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Direful

adjective
1.
Causing fear or dread or terror.  Synonyms: awful, dire, dread, dreaded, dreadful, fearful, fearsome, frightening, horrendous, horrific, terrible.  "An awful risk" , "Dire news" , "A career or vengeance so direful that London was shocked" , "The dread presence of the headmaster" , "Polio is no longer the dreaded disease it once was" , "A dreadful storm" , "A fearful howling" , "Horrendous explosions shook the city" , "A terrible curse"






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"Direful" Quotes from Famous Books



... contemplating, that the union of the two kinds of force now specified, was essential to the liberation of the world from that odious but scientific oppression, by which it had been so long held in misery, and which was repeatedly found, by very direful experience, to be too strong for either of them separately. It was not till the enthusiastic indignation of vulgar minds, and the cordial ferocity of some of the rudest of the allied tribes, had been amalgamated with the disciplined valour and the love of most enviable ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 13 • Robert Kerr

... the day when Mr. Fetherbee's spirit quailed. His kind friends, anxious that he should miss no feature of "local coloring" had thoughtfully conducted him to the very worst of the miner's boarding-houses, where they all cheerfully partook of strange and direful viands for his sake. Mr. Fetherbee, shrewdly suspecting the true state of the case, had unflinchingly devoured everything that was set before him, topping off his gastronomic martyrdom with a section of apricot pie, ...
— Peak and Prairie - From a Colorado Sketch-book • Anna Fuller

... wild bursts of cheering given out again and again by the rescued men, wounded (who were many) and sound (who were very few), to those who had succoured them in their direful time of need—shouts that were echoed and re-echoed by the wearied and weather-worn comrades warmly shaking hands and almost ready to embrace old friends—there were other meetings and heart-stirring incidents. Not the ...
— Trapped by Malays - A Tale of Bayonet and Kris • George Manville Fenn

... the friends of Garrison declared that the Administration had lost its strongest man and that it was now on the way to destruction. Neither the President nor his many friends, however, were disturbed by these direful predictions of disaster; and as the people pondered the President's letter of acceptance of Mr. Garrison's resignation, wherein he showed his own mind was open to the best method of preparing the country and that Mr. Garrison ...
— Woodrow Wilson as I Know Him • Joseph P. Tumulty

... I find a language in your eye more certain than your lip—murder—midnight murder is its direful theme. Thou wretched man! rather for thee than for myself I kneel. Pause, Longueville! raise but thine eye to yon clear world, thick-sown with shining wonders—think, that throughout the boundless beauteous space, an omnipresent, and all-conscious spirit is; think, that within his awful eye-beam, ...
— The Mirror of Taste, and Dramatic Censor - Volume I, Number 1 • Stephen Cullen Carpenter

... said. 'We turn out five troopers. I hope you will be here when we go out, for going round to Northwold brought me into a direful scrape when I went to exhibit myself to the dear old Terrace world. My father said it was an unworthy ambition. What would he have thought, if he had seen Jane stroking me down with the brush on ...
— Dynevor Terrace (Vol. I) - or, The Clue of Life • Charlotte M. Yonge

... of those who fell on this fatal day. First, Jemmy Tweedle felt on his hinder head the direful bone. Him the pleasant banks of sweetly-winding Stour had nourished, where he first learnt the vocal art, with which, wandering up and down at wakes and fairs, he cheered the rural nymphs and swains, when upon ...
— The History of Tom Jones, a foundling • Henry Fielding

... Aurora joined the Toulon fleet. When she was first seen it was imagined by those on board of the other ships that she had been in action, but they soon learnt that the conflict had been against more direful weapons than any yet invented by mortal hands. Captain Wilson waited upon the Admiral, and of course received immediate orders to repair to port and refit. In a few hours the Aurora had shaped her course for Malta, and by ...
— Mr. Midshipman Easy • Frederick Marryat

... had run off in search of one of the girls who had shared in the picnic. She came across Annie Forest, who was walking, as usual, by herself, with her head slightly bent, and her curling hair in sad confusion. Susan whispered the direful intelligence that old Betty had forsaken them, and that the basket, with its ginger-beer bottles and its stained table-cloth, might ...
— A World of Girls - The Story of a School • L. T. Meade

... to lead men and women to live good lives, in obedience to the Divine commandments, from spiritual and celestial motives. But it is difficult for them to fill the entire field where religious instruction is needed, for we are living in the midst of the most direful evils of life, which must be put away before the New Jerusalem can descend and have an abiding place with men. Evils so terrible as to destroy vast multitudes of men and women of all ages, and even innocent children, all around us, too frequently go unheeded by our clergy and the periodicals ...
— Personal Experience of a Physician • John Ellis

... and retainers is, however, of short duration. Grendel, the monster, is seized with hateful jealousy. He cannot brook the sounds of joyance that reach him down in his fen-dwelling near the hall. Oft and anon he goes to the joyous building, bent on direful mischief. Thane after thane is ruthlessly carried off and devoured, while no one is found strong enough and bold enough to cope with the monster. For twelve years he persecutes ...
— Beowulf - An Anglo-Saxon Epic Poem • The Heyne-Socin

... desert of the sea to hear my voice, . . I will pour forth my sorrows on the wind, and it shall carry the burden of grief to the four quarters of the earth,—all nations shall shudder and be astonished at the direful end of Al-Kyris, the city beautiful, the empress of kingdoms! Woe unto Al-Kyris, for she hath suffered herself to be led astray by her rulers! ... she hath drunken deep of the innocent blood and hath followed after idols, ...
— Ardath - The Story of a Dead Self • Marie Corelli

... have reminded him that his philosophy was a very recent acquisition. When the news of their poverty first came he was the one who raved and sobbed and refused to contemplate anything less direful than slow starvation or quick suicide. She had soothed and comforted then. Since the previous evening, when he had gone out, in spite of her protestations, and left her alone, his manner had changed. He was still nervous and irritable, ...
— Cap'n Warren's Wards • Joseph C. Lincoln

... American women displayed in their conflicts with the aborigines, we must take into account her natural repugnance to repulsive and horrid spectacles. The North American savage streaked with war-paint, a bunch of reeking scalps at his girdle, his snaky eyes gleaming with malignity, was a direful sight for even a hardened frontiers-man; how much more, then, to his impressionable and delicate wife and daughter. The very appearance of the savage suggested thoughts of the tomahawk, the scalping knife, the butchered ...
— Woman on the American Frontier • William Worthington Fowler

... fighting the flames, and began cutting the hose so as to stop the supply of water. The fire raged furiously. A strong wind sprung up adding intensity to the flames. Over $200,000 worth of property was soon swept away in this direful storm of fire. After a fearful conflict the prisoners were overpowered and ...
— The Twin Hells • John N. Reynolds

... foster-mother, who began to talk in her own tongue with a rapidity none of them had ever heard before, her voice as tender as some wild bird's song; then the two women went away together around the store into the house. Poleon had told Necia all the amazing story that had come to him that direful night, all that he had overheard, all that he knew, and much ...
— The Barrier • Rex Beach

... What direful sights hast thou beheld, As careless thou hast journied on: The hemlock-bowl for Athen's pride; The gory field of Marathon; The monarch crowned, the warrior plumed, With power and with ambition burning; Yet they must all have seemed to thee Poor ...
— The Knickerbocker, or New-York Monthly Magazine, February 1844 - Volume 23, Number 2 • Various

... in the heart of both our nations survives unchanged that kindred regard and respect whose property it is, above other human feelings, to be indestructible. At this hour of your own greatest need and direful struggle,—at this hour, when a pirate from our ports is ravaging your shores, as you believe (albeit erroneously) with our guilty connivance—at this very hour you have come forward with noblest generosity, and sent us the rich vessel which ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. XI., April, 1863, No. LXVI. - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics. • Various

... masses of pine, and occasionally the madrono shook its bright scarlet berries. As they toiled up many a steep ascent, Father Jose sometimes picked up fragments of scoria, which spake to his imagination of direful volcanoes and impending earthquakes. To the less scientific mind of the muleteer Ignacio they had even a more terrifying significance; and he once or twice snuffed the air suspiciously, and declared that it smelt ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 12, No. 72, October, 1863 • Various

... being tame, and elevated without being extravagant. Alas! I little thought to have lived until their light should be hidden by a cloud of delirious bats who had left their native obscurity and madly rushed to uncongenial day, vermin which are likely to be of direful omen to our country unless the land be speedily ...
— The Philadelphia Magazines and their Contributors 1741-1850 • Albert Smyth

... LITTLE ROSE: Do you fancy some direful calamity has befallen me, because I have not written to you for more than a week? Away with your fears, then, for nothing worse has come upon me than a badly broken limb, which will probably keep me a prisoner here for two months or more. ...
— Maggie Miller • Mary J. Holmes

... is due the honor of giving the world a practical stationary engine; George Stephenson picked that engine up bodily and placed it on wheels, and against the most direful predictions of the foremost engineers of his age, proved the practicability of harnessing steam to coaches ...
— Hidden Treasures - Why Some Succeed While Others Fail • Harry A. Lewis

... rising sun. Old Springfields did not carry as do the modern arms. Soldiers of those days were not taught accurate shooting as they are now. It was too far for anything but chance, and all within a minute or two the direful tragedy was over, and the red warriors had darted back behind the ...
— Warrior Gap - A Story of the Sioux Outbreak of '68. • Charles King

... ah no, it is repentant tears, By those let fall who make their direful flight, And drop by drop the anguish of their fears Comes down around us all ...
— The Story and Song of Black Roderick • Dora Sigerson

... crown a fig's green branches rise, And shoot a leafy forest to the skies; Beneath, Charybdis holds her boisterous reign, Midst roaring whirlpools, and absorbs the main. Thrice in her gulphs the boiling seas subside; Thrice in dire thunders she refunds the tide. Oh! if thy vessel plough the direful waves, When seas, retreating, roar within her caves, Ye perish all! though he who rules the main Lend his strong aid, his aid ...
— Journal of a Visit to Constantinople and Some of the Greek Islands in the Spring and Summer of 1833 • John Auldjo

... you please, we call it but a "play:" Whether the comic muse, or lady's love, Romance or direful tragedy it prove, ...
— A Book of the Play - Studies and Illustrations of Histrionic Story, Life, and Character • Dutton Cook

... mutiny of his troops in Campania (B.C. 46). [Footnote: See page 245.] Left as governor, Sallust seems to have pursued the methods common to that class, for he became immensely rich. Upon his return from Africa, he retired to an extensive estate on the Quirinal Hill, and lived through the direful days which followed the death of Csar. He died in the year 34 B.C., his last years being devoted to diligent pursuits of literature. His two works are Catilina, a history of the suppression of the conspiracy of Catiline, and Jugurtha, ...
— The Story of Rome From the Earliest Times to the End of the Republic • Arthur Gilman

... astonished at the wishful, hungry look in the blue eyes before her. "Yes, a little," she said lightly; "for I hate the very word. But, if it must be spoken, it should always be short and staccato. Instead, he sat here, and we talked about Fate and wounds and all sorts of direful things." She shook herself and shivered slightly. Then she sat down in the chair which Weldon had just left vacant. "It is bad manners to have nerves, Captain Frazer. Forgive me first, and then tell me something altogether flippant, to ...
— On the Firing Line • Anna Chapin Ray and Hamilton Brock Fuller

... at will, and may I see the Minotaur tranquilly seated this very evening upon my bed, if you do not know as well as I do how he expends it. Almost all men spend in necessary toils, or in the anguish of direful passions, this fine sum of energy and of will, with which nature has endowed them; but our honest women are all the prey to the caprices and the struggles of this power which knows not what to do with itself. ...
— The Physiology of Marriage, Part II. • Honore de Balzac

... code of morals. It was thought by many, that the labors of the commissioners would not come to an end till long after the race for whose benefit it was designed had ceased to exist. Afraid, apparently, of such a direful contingency, they had published, about three years before, the first part, in seventy-five folio volumes, containing limitations, illustrative cases, exceptions, and modifications, in relation to that very obscure general maxim, 'Do unto others as ye would that others should do unto you.' ...
— The Eclipse of Faith - Or, A Visit To A Religious Sceptic • Henry Rogers

... is the best part of it," said Peter, smiling; "you see, mother was so upset by this direful news, that another gypsy took pity on her and amended my cruel fate. The second seeress declared that I must meet the destiny number one had dealt me, but that to mitigate the family grief, I would ...
— The Come Back • Carolyn Wells

... His wife was the fair Halcyone, daughter of AEolus, ruler of the winds, and most perfectly did this king and queen love one another. Their happiness was unmarred until there came a day when Ceyx had to mourn for the loss of a brother. Following close on the heels of this disaster came direful prodigies which led Ceyx to fear that in some way he must have incurred the hostility of the gods. To him there was no way in which to discover wherein lay his fault, and to make atonement for it, but by going to consult the oracle of Apollo at Claros, in Ionia. When he ...
— A Book of Myths • Jean Lang

... declared him incompetent to bear the royal standard in a religious festival which was shortly to take place. Excommunication was at least as serious then as bankruptcy is now, though in Spanish America it did not carry with it such direful consequences ...
— A Vanished Arcadia, • R. B. Cunninghame Graham

... with the Highflyer colt mentioned by our Irish friend, and observes that Sam takes to wearing his old clothes for a twelvemonth, and never seems to have any ready money. We shall see some day whether or no this horse will carry Sam ten miles, if required, on such direful emergency, too, as falls to the lot of few men. However, this is all to come. Now in holiday clothes and in holiday mind, the two noble animals cross the paddock, and so down by the fence towards the river; towards the old gravel ford you may remember years ago. ...
— The Recollections of Geoffrey Hamlyn • Henry Kingsley

... I am, to love is dangerous. For such as I am, nor fire nor meteor hurls a mightier bolt than Aphrodite's shaft, or marks its passage by more direful ruin. But you do not know Euripides?—a fidgety-footed liar, Messire the Comte, who occasionally blunders into the clumsiest truths. Yes, he is perfectly right; all things this goddess laughingly demolishes while she ...
— Domnei • James Branch Cabell et al

... looked at the magnificent scene before him, and marvelled at the countless buildings he beheld, that, ere fifteen months had elapsed, the whole mass, together with the mighty fabric on which he stood, would be swept away by a tremendous conflagration. Unable to foresee this direful event, and lamenting only that so fair a city should be a prey to an exterminating pestilence, he turned towards the north, and suffered his gaze to wander over Finsbury-fields, and the hilly ground beyond them—over Smithfield and ...
— Old Saint Paul's - A Tale of the Plague and the Fire • William Harrison Ainsworth

... SULLA.—The cruelty of Sulla, after his victory, was more direful than Rome had ever witnessed. It appeared to spring from no heat of passion, but was cold and shameless. After a few days, there was a massacre of four thousand prisoners in the Circus. Their shrieks and groans were heard in the neighboring Temple of Bellona, ...
— Outline of Universal History • George Park Fisher

... glittering in the sunshine; the little villages perched like eagles' nests on the cliffs, far, far above our heads; the deep rocky channels through which the torrents had madly broken a way, tearing through every obstacle till they reached the Rhone, and marking their course with devastation; the scene of direful ruin at Martigny; the cataracts gushing, bounding from the living rock and plunging into some unseen abyss below; even the shrubs and the fruit trees which in the wider parts of the valley bordered the road side; the vines, the rich scarlet barberries, the apples and pears ...
— The Diary of an Ennuyee • Anna Brownell Jameson

... brow, And stern the threats he thundered forth. "What dost thou dare avow? Retract thy words, or, by the Gods! I swear that thou shall die!" Unmoved she met his angry frown—his fierce and flashing eye: "Nay, I have spoken—hasten now, fulfil thy direful task, The martyr's bright and glorious crown is the sole boon ...
— The Poetical Works of Mrs. Leprohon (Mrs. R.E. Mullins) • Rosanna Eleanor Leprohon

... seized with that awful anguish I had experienced on the other occasion and which has so direful an effect upon the spirit as to render ...
— My Friends the Savages - Notes and Observations of a Perak settler (Malay Peninsula) • Giovanni Battista Cerruti

... the gloom she saw, Well draped her direful musing; for in gloom, In thicker gloom, deep down the cavern-maw, Her sweet had vanished; liker unto whom, And whose pale place of habitation mute, She and all seemed where Seasons, pledged for fruit Anciently, gaped for bloom: Where hand of man was ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... "I couldn't ask for a braver protector. But, Chancellor," she looked at me with serious eyes, "why did you say I must take up my Cross? It sounded like such a direful prophecy." ...
— Wings of the Wind • Credo Harris

... devote a volume larger than the present one to the descriptive analysis of none but the poems inspired by Italy, Italian personages and history, Italian Painting, Sculpture, Architecture, and Music. From Porphyria and her lover to Pompilia and all the direful Roman tragedy wherein she is as a moon of beauty above conflicting savage tides of passion, what an unparalleled gallery of portraits, what a brilliant phantasmagoria, what a ...
— Life of Robert Browning • William Sharp

... story shall be told Of direful ruin, loss, and dearth, There shall be said with pride and joy: "But man survived, and proved ...
— A Backward Glance at Eighty • Charles A. Murdock

... the cheerful side of the picture. I should have hesitated to draw at such full length and in such lugubrious detail the direful possibilities and injurious effects of adenoids if its only result could have been to arouse apprehensions ...
— Preventable Diseases • Woods Hutchinson

... moved on to a farm six miles from Dumfries. He had become a lion, and the tables of the neighboring gentry were soon open to him, as the houses of the great had been in Edinburgh. Those were the days of conviviality, and Burns took his part in the hilarity of the table, soon with very direful consequences to himself and his family. He made many resolutions of amendment; but temperance was a very rare virtue in those days, and Burns, who could not bear it, was expected to drink just as much as those who could bear it, and who could afford it. His genius suffered from this irregular ...
— Home Life of Great Authors • Hattie Tyng Griswold

... king his entry made: And, prostrate now before Achilles laid, Sudden (a venerable sight!) appears; Embraced his knees, and bathed his hands in tears; Those direful hands his kisses press'd, embrued Even with the best, the dearest ...
— The Iliad of Homer • Homer

... booking places in the coach for himself and the bear, which bore the name of 'Miss Jenny'; trusting to her wraps and to the darkness to disguise the creature sufficiently. I will not repeat the language of the guard and coachman on discovering the trick played; but after direful threats as to what the showman might 'expect' as the result of his device, matters were amicably arranged. The owner of the bear made most abject apologies all round (I fancy giving more than civil ...
— Fifty-Two Stories For Girls • Various

... proposing to a minister who was going up to the General Assembly that year, "that the Assembly should draw out a Confession of Sin for all its ministers." The state, also, of parishes under the direful influence of Moderatism, lay much upon his spirit. In his diary he writes: "Have been laying much to heart the absolute necessity laid upon the church of sending the gospel to our dead parishes, during the life of the present ...
— The Biography of Robert Murray M'Cheyne • Andrew A. Bonar

... neck with if not in advance of the other fellows. The promised spurt, however, had not been made. Instead he had drifted along, studying only enough to keep his head above water and putting all his zeal into tennis or baseball until the present climax with its direful calamity had been reached. ...
— The Story of Leather • Sara Ware Bassett

... extremely difficult to make up one's mind. The Times seemed very mealy-mouthed—that impression, indeed, it took no great cleverness to gather—but the dilemma lay between one's sense of the brutality and cynicism of the usual utterances of the Turkish party and one's perception of the direful ills which Russian conquest was so liberally scattering abroad. The brutality of the Turkish tone, as I sometimes caught an echo of it in the talk of chance interlocutors, was not such as to quicken that race-feeling to which I just now alluded. English ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 22, August, 1878 • Various

... corroborated the opinion, for they had heard the clattering of a horse's hoofs down the mountain about midnight, and had no doubt that it was the spectre on his black charger bearing her away to the tomb. All present were struck with the direful probability for events of the kind are extremely common in Germany, as many well-authenticated histories ...
— The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. • Washington Irving

... heart, performing the last sad offices for the dead. A few words sufficed to explain to Katy the nature of her mistake; but Caesar continued to his dying day to astonish the sable inmates of the kitchen with learned dissertations on spooks, and to relate how direful was the appearance ...
— The Spy • James Fenimore Cooper

... mighty protagonist battling with his overweening desires and their inevitable disappointment. With the spectacle and sensation, the rant and absurdity, there is also dramatic structure and tragic significance in the revelation of these protagonists, their volitional struggles, and their direful catastrophes. These plays set the key for all Elizabethan tragedy, including Shakespeare's Lear, Othello, and Macbeth. They were immediately followed by dozens of imitators. All blank verse echoed Marlowe's mighty ...
— The Facts About Shakespeare • William Allan Nielson

... wonderfully abound with painful descriptions of the compromises, uncleannesses, and afflictions inseparably connected with existence. Volumes would be required to furnish an adequate representation of the vivid and inexhaustible amplification with which they set forth the direful disgusts and loathsome terrors associated with the series of ideas expressed by the words conception, birth, life, death, hell, and regeneration. The fifth chapter in the sixth book of the Vishnu Purana affords a good specimen of these details; but, ...
— The Destiny of the Soul - A Critical History of the Doctrine of a Future Life • William Rounseville Alger

... kind Hostess, who had vainly tried The force of ridicule to cure his pride, Fertile in plans, a surer method chose, To make him see the error of his nose; For till he view'd that feature with remorse, The Enchanter's direful spell must ...
— Books for Children - The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Vol. 3 • Charles and Mary Lamb

... his people withal." [Footnote: Memorable Providences, Preface.] Not content with this, Mather goaded his congregation into frenzy from the pulpit. "Consider also, the misery of them whom witchcraft may be let loose upon. What is it to fall into the hands of devils?... O what a direful thing is it, to be prickt with pins, and stab'd with knives all over, and to be fill'd all over with broken bones? 'Tis impossible to reckon up the varieties of miseries which those monsters inflict where they can have a blow. No less than death, and that a languishing and a terrible death ...
— The Emancipation of Massachusetts • Brooks Adams

... yet a large majority of the men voted to grant it perpetually. Women do not love their families because compelled to do so by statute, or cling to their homes because there is no place for them outside. This same direful prediction was made at every advanced step, but, although the entire status of women has been changed, and they are largely engaged in the public work of every community, they are better and happier wives, mothers and housekeepers ...
— The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume IV • Various

... fellow labourers, we believe the magnitude of the work in which we are engaged is by no means lessened, and that the alarming and direful consequences attendant in various quarters, on this unchristian and inhuman usurpation of power, call for our united vigilance, and redoubled exertions, in contributing our share towards the eradication of this evil so portentous ...
— The Journal of Negro History, Volume 6, 1921 • Various

... Geology interested me. The latter gives one the same sort of bewildering view of the abysmal extent of Time that Astronomy does of Space. I do not think I shall take your advice as to learning Portuguese. It is said to be very ill spoken here; and assuredly it is the most direful series of nasal twangs I ever heard. One gets on quite well ...
— The Life of John Sterling • Thomas Carlyle

... sure enough in a direful fix, and often I wondered why They did not take the chance that was left and leave me alone to die, Or finish me off with a dose of ...
— Ballads of a Cheechako • Robert W. Service

... extreme men of the South were in some localities as rash, unreasonable, and impracticable as the radicals of the North. The magnanimous spirit of Lincoln and the heroic, chivalric spirit of Lee could not prevail in the two sections; hence followed a direful period in American history. As E. L. Godkin said, "That the chapter which tells the story of reconstruction should have followed in American history the chapter which tells the story of the war and emancipation, is something over which many a ...
— Sidney Lanier • Edwin Mims

... in heaven in the region Okolni. There is also a fair hall of ruddy gold called Sindri, which stands on the mountains of Nida, (Nidafjoll). In those halls righteous and well-minded men shall abide. In Nastrond there is a vast and direful structure with doors that face the north. It is formed entirely of the backs of serpents, wattled together like wicker work. But the serpents' heads are turned towards the inside of the hall, and continually vomit ...
— The Elder Eddas of Saemund Sigfusson; and the Younger Eddas of Snorre Sturleson • Saemund Sigfusson and Snorre Sturleson

... Catholics, to the cause of the old faith"; further, that "the Venice scheme comes very near, if it does not amount to, an offence which the law had anticipated and actually forbidden, and it would have exposed its author to the direful penalties of Pramunire, which by a Statute of 27 Elizabeth were denounced against any person contributing to the support of any College of Jesuits, or Seminary, erected, or hereafter to be erected, beyond the sea": and finally, Mr Jackson dwells ...
— The Life and Times of John Wilkins • Patrick A. Wright-Henderson

... of the time may decide that it is not quite "the correct thing" to lay too much emphasis on the harder teaching of the Christian belief. Whether unpopular with the people or not, this teaching may be unpopular with the preachers. We do not speak of these unpleasant things, for why be singular in direful prophecy? Of some preachers, to summarise, we will say that their need is a recovery of the sense of sin; of others that a deepened consciousness of every man's power to triumph over his inherited tendencies, his circumstances, his training ...
— The Message and the Man: - Some Essentials of Effective Preaching • J. Dodd Jackson

... yon footsteps dread That shook the hall with thundering tread? With eager haste, The fellows past. Each intent on direful work. High lifts the mighty blade and points the ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 333 - Vol. 12, Issue 333, September 27, 1828 • Various

... to read the proclamation. One by one the windows in the public square were lighted up from within. The citizens of Boulogne wanted to think over the strange events which had occurred without their knowledge, yet which were apparently to have such direful or such joyous consequences ...
— The Elusive Pimpernel • Baroness Emmuska Orczy

... could not make bold to see our ambassadour in so wretched a condition. I had never undergone such distress; but I am born to run through all the misfortunes of life. In these circumstances my star, that among all its direful influences pours allways on me some kind refreshment, sent to me an English gentleman unknown to me, who forced me to receive some money that I wanted. Another London citisen that I had seen but once at Paris, carried me to his own country house, wherein I lead an obscure and charming ...
— Books and Characters - French and English • Lytton Strachey

... of peace and beauty. In its language, as in its action, the drama is full of tumult and storm. Whenever the Witches are present we see and hear a thunder-storm: when they are absent we hear of ship-wrecking storms and direful thunders; of tempests that blow down trees and churches, castles, palaces and pyramids; of the frightful hurricane of the night when Duncan was murdered; of the blast on which pity rides like a new-born ...
— Shakespearean Tragedy - Lectures on Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Macbeth • A. C. Bradley

... common in hot countries: they are very bold and watchful: when any thing approaches, they erect their tails, and stand ready to inflict the direful sting. In some parts of Italy and France, they are among the greatest pests that plague mankind: they are very numerous, and are most common in old houses, in dry or decayed walls, and among furniture, insomuch that it is attended with, much ...
— The History of Insects • Unknown

... note would be put into his hand, running thus:—"If you do not send me immediately the sum of five hundred pounds, I will blow your brains out." He affected to despise such threats; they, nevertheless, exercised a direful effect upon the millionaire. He loaded his pistols every night before he went to bed, and put them beside him. He did not think himself more secure in his country house than he did in his bed. One day, while busily engaged in his golden occupation, two foreign ...
— Old and New London - Volume I • Walter Thornbury

... later Miss Talbot came into the room. The three men knew that she brought momentous, perchance direful, intelligence. She was deathly pale. Her eyes were unnaturally brilliant, her ...
— The Albert Gate Mystery - Being Further Adventures of Reginald Brett, Barrister Detective • Louis Tracy

... of the species is that known as "literati," because of the erratic scribblings decorating its valves. With others of the genera, it is to be found cast away at other times of the year, but the end of the wet season seems exceptionally direful. ...
— Tropic Days • E. J. Banfield

... the Creator's laws, For these foul poisonous vapours were the cause Of five score agonising deaths, within The space of a few hours, from wilful sin. Many such instances of equal weight, I might from various other sources state, To show what misery and direful woe, From breaking nature's laws is sure to flow; Whilst in the keeping of them, blessings pure Flow in rewards continual and sure. Then, seeing we have so much in our power, Let us like the wise bees improve ...
— Home Lyrics • Hannah. S. Battersby

... with excitement. Then he broke into a disjointed checking off of the particulars—his potato cooling in mid-air meantime, and his mouth making a reach for it occasionally; but always bringing up suddenly against a new and still more direful performance of my hero. At last he looked his stunned and rigid comrade impressively in the face, and said, with ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... With the supposed direful consequences that would follow the triumph of Atheism I have not dealt with at length. These are the bugbears which the designing normally employ in order to frighten the timid and credulous. Mental uprightness and moral integrity are certainly not the property of one religion, nor can it be ...
— Theism or Atheism - The Great Alternative • Chapman Cohen

... womenkind will be the greater sufferers, yet even they look cheerily forward; and, for myself, the blowing off of my hat on a stormy day has given me more uneasiness."[53] To Lady Davy he writes truly enough:—"I beg my humblest compliments to Sir Humphrey, and tell him, Ill Luck, that direful chemist, never put into his crucible a more indissoluble piece of stuff than your affectionate cousin and sincere well-wisher, Walter Scott."[54] When his Letters of Malachi Malagrowther came out he writes:—"I am glad of this ...
— Sir Walter Scott - (English Men of Letters Series) • Richard H. Hutton

... him; nor indeed was any other place much safer, certainly not London, whence Clarence wrote accounts of formidable mobs who were expected to do more harm than they accomplished; though their hatred of the hero of our country filled us with direful prognostications, and made us think of the guillotine, which was linked with revolution in our minds, before we had I beheld the numerous changes that followed upon the thirty years of peace in which ...
— Chantry House • Charlotte M. Yonge

... was suggested. He went below, took a lamp that was always suspended, lighted in the main cabin, and, without ceremony, proceeded to Rose's state-room, where he soon found that the bird had really flown. A direful execration followed this discovery, one so loud as to awaken Mrs. Budd and Biddy. Determined not to do things by halves, he broke open the door of the widow's state-room, and ascertained that the person he sought was not there. A fierce explosion of oaths and denunciations followed, which produced ...
— Jack Tier or The Florida Reef • James Fenimore Cooper

... friend in that State, "I must say that I lament the decision of your legislature upon the question of importing slaves after March 1793. I was in hopes that motives of policy as well as other good reasons, supported by the direful effects of slavery, which at this moment are presented, would have operated to produce a total prohibition of the importation of slaves, whenever the question came to be agitated in any State, that might be interested in the measure." For his ...
— The True George Washington [10th Ed.] • Paul Leicester Ford

... August 13th.—Sad misfortune! direful calamity! Why? Read, and you will be as wise as myself. In the middle watch of this night, our two cats—have I told you that we brought two cats from England with us?—as was their wont, were skylarking and cutting capers on the hammock ...
— In Eastern Seas - The Commission of H.M.S. 'Iron Duke,' flag-ship in China, 1878-83 • J. J. Smith

... General von Zwehl would make the position untenable, and under cover of that appalling rain of death, the German infantry would creep back to reoccupy the positions from which they had been ousted by the bayonets only a few hours before. It was the German tactics of machine vs. men, a direful and cruel battle ...
— The Story of the Great War, Volume III (of 12) - The War Begins, Invasion of Belgium, Battle of the Marne • Francis J. Reynolds, Allen L. Churchill, and Francis Trevelyan

... the shaman has to watch the dead throughout the year, or the deceased would be carried away by the Devil. If the feasts were not given, the departed would continue to wander about in animal shape. This is the direful fate meted out to people who are too poor to pay the shaman. Sometimes, if the dead person has not complied in life with the customary requirements in regard to feasts and sacrifices, the shamans have a hard time in lifting him to heaven. It may take hours ...
— Unknown Mexico, Volume 1 (of 2) • Carl Lumholtz

... Knee with its direful results had been fought, I thought it would be a great joke to post a startling bulletin, just to start ...
— Danger Signals • John A. Hill and Jasper Ewing Brady

... fearfully surveying the multitude; in which there were many faces that he knew, and many that he did not know, but dreamed he did; when all at once a struggling head rose up among the rest—livid and deadly, but the same as he had known it—and denounced him as having appointed that direful day to happen. They closed together. As he strove to free the hand in which he held a club, and strike the blow he had so often thought of, he started to the knowledge of his waking purpose and ...
— Life And Adventures Of Martin Chuzzlewit • Charles Dickens

... slippers, another had dressed her hair, another had done something and another something else. It was all very entertaining, in spite of the conditions that made the stories possible. But what amused her most of all were the wild guesses as to her present whereabouts. There was a direful unanimity of opinion that she was groveling in her priceless wedding-gown on the floor of some dark, filthy cellar. The papers vividly painted her as haggard, faint, despairing of succor, beating her breast and tearing her beautiful ...
— Castle Craneycrow • George Barr McCutcheon

... predicted, and from whom so much good has come? Never has any man entered upon the Chief Magistracy of a country under such appalling predictions of ruin and woe! never has any one been so pursued with direful prognostications! never has any one been so beset and impeded by a powerful combination of political and moneyed confederates! never has any one in any country where the administration of justice has risen above the knife or the bowstring, ...
— Thomas Hart Benton's Remarks to the Senate on the Expunging Resolution • Thomas Hart Benton

... was so sudden and direful in its results that the warders gave way right and left, while the convicts stooped, literally glided over the edge of the path, and began to descend ...
— Witness to the Deed • George Manville Fenn

... its utterance the relative positions of the two individuals sitting opposite each other had changed. Wilford regarding Helen as an obstacle in his path, and Helen regarding him as a tyrant contemplating some direful harm against her sister. ...
— Family Pride - Or, Purified by Suffering • Mary J. Holmes

... clown, wretchedly unsuited to his new occupation, managed to get through the performance without mishap. He followed instructions blindly but faithfully, barking his shins twice and tripping over an equestrian banner once with almost direful results. The audience laughed with glee, and Grinaldi congratulated him on the hit ...
— The Rose in the Ring • George Barr McCutcheon

... that extreme poverty and hopeless indigence, the frequent experience of direful famines, and the scenes of misery and calamity occasioned by them, acting on minds whose affections are not very powerful, induce this unnatural crime which common custom has encouraged, and which is not prohibited by positive law. That this is the case, and that future advantages are ...
— Travels in China, Containing Descriptions, Observations, and Comparisons, Made and Collected in the Course of a Short Residence at the Imperial Palace of Yuen-Min-Yuen, and on a Subsequent Journey thr • John Barrow

... And dar'st thou thus confound Ambition's bloody crime with the dread act To which a father's direful need impelled him? Hadst thou to shield thy children's darling heads? To guard thy fireside's sanctuary—ward off The last, worst doom from all that thou didst love? To heaven I raise my unpolluted hands, To ...
— The Works of Frederich Schiller in English • Frederich Schiller

... trunks of gigantic pines coming up stirless and distinct almost to the surface; and do you remember the little island there, and the old tradition that it was the feasting-place of a tribe of red men, who displeased the Great Spirit by their crimes, and in direful punishment, one day, when they were assembled on their mountain, it suddenly gave way beneath them, and all were drowned in the flood of waters that rushed up, except one good old squaw who occupied one of the peaks that is now ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 10, No. 58, August, 1862 • Various

... and a few minutes later he and his nephew, hunger-sharpened and weary-legged, were seated facing one another in the widow's pleasant little parlour, hard at work, and risking all the direful symptoms upon which the elder had discoursed, and thoroughly enjoying hearty draughts ...
— The Ocean Cat's Paw - The Story of a Strange Cruise • George Manville Fenn

... to Bonynge, direful spring Of blows unnumbered, heavenly goddess, sing— That wrath which hurled to Hellman's office floor Two heroes, mutually smeared with gore, Whose hair in handfuls marked the dire debate, And riven coat-tails testified their hate. Sing, muse, what first their indignation fired, What ...
— Black Beetles in Amber • Ambrose Bierce

... his respects to the men whose work of political havoc he deplored. His impassioned arraignment of the disunionists was loudly applauded by the galleries, and clearly indicated the part he would have played in the late Rebellion had his life been spared to witness that direful event. "So long," said he, "as it pleases God to give me a voice to express my sentiments, or an arm, weak and enfeebled as it may be by age, that voice and that arm will be on the side of my country, for the support of ...
— Political Recollections - 1840 to 1872 • George W. Julian

... of Exile.—An Athenian will regard locking a criminal up for a term of years as a very foolish and expensive proceeding. If he has nothing wherewith to pay a round fine, why, simply send him into exile. This penalty is direful indeed to a Greek. The exile has often no protector, no standing in the courts of the foreign city, no government to avenge any outrage upon him. He can be insulted, starved, stripped, nay, murdered, often with impunity. ...
— A Day In Old Athens • William Stearns Davis

... statement of the difficult geographical questions connected with the subject, we recognize at once the work of an acknowledged master in his chosen field. It is work, too, of the first order of importance. It would be hard to mention a subject on which so many reams of direful nonsense have been written as on the discovery of America; and the prolific source of so much folly has generally been what Mr. Freeman fitly calls "bondage to the modern map." In order to understand what the great mariners of the fifteenth and sixteenth ...
— The Discovery of America Vol. 1 (of 2) - with some account of Ancient America and the Spanish Conquest • John Fiske

... of the yards with some difficulty. They had a spiked switch to look out for, and a missile from an old building smashed the headlight glass. At the limits a man tossed a folded paper into the locomotive cab. It was a poor scrawl containing direful threats to anyone opposing ...
— Ralph on the Engine - The Young Fireman of the Limited Mail • Allen Chapman

... interested not the listener, "retreated, to carry to Tosti and his ally the ominous answer of his injured brother. It was then that the distant towers of York, and the bloody streams of the Derwent, [26] beheld that direful conflict, in which, after displaying the most undaunted valour, the King of Norway, and Tosti, both fell, with ten thousand of their bravest followers. Who would have thought that upon the proud day when this battle was won, the ...
— Ivanhoe - A Romance • Walter Scott

... Department, and for the last ten years the American Secretary to the Japanese Legation at Washington. A lover of social intercourse, Mr. Lanman has led the typical busy life of the American, untouched by the direful and disastrous ills it is supposed to bring. He is now engaged in editing fourteen of his books for reproduction in uniform style, and a new book, The Leading Men of Japan, is ready for issue." 12mo, $1.50. Boston: ...
— The Bay State Monthly, Volume 3, No. 6 • Various

... had not all of sentience departed; for the consciousness and the sentiment remaining supplied some of its functions by a lethargic intuition. I appreciated the direful change now in operation upon the flesh, and, as the dreamer is sometimes aware of the bodily presence of one who leans over him, so, sweet Una, I still dully felt that you sat by my side. So, too, when the noon of the second day came, I was not unconscious ...
— Edgar Allan Poe's Complete Poetical Works • Edgar Allan Poe

... and thistles? Perhaps some cold bank is her bolster now, Or 'gainst the rugged bark of some broad elm Leans her unpillowed head, fraught with sad fears. What if in wild amazement and affright, Or, while we speak, within the direful grasp Of savage ...
— Milton's Comus • John Milton

... These were direful imaginings. He felt that it was no use; that the lie could not go on concerning his father. The world would know; the one thing left for him was to die. He was only a boy, but he could fight. Had not ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... on his own account the result is direful; women of his creating are always noisy ...
— The Euahlayi Tribe - A Study of Aboriginal Life in Australia • K. Langloh Parker

... skill[a] in champion's deeds. Valorous are the strokes I deal On the brilliant phantom host. War with numerous bands I wage, For the fall of warlike chief— This, Medb's purpose and Ailill's— Direful ...
— The Ancient Irish Epic Tale Tain Bo Cualnge • Unknown

... shield-hedge. Ye have the graves Under the stone-slopes, and likewise the places And the number of winters in writings set down." Judas replied (great sorrow he bore): 655 "That work of war, we, lady mine, Through direful need remember well, And that tumult of war in writing set down, The bearing of nations, but this one never By any man's mouth have we heard 660 Made known to men except here now." The noble queen gave answer to him: "Thou resistest too much both truth and right Of the tree of ...
— Elene; Judith; Athelstan, or the Fight at Brunanburh; Byrhtnoth, or the Fight at Maldon; and the Dream of the Rood • Anonymous

... but of one thing I am convinced, that the 'I am sorry for it, that's enough'—men mean nothing but regret when they talk of repentance, and have consciences either so pure or so callous, as not to know what a direful and strange thing remorse is, and how absolutely a fact 'sui generis'! I have often remarked, and it cannot be too often remarked (vain as this may sound), that this essential heterogeneity of regret and remorse is ...
— Coleridge's Literary Remains, Volume 4. • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... lo, the daring hosts engage! Dauntless hearts and flaming rage; And, ere the direful morn is o'er, Mangled limbs and reeking gore, And crimson torrents whelm the ground, Wild destruction stalking round; Fainting warriors gasp for breath, Or struggle ...
— The Poetry of Wales • John Jenkins

... predisposing belief that this was to be a night of events, stopped his consciousness that all had been thwarted; that there was nothing but plot, plot, counterplot and tangle, disunion, silly subtlety, jealousy, vanity, a direful congregation of antagonistic elements; threads all loose, tongues wagging, pressure here, pressure there, like an uncertain rage in the entrails of the undirected earth, and no master hand on the spot to fuse and point the ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... you too near a view of my heart at this moment of despondency. My present feelings are new even to myself. They terrify me. I must not trust myself longer alone. I must shake off, or try to shake off, this excruciating, this direful melancholy. Heavy, heavy is my soul; comfortless and friendless my condition. Nothing is sweet but the ...
— Jane Talbot • Charles Brockden Brown

... accession, 1558, Strype ('Annals of the Reformation,' i. 8, and ii. 545) tells that Bishop Jewell, preaching before the queen, animadverted upon the dangerous and direful results of witchcraft. 'It may please your Grace,' proclaims publicly the courtly Anglican prelate, 'to understand that witches and sorcerers, within these last few years, are marvellously increased within your Grace's realm. Your Grace's ...
— The Superstitions of Witchcraft • Howard Williams

... but, bad as it was, he gradually grew to feel that it had not been the most direful mistake in his plan of education. Something must have been wanting within, or time would have worn away much of its ill effect. He feared that principle, active principle, had been wanting; that they had never ...
— Library Of The World's Best Literature, Ancient And Modern, Vol 3 • Various

... their gravities and secrets of state: no such thing; that whisper from Lord Quintown, the handsome nobleman, to Mr. St. George, is no hoarded and valuable information which would rejoice the heart of the editor of an Opposition paper, no direful murmur, "perplexing monarchs with the dread of change;" it is only a recent piece of scandal, touching the virtue of a lady of the court, which (albeit the sage listener seems to pay so devout an attention to the news) is far more interesting to the gallant and handsome informant ...
— The Disowned, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... DAY she passed; another day the same; Her only sustenance, sobs, sighs, and flame Still unappeased; she murmur'd 'gainst her fate; But nothing could her direful woes abate. ...
— The Tales and Novels, Complete • Jean de La Fontaine

... Oh! direful and strange will the contest appear, Big with freedom to nations afar; The good, who confide, and the guilty, who fear, Shall join ...
— Poems • Sir John Carr

... of the present war will push the yellow mass toward Europe. Russia, as comparatively western, will have to bear their first onset; for this she will require Occidental assistance, and in the turmoil of that direful conflict—or, let us hope, in order to avoid it—she will readily give up all designs against her western neighbors, and she may become really western by the necessities which impel her to lean ...
— New York Times Current History; The European War, Vol 2, No. 2, May, 1915 - April-September, 1915 • Various

... liquors may be proper, if taken in moderation. It is necessary however, that beer, ale, cider, and wine, be taken in a sound state and of proper age, or they will be highly detrimental. Spirituous liquors, taken too freely, or in a raw state, are attended with direful effects, and are the destruction of thousands. From the degree of heat they have undergone in distillation, they acquire a corrosive and burning quality, which makes them dangerous to the constitution. They contract the fibres and smaller vessels, especially ...
— The Cook and Housekeeper's Complete and Universal Dictionary; Including a System of Modern Cookery, in all Its Various Branches, • Mary Eaton

... been slain while pursuing a wolf in the forest. Thereupon Aminta, with a last reproach to Dafne for having prevented him from putting an end to his miserable life before being the recipient of such direful news, rushes off the scene at a pace to mock pursuit. In the next act, however, Silvia reappears and narrates her escape. Here we arrive at the dramatic climax of the play. Dafne expresses her fear that the false report of Silvia's death may indeed prove ...
— Pastoral Poetry and Pastoral Drama - A Literary Inquiry, with Special Reference to the Pre-Restoration - Stage in England • Walter W. Greg

... five children at home, all ill of the small-pox, and his wife in an hospital—and he implored a payment on account. This sufferer succeeded in squeezing out of Titmouse seven shillings on account, and his landlady extorted ten; which staved off a distress—direful word!—for some week or two longer; and so they left him in the possession of eight shillings or so, to last till next quarter-day—six weeks off! He sighed heavily, barred his door, and sat down opposite his little table, on ...
— Ten Thousand a-Year. Volume 1. • Samuel Warren

... pursuing an avocation so full of hazard and peril! If I had taken their advice, and acceded to their solicitations, in all probability I should, at this time, have been in the enjoyment of much happiness." I was aroused from this reverie by the most direful screams from the united voices of the whole tribe, they having drunk largely of the rum, and become so much intoxicated that a general fight ensued. Many of them lay stretched on the ground, with tomahawks deeply implanted in their skulls: and many ...
— Thrilling Adventures by Land and Sea • James O. Brayman

... way from Thyrsis was an idiot man; upon the next place lived an old man who was a hopeless drunkard, and had one son insane, and another tubercular; and then down in the meadows below the woods lived the Hodges—a name of direful portent. The father would work as a laborer in town for a day or two, and buy vinegar and make himself half insane, and then come home and beat his wife and children. There were eleven of these latter, and a new one came each year; the eldest were thieves, and the youngest might ...
— Love's Pilgrimage • Upton Sinclair

... support before it sinks!—The distress'd inhabitants of this house are still alive; it is proclaim'd from every room by dreadful groans.—You sent me on a raven's message:—like that ill-boding bird I flew from house to house, afraid to croak my direful tidings. ...
— Barford Abbey • Susannah Minific Gunning

... at Rome by this letter were increased by the accidental burning of the Capitol. The Sibylline books, which held the secrets of the fate of Rome, were consumed. Such an event, it was believed, could only foreshadow the most direful calamities to ...
— A General History for Colleges and High Schools • P. V. N. Myers

... but, over and over, blessed his brother-in-law, as a good man and one of the few worthy to take into his charge the good and beautiful. Stede Bonnet had always been very fond of his daughter, and, now, as it became known to him into what desperate and direful condition his reckless conduct had thrown her, he loved her more and more, and grieved greatly for the troubles ...
— Kate Bonnet - The Romance of a Pirate's Daughter • Frank R. Stockton

... not the governing tone. The arguments ran like this: that the "Universal Good of Mankind" should be the aim of "every private member"; that nothing is so conducive to this general welfare as "HEALTH"; that no hazards to health are more direful than diseases such as "the Gout; the Rheumatism; the Stone; the Jaundice," etc., etc.; that countless men and women have succumbed to such afflictions either because they received no treatment or suffered wrong treatment at "the Hands of the Learned"; that no medicine ...
— Old English Patent Medicines in America • George B. Griffenhagen

... America,—occasionally turning aside to show off her bad French by speaking to the Spider, until another quarter of an hour had elapsed. Then Paris was mentioned; one of us happened to speak of the Gobelins,—I cannot now recall which it was first uttered that fatal word to me, the direful spring of woes unnumbered! Had I visited the Gobelins? I had not, but I ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 102, April, 1866 • Various

... and Tennessee we have already aided in establishing such churches which have connected themselves—and gladly so—with the regular State organizations of Congregational churches. No direful results have followed. No fanaticism is in it. It is simply doing the thing that is right and Christian. May such churches continue to multiply in the "New South" and help to make it ...
— The American Missionary, Volume 43, No. 11, November, 1889 • Various

... and helpless in the direful presence of a woman who, to his utter horror, had gone violently insane. He began silently but urgently to pray that the gasoline would give out, when he would find himself in a position to reason with her, gently or forcibly as the situation ...
— Anderson Crow, Detective • George Barr McCutcheon

... wrath of Peleus' son, the direful spring Of all the Grecian woes, O Goddess, sing, That wrath which hurled to Pluto's gloomy reign The souls of mighty ...
— Lives of the English Poets: Prior, Congreve, Blackmore, Pope • Samuel Johnson

... direful hate shall turn to peace, And love relent in deep disdain, And death his fatal stroke shall cease, And envy pity every pain, And pleasure mourn and sorrow smile, Before I talk of ...
— Rosalynde - or, Euphues' Golden Legacy • Thomas Lodge



Words linked to "Direful" :   alarming



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