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Desperado   /dˌɛspərˈɑdoʊ/   Listen
Desperado

noun
(pl. desperadoes)
1.
A bold outlaw (especially on the American frontier).  Synonym: desperate criminal.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Desperado" Quotes from Famous Books



... episode of his life was resurrected to serve as foundations for malicious fabrications. Daylight was frankly amazed at the new interpretation put upon all he had accomplished and the deeds he had done. From an Alaskan hero he was metamorphosed into an Alaskan bully, liar, desperado, and all around "bad Man." Not content with this, lies upon lies, out of whole cloth, were manufactured about him. He never replied, though once he went to the extent of disburdening his mind to half a dozen reporters. "Do your damnedest," he told them. "Burning Daylight's bucked bigger things ...
— Burning Daylight • Jack London

... he would treat him with the greatest tenderness, then again, at some wayward action of the idiot, he would burst upon him with an awful explosion of passion. The old man had evidently been a reckless desperado in other days, and many in the village suspected strongly that he had once been a pirate. He was addicted to drinking, and now and then, when bitten by the adder, would talk strangely. He would ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIII No. 3 September 1848 • Various

... afraid he might do the same to you some time if he lost his temper?" asked Mason, looking at the captain with his eyes as big as saucers. He did not like the idea of sailing with a desperado ...
— A Voyage with Captain Dynamite • Charles Edward Rich

... left his face; the storm of rage subsided. Great incentive there must have been for him thus to repress his emotions so quickly. He looked long at her with sinister, intent regard; then, with the laugh of a desperado, a laugh which might have indicated contempt for the failure of his suit, and which was fraught with a world of meaning, of menace, he left her without so ...
— The Last Trail • Zane Grey

... many boys with whom Frank associated not one suspected that the attractive lad, who was a favorite with all, was a son of the desperado whose deeds were a matter of common knowledge in the West. Ernest had cautioned the boy to say as little as possible ...
— A Cousin's Conspiracy - A Boy's Struggle for an Inheritance • Horatio Alger

... covering the desperado with his pistol, and glaring upon him with determined eye. Palafox, unable to escape, nonchalantly bit a chew of tobacco ...
— A Dream of Empire - Or, The House of Blennerhassett • William Henry Venable

... while, Frank has been almost overwhelmed with astonishment. The ease with which the desperado had vanquished his uncle and the strange behavior of the hitherto infallible Marmion, were things beyond his comprehension. He stood gazing, in stupid wonder, toward the trees among which Pierre had disappeared, while the sound of the horse's hoofs grew fainter and fainter, ...
— Frank Among The Rancheros • Harry Castlemon

... impulse, and the unforeseen result had been to save this desperado from justice. But the worst of it was that she could not find it in her heart to regret it. Granted that he was a villain, double-dyed and beyond hope, yet he was the home of such courage, such virility, that ...
— Wyoming, a Story of the Outdoor West • William MacLeod Raine

... ragged notch. Both his middle fingers had been taken off at the second joint, and his feet had lost the third right toe, the fourth left toe, and the end of one hallux. His back, also, had sustained a severe injury, which had retarded his growth. This animal we called "The Desperado." ...
— The Minds and Manners of Wild Animals • William T. Hornaday

... part of their lands; and on every side English settlers were impinging on the old Irish families. A bold man might indeed keep the forces of law at bay for a time; but James McMurrough, notwithstanding the folly into which he had been led, was no desperado. He had no desire to live with a rope round his neck, to flee to the bog on the least alarm, and, in the issue, to give his name to an ...
— The Wild Geese • Stanley John Weyman

... of brigandage, in crimes committed in dark caves and lonely mountain paths, was there perpetrated a fouler murder; seldom in the sensational records of human depravity do we find the desperado of parricidal guilt under the delicate frame of girlhood. Yet was she rather an instrument in the hands of avenging Heaven than a monster of moral iniquity. At that moment the cup of iniquity was full for the wretch who ...
— Alvira: the Heroine of Vesuvius • A. J. O'Reilly

... Flatbush got into this part of the country? And where was he stopping? It was evident that the cow-puncher and desperado had hamstrung the cattle out of revenge for having been discovered and driven out of the broncho ...
— Ted Strong in Montana - With Lariat and Spur • Edward C. Taylor

... horses had to slow down to a walk and the wheels sank deep into the sand, which now lay in long ridges, like waves, where the last high wind had drifted it. Two hours brought the party to Pedro's Cup, named for a Mexican desperado who had once held the sheriff at bay there. The Cup was a great amphitheater, cut out in the hills, its floor smooth and packed hard, dotted with sagebrush ...
— Song of the Lark • Willa Cather

... made great excitement in Damietta, and the part taken by Ben Mayberry once more placed his name in everyone's mouth. It was he who discovered the criminals, and was the direct means of securing the desperado, Dandy Sam, the ...
— The Telegraph Messenger Boy - The Straight Road to Success • Edward S. Ellis

... before we got to Holland I was not very clear in my own mind what my past had been. Indeed the danger was that the other side of my mind, which should be busy with the great problem, would get atrophied, and that I should soon be mentally on a par with the ordinary backveld desperado. ...
— Greenmantle • John Buchan

... of glass, a spatter of oil and vinegar covered the old man in the end chair, and he rose with a cry that drew a swift glance from the desperado. ...
— Flowing Gold • Rex Beach

... desperado, as we have before indicated, was radically changed at heart, and he now felt more interest in the welfare of Emily than he had ever before ...
— Hatchie, the Guardian Slave; or, The Heiress of Bellevue • Warren T. Ashton

... it all down again, like an ungrateful clock, in order to introduce a chapter in which Richard Skill (who was always being decoyed somewhere) should be decoyed on board that lonely hulk by Lord Bellew and the American desperado Gin Sling. It was fortunate he had not done so, he reflected, since the hulk was now required for very ...
— The Wrong Box • Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne

... his old master's influence, Andy was taken to London, and by dint of much effort remedied many of the defects of his early education. Then, marrying his cousin, Onoah, who had shared his mother's cabin in the old days, and to save whom from a desperado Andy had, this time knowingly, braved great personal danger, our hero settled down to the enjoyment of a life such as he had never dreamed of in ...
— Boys and Girls Bookshelf (Vol 2 of 17) - Folk-Lore, Fables, And Fairy Tales • Various

... may then be supposed into what a dismay it threw Colonel Belford when one fine day he received a letter from Captain Obadiah, in which our West Indian desperado informed his brother that he proposed quitting those torrid latitudes in which he had lived for so long a time, and that he intended thenceforth to make his home ...
— Stolen Treasure • Howard Pyle

... carry him, pard. I'm not for draggin' him down that passage. Grab hold there,—you! Hey, get his feet, damn you!" The third man was reluctant to understand, but at last grasped the prisoner by the feet, swearing in a language of his own. The Yankee desperado took his shoulders, and together, with earnest grunts, they followed the man with the lantern, Truxton knew not whither except that it was away from the ...
— Truxton King - A Story of Graustark • George Barr McCutcheon

... Mississippi River had long been hiding-places for pirate bands, whose exploits were notorious, and the "half-breed tract" was a known place of refuge for the horse thief, the counterfeiter, and the desperado of any calling. The settlement of the Mormons in such a region, with an invitation to the world at large to join them and be saved, was a piece of good luck for this lawless class, who found a covering cloak in the new baptism, and a shield in the ...
— The Story of the Mormons: • William Alexander Linn

... it?" remarked Bill Black, presently. Bill could not keep quiet for long. He was a typical Texas desperado, had never been anything else. He was stoop-shouldered and bow-legged from much riding; a wiry little man, all muscle, with a square head, a hard face partly black from scrubby beard and red from sun, and a bright, roving, cruel ...
— The Lone Star Ranger • Zane Grey

... produced the inevitable effect. A great number of adventurers flocked into the country, some desirable and some very much the reverse. There were circumstances, however, which kept away the rowdy and desperado element who usually make for a newly-opened goldfield. It was not a class of mining which encouraged the individual adventurer. It was a field for elaborate machinery, which could only be provided by capital. Managers, engineers, miners, technical ...
— The War in South Africa - Its Cause and Conduct • Arthur Conan Doyle

... chief of the party of reform, the latter the representative of the older Turkish military and patriotic spirit which Abdul Aziz had incensed by his subserviency to Russia. A few days later the deposed Sultan was murdered. Hussein Avni and another rival of Midhat were assassinated by a desperado as they sat at the council; Murad V., who had been raised to the throne, proved imbecile; and Midhat, the destined regenerator of the Ottoman Empire as many outside Turkey believed, grasped all but the highest power in ...
— History of Modern Europe 1792-1878 • C. A. Fyffe

... The desperado to whom Crux referred was one of those terrible human monsters who may be termed a growth of American frontier life, men who, having apparently lost all fear of God, or man, or death, carry their lives about with hilarious indifference, ready to risk them at ...
— Charlie to the Rescue • R.M. Ballantyne

... "The Stolen Treasure," which, with a high-flown name, and a most melodramatic and commonplace ending, shows yet great power in the delineation and grouping of characters. The young school-girls are as real as those of Charlotte Bronte; and although the typical maidenly desperado is present,—lying and cheating with such hopeless obviousness that it seems as if they must all have had to look very hard the other way to avoid finding her out,—yet there is certainly much ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 89, March, 1865 • Various

... very last apparition Reginald could have looked for. He had given up all idea of seeing the young desperado any more. ...
— Reginald Cruden - A Tale of City Life • Talbot Baines Reed

... coterie gathered at the home of Jasper Staggs. Old Jasper, in his earlier days, had been a town marshal, and it was his boast that he had arrested Steve Day, the desperado who had choked the sheriff and defied the law. This great feat was remembered by the public, and old Jasper nursed it as a social pension. But it did not bring in revenue sufficient to sustain life, so he made ...
— Old Ebenezer • Opie Read

... he spoke—a frightful smile—and laid a very strong emphasis on those two words, "Somebody else." There is evidently a third ruffian, a nameless desperado, concerned in ...
— Masterpieces of Mystery In Four Volumes - Detective Stories • Various

... sound. Finally, at the risk of losing an eye which I justly value, I peered around and into the room. There was no desperado there: only a fresh-faced, trembling-lipped servant, sitting on the edge of her bed, with a quilt around her shoulders and the empty ...
— The Man in Lower Ten • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... not coming towards her but was going onwards slowly before her. She hastened, and presently came up with an old man, poorly dressed in a dreadful frock-coat and disgraceful trousers, wearing on his long gray locks a desperado of a top hat, and carrying, in a bloated and almost purple hand, ...
— In the Wilderness • Robert Hichens

... from Jacques who, despite his desperado exterior, proved to be friendly and communicative, glad no doubt of someone to chat with since his master was so particularly reserved. His master, Jacques confided about the third day, was not a man at all but a machine. Work, work, work—day ...
— Juggernaut • Alice Campbell

... lauded for her brave part in the capture of the famous desperado. But Cap was too sincerely sorry for Black Donald to care ...
— Capitola the Madcap • Emma D. E. N. Southworth

... There were romances of the order which makes the story of Dumas such a success upon the stage, and risks and escapes enough to satisfy the hungriest of romance-readers. It was all grotesque in its grim reality, and the young man did not know it. He was an unconscious desperado, and the odd thing about it all was the ease with which he led ...
— A Man and a Woman • Stanley Waterloo

... did not; and what's more, you will never find a man doing much good after being flogged. It either makes him an invalid, or a desperado. It may make him quiet under authority, but it ensures the very opposite when he ...
— Six Years in the Prisons of England • A Merchant - Anonymous

... instant the two foreigners sprang at him. One, swinging the porter off his feet, seized the newcomer's right arm, and, helped by his comrade, endeavored to force him back into the vehicle. The effort failed, however, so the second desperado drew a knife and plunged it deliberately into the unfortunate man's neck. It was a fearsome stroke, intended both to silence and to kill, and, with a gurgling cry, its victim collapsed in the grip ...
— One Wonderful Night - A Romance of New York • Louis Tracy

... the door in which his companion was standing. For the moment the man in the door could not get at me except through his comrade, and I resolved to grasp the opportunity. In a flash I had reached down into the breast of my coat and grasped the butt of my revolver. Before the desperado in front of me could get his gun in action, I had fired. At the first shot he dropped to the ground and, as he fell, a bullet from the man in the doorway took my hat off. I pulled the trigger as fast as my fingers could work, and he did the same. I have only a confused recollection ...
— Bert Wilson on the Gridiron • J. W. Duffield

... said. "And what are you doing carrying concealed weapons? I'm beginning to think that you're a desperado yourself." ...
— The Penalty • Gouverneur Morris

... aimed his navaja at the baron, who was at that moment off his guard, and would not perhaps have escaped the deadly weapon a second time if it had been hurled at him from that skilful hand, but that a grasp of iron fastened upon the desperado's wrist, just in time to defeat his purpose. He strove in vain to extricate his right arm from the powerful grip that held it like a vice—struggling violently, and writhing with the pain it caused him—but he dared not turn ...
— Captain Fracasse • Theophile Gautier

... moods rare, and only passing at their worst. On the other hand the same boy-part gave a vigor and a lustre to his occupation, though that occupation was—fighting. He knew no other, and in that the young animal worked off excess of animal life with a refreshing gusto. Even his comrades, of desperado stripe that they were, had dubbed him the Storm Centre. And so he was, in every tempest of arms. The very joy of living—in killing, alas!—always flung him true to the centre. But once there, he was like a ...
— The Missourian • Eugene P. (Eugene Percy) Lyle

... could be expected of him in so short a time? They had no reason to believe that a boy who had always been a desperado would suddenly become a gentle and kind-hearted person. His nature wanted refining, and such a work could not be done in a moment. These reflections came to Frank's relief, when he had become well-nigh discouraged at the idea of reforming Tim—discouraged ...
— All Aboard; or, Life on the Lake - A Sequel to "The Boat Club" • Oliver Optic

... a judge and was holding court in a small settlement, a border ruffian, a murderer and desperado, came into the court-room with brutal violence and interrupted the court. The judge ordered him to be arrested. The officer did not dare approach him. "Call a posse," said the judge, "and arrest him." But they also shrank with fear from the ruffian. "Call me, then," said ...
— How to Succeed - or, Stepping-Stones to Fame and Fortune • Orison Swett Marden

... prisoners at once, all except Hinkey," Sergeant Noll reported back to his chum and to Lieutenant Prescott. "The leader of the gang is a half-popular fellow with some classes here in the mountains. Despite the fact that he's a desperado, he is often surprisingly good-natured, and always game when he loses. His name is Griller—Butch Griller, he's called. His crew are called the Moccasin Gang, because Griller has always preferred that his men ...
— Uncle Sam's Boys as Sergeants - or, Handling Their First Real Commands • H. Irving Hancock

... the district school, seemed dull work indeed to a boy who was longing to stand sword in hand on a blood-stained deck, in a gory uniform trimmed with skulls and cross-bones, and order his enemies to be thrown one by one into the sea. "The shark awaits your car-casses!" spouted the imaginary desperado with a vicious snap of his teeth; and when Aunt Greg interrupted by asking him to bring in an armful of kindling, he glared at her like the Red Rover himself. Poor Aunt Greg! how little she guessed what was ...
— St. Nicholas Magazine for Boys and Girls, Vol. 5, September 1878, No. 11 • Various

... lick in the unctuous meat, with his more unctuous sayings—how he would fit the tit bits to the puny mouths, reserving the lengthier links for the seniors—how he would intercept a morsel even in the jaws of some young desperado, declaring it "must to the pan again to be browned, for it was not fit for a gentleman's eating"—how he would recommend this slice of white bread, or that piece of kissing-crust, to a tender juvenile, advising ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Volume 2 • Charles Lamb

... roared. "Ladies and gentlemen don't be frightened. This young man is no desperado, but he has been fighting them off down in front on the engine during the ...
— Frontier Boys in Frisco • Wyn Roosevelt

... and muddled, thought of this and but done that, of her stupid failure to have pounced, when she had first meant to, in season. She abused the author of their wrongs—recognising thus too Monteith's right to loathe him—for the desperado he assuredly had proved, but with a vulgarity of analysis and an incapacity for the higher criticism, as her listener felt it to be, which made him determine resentfully, almost grimly, that she shouldn't have the benefit of a grain of his vision ...
— The Finer Grain • Henry James

... especially,—names which do not adorn the sacred page, nor carry us back to the times and faith of our fathers, but which have gained notoriety in the world of fiction, and associate us with the lover's affrays and with the desperado's feats,—these are the names which Christian parents too often seek with avidity for their children. If you were to judge their homes by these names, you would think yourself in a Turkish seraglio, or amid the voluptuous scenes of a Parisian ...
— The Christian Home • Samuel Philips

... had to meet him with all that was catlike and subtle and devilish at the command of a woman. She had to win him, foil him, kill him—or go to her death. She was no girl to be dragged into the mountain fastness by a desperado and made a plaything. Her horror and terror had worked its way deep into the depths of her and uncovered powers never suspected, never before required in her scheme of life. She had no longer any fear. She matched ...
— The Border Legion • Zane Grey

... provided that, during the remainder of his life he will show that caution which becomes his delicate situation, and prove by his subsequent benevolence that he regrets his misfortune. But if, after once having stained his hands with human blood, he will act the desperado, and become a leader in such outrages as may end in a repetition of his former act—then, we say, he is worthy of reproach, and ought to be viewed as the common enemy ...
— The Story of the Upper Canada Rebellion, Volume 1 • John Charles Dent

... observed the crown of his hat, which was of conical shape, according to the fashion supposed to have been favoured by Guido Fawkes. I wondered what he was looking up at. It couldn't be at the stars; such a desperado was neither astrologer nor astronomer. It must be at the high gallows, and he was going to be hanged presently. Would the executioner come into possession of his conical crowned hat and plume of feathers? I counted the feathers again—three ...
— Stories By English Authors: France • Various

... and felt, as he expressed it, like leading a forlorn hope. They went on, the cutting sunshine and sparkling breeze alluring them to vague distances. It was long after midday when they marched back at a slower pace, Gerald swinging the basket like a light-hearted boy, instead of the desperado he ...
— Visionaries • James Huneker

... wrong as I am; and I am only endeavoring to turn the eye of justice from the guiltless to the guilty when I entreat you to look elsewhere for the culprit who committed this deed." Pausing, she held her two hands out before him. "It must have been some common burglar or desperado; can you not ...
— The Leavenworth Case • Anna Katharine Green

... not infrequently to those which seem outwardly the coarsest, superstition wields a power the normal mind can scarcely comprehend. Murphy might be spiritually as cringing a coward as he was physically a fearless desperado. Hampton had known such cases before; he had seen men laugh scornfully before the muzzle of a levelled gun, and yet tremble when pointed at by the finger of accusation. He had lived sufficiently long on the frontier to know that men may become inured to that special form of danger to which ...
— Bob Hampton of Placer • Randall Parrish

... Desperado Walked on the Prado, And there he met his enemy. He pulled out a knife, a, And let out his life, a, And fled for his own ...
— Westward Ho! • Charles Kingsley

... and cut down and waiting for another yank, you certainly—are—mild! You're the tamest thing that ever happened. A lady could handle yuh with safety and ease. You're a children's playmate. For a deep-dyed desperado that's wanted for manslaughter in Texas, perjury in South Dakota, and bigamy in Utah, you're the last feeble whisper of a summer breeze. You cuff my ears proper? Oh, my! and oh, fudge! ...
— The Lonesome Trail and Other Stories • B. M. Bower

... thrilling picture of you," she went on, "coming over here armed cap-a-pie to do battle for the romance of money. Already we were picturing to ourselves poor Dreadnought Phipps, the first of your victims, seeking for an asylum in the Stock Exchange Almshouses; and the other desperado—what was his name? Skinflint Martin?—on his knees before you while you read him a moral lecture ...
— The Profiteers • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... upon the artistry of crime, And he would tell of cracking cribs and cops and doing time; Or else when he was flush of funds he'd carelessly explain He'd biffed some bloated bourgeois on the border of the Seine. So gentle and polite he was, just like a man of peace, And not a desperado and the terror of ...
— Ballads of a Bohemian • Robert W. Service

... "I have ridden far, and I am not of a mind to go back." He crowded his horse forward, the more so as he saw approaching another band of men from the encampment. He could only hope that they might be of a class not quite the same as this desperado. A moment later these riders joined ...
— The Junior Classics • Various

... beery chuckles from the reporters who were "covering" this effort. "Lola Montez in the chapel pulpit is good fun," was the conclusion at which one of them arrived; and another headed his column, "A Desperado in Dimity." ...
— The Magnificent Montez - From Courtesan to Convert • Horace Wyndham

... "these stories have many endings after so many years. It was long after D'Albret was killed that we came into this country. It was spoken of at the time as a great mystery by some, and by others it was regarded as a settled affair. One side would have it that a man who was a desperado and a murderer had done it, while others said that it would never be known who had shot him. There is only this that I know. A man named Banker, who spends all his time searching for gold, has spent year after year in searching the Esmeraldas for D'Albret's mine and, although he has never ...
— Louisiana Lou • William West Winter

... The Holy City, too! Willie stayed out by the barb-wire fence; he didn't dast to go in. When I come out I found him ready to cry. That desperado has sure got the heart of a woman. I reckon he'd commit a murder for that phonograph—he's ...
— Going Some • Rex Beach

... fascinations on the great orator. He had escaped complete subjugation, but he had been flattered by the attention of the seductive beauty, and was ready to help her brother out of his difficulty. Clodius was not yet the dangerous desperado which he afterward became; and immorality, though seasoned with impiety, might easily, it was thought, be made too much of. Caesar himself did not press for punishment. As president of the college, he ...
— Caesar: A Sketch • James Anthony Froude

... him under that respectable name. But I knew his voice the moment he entered the cabin, and realized that some devilment was afoot. Every town along this frontier has his record, and I've met him maybe a dozen times in the past three years. He is known as 'Black Bart'; is a gambler by profession, a desperado by reputation, and a cur by nature. Just now I suspect him of being even deeper in the ...
— Keith of the Border • Randall Parrish

... best for a hundred and eighty men to pursue five hundred Indians and Canadians, through a region where every mile presented the most favorable opportunities for concealment in ambush. Gerty was a desperado who was to be feared as well as hated. Contrary to the judgment of both Colonels Todd and Boone, it was decided to pursue the Indians. There was no difficulty in following the trail of so large a band, many of whom were mounted. Their path led almost directly ...
— Daniel Boone - The Pioneer of Kentucky • John S. C. Abbott

... conversation, some in a loud, braggadocio, swaggering tone, others in low, murmuring voices, audible only to themselves, and still others in confidential whispers. Of those who have figured heretofore in the incidents of this story, we may mention the hard-featured, desperado-looking fellows who had conceived a dislike to Duval, as being very earnestly engaged in some matter among themselves, doubtless of a vile character; it would seem, too, from their manner, that others than themselves were not to be admitted into their counsels, ...
— Eveline Mandeville - The Horse Thief Rival • Alvin Addison

... Kid Wolf ran across to reenforce the other sides of the circle. At one point the outlaws had already broken through the circle of wagons. Kid Wolf sent three screaming slugs toward them, and they fell back in disorder, leaving one desperado stretched out ...
— Kid Wolf of Texas - A Western Story • Ward M. Stevens

... had rejected his prayers with disdain, refused to give any account of the state of his soul, persisted in a false exposition of the gospel, and gloried in his relationship to notorious malignants. "He is the son of that desperado Colonel Evellin," said Henley—Bellingham trembled as he uttered that name—"and the nephew of Dr. Eusebius Beaumont," continued the Chaplain. The horrors and fears of Bellingham were wrought to a climax by this information. Those apprehensions ...
— The Loyalists, Vol. 1-3 - An Historical Novel • Jane West

... murderer of their companion, came over them in a blind wave of fury. The sun, now well above the horizon, shone warmly down upon them. They were in the midst of an infrequent Winter thaw. The full current of the river was between them and the desperado. It might be days, a week, before ice would again form; yet, connecting the island with the western bank, it was even now in place. Blair had but to wait until cover of night, and depart in peace—on foot, to be sure, but in the course of days a man could travel far afoot. Doubtless he realized ...
— Ben Blair - The Story of a Plainsman • Will Lillibridge

... her, and rendered her weak. She was but a year younger than he, and her life had been almost as simple exteriorly, but at center she was of far finer development. She had always been introspective, and she had grown self-analytic. She knew that the touch of this young desperado's hand had changed her relation toward the world. As he talked she ...
— The Eagle's Heart • Hamlin Garland

... before her father died she read in the paper of a young desperado, handsome and well-dressed, who held up a New York jeweller at the point of a gun and relieved him of five thousand dollars' worth of diamond rings. The story was made remarkable by a detail. An old woman ...
— Mary Minds Her Business • George Weston

... be helped. Bolivar's got plenty of bottom—he'll get us both far enough to get fresh mounts. Dang it, Shark, I can't help thinkin' how funny it is that an Easterner like you can come out here and give us Western fellows cards and spades in the desperado business. What part of the ...
— Whirligigs • O. Henry

... bloodthirsty desperado, by whose unconscious aid Maunders had contrived to get the Marquis into his power, was back in the Bad Lands, earning his living by hunting as he had earned it before the fatal June 26th when the Marquis lost his head. There had been a "reconciliation." When O'Donald had returned ...
— Roosevelt in the Bad Lands • Hermann Hagedorn

... and thy decision in this matter is watched for by tens of thousands; and if this Daniel escapes the punishment of the law, we may as well burn up our statute books and give absolute liberty to every ruffian and desperado. Law and order will be at an end, the union of the provinces will be forever dissolved, and confusion and desolation shall follow. The question now to be settled is not, 'How came this law to be enacted?' but, seeing that it is enacted, is there ...
— The Young Captives - A Story of Judah and Babylon • Erasmus W. Jones

... Certainly, Felix Poluski, judged by his past, was no bad prototype of a character in that class of fiction; regarded in his present guise, as he sat opposite her in the dining car of the Orient Express, he looked the most harmless desperado that ever preyed on a ...
— A Son of the Immortals • Louis Tracy

... pale, unstrung by this calm acceptance of what he had opposed bitterly two years, sat down foolishly, and listened to the pompous utterance of pompous phrases in praise of dead heroes and a living poet. Thought and speech failed together. If only some desperado would break in upon him and try to kill him! if the house would take fire, or a riot begin in the street! The old man finished his reading, congratulated the poet, blessed the pair in the old-fashioned style, informed his wife of the date of the wedding, ...
— The Art of Disappearing • John Talbot Smith

... terms of their enlistment had been complied with; that their pay was going on; that they had no special favor to expect, and certainly were not in the way to obtain any by such a rude manner of application. As the fellow became outrageously insolent, the Captain drew his sword, which the desperado snatched out of his hand, broke in two pieces, threw the hilt at him, and made off for the barrack, where, taking his gun, which was loaded, and crying out "One and all!" five others, with their guns, rushed out, and, at the distance of about ten yards, the ringleader shot ...
— Biographical Memorials of James Oglethorpe • Thaddeus Mason Harris

... of his lawless career this supernaturally gifted desperado, having collected a band of followers, fastened round their ankles such heavy weights that they were at first totally unable to move; but, as the fruit of continual exertions, they by-and-by managed to creep a few paces, later on they ...
— Life and sport in China - Second Edition • Oliver G. Ready

... steered to a faded Boarding House and found himself in a Chamber of Horrors that seemed to be a Cross between a Junk-Shop and a Turkish Corner. Here he found the College Desperado known as "Old Buck," attired in a Bath-Robe, plunking a stingy little Mandolin and smoking a Cigarette that smelled as if somebody had been standing too ...
— People You Know • George Ade

... was "an ancient Pile, reared by Hands that ages ago moulded into Dust—the Body spacious, the Structure lofty, the whole magnificently plain." He was at Bideford in 1740. Much more lively in its nature was the connection with this parish of the notorious Cruel Coppinger, smuggler, wrecker, and desperado. ...
— The Cornwall Coast • Arthur L. Salmon

... course indicated in the verbal order of the flag-officer. Christy felt that he had had a narrow escape from death, or at least a severe wound, at the hands of the desperado who had invaded his cabin. Flanger had escaped, after he had been put on board of the flag-ship, with the assistance of Galvinne; and he appeared not to have taken the trouble to render the same service to his confederate. The ships' companies ...
— Stand By The Union - SERIES: The Blue and the Gray—Afloat • Oliver Optic

... has that eye doesn't need to go armed," he wrote later. "He can move upon an armed desperado and quell him and take him a prisoner without saying a single word." It was the same Bob Howland who would be known by and by as the most fearless man in the Territory; who, as city marshal of Aurora, kept that lawless camp in subjection, and, when the friends of a lot of condemned ...
— Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete - The Personal And Literary Life Of Samuel Langhorne Clemens • Albert Bigelow Paine

... green table. They seemed to see a frowzy desperado, shaggy as a bison, in a red shirt and jackboots, hung about the waist with an assortment of six-shooters and bowie-knives, and standing against a background of mustangs, ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 09, No. 51, January, 1862 • Various

... room now, Farrington with his trusty lieutenant, and behind them the one-eyed Italian desperado whom Poltavo remembered seeing in the power house one day, when he had been allowed the ...
— The Secret House • Edgar Wallace

... Polly, who had not cried yet, began to do so. The elder Toodles, who appeared to have been meditating a rescue, unclenched their fists. The younger Toodles clustered round their mother's gown, and peeped from under their own chubby arms at their desperado brother and his unknown friend. Everybody blessed the gentleman with the beautiful teeth, ...
— Dombey and Son • Charles Dickens

... with a black infinity above and below; and before my eyes, now grown familiar with the peculiar darkness, stood Lord Ernest Belville, waiting for Raffles to emerge with full hands and unsuspecting heart! Taken so horribly unawares, even Raffles must fall an easy prey to a desperado in resource and courage scarcely second to himself, but one whom he had fatally underrated from the beginning. Not that I paused to think how the thing had happened; my one concern was for ...
— Raffles - Further Adventures of the Amateur Cracksman • E. W. Hornung

... had been surprised to see her picture in the "studio" at the House by the Lock, I was doubly surprised to see it in a locket worn by a young desperado on the other side of the world. Impulsively I withdrew my hand which held the ornament, with the feeling that the man had no right to it—that I could not return ...
— The House by the Lock • C. N. Williamson

... Well, imagine your hero in such a position. He has been waiting outside the murderer's den preparatory to dashing in and saving the heroine. He dashes in. "Hands up, you scoundrels," he cries. And then his glasses get all misty, and there he is, temporarily blind, with a full-size desperado backing away and measuring the distance in order to hand ...
— A Wodehouse Miscellany - Articles & Stories • P. G. Wodehouse

... temporary specific for these incurables. Flinging off his coat, he cast away the cynic style engendering or engendered by them. He and Weyburn were for a bout. Sir John Randeller and Mr. Morsfield were at it, like Bull in training and desperado foiled. A French 'maitre d'armes,' famed in 'escrime,' standing near Captain Chiallo, looked amused in the eyes, behind a mask of professional correctness. He had come on an excursion for the display of his art. Sir John's ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... the man was different. He was a desperado, one of the dashing, reckless kind—more famous along the Pecos and Rio Grande than more really desperate men. His attire proclaimed a vanity seldom seen in any Westerner except of that unusual brand, yet it ...
— The Rustlers of Pecos County • Zane Grey

... Vicesimus—Turner, a brother of the Judge, a man of desperate character, come into the bar-room, throw back his Spanish cloak, draw forth a navy revolver, and level it at me. Seeing the movement, he had thrown himself between me and the desperado and carried me off. These good offices on the part of Mr. Broderick filled me with a profound sense of gratitude. For years afterwards I thought and felt as if there was nothing I could do that would be a sufficient return for his kindness. On his account I took much greater interest in ...
— Personal Reminiscences of Early Days in California with Other Sketches; To Which Is Added the Story of His Attempted Assassination by a Former Associate on the Supreme Bench of the State • Stephen Field; George C. Gorham

... Shir bi pir—a lion without a saint, is a favourite Persian epithet, when applied to a desperado, a fellow ...
— The Adventures of Hajji Baba of Ispahan • James Morier

... gleamed on the barrel of Andy Lanning's rifle, and these men rode back in silence, feeling that they had witnessed one of those prodigies which were becoming fewer and fewer around Martindale—the birth of a desperado. ...
— Way of the Lawless • Max Brand

... of the keenest satisfaction. "I could have cried. I called him a worm, a bug, a boll-weevil; but he said he had a family and didn't intend to be shot up by some well-dressed desperado." ...
— The Net • Rex Beach

... was populous. For'ard, rifle in hand, among the Raiatean sailors, stood a desperado whom Mauriri announced was Raoul's brother. Aft, by the helmsman, stood another. Attached to him, tied waist to waist, with slack, was Mataara, the old Queen. On the other side of the helmsman, his arm in a sling, was Captain Glass. Amidships, ...
— A Son Of The Sun • Jack London

... sang out a deriding voice that set the crowd jeering anew. "You'll git promoted, you will! See it in all the evenin' papers—oh, yus! ''Orrible hand-to-hand struggle with a desperado. Brave constable has 'arf a quid's worth out of an infuriated ruffian!' My hat! won't your missis be proud when you take her to ...
— Cleek, the Master Detective • Thomas W. Hanshew

... ammunition gave out, he was brought to bar to answer for the unprovoked murder of a postal clerk on a transcontinental limited. No time was wasted in hurrying his trial through to its conclusion; it was felt that there was crying need to make an example of this red-handed desperado. Having been convicted with commendable celerity, the Lone-Hand Kid was transferred to Chickaloosa and strongly confined there against the day of Uncle ...
— From Place to Place • Irvin S. Cobb

... The desperado fired again. A little cry came from Nancy Derwent. Littlefield whirled, with blazing eyes, and saw the blood trickling ...
— Whirligigs • O. Henry

... clutching the handle of his big Colt's revolver, and his hat was pulled low over his eyes. He was flushed and panting. A glitter was in his eyes, the glitter of the old desperado spirit returned. ...
— The Bishop of Cottontown - A Story of the Southern Cotton Mills • John Trotwood Moore

... approaching. He was dressed roughly in a red shirt, trousers tucked in his boots, and a hat with a broad flapping brim. As he strode along, his revolver and bowie-knife were carelessly exposed. His complexion was dark; he wore an abundant beard, and whatever he might be, he looked like a desperado, whom one would not care to meet on a dark night, unless well armed and ...
— The Young Explorer • Horatio Alger

... in the doorway regarded this startling scene with amazement. When in answer to her eager questions the new-comers told her that the young desperado whom she had so nearly admitted to her house was a horse-thief, who, but a short time before, had stolen the animal now tied to her front fence, at the point of a revolver from the man who was leading him to water, she said she wouldn't have believed that such a mere ...
— Cab and Caboose - The Story of a Railroad Boy • Kirk Munroe

... the means of his becoming a good man. Paul writes a letter to the chief murderer of the gang, or to the captain of the robbers, sends Onesimus back, and "beseeches" the brigand for "his son Onesimus," telling him that now he receives him "forever," and then calls the desperado "our dearly beloved fellow-laborer"! Why not, with equal propriety, if slavery be, necessarily, as our brother describes it? There is some mistake in ...
— The Sable Cloud - A Southern Tale With Northern Comments (1861) • Nehemiah Adams

... his feelings. His companions, Max Graub and Axel Regor, were separated from him, and from each other, at different sides of the table, and Paul Zouche the poet, was almost immediately opposite to him. He was glad to see that he was next but one to Lotys—the man between them being a desperado-looking fellow with a fierce moustache, and exceedingly gentle eyes,—who, as he afterwards discovered, was one of the greatest violinists in the world,—the favourite of kings and Courts,—and yet for all that, a prominent member of the Revolutionary Committee. The supper, which was of a simple, ...
— Temporal Power • Marie Corelli

... small riots against Rome which were perpetually sputtering up and being trampled out by an armed heel. There had been bloodshed, in which he had himself taken part ('a murderer,' Acts iii. 14). And this coarse, red-handed desperado is the people's favourite, because he embodied their notions and aspirations, and had been bold enough to do what every man of them would have done if he had dared. He thought and felt, as they did, that freedom was to be won by the sword. The popular ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - St. Mark • Alexander Maclaren

... chase of at this moment, our own ship included. She is called le Feu-Follet, which is not Wing-and-Wing, but Will-o'-the-Wisp, or Jack-o'-Lantern, in English; and which you, in Italian, would call il Fuoco Fatuo. Her commander is Raoul Yvard than whom there is not a greater desperado sailing out of France; thought it is admitted that the fellow has ...
— The Wing-and-Wing - Le Feu-Follet • J. Fenimore Cooper

... the date fixed for the execution of this very remarkable desperado, Captain Michael Malet-Marsac, Adjutant of the Gungapur Volunteer Corps, received two letters dated from Gungapur Jail, one covering the ...
— Driftwood Spars - The Stories of a Man, a Boy, a Woman, and Certain Other People Who - Strangely Met Upon the Sea of Life • Percival Christopher Wren

... luggage. Stepping into a skiff, they were rowed to a launch, and a few moments later were gliding swiftly around the long rock-rib that guards the harbor, a copper-hued bandit at the wheel, a Nubian giant at the engine, and an evil, yellow-faced desperado ...
— The Ne'er-Do-Well • Rex Beach

... The desperado replaced one of the weapons and patted the other with grisly affection. In the excess of my admiration I made bold to reach for it. He relinquished it to me with a mother's yearning. And all too legible in the polished ...
— Somewhere in Red Gap • Harry Leon Wilson

... the first time into the business at a period of great depression some six years ago. The name of a distinguished Royal personage had been mentioned by rumour in connection with this sum. "The cowardly desperado"—such, I remember, was the editorial expression—was supposed to have escaped with a large part of this mysterious fund still ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 4 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... chair, with a groan. This gentle, sad little woman, in the rusty black gown, the daughter of his oldest friend, the wife of Benton Sharp! Benton Sharp, one of the most noted "bad" men in that part of the state—a man who had been a cattle thief, an outlaw, a desperado, and was now a gambler, a swaggering bully, who plied his trade in the larger frontier towns, relying upon his record and the quickness of his gun play to maintain his supremacy. Seldom did any one take the risk of ...
— Roads of Destiny • O. Henry

... saddle of each girl there was a double-barreled pistol, loaded and ready for instant use; and it was not there for ornament. Both girls had been trained to use the rifle and the pistol; and never, since Iola's frightful experience with the Mexican desperado, Padilla, some three years before,[1] had either girl been permitted to ride, even a short distance from the house, without having one or both of these weapons with her. Consequently, trained and armed as they were, they saw nothing ...
— The Cave of Gold - A Tale of California in '49 • Everett McNeil

... as Sulphur Creek, has the honor, or the dishonor if you choose, of being the first desperado of the Yellowstone, but one so much greater than its two petty imitators of human times that there is no comparison of misdeeds. Sulphur Creek stole the lake from the Snake River and used it to create the Yellowstone River, which in turn created the wonderful canyon. Here ...
— The Book of the National Parks • Robert Sterling Yard

... an account of the justifiable killing of the notorious desperado and ex-convict, Australian Pete, by a courageous young miner by the name of Fowler. "An act of firmness and daring," said the "Pioneer," "which will go far to counteract the terrorism produced by ...
— Colonel Starbottle's Client and Other Stories • Bret Harte

... Fate is the servant of his will. It's a sort of national trait, you know, very much like the way we English bury our heads in the sand when we hear unpleasant truths. The last thing Fischer wants is advertisement, and yet he goes to some of his Fourteenth Street friends and unearths a popular desperado to get rid of me. The fellow happens most unexpectedly to fail, and now Fischer has to face a good many awkward questions and a good deal of notoriety. No, I don't think Fischer ...
— The Pawns Count • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... and confused while James eyed the pattern of the gun. Then he heard the man's contemptuous laugh and saw him pull the trigger. The hammer refused to move. It was so rusted that the weapon was quite useless. For a moment the desperado's eyes sought the pale face of his would-be slayer. A devilish smile lurked in their depths. Then he held out the pistol for the other to take, while his whole ...
— The Twins of Suffering Creek • Ridgwell Cullum

... yards. At that distance they accordingly stood, fixed there by the centrifugal force of the repugnance which the mystic symbol inspired. The whole gang of sailors, likewise, observing the press of spectators, and learning the purport of the scarlet letter, came and thrust their sunburnt and desperado-looking faces into the ring. Even the Indians were affected by a sort of cold shadow of the white man's curiosity, and, gliding through the crowd, fastened their snake-like black eyes on Hester's bosom; conceiving, perhaps, ...
— The Scarlet Letter • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... was asked if he thought Jimmy Governor (a notorious desperado who had given the New South Wales police much trouble) ought to be hanged. "Baal. No fear hang 'em; ...
— The Confessions of a Beachcomber • E J Banfield

... gathered together in the retired parts of the ships, at first in little knots of two and three, which gradually increased and became formidable, joining in murmurs and menaces against the admiral. They exclaimed against him as an ambitious desperado who, in a mad fantasy, had determined to do something extravagant to render himself notorious. What obligation bound them to persist, or when were the terms of their agreement to be considered as fulfilled? They had already ...
— Great Epochs in American History, Volume I. - Voyages Of Discovery And Early Explorations: 1000 A.D.-1682 • Various

... in the person of Jack Slade, the station-agent at Fort Kearney, who was a desperado in the strictest definition of the term; that is, he was a coward at heart, as all of his class are, and brave only when every advantage was in his favour. The number of men he killed in cold blood would probably aggregate ...
— The Great Salt Lake Trail • Colonel Henry Inman

... culminating power was gained in vivid, instant force. The deeds of his character could not be represented as the final result of long-inherited proclivities; but they could appear between their motive and their consequence, like the draw—aim—fire! of the Western desperado,—as short, sharp, and conclusive. In other words, the conditions of American life, as he saw it, justified a short story, or any number of them, but not a novel; and the fact that he did afterwards attempt a novel ...
— Confessions and Criticisms • Julian Hawthorne

... keep, who would have jumped at the chance of drilling a hole through the man who fixed it so that they must starve or give in to his terms. Thirty thousand of the toughest aliens in the country, Mr Trent. There's a type of desperado you find in that kind of push who has been known to lay for a man for years, and kill him when he had forgotten what he did. They have been known to dynamite a man in Idaho who had done them dirt in New ...
— Trent's Last Case - The Woman in Black • E.C. (Edmund Clerihew) Bentley

... find the greatest contrasts everywhere. Here you will see the most luxurious castles, cathedrals, convents, villas and estates; there you will find the most desolate huts of the moujiks and lonely hermit caves in the wilds of Siberia. Here you will meet the most selfish chinovnik, the most fanatic desperado or reckless bureaucrat; there you face the noblest men and women, supermen, physically and mentally. You will find that all Russian life is full of ...
— Defenders of Democracy • Militia of Mercy

... for a train to Paris. Once safely in that city, Barbara felt it would be a weight lifted from her mind, for she really was not very happy at sharing in an enterprise which, even to her inexperience, seemed more fitted for some desperado than a sane ...
— Barbara in Brittany • E. A. Gillie

... Cribb's parlor, where they don't seem to be a whit less at home than in fashion's gilded halls: and now they are at Newgate, seeing the irons knocked off the malefactors' legs previous to execution. What hardened ferocity in the countenance of the desperado in yellow breeches! What compunction in the face of the gentleman in black (who, I suppose, has been forging), and who clasps his hands, and listens to the chaplain! Now we haste away to merrier scenes: to Tattersall's (ah gracious powers! what a funny fellow ...
— Roundabout Papers • William Makepeace Thackeray

... aversion with which he inspires us, he still engages us in the greatest variety of ways by his profound skill in dissimulation, his wit, his prudence, his presence of mind, his quick activity, and his valour. He fights at last against Richmond like a desperado, and dies the honourable death of a hero on the field of battle. Shakspeare could not change this historical issue, and yet it is by no means satisfactory to our moral feelings, as Lessing, when speaking of a German play on the same subject, has very judiciously remarked. ...
— Lectures on Dramatic Art - and Literature • August Wilhelm Schlegel trans John Black

... recognized hero of the British public, which on one occasion had presented him with a testimonial for his capture of a desperado who had been terrorizing the East End of London. But Merrington disdained such tokens of popular approval. He regarded the public, which he was paid to protect, as a pack of fools. For him, there were only two classes of humanity—fools ...
— The Hand in the Dark • Arthur J. Rees

... discovery. He almost regretted not having made a row at once. But then the very monstrosity of the disclosure . . . Why! He could hardly face it himself, let alone pointing it out to somebody else. Moreover, with a desperado of that sort one never knew. The object was not to get him out (that was as well as done already), but to step into his place. Bizarre as the thought seemed he might have shown fight. A fellow up to working such a fraud would have enough cheek for anything; ...
— End of the Tether • Joseph Conrad

... his Seminoles soon wandered off, leaving the fort without a garrison. This gave an opportunity to a negro bandit and desperado named Garcon to seize the place, which he did, gathering about him a large band of runaway negroes, Choctaw Indians, and other lawless persons, whom he organized into a strong company of robbers. Garcon made the fort his stronghold, and began to plunder the country ...
— Strange Stories from History for Young People • George Cary Eggleston

... been moments when McEachern's faithful employee had filled Jimmy with an odd sort of fury, a kind of hurt pride, almost to the extent of making him wish that he really could have been the desperado McEachern fancied him. Never in his life before had he sat still under a challenge, and this espionage had been one. Behind the clumsy watcher, he had seen always the self-satisfied figure of McEachern. If there had been anything subtle about the man from Dodson's, he could have forgiven ...
— The Intrusion of Jimmy • P. G. Wodehouse

... a fast train, and they let it pass. They flagged the freight train, and one of the robbers, who was doubtless new at the business, caught the passing engine and climbed into the cab. The engineer, seeing the man's masked face at his elbow, struck it a fearful blow with his great fist. The amateur desperado sank to the floor, his big, murderous gun rattling on the iron plate of the coal-deck. Yank, the engineer, grabbed the gun, whistled off-brakes, and opened the throttle. The sudden lurch forward proved too ...
— The Last Spike - And Other Railroad Stories • Cy Warman



Words linked to "Desperado" :   U.S., America, United States, United States of America, criminal, crook, outlaw, malefactor, U.S.A., US, the States, felon, USA



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