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Effrontery   /ɪfrˈəntəri/   Listen
Effrontery

noun
(pl. effronteries)
1.
Audacious (even arrogant) behavior that you have no right to.  Synonyms: assumption, presumption, presumptuousness.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Effrontery" Quotes from Famous Books



... shortcomings, Shirley preserves in the main the great tradition of the Elizabethans. A further step downwards, a more deadly stage in the history of decadence, is marked by Sir William Davenant. That arch-impostor, as is well known, had the effrontery to call himself the "son of Shakespeare": a phrase which the unwary have taken in the physical sense, but which was undoubtedly intended to mark his literary kinship with the Elizabethans in general and with the greatest of ...
— English literary criticism • Various

... any one who reads that exceedingly delightful volume the Camden Society's Poems attributed to Walter Mapes may be one of mere amusement, of which there are few books fuller. The agreeable effrontery with which the question "whether to kiss Rose or Agnes" is put side by side with that "whether it is better to eat flesh cooked in the cauldron or little fishes driven into the net;" the intense solemnity and sorrow for self with which Golias discourses in trochaic mono-rhymed laisses ...
— The Flourishing of Romance and the Rise of Allegory - (Periods of European Literature, vol. II) • George Saintsbury

... long time to come, in a sort of ghastly twilight. It is a crime made up of audacity and darkness; here it shows itself impudently in broad daylight; there it skulks away into the mist. Hideous and double-faced effrontery, which conceals no one knows ...
— Napoleon the Little • Victor Hugo

... now. They say the entire mausoleum was intended for the Holy Sepulchre, and was only turned into a family burying place after the Jerusalem expedition failed—but you will excuse me. Some of those Medicis would have smuggled themselves in sure.—What they had not the effrontery to do, was not worth doing. Why, they had their trivial, forgotten exploits on land and sea pictured out in grand frescoes (as did also the ancient Doges of Venice) with the Saviour and the Virgin throwing bouquets to them out of the clouds, and the Deity himself applauding ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... has not been called by its right name. "Do you mind if I smoke?" was a polite question two hundred years ago when tobacco was rare enough to make smoking a distinction, or fifty years ago when everybody smoked at home and in public. But it is effrontery to-day when people do mind, when smoking pollutes the air of drawing room and office, and while soothing the excited nerves of the smoker lowers the vitality of nonsmokers compelled to breathe smoke-laden air. It is selfish to intrude upon others a personal weakness or a personal ...
— Civics and Health • William H. Allen

... young man, not more than thirty, of very quick parts, who had been brought up in the Bureau of Foreign Affairs, had an exorbitant idea of his own importance, and might be described without malice as a master of effrontery. The ship which brought him to this country was driven by adverse winds to Charleston and landed him there on April 8th. He lost no time in fitting out a privateer against British mercantile vessels. The fact that by ...
— George Washington • William Roscoe Thayer

... impudent rogue have we here!" cried the angry Duke, who conceived that Richard was purposely dealing in effrontery. "Mr. Trenchard, I do think we are wasting time. Be so good as to confound them both with the truth of ...
— Mistress Wilding • Rafael Sabatini

... proved itself. For, as the days passed, rumours reached the distant department of New Mexico that the old tyrant Santa Anna was again returning to power. And, in proportion as these gained strength, so increased Gil Uraga's confidence in himself, till at length he assumed an air of effrontery—almost insolence—towards his superior officer; and towards the sister, in the interviews he was permitted with her, a manner ...
— The Lone Ranche • Captain Mayne Reid

... trademarks of intellectual products and changing the terminology of things! Those men with flowing beards and gold-rimmed spectacles, pacific rabbits of the laboratory and the professor's chair that had been preparing the ground for the present war with their sophistries and their unblushing effrontery! Their guilt was far greater than that of the Herr Lieutenant of the tight corset and the gleaming monocle, who in his thirst for strife and slaughter was simply and logically ...
— The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... sunken with pain and longing, was for him alone. To the other dancers, to the crowded room at large, she seemed a brazen girl, with beauty to make a goddess, wit to mask as a great lady, effrontery to match that of the gentleman who had brought her here. The age was free, and in that London which was dear to the hearts of the Virginians ladies of damaged reputation were not so unusual a feature of fashionable entertainments as ...
— Audrey • Mary Johnston

... to the gods; so that they were jeered by the mob who thronged around them, as it was plain to all that they were equally afraid to sacrifice and to die. Others advanced more briskly, carrying their effrontery so far as to avow that they never had been Christians." [301:2] Multitudes now withdrew into deserts or mountains, and there perished with cold and hunger. The prisons were everywhere crowded with Christians; and the magistrates were occupied with the odious task of oppressing and destroying ...
— The Ancient Church - Its History, Doctrine, Worship, and Constitution • W.D. [William Dool] Killen

... a most leisurely way to the gate that led into the meadow whose eastern boundary was Hope's quick-set hedge, and he came in the same leisurely way up to Mr. Bartley, and leaned his back, with his hands behind him, with perfect effrontery, ...
— A Perilous Secret • Charles Reade

... conveys to the mind of the reader that I applaud and sympathise with the events of the winter of 1793, and more particularly with the odious procession of the Goddess of Reason at Notre Dame. He says, moreover, that I have "the effrontery to imply that the horrible massacres of the Revolution ... were 'a very mild story compared with the atrocities of the Jews or the crimes of Catholicism.'" No really honest and competent disputant would have hit on "effrontery" as the note of the passage referred ...
— Studies in Literature • John Morley

... corporal punishment or jail, but the impulse of gluttony and lechery is always there. Any keeper of a second or third-class hotel in a town that is on one of the big circuits is apt to grow eloquent upon the subject of theatrical folk if given the chance. They are noted for a brazen effrontery in demanding everything that is in sight and the laxity with which they regard a debt incurred. I have no doubt that the first man to let his valise down from the second-story window of a hotel, slide down the rope himself and thus square his bill was the leading comedian of that sterling ...
— Volume 10 of Brann The Iconoclast • William Cowper Brann

... of Mr Colt, of which our Lay contains merely the sequel, is this: A New York printer, of the name of Adams, had the effrontery to call upon him one day for payment of an account, which the independent Colt settled by cutting his creditor's head to fragments with an axe. He then packed his body in a box, and sprinkling it with salt, despatched it to a packet bound for New Orleans. Suspicions having been excited, ...
— The Bon Gaultier Ballads • William Edmonstoune Aytoun

... advantage of me, sir, but allow me to say that the person under discussion has not only, with unheard of effrontery, publicly and unblushingly proclaimed himself as a blackmailer and knave, capable of descending to any perfidy or treachery for the purpose of favoring his own base schemes, but he has also, in his inordinate greed and ambition, unwittingly proved himself by his own statements and conduct to be a ...
— That Mainwaring Affair • Maynard Barbour

... but she eyed her hostess narrowly. She had begun of late to distrust the aesthetic worth of the colored glass and metal stag, and, though she was on her guard against effrontery, she wished to know the truth. She knew that Mr. Pierce, with fine business instinct, had already conveyed to her husband the promise that he should furnish the varnish for the new church in case of his own selection, which, ...
— Unleavened Bread • Robert Grant

... said, laughing at her enchanting effrontery. "But, Marya, when the rainbow goes a-glimmering, the same old grey world is there again. It's ...
— The Crimson Tide • Robert W. Chambers

... mention how many of my salutary advices you have despised: I have given you line upon line and precept upon precept; and while I was chalking out to you the straight way to wealth and character, with audacious effrontery you have zigzagged across the path, contemning me to my face: you know the consequences. It is not yet three months since home was so hot for you that you were on the wing for the western shore of the Atlantic, not to make a fortune, but to hide ...
— The Complete Works of Robert Burns: Containing his Poems, Songs, and Correspondence. • Robert Burns and Allan Cunningham

... reading it to his friends after dinner, or on other occasions, and as he had many, it got pretty well about London. I may here very truly remark that Mr. Hotten, in the public controversy which he had with Mr. Trubner on the subject of my "Ballads," displayed an effrontery absolutely without parallel in modern times, apropos of ...
— Memoirs • Charles Godfrey Leland

... the motion. They had not the effrontery to wrap up their motives in specious expressions of concern for my health, but stated their point of view with brutal frankness, as is their wont. I was an old dear, they conceded, and of course Kitty was Kitty; but ...
— The Right Stuff - Some Episodes in the Career of a North Briton • Ian Hay

... of distinct genius. Yet the Directors were, almost without exception, men of mediocre talents, [Footnote: Carnot, upright and sincere, and the only member of first-rate ability, was forced out of the Directory in 1797.] who practiced bribery and corruption with unblushing effrontery. They preferred their personal gain to the ...
— A Political and Social History of Modern Europe V.1. • Carlton J. H. Hayes

... and treachery, and effrontery and cunning, the rivals who act unfairly, and the keen competition of the literary market," his companion said resignedly. "What is a first loss, if ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... such occasions. Young Mavering's behaviour gave her still greater question: his self-possession, his entire absence of anxiety; or any expectation of rebuff or snub, might be the ease of unimpeachable social acceptance, or it might be merely adventurous effrontery; only something ingenuous and good in the young fellow's handsome face forbade this conclusion. That his face was so handsome was another of the complications. She recalled, in the dreamlike swiftness with which ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... the accused been required to declare if she had had pleasure and carnal commerce with all the men, nobles, citizens, and others as set forth in the plaints and declarations of the inhabitants. To which her who speaks has it been answered with great effrontery: "Pleasure, yes! Commerce, ...
— Droll Stories, Complete - Collected From The Abbeys Of Touraine • Honore de Balzac

... Iglesias. Her unblushing effrontery began to entertain him somewhat. And then he had sallied forth in search of amusement. This was not the form of amusement he would have selected; but—since it ...
— The Far Horizon • Lucas Malet

... friend took my troubles on his shoulders," said Percival, "and got the parcels through with an effrontery which amazed me. I always took him for an ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 158, January 21st, 1920 • Various

... Mrs. Egremont was greeting him, and there were ten minutes of delicious exchange of news. But 'pleasures are as poppies fled,' Nuttie had no dance to spare, her card was full, and she had not learnt fashionable effrontery enough to play tricks with engagements, and just then Mr. Egremont descended on them—'I wish to introduce you to the Duchess,' he said to his wife; and on the way he ...
— Nuttie's Father • Charlotte M. Yonge

... fought it out with his imperative father; but, nevertheless, it was a comfort to have to fetch pale Charles for a jobation; so he went at once. And the three young people, two of them trembling with affections overstrained, and the third indurated in effrontery, stood before that ...
— The Complete Prose Works of Martin Farquhar Tupper • Martin Farquhar Tupper

... you'd do such a caddish thing as that. Think it over for a minute. You come down here; you sweep that unfortunate girl off her feet; you make love to her with the fury of a stage villain; you force her to betray her very evident partiality for you—and then you have the effrontery to say: 'Good-by. ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume VI. (of X.) • Various

... off a few feet to get a better look at the terrible stranger. He had not expected opposition and such effrontery was new to him. ...
— Black Bruin - The Biography of a Bear • Clarence Hawkes

... watched for flocks of migrating starlings and shot at them with small shot, then we picked up those that were wounded, and some of them died in our hands in terrible agonies (I remember to this day how they moaned in the cage at night); those that recovered we sold, and swore with the utmost effrontery that they were all cocks. On one occasion at the market I had only one starling left, which I had offered to purchasers in vain, till at last I sold it for a farthing. "Anyway, it's better than nothing," I said to comfort myself, as I put the farthing ...
— The Chorus Girl and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... though, if so, it must, from some of the references, have been revised after 1773. The two young men who had tried to palm off their retranslation from Goethe as Diderot's own text, at once had the effrontery to accuse Briere and Diderot's daughter of repeating their own fraud. A vivacious dispute followed between the indignant publisher and his impudent detractors. At length Briere appealed to the great Jove of Weimar. Goethe expressed his conviction ...
— Diderot and the Encyclopaedists (Vol 1 of 2) • John Morley

... to imply a mixture of boldness and apprehension, like one who has undertaken a dangerous commission, and is sensible that audacity alone can carry him through it with safety. Something of the same mixture of fear and effrontery was visible in the manner in which he paid his respects, and he showed also a grotesque awkwardness, not usual amongst those who were accustomed to be received in the presence ...
— Quentin Durward • Sir Walter Scott

... to repent of any action—I will be content to receive Mesopotamia and Armenia, which was fraudulently extorted from my grandfather. We Persians have never admitted the principle, which you proclaim with such effrontery, that success in war is always glorious, whether it be the fruit of courage or trickery. In conclusion, if you will take the advice of one who speaks for your good, sacrifice a small tract of territory, one always in dispute and causing continual bloodshed, in order that you may rule the ...
— The Seven Great Monarchies Of The Ancient Eastern World, Vol 7. (of 7): The Sassanian or New Persian Empire • George Rawlinson

... in a humble attitude, little conformable with the effrontery natural to his race. One would have said that he was endeavoring rather to avoid attention than to attract it. His battered hat, browned by the suns of every clime, was pulled forward over his wrinkled face. His arched back was ...
— Michael Strogoff - or, The Courier of the Czar • Jules Verne

... whether it would ever have taken place—with this dash of affecting reminiscence in any case. Allusions to a common past were barred for excellent reasons, as between these two persons, save strictly in public. Even so it struck him as a humorous piece of audacity on the lady's part. Her effrontery touched on the colossal! But it succeeded, always had done so.—In his judgment of Henrietta, Carteret never failed to remember, being compact of chivalry and of truthfulness, that he had once on a time been a good half in love with her himself.—All the same he was not sure her close association ...
— Deadham Hard • Lucas Malet

... attempt to kill Cicero; his directions to Manlius well observed, XXVIII. His machinations induce the Senate to confer extraordinary power on the consuls, XXIX. His proceedings are opposed by various precautions, XXX. His effrontery in the Senate, XXXI. He sets out for Etruria, XXXII. His accomplice, Manlius, sends a deputation to Marcius, XXXIII. His representations to various respectable characters, XXXIV. His letter to Catulus, XXXV. His arrival at ...
— Conspiracy of Catiline and The Jurgurthine War • Sallust

... veneration as inclines me to approve his conduct in the whole, without a minute examination of its parts; yet I could never forbear to wish, that while vice is every day multiplying seducements, and stalking forth with more hardened effrontery, virtue would not withdraw the influence of her presence, or forbear to assert her natural dignity by open and undaunted perseverance in the right. Piety practised in solitude, like the flower that blooms in the desert, may give its fragrance to the winds of Heaven, and delight those unbodied ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes - Volume IV: The Adventurer; The Idler • Samuel Johnson

... of poetry to that exhibited in 'Jabberwocky.' Carroll, with a sense of mathematical neatness, makes his whole poem a mosaic of new and mysterious words. But Edward Lear, with more subtle and placid effrontery, is always introducing scraps of his own elvish dialect into the middle of simple and rational statements, until we are almost stunned into admitting that we know what they mean. There is a genial ring of ...
— The Defendant • G.K. Chesterton

... decided. She could not, with effrontery of selfishness, take the last possible place,—a place already asked for by another. She thanked Dakie Thayne, and, with just one little secret sigh, got into the interior, placing herself by ...
— A Summer in Leslie Goldthwaite's Life. • Mrs. A. D. T. Whitney

... obscurity and wreckage of the past, whether as legend, or ballad, or mere nursery rhyme, has survived in right of some intrinsic merit of its own, and will not be snuffed out of existence by any of our precautionary or hygienic measures. . . . Puss in Boots is one long record of triumphant effrontery and deception. An honest and self-respecting lad would have explained to the king that he was not the Marquis of Carabas at all; that he had no desire to profit by his cat's ingenious falsehoods, and no weak ambition to connect himself with the ...
— Children's Literature - A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes • Charles Madison Curry

... should think himself bound, once for all, by any opinion once given on so important a matter; he would willingly swear and submit to the law, if so be it were one, a proviso which he added as a mere cover for his effrontery. The people, in great joy at his taking the oath, loudly clapped and applauded him, while the nobility stood by ashamed and vexed at his inconstancy; but they submitted out of fear of the people, and all in order took the oath, till it came to Metellus's turn. But he, ...
— Plutarch's Lives • A.H. Clough

... which seemed to furnish the Papacy with a new external guarantee. Two cardinals, who, at the same time, were princes of ruling houses, Giovanni d'Aragona, son of King Ferrante, and Ascanio Sforza, brother of Lodovico il Moro, sold their votes with shameless effrontery; so that, at any rate, the ruling houses of Naples and Milan became interested, by their participation in the booty, in the continuance of the papal system. Once again, in the following conclave, when all the cardinals but five sold themselves, Ascanio received ...
— The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy • Jacob Burckhardt

... of the sixteenth century, France was invaded by a horde of mountebanks in showy and fantastic garb, who went from one town to another, loudly and with brazen effrontery proclaiming in the market-places their ability to cure every kind of ailment. And the people, then as now easily duped, lent willing ears to these wily pretenders, and bought freely of their marvellous pills ...
— Primitive Psycho-Therapy and Quackery • Robert Means Lawrence

... safety. She had said all that she could say to Veronica and to Bosio. Gregorio Macomer, her husband, whom she hated and despised, but whom she was saving, or trying to save, with herself, carried the effrontery of his sham-honest face and cold manner through it all, unmoved, so far as she could see. Only once or twice in the course of the day he had laughed suddenly and nervously, with a contraction of the face and a raising of the flat ...
— Taquisara • F. Marion Crawford

... He had early gained the name of Raven from his artful looks. His manner was a mixture of calm audacity and consummate self-conceit. Though you knew him to be a thorough scamp, the young imp would stare you in the face with the effrontery of a man about town. He was active, sharp, and nice-looking, and there was nothing which he was either afraid or ashamed to do. He had not a particle of that modesty which in every good boy is as natural as it is graceful; he could tell a lie without the slightest hesitation or the faintest ...
— St. Winifred's - The World of School • Frederic W. Farrar

... has a better opinion of himself than the people have of him: he is superficial, and makes up in effrontery what he lacks in qualification. The gambler yonder, with a toothpick in his mouth, has of late succeeded in his tricks. The affairs of this kind-hearted grocer are troubling him. Were we within a yard of that round-shouldered man from the country, we should smell leather; ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 10, No. 62, December, 1862 • Various

... believe that the woman who had just stormed at the conductor, who had the effrontery to subject Helen to that stony scrutiny before she answered, could adopt such dulcet tones so suddenly. Helen, frank and generous-minded to a degree, would have preferred a gradual subsidence of wrath ...
— The Silent Barrier • Louis Tracy

... farmer, although in the abundant enjoyment of {280} bread, butter, cheese, flesh, and broth, is not only not ashamed to complain of poverty as an excuse for non-payment of his rent, but has the effrontery to thank God, as if he were enjoying only those blessings of Providence to which ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 203, September 17, 1853 • Various

... hypocrite!" his wife almost shouted. "Gambled every day of his life for twenty-five years on the New York Stock Exchange, and now he has the effrontery to make a statement like that! John Parker, roll ...
— The Pride of Palomar • Peter B. Kyne

... occasions) of the persecutions which they endured. Hence Bernard de Foucald (Monastier History), a writer of the twelfth century, says, "These Waldenses, although condemned by Pope Lucius II., continued to pour forth, with daring effrontery, far and wide all over the world, the poison ...
— The Vaudois of Piedmont - A Visit to their Valleys • John Napper Worsfold

... that had happened had been in perfect accordance with his wishes. He made a short speech, in which he confirmed all the concessions and promises which he had previously made. He even placed in his hat a tricolor cockade, which the mayor had the effrontery to present to him, though it was the emblem of the revolt of his subjects and of the defeat of his troops. And at last such an effect had his fearless dignity on even the fiercest of his enemies, ...
— The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France • Charles Duke Yonge

... of rooms, either by force or with false keys. There are of this class thieves of incredible effrontery; that of one Beaumont almost surpasses belief. Escaped from the Bagne at Rochefort, where he was sentenced to pass twelve years of his life, he came to Paris, and scarcely had he arrived there, where he had already practised, when, by way of getting his hand in, he committed ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 388 - Vol. 14, No. 388, Saturday, September 5, 1829. • Various

... would be Easter, and she thought of a hundred ways in which she could make it brighter for so many of the unfortunates. Her heart was opened to the world, and looking across to Henderson, who was deep in the morning paper, she said, with a wife's unblushing effrontery, "Dearest, how handsome ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... how I assault the strong places and root up the vines. Wherefore, do as I bid thee and bear thyself to me as a servant to his lord.' 'O stupid dullard,' answered the fox, 'that seekest a vain thing, I marvel at thy stupidity and effrontery, in that thou biddest me serve thee and order myself towards thee as I were a slave bought with thy money; but thou shalt see what is in store for thee, in the way of breaking thy head with stones and knocking out thy traitor's teeth.' So saying, he ...
— The Book Of The Thousand Nights And One Night, Volume III • Anonymous

... despise the temples as charnel-houses; they reject the gods; they deride sacred things. While they are wretched themselves, if allowed they pity the priests; while they are half naked themselves, they despise honors and purple robes. O wonderful folly and incredible effrontery! They despise present torments, but fear those that are uncertain and in the future. While they fear to die after death, for the present life they do not fear to die. In such manner does a deceitful hope soothe their fear with ...
— A Source Book for Ancient Church History • Joseph Cullen Ayer, Jr., Ph.D.

... as it may be, and that is as I say, sir; and considering how you have treated me—your mean, treacherous, and infamous suit, and your cruel treason to your poor wife, I am amazed at your effrontery.' ...
— Uncle Silas - A Tale of Bartram-Haugh • J.S. Le Fanu

... effrontery will not avail thee, knave," he cried. "Thou knowest that I would have engaged thee as the leader of a chosen band, to favor the flight ...
— The Bravo • J. Fenimore Cooper

... at the regent's right hand, with head high and eyes undrooping. For a dramatic instant she paused, as though in the rehearsal of a part—a part of which it might be said that the regent was not alone the author. This triumph of woman over other women, this triumph of vice over other vice, of effrontery over effrontery akin—this could not have been so planned and executed by any but a woman. One another these beauties might tolerate, knowing one another's frailties as they did; yet the elegance, the disdain, the indifference ...
— The Mississippi Bubble • Emerson Hough

... these two authorities, directly at issue on this point, I think there will be little trouble in determining which we shall make 'to give place;' or, if we 'look to a large and decided preponderancy' of either talent, learning, or benevolence, from whom we shall 'take our judgment.' The effrontery, or, to speak more charitably, the ignorance of a reference to Paley on this subject, and in this instance, ...
— The Miscellaneous Writings and Speeches of Lord Macaulay, Vol. 2 (of 4) - Contributions To The Edinburgh Review • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... devotion; and so on, to the end of the chapter. We will consider that all said, and so save time and trouble. You think that ought to end the matter and bring me to your way of thinking. I wonder at the effrontery of young men, who walk into our households and carelessly tell us mothers what is best for our children, and assure us, between their puffs of tobacco smoke, that a case of three weeks' moonshining outweighs ...
— That Mother-in-Law of Mine • Anonymous

... is ready to make new tests and what is holding up work on the Sisyphus? Replied it was complete except for my cabins. She had the effrontery to say these werent important and she was ready to go ahead without me. I pointed out that the Sisyphus was my property and it would not sail until I was ...
— Greener Than You Think • Ward Moore

... in a tone of the most imperturbable self- possession, and perfectly staggered poor Amos by their amazing effrontery. But all was now plain enough to him. This needy adventurer, who had entangled poor Julia in his cruel meshes, and had deserted her for a time, was hard up for money; and, having found out that Amos had taken upon himself to provide for his children at present, had hit ...
— Amos Huntingdon • T.P. Wilson

... it all, now!" exclaimed she—"Bigot's falseness, and her shameless effrontery in seeking him in his very house. But it shall not be!" Angelique's voice was like the cry of a wounded panther tearing at the arrow which has pierced his flank. "Is Angelique des Meloises to be ...
— The Golden Dog - Le Chien d'Or • William Kirby

... kind of American travellers possess, these countrymen of ours display an amount of insolent conceit and cool assumption of superiority, quite monstrous to behold. In the coarse familiarity of their approach, and the effrontery of their inquisitiveness (which they are in great haste to assert, as if they panted to revenge themselves upon the decent old restraints of home), they surpass any native specimens that came within my ...
— American Notes for General Circulation • Charles Dickens

... that the portrait of Maria Vanrenen might really be elsewhere, and even suggested in his hearing that it might not improbably have got into the hands of that omnivorous collector, Sir J. H. Tomlinson. But the vendor was proof against all such attempts to decry his goods. He had the effrontery to brush away the documentary evidence, and to declare that Sir J. H. Tomlinson (one of the most learned and astute picture-buyers in England) had been smartly imposed upon by a needy Dutch artist with a talent for forgery. ...
— An African Millionaire - Episodes in the Life of the Illustrious Colonel Clay • Grant Allen

... struck dumb by the other's effrontery, almost frightened by it. If this terrible creature withdrew into a brazen fortress of lies, who could tell how long a siege she might be able to withstand? The girl had been astonished and dismayed in the morning, when the first sally of the attack ...
— The Castle Of The Shadows • Alice Muriel Williamson

... the effrontery to say that. She told me that Mr. Meldon, this parson of yours who takes you out yachting, had given orders before I came that all my food was to be soaked ...
— The Simpkins Plot • George A. Birmingham

... rival from the scene, Alessandro de' Medici plunged with even greater effrontery into the cruelties and debaucheries which made him odious in Florence. It seemed as though fortune meant to smile on him; for in this same year (1535) Charles V. decided at Naples in his favour against the Florentine exiles, who were pleading their own cause and ...
— Sketches and Studies in Italy and Greece, Complete - Series I, II, and III • John Symonds

... he replied, 'the Greek has less confidence in me than I thought, and I must take it as a warning. It may be. On the other hand, there is the possibility that Petronilla's effrontery outwits us all. Of course she has done her best to ruin both of us, and perhaps is still trying to persuade Bessas that you keep Veranilda in hiding, whilst I act as your accomplice. If this be the case, ...
— Veranilda • George Gissing

... chief culprits, nay, as appeared afterwards, the most eager mischief-maker, was Professor Whitney himself, and let us now hear what he has to say. As if he himself were entirely unconcerned in the matter, instead of having been the chief culprit, he speaks of "cool effrontery;" "magisterial assumption, towards a parcel of naughty boys caught in their naughtiness;" "most discreditable;" "the epithet outrageous is hardly too strong." Here his breath fails him, and, fortunately ...
— Chips from a German Workshop - Volume IV - Essays chiefly on the Science of Language • Max Muller

... ownerless land yonder, the West. But they waited and waited, until your success was sure. Why, that scoundrel Merry is here this very day—the effrontery of him! He wants nothing more to do with me. No, he is here to undertake to recoup himself in his own losses by reasons of moneys he advanced to me some time ago. He is importuning my son-in-law, Mr. Alston, to pay him back those funds—which once ...
— The Magnificent Adventure - Being the Story of the World's Greatest Exploration and - the Romance of a Very Gallant Gentleman • Emerson Hough

... impertinence; sauciness &c. adj.; flippancy, dicacity|, petulance, procacity[obs3], bluster; swagger, swaggering &c. v.; bounce; terrorism. assumption, presumption; beggar on horseback; usurpation. impudence, assurance, audacity, hardihood, front, face, brass; shamelessness &c. adj.; effrontery, hardened front, face of brass. assumption of infallibility. saucebox &c. (blusterer) 887[obs3]. V. be insolent &c. adj.; bluster, vapor, swagger, swell, give oneself airs, snap one's fingers, kick up a dust; swear &c. (affirm) 535; rap out oaths; roister. ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... find the difference on their return—a fondness for foreign fashions, an attachment to foreign vices, a supercilious contempt of his own country and countrymen; (himself more despicable than the most despicable of those he despises;) these, with an unblushing effrontery, are too generally the attainments that concur to finish the ...
— Clarissa, Volume 4 (of 9) - History Of A Young Lady • Samuel Richardson

... transaction was rapidly concluded; and it was not till the canvas passed into my hands that, as though the physical contact had unnerved her, Mrs. Fontage suddenly faltered. "It's the giving it up—" she stammered, disguising herself to the last; and I hastened away from the collapse of her splendid effrontery. ...
— Crucial Instances • Edith Wharton

... Eminent Writer.—Sorry you're offended. I thought my Article rather a moderate one. Quite true that I talk about falsehood, hypocrites, effrontery, demagogues, Pharisees, and so on; but expressions to be taken in strictly Pickwickian sense, and of course not intended ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 100, April 11, 1891 • Various

... The mystical effrontery of this peroration was quite to the taste of the idlers; the fame of the Prophet had reached Mockern, and, as a performance was expected on the morrow, this prelude much amused the company. On hearing the insults of his adversary, Dagobert ...
— The Wandering Jew, Complete • Eugene Sue

... was well understood to be concession, or at least silence, on the subject of slavery. The pressure of motives, some of which were honorable and generous, was everywhere, like the pressure of the atmosphere. It was not strange that there should be defections from righteousness. Even the enormous effrontery of the slave power in demanding for its own security that the rule of tyrannous law and mob violence by which freedom of speech and of the press had been extinguished at the South should be extended over the so-called free States did not fail of finding citizens ...
— A History of American Christianity • Leonard Woolsey Bacon

... time to collect her thoughts and realize the situation. The effrontery of Jawkins seemed so daring that she almost laughed aloud. She had escaped from his clutches for a moment, but it was only a respite, a breathing spell which would soon be over. It would be necessary to provide ...
— The King's Men - A Tale of To-morrow • Robert Grant, John Boyle O'Reilly, J. S. Dale, and John T.

... Elizabeth's boudoir. "And he had the effrontery," the latter was saying, "to tell me what I must do and must not do! The idea! A miserable little milk-wagon ...
— The Efficiency Expert • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... Sardinia will live to regret. All the rest of Europe—Spain, Portugal, Italy, Austria, Prussia, Switzerland, Holland, Denmark, and Sweden—take no part in the war, and yet our Ministers have—what I should call, if I were not in this House, the effrontery and audacity to get up and tell us that they are fighting the battle of all Europe, and that all Europe is leagued with us against the colossal power of Russia. Europe in the last war did, for the most part, unite with ...
— Speeches on Questions of Public Policy, Volume 1 • John Bright

... one prize, he who gave has insolently taken away. Tell him all as I now bid you, and tell him in public that the Achaeans may hate him and beware of him should he think that he can yet dupe others for his effrontery ...
— The Iliad • Homer

... of his men on board, Adair ordered them to handcuff the whole of the party. The Arabs looked somewhat alarmed, their skipper very much so. "What have you done with my officers and men?" asked Adair. The negoda, recovering himself, with the coolest effrontery made the action of shaking hands, then pointed astern, as if to signify that those whom Adair was asking after had parted good friends and gone off ...
— The Three Commanders • W.H.G. Kingston

... among these slave-holders? They refuse to legalize the marriages of their slaves, but induce them to form such temporary connexions as may suit the owner's conveniency, just as they would pair the lower animals; and this man has the effrontery to tell us so! Mary, however, tells a very different story, (see page 17;) and her assertion, independently of other proof, is at least as credible as Mr. Wood's. The reader will judge for himself as to the preponderance of internal ...
— The History of Mary Prince - A West Indian Slave • Mary Prince

... and write and cipher, and to tell mushrooms from toadstools, to eschew poisonous berries, and to know the weather signs. For her part, she taught me so much more that it seems effrontery to call her my pupil. It was from her gentle, softening companionship that I learned in turn to be merciful to helpless creatures, and to be honest and cleanly in my thoughts and talk. She would help me to seek for birds' nests ...
— In the Valley • Harold Frederic

... piece of cambric and was putting it in her basket, when Mr. Allston asked, with more effrontery than the ...
— St. Elmo • Augusta J. Evans

... reason of the splendour of his equipage, entirely supported by his uncle's wealth; he had likewise made a forcible impression on her heart by virtue of the ardour of his addresses, wholly sustained by his own effrontery. The effect of his presence on the princess soon became visible to the court. Rumour whispered that as Lord St. Albans had already made an alliance with royalty, his nephew had likewise followed his example; but scandal declared that young Jermyn ...
— Royalty Restored - or, London under Charles II. • J. Fitzgerald Molloy

... November day he received a more penetrating chill when he saw the bulletins at the newspaper offices intimating that a fair count might give the Republicans enough Southern States to elect Hayes. This appeared to Bartley the most impudent piece of political effrontery in the whole history of the country, and among those who went about denouncing Republican chicanery at the Democratic club-rooms, no one took a loftier tone of moral indignation than he. The thought that he might lose so much of Halleck's ...
— A Modern Instance • William Dean Howells

... of effrontery then, and I shall take the opportunity of testing its truth. Go to the bank, Narischkin, and say that I need one hundred thousand rubles for an entertainment I propose to give to the czarina. I must have it in ...
— Joseph II. and His Court • L. Muhlbach

... confidence in Speug's genius for mischief and effrontery of manner, but the Rector's class sat breathless when Peter came in with an unshaken countenance, and politely intimated to the Rector that a magistrate of Muirtown had come and desired to speak to the school. Before ...
— Young Barbarians • Ian Maclaren

... apologetic, wholly respectful, not altogether devoid of the old familiarity. He offered his hand; did not to be sure detain hers, which would have been inconvenient in a public assembly; but he detained her, falling into talk with an ease or an effrontery which it was impossible not to admire. And Eleanor admired him involuntarily. Certainly this man had capacities. He did not detain her too long; passed away as easily as he had come up; but returned again in the course of the evening to offer her some civility; and it was Mr. ...
— The Old Helmet, Volume II • Susan Warner

... cried at him: "What's your name?"—"Donkin," he said, looking round with cheerful effrontery.—"What are you?" asked another voice.—"Why, a sailor like you, old man," he replied, in a tone that meant to be hearty but was impudent.—"Blamme if you don't look a blamed sight worse than a broken-down fireman," was the comment in a convinced mutter. ...
— The Nigger Of The "Narcissus" - A Tale Of The Forecastle • Joseph Conrad

... maddening agony; his Lear, at that supreme moment of intolerable torture when he parts away from Goneril and Regan, with his wild scream of revenges that shall be the terrors of the earth; his Richard the Third, with the gigantic effrontery of his "Call him again," and with his whole matchless and wonderful utterance of the awful remorse speech with which the king awakens from his last earthly sleep—those, among many others, rank with ...
— Shadows of the Stage • William Winter

... my temper, he smooth and placid, to outward seeming, as the idol he resembled. The resolution with which he stuck to his silly pose was, in its way, a rogue's masterpiece; nothing more exasperating than this stolid effrontery was ever devised. The scoundrel feared, and yet knew he had, in a sense, the better of me; the helpless old man between us ...
— McClure's Magazine, Vol 31, No 2, June 1908 • Various

... contradict the hope implied in Lincoln's saying that you can't fool all the people all the time. Here was a demagogue, who had been exposed and beaten four years before, who raised his head—or should I say his voice?—with increased effrontery and to an equally ...
— Theodore Roosevelt; An Intimate Biography, • William Roscoe Thayer

... judgment may exist separately from the power of execution." One need not be a composer, but one must be able to feel with a composer before he can discuss his productions as they ought to be discussed. Not all the writers for the press are able to do this; many depend upon effrontery and a copious use of technical phrases to carry them through. The musician, alas! encourages this method whenever he gets a chance; nine times out of ten, when an opportunity to review a composition falls to him, he approaches it on ...
— How to Listen to Music, 7th ed. - Hints and Suggestions to Untaught Lovers of the Art • Henry Edward Krehbiel

... to sign my treaty on the 18th of June [Waterloo day] with or without that clause." Fancy a mind that could think of a treaty obtained by British guns as entitling him to be associated with Wellington! Yet Mr. Reed had the effrontery to say that he "expected us to make the missionary societies duly sensible of their obligations" to him. That twenty-ninth article was the gem of the treaty; and it had the honor of being copied into that of Lord Elgin, which ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume XIV • John Lord

... was obvious, and we went no further." This, as usual, is well grouped; the Vicar ponders, and cannot tell what to make of it. We should have preferred, as a subject, the Vicar confronting Mr Burchell, and the cool effrontery of the philosopher turning the tables upon the Vicar, "and how came you so basely to presume to break open this letter?" or better still, perhaps, the encounter of art between Mr Burchell and Mrs Deborah Primrose. And why have we not Dick's episode of the dwarf and the giant? Episodes ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXXXII. - June, 1843.,Vol. LIII. • Various

... ago, and our cooing doves of peace would have had molten tar mixed with their feathers. An Italian proverb runs, "It is easy to scoff at a bull from a window," and we indulge in not a little of such babyish effrontery from our safe place in the world. Germany, on the other hand, looks out upon the world from no such safe window-seat; she is down in the ring, and must be prepared at all hazards to take care of herself. That is a reason, too, why Germany ...
— Germany and the Germans - From an American Point of View (1913) • Price Collier

... this bit of effrontery by nothing more than a growl deep in this throat. His eyes travelled on, above Iff's head, and Staff was conscious of their penetrating and ...
— The Bandbox • Louis Joseph Vance

... heard her exclaim, 'if that's not a nursery rhyme of my childhood that I've not heard for sixty years and more! I declare,' she added with innocent effrontery, 'I've not heard it since I was ten years old. And I was born in ...
— A Prisoner in Fairyland • Algernon Blackwood

... The frank effrontery of satire like the foregoing had by this time begun to attract the attention of the Ministry, whose withers had already been sharply wrung by Pasquin; and it has been conjectured that the ballet of Quidam and the Patriots played no small part in precipitating the ...
— Fielding - (English Men of Letters Series) • Austin Dobson

... persistently refused for years to select a fifth. To pretend that such a body was, or could lawfully be, empowered to appoint eight electors for the people of Louisiana, to match the eight who were appointed by the people of Maryland, would be simple effrontery; and most certainly, as I have said, if they could not appoint, they could not give an incontrovertible certificate of appointment. The certificate is one thing; the appointment another. The State appoints and the Legislature directs the manner of appointment, ...
— The Vote That Made the President • David Dudley Field

... attendants said that it was Uffe, he declared that it was enough that the insolent foreigner should jeer at the pangs of his misery, without those of his own household vexing him with the same wanton effrontery. But the courtiers persistently averred that this man was Uffe; and the king said: "He is free, whosoever he be, to say out what he thinks." Then said Uffe, "that it was idle for their king to covet a realm which could rely not only on the service ...
— The Danish History, Books I-IX • Saxo Grammaticus ("Saxo the Learned")

... eleven and twelve o'clock at night, a tragedy in their opinion was the most unwholesome. They went to keep a watch on Victurnien and to embarrass him, a piece of schoolboys's mischief embittered by a jealous dandy's spite. But Victurnien was gifted with that page's effrontery which is a great help to ease of manner; and Rastignac, watching him as he made his entrance, was surprised to see how quickly he caught the tone ...
— The Jealousies of a Country Town • Honore de Balzac

... on altogether new characters when they are married, and girls think that they can do so. Look at this Mr. Maule, who is really over head and ears in love with Adelaide Palliser. She is full of hope and energy. He has none. And yet he has the effrontery to suppose that she will adapt herself to his way of living if ...
— Phineas Redux • Anthony Trollope

... her with it and demanded why she had it. With ready effrontery she said it was to hammer in the hook that held the clothesline, and proceeded to carry out the lie with a smiling face. That gave Yan a new lesson and not a good one. The hatchet was at once put back in the box, to be stolen more ...
— Two Little Savages • Ernest Thompson Seton

... the distinction in the church between spiritualia and temporalia. Well, the Jews let the spiritualia go to those who cared to take such things, while they held fast to the temporalia. And all that went on till His disciples had the effrontery to clip and coin under our Lord's very eyes, and even to ask Him to hold the coin while they sharpened their shears. 'O faithless and perverse generation! How long shall I be with you? How long shall I suffer you? ...
— Bunyan Characters - Third Series - The Holy War • Alexander Whyte

... for a bedroom and five louis for a glass of beer. Now, in order to derive such profit from the Anglo-Saxon a knowledge of English was indispensable. He resolved to learn the language. How he did so, except by sheer effrontery, taking linguistic toll of frequenters of the cafe, would be a mystery to anyone unacquainted with Aristide. But to his friends his mastery of the English tongue in such circumstances is comprehensible. To Aristide ...
— The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol • William J. Locke

... For fifteen years Jansoulet had exploited the former Bey in a scandalous fashion. Names of purveyors were cited and tricks wonderful in their assurance, their effrontery; for instance, the story of a musical frigate, yes, a veritable musical box, like a dining-room picture, which he had bought for two hundred thousand francs and sold again for ten millions; the cost price of a throne sold at three millions for which the account could be seen in the books of an ...
— The Nabob • Alphonse Daudet

... with the same monotonous precision of habit, and disclosed the muzzles of his confederates' weapons still leveled at the passengers. In spite of their astonishment, indignation, and discomfiture, his practiced effrontery and deliberate display appeared in some way to touch their humorous sense, and one or two smiled hysterically, as they rose and hesitatingly filed out of the vehicle. It is possible, however, that the leveled shot-guns contributed more or less ...
— In a Hollow of the Hills • Bret Harte

... Unblushing effrontery and a bronzed visage gained for John Scott (Lord Clonmel) while at the Bar the sobriquet of "Copper-faced Jack." He took the popular side in politics, which ordinarily would not have led to promotion in his profession; but his outstanding ability attracted ...
— Law and Laughter • George Alexander Morton

... him,—love-letters, do you understand? And now,"—her voice rose more shrill and uncontrollable at every word, as she saw Lira's face turn white, and her anger gave desperate utterance to the lie,—"and now he has the effrontery to come to me—to me—to me of all women—and to confess his abominable passion for that pure angel, imploring me to assist him in bringing destruction upon her and you. Oh, it is execrable, it is vile, it is hellish!" She ...
— A Roman Singer • F. Marion Crawford

... acknowledged this correction, and with the cool effrontery that only a woman can carry off to her entire satisfaction, she then pretended that this was the first time that she had ever laid eyes on him, when as a matter of fact she and the Princess had discussed this remarkable, independent individual, ...
— L. P. M. - The End of the Great War • J. Stewart Barney

... read that Capito is favoured by such a hater of Luther with the designation of an excellent and most accomplished man. These and many things of the like kind he represents me as saying, taking the pattern of his effrontery from a letter of Jerome, who complains that his rivals had circulated a forged letter under his name amongst a synod of bishops in Africa; in which he was made to confess that, deceived by certain Jews, he had ...
— Colloquies of Erasmus, Volume I. • Erasmus

... except "Martin Claw-Clergy," appointed by the author to print the same, presume to do so. [Footnote: Quoted by Prynne in his Fresh Discovery, p. 8.] Prynne quotes this as an example of the contempt into which the Ordinance for Licensing had fallen with the Sectaries, and of their supreme effrontery, Robinson, he says, was one of the chief publishers of scandalous libels, having brought printers from Amsterdam, and set up a private printing press for the purpose. [Footnote: I may take this opportunity of announcing ...
— The Life of John Milton Vol. 3 1643-1649 • David Masson

... inference? Are not these evidences of a compact between them? Has he not acknowledged this compact in confessing that he knew Welbeck was my debtor; that he was apprized of his flight, but that (what matchless effrontery!) he had promised secrecy, and would, by no means, betray him? You say he means to return; but of that I doubt. You will never see his face more. He is too wise to thrust himself again into the noose; but I do not utterly despair of lighting upon Welbeck. ...
— Arthur Mervyn - Or, Memoirs of the Year 1793 • Charles Brockden Brown

... The man's effrontery was prodigious and there was so much plausibility in his glib chatter that, in spite of himself, Coquenil kept a last lingering wonder if Groener could be telling the truth. If not, what was his motive in this elaborate fooling? He must know that his hypocrisy and ...
— Through the Wall • Cleveland Moffett

... was the London public so much alarmed. The subject, of course, fell under the consideration of parliament, where Fergus O'Connor was accused of attending seditious meetings and making treasonable speeches; this he denied with the greatest effrontery, affecting to be a pattern of order and law, although it was notorious that he was bent upon revolutionary attempts, and that his main motive was to resent certain affronts offered to himself by the Whigs. He had been jealous of ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... and patriotic ladies and gentlemen in the whole of the United States, have been imposed upon by an individual who (I have been told) faintly resembles me as far as personal appearance is involved. Yet how this person, who is, I regret to say, but a common, vulgar ignoramus, could have the barefaced effrontery to address an intelligent audience either in his own or an assumed character, I can not comprehend. Needless to say I shall at once take steps to learn the truth, and the impostor shall be made to suffer the extreme penalties of the law providing for ...
— Mixed Faces • Roy Norton

... "get over the idea that there's anything the matter with me mentally except love and righteous indignation. I am in love; and it hurts. I'm indignant, because those people are treating my sex with an outrageous and high-handed effrontery that would bring the blush of impotent rage to ...
— The Gay Rebellion • Robert W. Chambers

... dear. We were in by eleven." This was a faint attempt to help dignity by a parade of accuracy in figures, and an affectation of effrontery. "But really we needn't go over it again. You know what a nice letter he wrote Aunt Frances?" And instead of waiting for an answer, Tishy, perhaps to avoid catechism about the moonrise and things, ploughs ...
— Somehow Good • William de Morgan

... could not have been aware that your official envelope contained only blank paper. I cannot believe that one more simple-minded than I believe you to be would have had the effrontery to present such matter as evidence that he was an officer of the United States Navy," continued Captain Battleton, with a look of greater severity than he had before assumed, possibly because he ...
— Stand By The Union - SERIES: The Blue and the Gray—Afloat • Oliver Optic

... self-conscious. He greatly desired to lie, but lacked the effrontery to do so before the other men. His father saved him the trouble of doing so. Eager to get back at ...
— The Deaves Affair • Hulbert Footner

... no one in sight that morning who promised the diversion or the effrontery that would make this the day of days, and there seemed to be no excuse that would furnish the occasion for the battle-cry which would end all this ...
— All-Wool Morrison • Holman Day

... wicked persons in the country, mostly, it is true, belonging to that class of non-respectable foreigners of whom my lord spoke with such feeling, taste, and judgment, who are plotting, rather with insolent effrontery than crawling secrecy, to overturn the sacred edifice of property, the foundation of our hearths, our homes, and our altars. Gentlemen of the Jury, it might be thought that such madmen might well be left to themselves, that no one would listen to their ravings, and that the glorious machinery ...
— The Tables Turned - or, Nupkins Awakened. A Socialist Interlude • William Morris

... could not bring himself to read Ruskin's letter of resignation to convocation. The editor of the University Gazette also had the effrontery to leave a letter from Ruskin, giving the reasons for his resignation, unpublished; and the Pall Mall Gazette crowned the edifice of poltroonery by announcing that he had resigned owing to his ...
— Great Testimony - against scientific cruelty • Stephen Coleridge

... organisms. Neither as individuals nor as a race, neither in regard to this life nor to the next, does the idea of God, when ennobled by a contemplation of the cosmical relations, permit to man the effrontery of claiming that this universe and all that therein is was made with an eye to his wants and wishes, whether to gratify ...
— The Religious Sentiment - Its Source and Aim: A Contribution to the Science and - Philosophy of Religion • Daniel G. Brinton

... presented petitions against it, as they had done in the lower house. They prayed that counsel might open their case; and though they had been driven from the Commons on account of their evidence, with disgrace, they had the effrontery to ask that they might call witnesses ...
— The History of the Rise, Progress and Accomplishment of the - Abolition of the African Slave-Trade, by the British Parliament (1839) • Thomas Clarkson

... goddess and mistress of his being. Before her majestic purity, how false and empty seemed all the calumnies he had heard! How vulgar and insolent his own audacious attack upon her! Was this the woman he had had the effrontery to ...
— Captain Mansana and Mother's Hands • Bjoernstjerne Bjoernson



Words linked to "Effrontery" :   audaciousness, presumptuousness, uppityness, audacity, uppishness



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