent them sweeping across the desolate-looking fields and gardens, and over the wet road where a hack was lumbering along, drawn by two weary-looking steeds; its solitary passenger sighing and groaning with impatience over its slow progress ...
— Elsie at Home • Martha Finley

... that lined the trail gave a desolate air to the bleak, white prospect. The whole of that northern world offered little promise to the traveler, little inducement to leave the warmth of ...
— The Watchers of the Plains - A Tale of the Western Prairies • Ridgewell Cullum

... I'll wait until our cobbler has made you a pair of boots. But isn't that desolate region of blasted oaks and sundered rocks wonderful? You find everything in the forest. In a few minutes I shall ...
— Celibates • George Moore

... shall you hoax us with your pleas, Or with the serpent's cunning wake distrust, Range tribe 'gainst tribe—then shoot the remnant down, And in the red man's empty cabin grin, And shake with laughter o'er his desolate hearth. No, we are one! the red men all are one In colour as in ...
— Tecumseh: A Drama • Charles Mair

... "Solitude." It was a short, plaintive, minor strain. The name of the piece was something else, but she called it "Solitude." When she heard it there came before her imagination the figure of a man standing beside a desolate rock on the seashore. He was naked. His attitude was one of hopeless resignation as he looked toward a distant bird winging its flight ...
— The Awakening and Selected Short Stories • Kate Chopin

... her office, and vain would be the effort to portray the feelings or the fond and desolate mother, as she anticipated the return of her long-absent, dearly-loved son. Of his own accord he came back to her; he had tried the pleasures of the world, and proved them hollow; he had formed friendships with the young, the gay, the bright, the lovely, and he ...
— The Mother's Recompense, Volume II. - A Sequel to Home Influence in Two Volumes • Grace Aguilar

... passing through some of the old capital cities of Western India, then deserted and in ruins, writes to the Archbishop of Canterbury: 'I know not by what policy the Emperors seek the ruin of all the ancient cities which were nobly built, but now be desolate and in rubbish. It must arise from a wish to destroy all the ancient cities in order that there might appear nothing great to have existed before their time.'[4] But these cities, like all which are supported in the same manner, by the residence of a court and ...
— Rambles and Recollections of an Indian Official • William Sleeman

... remorsefully within her when she saw suddenly appear upon the speaking countenance of the young lady before her a wan desolate look of agony. ...
— Desperate Remedies • Thomas Hardy

... did not leave it ungratified. It is not well to try to lift the curtain of the unseen, it is not well to call to heaven to show its glory, or to hell to give us touch and knowledge of its yawning fires. Knowledge comes soon enough; many of us will say that knowledge has come too soon and left us desolate. There is no bitterness like the bitterness of wisdom: so cried the great Koheleth, and so hath cried many a son of man following blindly on his path. Let us be thankful for the dark places of the earth—places where we may find rest and shadow, and the heavy sweetness ...
— Jess • H. Rider Haggard

... shall the usurper, insolent of power, O'erwhelm it with swift ruin in an hour! And hurl his bolts, and with a dominant will, Say to its mighty heart—'Crouch, and be still! My foot is on your neck! I am your Fate! Can speak your doom, and make you desolate!'" ...
— War Poetry of the South • Various

... to fix on some course in the next few days," added his companion. "Say we run in to make inquiries"—and a gleam of grim amusement crept into his eyes—"what are we going to find? A beach with a roaring surf on it, and if we get a boat through, a desolate, half-frozen swamp behind it. It's quite likely there are people in the country, Koriaks or Kamtchadales, but if there are they'll probably move up and down after what they get to eat like the Huskies do, and we can't hang on and wait for them. ...
— Hawtrey's Deputy • Harold Bindloss

... thee the poor man can abide Oppression, want, the scorn of pride, The curse of penury, Companion of his lonely state, He is no longer desolate, And still can brave an adverse fate, With honest ...
— Tobacco; Its History, Varieties, Culture, Manufacture and Commerce • E. R. Billings

... "How I hate this desolate month!" my lady said, as she walked about the garden, shivering beneath her sable mantle. "Every thing dropping to ruin and decay, and the cold flicker of the sun lighting up the ugliness of the earth, as the glare of gas-lamps lights the wrinkles ...
— Lady Audley's Secret • Mary Elizabeth Braddon

... you very much," he said gloomily. "The house at Monsanto will not be the same when you are gone. Una will be lost and desolate without you." ...
— The Snare • Rafael Sabatini

... Meanwhile the wheels of the carriage were no longer rattling over paving stones; the streets and houses of the city were left behind; a grey country, with houses scattered over it and trees here and there standing, desolate and drear enough, was to be seen from the carriage windows; but Wych Hazel hardly saw it. At last the houses began again to stand apparently in some regular order and took a more comfortable air; gardens and trees and shrubbery ...
— The Gold of Chickaree • Susan Warner

... throw wide her windows, knowing it arose from no change in lady Margaret's judgment concerning her: she could not as a culprit accept what had been as a culprit withdrawn from her. The conviction burned in her heart like cold fire, that, but for compassion upon the desolate state of an orphan, she would have been at once dismissed from the castle. Sometimes she ventured to think that if lord Herbert had been at home, all this would not have happened; but now what could she expect other than that on his return he would regard her and treat her in ...
— St. George and St. Michael • George MacDonald

... barter away to the West, or to send across the desert. Describing the effects of a Fellatah raid, Barth says: "The whole village, which only a few moments before had been the abode of comfort and happiness, was destroyed by fire and made desolate. Slaughtered men, with their limbs severed from their bodies, were lying about in all directions and made ...
— The Journal of Negro History, Volume 2, 1917 • Various

... desolate man was an uncontrollable passion; his heart was strong and all its strength entered into its sorrow. Miss Blagden, "perfect in all kindness," took motherly possession of the boy, and persuaded his father to accompany Penini to her villa at Bellosguardo. ...
— Robert Browning • Edward Dowden

... damp soil its growth is rapid; but the most valuable trees grow slowly among rocks on sterile soil, and seem to gather compactness and beauty from the very struggle which they make for an existence. In the Bahamas, in the most desolate regions, once flourished that curiously veined and much esteemed variety once known in Europe as "Madeira wood," but which has long since been exterminated. Jamaica, also, which used to be a fruitful source ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 362, December 9, 1882 • Various

... the greatest satisfaction your amendments of the Opera ["Fidelio" which was about to be again performed]. It has decided me once more to rebuild the desolate ruins of an ...
— Beethoven's Letters 1790-1826, Volume 1 of 2 • Lady Wallace

... covered this case, also, to a nicety. It explained everything. But what an explanation, leaving her, Damaris, doubly orphaned and desolate! For the first case, that of which Faircloth actually had spoken, brought her royal, if secret compensation in the brotherhood and sisterhood it made known. But this second case brought nothing, save a sense ...
— Deadham Hard • Lucas Malet

... national character he has dishonoured. I impeach him in the name of the people of India, whose laws, rights, and liberties he has subverted, whose properties he has destroyed, whose country he has laid waste and desolate. I impeach him in the name of human nature itself, which he has cruelly outraged, injured, and oppressed in both sexes, in every age, rank, situation, and condition of life. And I conjure this high and sacred court to let not ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... and cultivated grounds, which creep up the mountain to a height of between two and three thousand feet, above which is virgin forest, reaching nearly to the summit, which on the side next the town is covered with a high reedy grass. On the further side it is more elevated, of a bare and desolate aspect, with a slight depression marking the position of the crater. From this part descends a black scoriaceous tract; very rugged, and covered with a scanty vegetation of scattered bushes as far down as the sea. This is the lava ...
— The Malay Archipelago - Volume II. (of II.) • Alfred Russel Wallace

... upon me somewhat that I should be coming hither to chase this aged Christian warrior from his house.'" At the beginning of the following year the knights left the island, never to return. On the day of this desolate embarcation the herald blew upon his trumpet the "Salute and Farewell" and the identical instrument upon which this call was sounded is still preserved in the armoury at Malta, to which barren island the knights ...
— Sea-Wolves of the Mediterranean • E. Hamilton Currey

... mood; the Calabrian mountains, even without sunshine, had their wonted grace. Moreover, cactus and agave, frequent in the foreground, preserved the southern character of the scene. The great plain between the hills and the sea grows very impressive; so silent it is, so mournfully desolate, so haunted with memories of vanished glory. I looked at the Crathis—the Crati of Cosenza—here beginning to spread into a sea-marsh; the waters which used to flow over golden sands, which made white the oxen, and sunny-haired the children, that bathed in them, ...
— By the Ionian Sea - Notes of a Ramble in Southern Italy • George Gissing

... through his megaphone, and the marine band struck up "Home, Sweet Home," "just to give us a cheerful mood on entering this desolate land!" as Major ...
— Boy Scouts in the Philippines - Or, The Key to the Treaty Box • G. Harvey Ralphson

... said mockingly, "no maid, even in the glorious days of chivalry, had ever more heroic figures to do battle for her honor. I accept the amende, Monsieur, and henceforth enroll you as knight at my court. Upon my word," and she looked about at the desolate sand-heaps surrounding us, "'tis not much to boast of here; nor, in truth, is ...
— When Wilderness Was King - A Tale of the Illinois Country • Randall Parrish

... to Windy Arm, rugged, desolate and despairful. Down it, with menace and terror on its wings, rushes the furious wind, driving boats and scows crashing on an iron shore. In the night we heard shouts; we saw wreckage piled up on the beach, but we pulled away. For twelve weary ...
— The Trail of '98 - A Northland Romance • Robert W. Service

... all-wise god. Ravens carried to him the news from earth. His temples were stone altars on desolate heaths, and human sacrifices ...
— ZigZag Journeys in Northern Lands; - The Rhine to the Arctic • Hezekiah Butterworth

... care anything about your locker beer, Lina Rosenberg, nor your whiskey and tobacco pipes, either. Nor neither, nor nothing," added the desolate child, standing "stock still," with the back of her head against a pile of bricks, her eyes closed, and her hands ...
— Dotty Dimple at Play • Sophie May

... way, and yet, once torn from their old associations, the travelling mania seized them; they seemed absolutely unable to rest. So on foot, and speaking not a word of any language but their own, these three desolate sisters journeyed over a great part of the Continent. They visited most of the principal towns, and were well known in several. I daresay they are still remembered at some of the places they used to stay at, though never for more than a short time together. Mrs. ...
— Four Ghost Stories • Mrs. Molesworth

... along the lobby, pshawing with vexation, and in a little, Doom, to all appearance, was a castle dark and desolate. ...
— Doom Castle • Neil Munro

... was cheerful to him, since the very nature of it set seal upon his services to the Empire. The longing for some word of England's remembrance had assuredly been in his heart, which had often been left desolate. It was all rapture to England, like a ...
— The Romance of a Pro-Consul - Being The Personal Life And Memoirs Of The Right Hon. Sir - George Grey, K.C.B. • James Milne

... their doors, while others taking to their heels, communicated their fear to all they met, who stayed not to look behind them; insomuch, that Schaibar and prince Ahmed, as they went along, found all the streets and squares desolate, till they came to the palace, where the porters, instead of preventing Schaibar from entering, ran away too; so that the prince and he advanced without any obstacle to the council-hall, where the sultan was seated on his throne and ...
— The Arabian Nights Entertainments Complete • Anonymous

... the long slope which led to the rise upon which, in another time, Sheila had caught her last glimpse of the parson. It was in the cold, bleak moment of the morning when darkness has not yet gone and the dawn not come, and Langford looked strangely desolate out there on the trail alone—alone with thoughts ...
— The Trail to Yesterday • Charles Alden Seltzer

... place for five years? I suppose old Mrs. Hopkins will remain, and that it will become more and more desolate every year. I mustn't let the old house tumble down; that's all." Then the Minister Plenipotentiary to Patagonia took his departure and walked back to Bragton thinking of the publicity of his engagement. All Dillsborough had heard that he was to be married to Miss Trefoil, and ...
— The American Senator • Anthony Trollope

... stock of provisions, and immediately mounted one of the horses from the captain's stable, which brought me past the rocky pass in a good hour. The road towards the temples here turns off to the right into desolate, barren mountain valleys, whose death-like stillness was unbroken by the breathing of an animal, or the song of a bird. This place was well calculated to raise and ...
— A Woman's Journey Round the World • Ida Pfeiffer

... days when she ran "shrill as a cicada and thin as a match" through the chill mists of her native mountains could she ever have felt so cold, so wretched, and so desolate. Her very soul, her grave, indignant, and fantastic soul, seemed to drowse like an exhausted traveller surrendering himself to the sleep of death. But when I asked her again to lie down she managed to answer me, "Not in this room." The dumb spell was broken. ...
— The Arrow of Gold - a story between two notes • Joseph Conrad

... slave bore her away into the bush, and there at a desolate spot, where no one was likely to live or plant or build, they left her and stole from the ...
— Mary Slessor of Calabar: Pioneer Missionary • W. P. Livingstone

... moving sheet of ice, which with more or less difficulty kept itself conformable with the face of the land over which it was riding, the sharper outstanding points were cut away and the deeper river canons filled in. Desolate and rugged rocky wastes were thrown down and spread ...
— Agriculture for Beginners - Revised Edition • Charles William Burkett

... quite so desolate and forlorn and helpless as she felt that day when she left the "Daily Review" office, and found herself in the noise and bustle of Fleet Street. The midday sun blazed down upon her in all its strength; the pavements ...
— We Two • Edna Lyall

... had an impulse to teach; not for the teaching's sake, for that, regarded as the attempt to fill skulls with knowledge, had always been to me a desolate dreariness; but the moment I saw a sign of hunger, an indication of readiness to receive, I was invariably seized with a kind of passion for giving. I now proceeded to explain the sonnet. Having done so, nearly as well as I could, ...
— Annals of a Quiet Neighbourhood • George MacDonald

... appeared as empty of life as the land. Never a keel cut those waters, never a sail broke the edge of the horizon, never a feather of smoke spotted the sky where it whitened to meet the sea. Everything was empty—vast, unspeakably desolate—palpitating with heat. ...
— Moran of the Lady Letty • Frank Norris

... air of mystery and beauty to the solitary country; there was a sort of vast stillness over the land, as the boat glided to her moorings in the early morning. Nothing could be heard but the chirping of a bicho, or the desolate neigh of one of the horses that awaited them by the little quay. The stars shone and twinkled overhead, and the air was clear and cool and marvellously still. Black John woke the travellers up and told them it was time to disembark; ...
— Peter and Jane - or The Missing Heir • S. (Sarah) Macnaughtan

... on his throne of rock, and blessing his two children, the most beautiful creatures in the island. Now the whole existence of this man, who was once so happy and so much envied, is changed. The smiling cottage, that hung over the gulf like a swan over a transparent lake, is sad and desolate; the little enclosure, with its hedges of lilac and hawthorn, where joyous groups used to come and sit at the close of day, is silent and deserted. No human sound dares to trouble the mourning of this saddened solitude. Only towards evening the waves of the sea, compassionating such great ...
— Celebrated Crimes, Complete • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... to be very desolate to be thus left alone without a word of comfort or a word of love; without being able to speak to any one of what filled her heart; doubting, nay, more than doubting, being all but sure that her passion must terminate in misery. Why had she not obeyed her conscience ...
— Doctor Thorne • Anthony Trollope

... was keeper of the Longstone Lighthouse on the Farne Islands, off the coast of Northumberland. Longstone is a desolate rock, swept by the northern gales; and woe betide the ship ...
— Beneath the Banner • F. J. Cross

... lambs, with a pretty boy commonly holding a lamb in his arms, who drives his flock to water at the pond opposite my window, is the only thing that gives token of the season. I am quite mortified at this on your account, for April, in general a month of great beauty here, will be as desolate as winter. Nevertheless you must come and see me, you and Mr. and Mrs. Bennoch, and perhaps you can continue to stay a day or two, or to come more than once. I want to see as much of you as I can, and I must change much, if I be in any condition to go to London, even upon the only condition ...
— Yesterdays with Authors • James T. Fields

... occasion to remark the extraordinarily desolate nature of that country, through which the drove-road continued, hour after hour, and even day after day, to wind. A continual succession of insignificant shaggy hills, divided by the course of ten thousand brooks, through which we ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 20 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... surveyed the barren waste around them in dismay. The floor of the valley was strewn with even larger rocks and bowlders than those on the surface above, and looked utterly pathless and desolate. "What do we do first?" he ...
— The Girl in the Golden Atom • Raymond King Cummings

... three sisters, arm-in-arm, paced up and down plotting their weird stories. She walked through the same old gate, on the same single stone pavement and over the same stile out into the same heather fields, gazing on the same dreary sky above and the same desolate earth on every side. She dined in the same old "Black Bull"; sat in poor Branwell's chair and was served by the same person who dealt out the drinks to that poor unfortunate—then a young bar-maid, ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume III (of III) • Various

... turned, in grateful surprise, to greet, for the first time since his return, her heart's idol. "My son! my son!" she continued, with gathering emotion, "are you indeed restored alive to my arms, and, but for you, my now doubly desolate home? Thank Heaven! O thank Heaven! for the ...
— Gaut Gurley • D. P. Thompson

... for the waters are come into my soul!" That was the wild, wordless prayer of her heart. Her life was wrecked, her heart was desolate; she must go forth a beggar and an outcast, and fight the bitter battle of life alone. And love, and home, and Charley might have been hers. "It might have been!" Is there any anguish in this world of anguish ...
— A Terrible Secret • May Agnes Fleming

... Appeal! The Balkan plains are still steaming with the blood of thousands of murdered; the ruins of desolate towns and devastated villages are still smoking after the Balkan War; hungry, workless men, widowed women and orphan children are still wandering through the land, and yet again Austria's Imperialism unchains the War Fury to bring death ...
— What Germany Thinks - The War as Germans see it • Thomas F. A. Smith

... retaliation, even in words. A city shattered, burned, destroyed, desolate, a land wasted, humiliated, made a desert and a wilderness, or wearing the thorny crown of humiliation and subjugation, is invested with the sacred prerogatives and immunities of the dead. The base human revenge of exultation at its ...
— Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry • Albert Pike

... Love were king, Gaunt wickedness would hide his loathsome features, And virtue would to all the world's sad creatures Her treasures fling; Till drooping souls would rise above their fate, And find sweet flowers for all the desolate And sorrowing. ...
— Oklahoma and Other Poems • Freeman E. Miller

... thinking that after all he had found one way of escape from his troubles. For if Lesley accepted Maurice, and lived with him in a house opposite her father's, there would always be a corner for him at their fireside, and he would not go to the grave feeling himself a childless, loveless, desolate old man. ...
— Brooke's Daughter - A Novel • Adeline Sergeant

... souvenir of hellish war, A monument of man's stupendous hate! Can this have been a Paradise before, Now up-blown, blasted, drear and desolate? Aye, once with smiling and contented face She reigned a ...
— Over the Top With the Third Australian Division • G. P. Cuttriss

... must suffer to extremity, I would not spare you, Richard; though I love you. There are four words that you can say, which will shake the gates of heaven; which will make the Father meet you, and the elder Brother welcome you, and the angels sing for joy. Desolate souls, full of anguish, and yet full of hope, have comprehended them: Have ...
— The Hallam Succession • Amelia Edith Barr

... of the department of the Hautes-Pyrenees, and exactly in the most desolate and miserable part, was erected an arch of triumph, which seemed a miracle fallen from heaven in the midst of those plains uncultivated and burned up by the sun. A guard of honor awaited their Majesties, ranged around this rural monument, ...
— The Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte • Bourrienne, Constant, and Stewarton

... after the remains of poor Raymond had been laid in the grave, and the widow had returned to her desolate cottage, that she experienced the full weight of her heavy burden. Even when death comes slowly, when sickness, pain, and long suspense have made the issue certain, it is hard for the bereaved to realize the dread event; but when the scythe of the destroyer has passed so ...
— Watch—Work—Wait - Or, The Orphan's Victory • Sarah A. Myers

... all stops?" she asked, almost breathlessly. "When the stamps pound no more, and the power is withdrawn? It is empty and desolate—and frightening?" ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... and the Grey Friars were sacked and rendered desolate, and the gorgeous edifice of the Carthusian monks ...
— Ringan Gilhaize - or The Covenanters • John Galt

... Nevertheless, so profound is our ignorance, and so high our presumption, that we marvel when we hear of the extinction of an organic being; and as we do not see the cause, we invoke cataclysms to desolate the world, or invent laws on the duration of the ...
— The World's Greatest Books - Volume 15 - Science • Various

... return to his ship, the prisoner was sent on shore and landed on the desolate and rocky coast, with a supply of provisions for two days. Not a single article of extra clothing, or the means of striking a light was permitted him. When the boat's keel grazed the beach, he was ordered out. The ...
— The Phantom Ship • Captain Frederick Marryat

... of escaping from this, I fear, for a long time," said Alf Vandervell to his brother, as they stood near the wheel, looking at the desolate prospect. ...
— The Giant of the North - Pokings Round the Pole • R.M. Ballantyne

... she felt Miltoun's arm round her, and heard him say: "Don't cry, Babs!" Instinct telling her what to do, she laid her head against his chest, and sobbed bitterly. Struggling with those sobs, she grew less and less unhappy—knowing that he could never again feel quite so desolate, as before he tried to give her comfort. It was all a bad dream, and they would soon wake from it! And they would be happy; as happy as they had been before—before these last months! And ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... of Beginnings centres around the production by the gods of water, Enki and his consort Nin-ella (or Dangal), of a great number of canals bringing rain to the desolate fields of a dry continent. Life both of vegetables and animals follows the profusion of the vivifying waters.... In the process of life's production besides Enki, the personality of his consort is very conspicuous. ...
— The Evolution of the Dragon • G. Elliot Smith



Words linked to "Desolate" :   unconsolable, ditch, walk out, desolation, inhospitable, disconsolate, strand, reduce, expose, inconsolable, ruin, shrink, maroon, destroy, leave, bleak



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